about Lao Cai tourism visitors would think of the
resort town of Sapa, however Lao Cai have other attractive
places bedise Sapa. Known as the land of 25 ethnic groups
born with unique identities, cool climate all year round and
fascinating natural landscapes. If you are wondering how to
know Lao Cai, let's follow our article below to discover the
most detailed travel experience in Lao Cai!
Time to travel Lao Cai (see more
• Generally, good time is around April to August, at this
time the weather is cool and sunny, very suitable to come
here for a vacation. Traveling this time, you just need to
pay attention to the weather to avoid rainy days.
• From January to March, the highlands of Lao Cai often have
beautiful plum blossoms, but this time is sometimes a bit
cold, the humidity in the air is high so it feels wet.
• August to September is the rice harvest season, coming to
Sapa this time you can take a look at the
rice terraces in Y
Ty and then return to Sapa to rest. Y Ty is also a place for
the photographers to “hunt clouds”, an attractive topic for
young people, the time is not fixed and depends on the
weather and your fortunate, but usually around March, April
• Bac Ha horse racing festival in early June every year, if
you are curious, you can travel Bac Ha and enjoy this
• If you want to climb Bach Moc Luong Tu mountain, you can
go in March – April, this time the weather is moderately
cold, little rain and not too wet.
• If you want to hunt snow in Sapa, pay close attention to
the weather forecast at the end of the year. There is no
fixed time but depending on the year from December to
January, there can be severe cold spells, it may snow in dry
Transport from Hanoi to Lao Cai
Lao Cai city is 376km from Hanoi. So to choose the means of
travel to Lao Cai you can choose to go by train,
private car or bus.
If you go by train, you should go in the evening with the
will arrive early in the morning, you should
buy a bed cabin
ticket to rest at night to be comfortable so that the next
morning has health to visit, there are many choices such as
Orient Express, Sapaly,
Dream Express, Livitrans, Fanxipan.
Trains arrive in Lao Cai you can catch the
bus to Sapa
(about 30km) or to
Bac Ha (70km). And if you choose the bus,
it is faster with the new Hanoi - Lao Cai expressway so the
travel time is about 4 hours, the car will take you straight
to Sapa. To Sa Pa, you rent a motorbike at the hotel to go
sightseeing for convenience.
Where to stay when to Lao Cai?
In recent years, along with the growth in the number of
visitors to Sapa has become one of the famous tourist
destinations in Vietnam. Therefore, the accommodation system
in Lao Cai is currently very developed and diversified types
of accommodation services: From
cheap hotels to luxury
resorts. Especially, if you come to Lao Cai to experience
and explore the unique cultural space of ethnic minorities
living here. Can use the
family homestay in the village -
this will be a great experience that you can not forget and
perhaps this is the most economical form of saving money.
However, you should pay attention to learn about customs
before choosing a homestay, avoid the unhappy things for you
and the host.
What to eat in Lao Cai?
Come to Lao Cai, do not forget to enjoy the special dishes,
typical for the Northwest highland such as: Village pigs,
Thang Co (soup cooked by horse), salmon hotpot, grilled fish
and especially Sapa barbecue dishes, You can enjoy an
evening in the downtown area, enjoy the chill and fresh
feeling of this town, indeed very warm and interesting.
visit Bac Ha market, you should enjoy
Khau Nhuc -
sliced pork with big pieces covering a large bowl of pickled
vegetables and flavored herbs. Simacai market is famous for
its Thang Co soup, a combination of meat, skin and bones of
grass-eating species such as horses, cows, goats…
Entrance fee to Sapa points (latest update 2019)
• Silver Waterfall: 20,000 VND / person (from 16 years old),
10,000 VND / person (from 7 years old to under 16).
• Route of Sapa - Sin Chai - Sa Pa: VND 40,000 / person
(aged 16 and over), VND 20,000 / person (aged 7 to under
• Route Sa Pa - Ta Phin - Sa Pa: 40,000 VND / person (from
16 years and older), 20,000 VND / person (from 7 years old
to under 16).
• Route Sa Pa - Lao Chai - Ta Van - Ban Ho - Thanh Phu - Nam
Sai - Nam Cang - Sa Pa: 75,000 VND / person (from 16 years
and older), 30,000 VND / person (aged 7 to under 16).
• Route Sa Pa - Sa Pa - Hau Thao - Su Pan - Ta Van - Sa Pa:
75,000 VND / person (aged 16 and over), 30,000 VND / person
/ route (people aged 7 to under 16).
• Route Tram Ton - Suoi Vang - Thac Tinh Yeu - Tram Ton:
70,000 VND / person (from 16 years and older) and 30,000 VND
/ person (peole from 7 years old to under 16 years old);
• Tram Ton - Jungle - Tram Ton route: VND 40,000 / person.
• Fansipan mountain (climbing), including 5 sights: Ancient
tea forest at an altitude of 2,000 m, bird populations at
2,200 m, short bamboo forest at 3,000 m, Van Sam populations
at 3,100 m, conquering Fansipan peak: 150,000 VND / person.
• Children under 16 years old are not allowed to join the
Tram Ton - Jungle - Tram Ton route and the Fansipan route
Tourist places worth visiting in Lao Cai
Cay May (Rattan Bridge)
Cau May, about 17km southeast of Sapa, is one of the tourist
destinations in Lao Cai. In the past, Rattan bridge was the
only bridge for local people to move from Ta Van commune to
the center of Sapa town. Over time the bridge has become
increasingly degraded, and due to the development of Sapa
tourism, a new stronger wooden bridge has been built nearby.
Old Cloud Bridge was remodeled and was only for tourists to
visit and take pictures.
Located in San Sa Ho commune, Sapa district, Lao Cai
Love Waterfall is an ideal place to visit and
rest. The waterfall has a height of nearly 100m, originating
peak of Phan Xi Pang, bringing the coldness of the
mountain forest rushing down into a stream of white bubbles.
After each thin layer of water on both sides of the
waterfall is a lush forest vegetation. The vast space of
charming forests, rivers and streams, the love waterfall is
a great tourist destination for visitors.
When mentioning the heaven gate, most people think of the
sky gate of Quan Ba and Ha Giang that few people know that
Sapa also has a heaven gate. This is the highest road peak
in Vietnam that can come to admire the peak of Fansipan. The
road to the zigzag heaven gate is winding in the middle of
the mountain, this road is called O Quy Ho pass, weaving
between majestic Hoang Lien Son range and in the middle of
the highest point of O Quy Ho pass is the sky gate.
Muong Hoa valley
10km southeast of Sapa town center, Muong Hoa valley is an
attractive and attractive tourist attraction for tourists.
Passing a mountain pass and going along the mountains,
visitors will be fascinated by the charming scenery of the
valley. This beautiful Muong Hoa valley is also the home of
many ethnic groups, which contains a wonderful natural
beauty that captivates many tourists when they come to
O Quy Ho Pass
O Quy Ho pass or Hoang Lien Son pass is a mountain pass on
the national highway 4D crossing Hoang Lien Son range,
connecting Lao Cai and Lai Chau provinces with the top of
the pass also marks the border between the two provinces, of
which 2/3 is in Tam Duong district of Lai Chau, the
remaining one third is located in Sa Pa and Lao Cai. This is
probably a mountain pass that holds the record of the length
in the Northwest mountainous region of Vietnam, with a
length of nearly 50 km longer than the Pha Din pass (32 km
long, located on the boundary of Son La and Dien Bien
provinces) or Khau Pha pass (nearly 40 km, belonging to Yen
Bai). The height, ruggedness and length of O Quy Ho makes
the pass unorthodox as the "King of the Northwest Pass", one
of the four great passes in northern Vietnam.
Fansipan peak: Roof of Indochina
With a height of 3143m Fansipan is the highest mountain in
Vietnam and also the highest mountain in 3 Indochina
countries of the Hoang Lien Son mountain range, 9km
southwest of Sapa. According to the local language, the name
of the mountain is Hua Xi Pan which means giant slab.
Fansipan Peak is currently the meeting place of many
climbers. Conquering the mountain can be done through tours
of professional travel companies or self-sufficient with the
guidance of indigenous people. The hiking route can start
from Sapa to the top of Tram Ton Pass or less commonly Cat
Cat tourist area by car or motorbike. There are H’Mong and
Red Dzao ethnic people working as ten thousand workers for
the highest number of mountain climbers.
The best time to climb is from September to March next year.
However, the most beautiful way to Fansipan is around late
February, when the mountain flowers start to bloom.
For those who are not healthy and have limited time, the
time to reach Fansipan is only about 30 minutes thanks to
the cable car. The cable car will take you to the station
about 600m from the top, your job is to climb the last step.
Bac Ha market
Bac Ha market takes place every Saturdays. People flock to
the town of Bac Ha to market with a variety of different
items. The market is mainly a place for exchanging and
trading goods of ethnic minority people from nearby
villages. At Bac Ha market, you can find strange items of
ethnic minorities, as well as enjoy highland specialties,
such as the ancient winery, corn wine, rice wine or camellia
tea or livestock…
Lao Cai Border Gate
Lao Cai International Border Gate is one of three important
international border gates on the northern border of Vietnam
along with Dong Dang Border Gate (Lang Son) and Mong Cai
Border Gate (Quang Ninh). If the border gates in Quang Ninh
and Lang Son are adjacent to Guangxi province - a province
with a developed economy and exported goods require high
technical content, Lao Cai International Border Gate is
adjacent to the Southwest region of China - a large area
with an easier market.
Lao Cai International Border Gate is also the place where
many tourists put in the list of favorite destinations. You
can do the procedures by applying for a daily passport to go
to Hekou (China) for some shopping.
Coc Leu Market
Less than 1km from the Vietnam - China border, Coc Leu
market is considered a busy shopping center of Lao Cai city.
In general, you can check it out here or if you like to buy,
there is anything you need at this market. Of course, all
Chinese goods so the quality is off the table.
Above is all the experience of Lao Cai travel that I have
summarized. Just come and experience for yourself.