My experiences about Sapa Trekking and Homestay Tours
( wrote by a tourist)
That’s the second time I came to Vietnam, The first one I had an interesting time when visiting Halong Bay. So, I made decision to come back Vietnam one more time to discover new places, gain more new experience. After landing the plane at Noi Bai Airport, I took a taxi to the hotel, which I had reservation in advance. Relaxing at the hotel and then I had a waking around Hanoi Old Quarter after my lunch. I came back the hotel, had dinner and packed my package for my trip to Sapa, which I had booked at travel desk in the hotel. The tour owned by TheSinhCafe Travel. bus and the tour-guide named Mr. Quynh picked me up and left me to Hanoi Train Station. In the bus I met two Singaporeans who are Kenny and Elda, they are friendly. Our tour there was eight people. We got on the train and stared the trip. I slept all time on the train with my soft chair. Arriving Lao Cai Train Station at 5.30 AM. We had a time to take a rest and have breakfast together. The food is quite nice and not to heavy with us, the tour guide said that we will have a trip walking later.
It was a wonderful day in Sapa, walking in those gorgeous glens and we stopped off at a village or two to smile at locals and pull faces at the super-cute children in their house. The village I remembered it has a funny named Cat Cat. Cat Cat Village offered some breathtaking rice paddy views. We took about a 2-3 km hike through the village. It offered a glimpse into the daily life of a big minority group, Black H’Mong. They are much friendlier than and definitely not as aggressive as the Red Zao ladies. The hike through the mountains and rice paddies was just picture perfect. There was a nice waterfall about half-way. And with this village, we got to see how the local people really lived and worked. Water buffalos play an important role in Sapa because they help to plough the rice fields as there is no modern machinery to do this type of work at Sapa.
During our trek to the villages, we had a chance to see water buffalos at work or grazing leisurely on the rice terraces. On the way we catched Lao Chai village, it lies in between mountains and grass hills, with houses that look like colossal mushrooms on all sides. All the houses are alike in construction. I wondered why they can live in such a lack of facilities like that. But on the other way, there have fresh air and very large space.
Our guide was fantastic, he speaks great English and is interesting, relaxed and quite playful, and imitating my accent…He told us about the simple life of the local people there. He knows many things in many fields. That made our trip more interesting.
And you know??? Ta Van is a small village set within a picturesque valley not far from the northern Vietnamese mountain resort of Sapa. The area is renowned for its colorful ethnic minorities, and Ta Van is home to two such groups. A stay with one of the farmer families here will give you a close-up experience of the life-style and culture typical of the area. Trekking in the surrounding area is most satisfying. In this village we had a welcome feeling at any house of the hospitable people there. A picnic lunch in the village with the local people was wonderful. Laura is a vegetarian and she got her private menu of all. Jackson always made every in the group surprised by his magic skills during the meal.
I’m so happy to get a good time together in this trip. Although everybody felt tired of after got a big trek but it’s still OK because many interesting things discovered. Continue the trip we walked to Ta Van village, had some looks then comeback to the house of the host. We were served a delicious meal in which we could see the way the H’mong people cook the meal in the normal day.
Morning in Sapa was very nice. It seemed that the time stop at the nice view here. While having our breakfast, Greg wants the prettiest hawker, Jeremy wants to chase smoke and I just want my Pho Ga….
The trip to Giang Ta Chai village, Silver waterfall of Red Dzao was incredible feeling for us. It was the true experiences when I found out Suspension Ranttan Bridge and met the locals, shared cultural experience with their families. On the way trek we called Su Pan Village as mountainous commune! There are 4 small hamlets of the Black H’mong and Red Zao looks down to the Muong Hoa Valley and is one of the poorest communes to Sapa due to the thin and poor soil. Walking uphill from the road, one can see rudimentary houses built on the rocky farmland where the locals cultivate corn for their staple food.
After a busy day trek we got many things from Sapa. I had a big sleep ever in the train to comeback Hanoi. Of all, this was an incredible adventure and worth your time to spend!