Here are the most common
questions asked by our travelers, please follow the links to
get the answers or you can type your questions on the search
If you can not find your answers, please send us your
questions, we will email you and update it here for other
When is the best time to
The best time to visit is from April to September. Although,
each season has its own special qualities and surprises.
During this period the temperature is ranging from 15 – 25
Degree Celsius, it is not a raining season in Sapa so the
trekking routes are dry and bear great opportunity to do
longer treks and to conquer Mount Fansipan. During the
winter months, the temperature is much cooler and it is
advised to bring a some warm clothing (hat, sweater, wool
socks) for after you days fo trekking. Also, during the
winter months there are periods of light rain, which brings
in the fog. This puts Sapa in the clouds and allows for some
fantastic photo opportunities.
Before our night train to
Sapa, do you have a place where we can leave luggage?
It is recommended that you
extend your stay / check-out time at the hotel that you are
staying at so that you can get a little added rest, shower,
and change of clothes before boarding the train. Then, you
can also leave your bags there during the day.
If this option is unavailable or you don’t have a hotel,
you can leave your luggage at one of our offices. We will happily
store it for you while you are on you trip for free.
Tip: If you are to Sapa for trekking, we suggest you travel
light for an enjoyable time.
Is there a sleeper train to
Sapa? What is it like?
There is a night train to
Sapa. There are a range of seating types but we only use the
air-conditioned soft sleepers for our guests. There are four
berths in each cabin, two lower and two upper. The beds are
soft, clean and come with a blanket and pillow. The beds are
sometimes a bit small for some Westerners.
Each cabin locks on the inside for security and has a fair
amount of room for luggage storage under the beds and above
If you would like to splurge and go first class, the Royal
Victoria Train is available. Please ask our travel
consultant for more details.
The train itself does not go fast and takes about 10 hours
from Hanoi to Lao Cai (about 350 km). In comparison to other
trains it is not too noisy, although some people bring
earplugs, especially if they are in the hard –sleeper
class. Toilets are available on each coach. It is advised to
bring your own toilet paper.
About half the time there is a dining car on the train. Just
recently we have noticed that they have replaced the dining
car with another passenger coach. Thus, it is advised to
bring water, snacks, or anything else you may want to eat
Is there a day train to Lao
There is one train that
journey from Hanoi to Lao Cai and vise-versa in the day, but
there is no sleeper train during the day. It only has seats
and no air-conditioning. We recommend you not take this
Tip: We highly recommend taking the night train to save you
time, visit more places in Sapa.
Any other means of travel to
Sapa except train?
The best mean of transport to
Lao Cai and Sapa is still the train, however, car or van can
be also good to reach to this beautiful mountain town.
It will take about 10 hours (not including possible traffic
jams) in a distance of 400 km from Hanoi. And there is
plenty of sightseeing we can make en route.
We recommend to travel by train, but for some
reasons, you would wish to travel there by car, please check
with one of our travel consultants to see the road
conditions since it sometimes has construction and will make
your journey to Sapa even longer than 10 hours.
Road travel should be at day time.
How far is that from Lao Cai
to Sapa and means of transport?
It is 38 km from Lao Cai to
Sapa, the road is constantly zigzag with steep up hills. As
we approach will gain about 1000m in elevation and reach
Sapa town at 1600m. The views are spectacular.
It is comfortable by AC can or car, our driver will bring
you to Sapa in about one hour.
Your guide and/or driver will be waiting outside the train station
you up. Look for a sign with your name on it.
your local guide waiting for us at the train station of Lao
guide will be waiting outside the train station with a sign
and with your name. Together with your driver they will take
you safely to Sapa. The guide that we use is a local guide
from the Sapa area.
We provide telephone numbers of our local guides and tour
operators in advance, just in case.
Tip: There are so many people outside at Lao Cai train
station when you get out, please make sure you look for the
sign Sapa Adventure Travel and our local guide welcoming you
Is there anywhere in Sapa or
Lao Cai, that we can get changed, have a shower, and leave
luggage before our trekking?
Yes, for your comfort, we have arranged a clean place at a
Sapa hotel for you to shower (not for sleep). Breakfast is
at the restaurant in the same place. For your convienience
you may also store your bags at the hotel.
There is also a good place in Lao Cai for shower and
breakfast in case that your itinerary is not to travel to
Sapa that day. (e.g. travel to Bac Ha Sunday market)
Tip: The place for shower and changed is not for sleeping
the whole day, it’s just for a short rest and shower
before you start your trek.
How do you define: easy
trekking, intermediate & hard trekking?
(How hard is the trek with
your Sapa tours? About the condition of the Sapa trails. Are
they dry or wet, steep or flat?)
Trekking: Is a category of adventure travel, typically
involving visits to remote areas, with overnight lodging in
tents or other minimal accommodation. It is less strenuous
than hiking but more strenuous then walking.
In comparison to trekking in Nepal or India, the trekking in
Sapa is easy. But, because of the rapid weather changes, and
the severe ups and downs on some of the trails; we have to
classify the trekking as moderate. Please be aware of the
time it takes to reach each destination so that you can
confirm that it will suit your abilities.
Easy trekking: Harder than walking, trekking trail is not
steep, has some ups and downs, often in a short time.
Moderate trekking: Trekking trail has ups and downs, but not
so steep. Trail will become more difficult in poor weather.
Intermediate to Hard trekking: Trekking route has a steep
incline and often is off road in remote areas, very
difficult during periods of rain.
Every situation depends on weather, especially in Sapa.
Tip: We can always tailor the trek to adapt to the weather
changes, sometimes you would like to hire the support jeep /
vehicle to bring you from point to point, and this is
possible at Sapa Adventure too at a reasonable extra.
What kind of shoes should we
use for trekking in Sapa?
There are different types of
trekking in Sapa and its surrounding mountains, so when
booking Sapa tours or Vietnam tours including Sapa, you will
need to check with our travel consultants to see which kind
of shoes will work best.
For the light or easy trek, we recommend using good sandals
or walking shoes, but for intermediate and hard trekking
trips, we have to use really good shoes or sport shoes which
must have really strong grips for hiking up and down. Many
of our past clients use their expert hiking boots which
often become very muddy in rainy weather. The best footwear
during periods of rain are definitely the local rubber boots
bought at the local market for about 60 000 VND or $4 USD.
They grip in mud and do not cause blisters. Although, these
boots do not breath at all.
What do you mean by CBT
Adventure continues to
promote responsible travel, we strive to do our best in
supporting CBT (Community Based Tourism) Products. A CBT
Homestay is an overnight in the home of one of the local
ethnic minorities. They have been set up in a way that the
community benefits from the added tourism income and not
just a single entity.
What is the homestay
condition, are there mosquito nets and sleeping bags
provided at homestay?
We try not to bring our
influences to the local host. CBT means that the locals will
make all the arrangements of bedding like: cushions,
mattress, blankets, pillows, mosquito-net, with their own
materials. Authentic and simple but clean and safe.
Please bring your own sleeping bags to the homestay if you
feel the need and it is also recommended for some of the
visitors with sensitive skin.
For meals, our host will help with cooking and dining, our
local guide might have to bring food from Sapa (if they are
far away from the market). They have their traditional ways
of preparing food and they are all well educated about
hygiene, food safety, and cleanliness.
Simple as it is, a toilet is placed a few steps from their
house, there is a bucket of water for use…please do bring
your own toilet paper. Minimizing as many environmental
impacts as possible has already been an issue raised and
Are we sleeping with the
family at the village in the same house? Do we eat with the
locals at the homestay?
Yes we will stay with the
family in the same house providing we are a group of less
less than 4. If we are more than four we will divide into
smaller groups and stay with multiple neighboring families
We will normally enjoy dinner and sleep with one family, but
sometimes, the neighbors want to share the tourism benefits
equally, then cooking and eating is at one house but
sleeping is at another
What types of activities
should we expect to be participating in at the homestay?
There is a wide range of
activities that we have participated in. Some of our guests
have gone out in the fields and actually got into the mud
and planted rice. Others, have befriended one of the young
women and was taken to her house to have tea. Sometimes the
guest are up for some more trekking and we go for a short
walk in the mountains. And, others prefer to just sit and
relax. Helping out with the cooking and some of the chores
is encouraged so that you can get a better understanding of
The people at the homestay are quite shy. Especially with
their English. They can speak a little English and actually
it is enough to have a conversation. Although, they do need
some encouragement. We ask you to be active in communicating
with the family, askin them questions about their lives.
They are always happy to answer, oftem showing you and
getting you involved in order for you to better understand.
What kind of food will we
eat at the homestay?
There will be a range of food
at the homestay. For dinner there will be a mix of
traditional Dao and Vietnamese. We bring a lot of food in
from Sapa to share with the family and everyone gets a
chance to share in the cooking. For breakfast, pancakes and
bananas have become very poplular amongst the trekkers and
homestays, although if you wish to have a traditional Dao
breakfast that can be arranged. It is ususlaly rice, and an
egg and some vegetables
How do I prepare before
going to the homestay?
First off, you should go for
a few walks before going trekking as it will help you get
your legs back.
For the homestay, there is not much preparation. Making sure
that you have packed everything you need to make your stay
more confortamble is most important. Bring a small bag with
the clothes change of clothes. You should bring something
warm, as the nights will cool off, sometimes dropping as
mush as ten degrees. Other things you might want to bring
with you are a mirror, toilet paper, your favorite tea or
snack, flashlight, and a book.
Further preparations to make your stay even more special
would include learning a short song to sing after dinner. It
is a cultural tradition to sing after dinner, and if you
start off by saying you would like to sing a song, then all
the better. You can bring gifts for the homestay owner,
things like pens, pencils, and books. Other great things to
bring with you to the homestay, and all over asia, are
pictures of your home, you and your family. The pictures
always become a great converstaoin piece.
How does sleeping work in
Most of the family goes to
bed early although one will stay up until everyone goes to
bed. Having your flashlight close to your bed is a good a
idea as the light switches are sometimes in odd place,
Expect roosters to begin the day at about five o’clcok in
the morning. By 5:30 a fire has already been lit to boil
For other questions not here,
pls contact us via email: firstname.lastname@example.org