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Sapa is a small, mountain town in Lao Cai Province. It is located about 350 km northwest of Hanoi, close to the Chinese border. Here's where you'll find the Hoang Lien Son range of mountains, which includes Fan Si Pan—the country's highest peak. This quiet Vietnamese town is home to different ethnic tribal groups. There are five main ethnic groups in Sapa: the Hmong, Dao, Tay, Giay and Xa Pho. It is said that Sapa was first occupied by the first four groups, since the Vietnamese from the lowlands (better known as the Kinh) did not colonise the highest valleys. These days, Sapa welcomes a diverse range of visitors, attracted by the highland tribes, iconic rice paddies and forest treks. The whole area is blessed with awe-inspiring natural beauty.

Sapa weather overview

Sapa has a temperate climate, so it is cold all year, with the average temperature fluctuates around 15ºC.

The weather in Sapa in summer is not nearly as hot. The daytime temperature usually fluctuates from 20ºC to 25°C, and at night temperature is around 13ºC to 15°C.

In the winter, Sapa is very cold with the temperature drops to 0°C so it will offer an opportunity to watch snow if you travel to Sapa in the winter.

During the year, the rainy season usually starts from May to October, accounting for nearly 80% of the annual rainfall. You will be more likely to encounter showers in these months of the year.

Sapa during the day

A distinctive feature of Sapa weather is that you will get a chance to experience four seasons in one day.

In the morning, you will feel pleasant spring weather. In the afternoon, it’s a bit sunny but still cold and not too hot in the afternoon.

The temperature starts to drop down with clouds, creating a feeling like autumn in the evening or cold weather like winter at night.

Check the below table for the general idea of Sapa weather throughout the year

Month Avg. High (°C) Avg. Mean (°C) Avg. Low (°C)
Jan 11.2 8.1 5.6
Feb 15.3 11.7 8.5
Mar 19.6 15.6 12.1
Apr 21 17.3 14.4
May 23.4 20.1 17.3
Jun 22.9 20.2 17.8
Jul 22.3 19.6 17.5
Aug 22.6 19.4 17.2
Sep 21 18.1 16.1
Oct 18.6 15.5 13.3
Nov 16.4 13.6 11.3
Dec 11.8 8.8 6.5

 

Best time to go to Sapa

The best time to visit Sapa is from March to May and from September to November. At these times, the weather is relatively stable with sunny days and cool nights. The first period is the fall time. At this time of the year, the weather is very comfortable for tourism. It is dry, clear with much sunshine. The view of Sapa’s rice terraces is at its best between September and October. The cool and dry weather with the stable temperature makes it the perfect time for trekking and photos

In the summer, although the weather is quite warm, it is not as hot as other regions in Vietnam. If you spend time in this town in the period between April and May, you will have the chance to see the wonderful scenes of many colorful flowers and green fields there. Many Vietnamese visit Sapa after the Lunar New Year to admire the blossoming cherry trees.

In the winter, from December to February, the weather in Sapa becomes very cold, especially at night. However, in return, visitors will have the opportunity to watch the sunrise over the valley in the morning. In recent years, there is snow in Sapa. If you have chance to travel to this picturesque town on this occasion, you will definitely see quite a romance scene. However, this is the reason why Sapa is always crowded at this time of the year.

When to Climb Mount Fansipan

If you’ve made your way to Sapa, chances are you want to climb Vietnam’s highest peak, Mount Fansipan. To make the very most of this special experience, careful planning is necessary and that starts with the time of year you choose to go on this adventure.

The best time to climb the mountain is either in springtime (March to May) or autumn (October to November). During these seasons you will have a minimal chance of rain and the temperatures will be most comfortable. If you don’t mind the cold, winter can also work, but you risk getting your view covered by clouds. That way you’d really be missing out as a main part of climbing Fansipan is enjoying the scenery of the surrounding mountains and villages.

A hike during the rainy season is not advisable. For one, because the ascent is very long and getting caught in the rain on a full-day trek is not comfortable. Also, some parts of the trails can become treacherous even if you wear good shoes. Since safety should always come first, it would be best to avoid this hike in summer.

If you are at all flexible with your dates, keep an eye on the weather once you reach Hanoi. Maybe you can add an extra day of sightseeing in the capital to wait out a period of bad weather or visit Sapa before Hanoi if you hear the weather is currently good. This might sound a bit troublesome but when you hike Fansipan, or any trail in Sapa for that matter, on a clear beautiful day and fully experience the wonders of nature in this special area, you’ll be glad you made the effort.

Sapa seasonal weather guide

Spring in Sapa – March to May

From early March to late May Sapa wakes up from its winter sleep. The weather is sunny and dry during the day and crisp and cool at night. At this time, the landscape looks even lusher and greener than the rest of the year as everything is filled with fresh life after winter. This makes for wonderful views as you hike Sapa’s hills and your photos will be priceless.

But not only the perfect temperatures and low chance of rain make this time of year great for traveling to Sapa. The local cherry blossom season is a sight to behold as entire fields and gardens are filled with clouds of pink and white flowers.

If it’s your first time in Sapa, spring is the ideal time to visit. The cool temperatures will make the hikes less strenuous and leave you with more energy to connect with your guide, explore the markets, try local food specialties, and simply enjoy your surroundings.

Early spring is also less busy than other periods, so it will be easier to find a guide and accommodation. Trails will also be quieter, and you’ll be able to enjoy Sapa’s beauty without the crowds. If you feel this time of year is still too cold for hiking, a motorbike tour is another good way to explore the area, either with a guide or by yourself.

Summer in Sapa – June to September

In late May and early June, you will feel the weather getting hotter as the rainy season approaches. During this time daytime temperatures climb to about 25°C and there’s at least one heavy downpour a day. While it often only lasts an hour or two, the rain is so heavy it will quickly turn paths and dirt roads into muddy trails making it harder to travel to and from Sapa as well as get around and hike.

While planning your trip, be aware that some treks might be a lot more difficult or even impossible due to the rain. Follow your guide’s recommendations about when to go out or stay in as they know best how to navigate the area in this season. If the idea of risking a fall in the mud or getting caught in the rain doesn’t bother you too much but might even make your trip more fun, this season could be great for a unique adventure.

Despite the unfavorable weather conditions, Sapa still attracts a lot of domestic visitors during the summer months, making it the busiest time of year in terms of tourism for the hill station. This is another fact you might want to consider when you book your trip as overcrowded trails, markets and hostels could make it more difficult to find a good guide and take away from your experience.

Autumn in Sapa – October to November

Towards the end of September, the daily rains stop and hiking as well as getting around will become easier again. The days will still be warm, but the heat of the rainy season will be over by then. From October to November temperatures will slowly keep falling making for mild days and cool nights.

Autumn is harvest season in Sapa, which is special as the endless rice paddies will weave through the mountains like golden ribbons and give the area a unique look you’ll only get to see right before the rice is gathered.

Coming to Sapa in autumn is a wonderful experience as you’ll be able to enjoy the hiking trails in perfect weather and take in the views of the endless yellow rice paddies. Autumn is also another great time for a motorbike tour as roads will be safe, dry and less busy than in summer.

Winter in Sapa – December to February

From late November all through February, winter takes over in Sapa. Temperatures can drop as low as freezing and you might even get to see snow. While it would be a magical sight to see the rolling hills and mountains covered in a blanket of fresh white snow, you can imagine hiking in this weather could be challenging and would require you to bring a lot of extra gear and clothes you won’t need during the rest of your time in Vietnam. Also keep in mind that nights will be even cooler and staying in simple homestays with limited heating could be very uncomfortable if that’s not something you’re used to.

If it doesn’t get cold enough to snow, you will probably get some light rains which again will make trails and streets muddy. Winter is also a time of heavy fog. If you’re lucky you can catch the clouds gliding in to wrap around the mountains and beautifully reflect the light, but chances are your views of Sapa’s unique landscape will be obstructed by fog and all you’ll see around you as you hike is a grey wall.

Sapa's current weather and 7-day forecast

SAPA WEATHER

Our comprehensive guide will show you from A to Z things to do in Sapa and how to make most of your Sapa experience. Through the course of history, Sapa underwent the changes of time to turn itself from a remote trading post built by the French colonists into a global travel hub, a top tier travel destination of Vietnam. Located in Lao Cai, a province in Northwest Vietnam, a small town like Sapa surprisingly boasts its richness in its indigenous tribal culture of the ethnic communities, together with the unrivaled beauties in natural landscapes.

1. Fansipan - 'Roof of Indochina'

As the roof of Indochina, Fansipan peaks at the height of 3143m above sea level. Fansipan also offers some great choices for many levels of trekking starting from the easiest path can be done within a full days for those who are physically fit, not necessary experienced. Scenery along the way to the top is worth your effort with thick forest, magnificent landscape of Hoang Lien Son range, idyll tribal villages and the sight of wild Azalea near the peak.

Best time for a Fansipan trek would be between mid-November and March since in this time the weather in the north falls in winter, drier air, less rain and temperature low which will make your trek much more easier than it is in summer.

For folks who are not capable of trekking on long hours, you still can reach the top of Fansipan by riding cable car. From 2016, Fansipan Legend, the highest, longest and most modern cable car system in the world has been opened for everyone who dreams of standing on top of ‘Roof of Indochina’.

Cable Car Fees

- Cable Car: 700,000VND per adult

- Cable Car + Funicular Ride: 840,000VND per adult

*Note: The cable car will take you to the mountaintop, not the peak. You’ll have to walk up the stairs then take the funicular to near the Fansipan’s peak.

2. Sapa Central Town

The central town of Sapa has to its own a dreamy and romantic atmosphere, especially when it’s covered in mist and cloud. By no means should you skip this town when coming to Sapa, it’s a wonderful base to explore further areas. And Sapa Town itself has a lot of things for visitors to enjoy.

3. Ham Rong Mt. Park

Why not come up the 1800m-peaked dragon-jaw shaped mountain for the panoramic view of Sapa and Muong Hoa Valley. The path up is easy and on the mountaintop there is a Cloud Yard if you want to conquer all the way. At lower attitude, part of the mountain was made into a flower garden with hundreds of orchid kinds and other flowers. A romantic hangout for couples and friends.

Admission: 70,000VND/adult, 20,000VND/child.

4. Sapa Church

Sapa Church is not far away from Ham Rong Mountain, it only costs you a short walk. The church was built in 1895, made entirely of stones, and considered to be the most ancient vestiges of the French.

Nowadays, Sapa Church is the symbol of Sapa town, especially when it’s covered in mist or snow. The front of the church is a huge square where a lot of local activities to take place, some cultural performance on Saturday. Take the camera with you for some really unique photos of the Church.

5. Sapa Market, Night Market

- Sapa Market:

The market of Sapa is not only a center for goods exchanging but also a meeting place of Hmong, Dao, Nung ethnic minorities. Located in the center of Sapa (Luong Dinh Cua Street), the market is not easy to miss with thousands of goods, hand-made products on display.  Tourists can also buy pharmaceutical products, forestry products and brocade clothing. Food to enjoy here is the local specialty ‘Thang Co’ – a soup made from horse meat, bacon, borecole, chayote, corn wine.

- Night Market: 

If you’re looking for a street food tour at night, we suggest you to join the Sapa town night market where several nightly grilled dishes like grilled beef, fish and vegetables can be found. It’s a wonderful local experience especially on chilly nights, you stay close to the fire and wait for your meat to be done. Don’t forget to use chili sauce and lemon-salt to eat with the meat.

6. Muong Hoa Valley

To take in the magnificent beauty of highland terraced paddy fields in the harvest season, nowhere is better than Muong Hoa Valley which lies between two towering mountain ranges running in parallel southeast of Sapa Town.

Come to Muong Hoa Valley, you’ll be learning more on the age-old rice cultivation of the highland ethnic tribes, taking the scenic sights of the mountain range covered in the terraced fields, forest and streams downhill.

It isn’t just landscape, it’s the way of life of Hmong, Dao and many others preserved for many generations.

The poetic Muong Hoa River will take you to the idyllic hamlets of ethnic people such as Sa Seng village, Hang Da village and Hau Thao village. On the lowest altitude of 1000m, the valley is home to several minority groups, including Hmong, Zao, Zay….

7. Silver Waterfall

Nested at San Sai Ho Commune, 15km away from Sapa towards Lai Chau and Dien Bien Province, Silver Waterfall  can be seen from National Highway 4D.

The fall, as the upstream of Muong Hoa Stream, is about 200m high with water cascading down as white as silver. The beauty of the waterfall adds even more to the dramatic backdrop of Sapa’s mountains with pine forests and chayote gardens spreading over hillside.

To get closer to the waterfall, visitors will climb the stone steps to a height of 30 meters where the water seem like to flow down on you.

Admission: 25,000VND/adult

8. Trekking Authentic Hill Tribe Villages

- Cat Cat Village

Cat Cat Village is the most touristic ethnic village to visit from Sapa, the most excellent example of a hill tribe village of Hmong people. What you can enjoy here is the idyllic landscape, dramatic backdrop and the peaceful atmosphere of the local community.

One thing to look for is the traditional Hmong houses which still preserved in good condition, the house is considered a very important part in Hmong life. On your trekking way, we can’t fail to mention the beautiful sight of terraced paddy fields running immensely to the horizon.

Cat Cat village is definitely a delightful and special feature of Sapa.

Location: 2km away from Sapa central town

Admission: 70,000VND/adult.

- Ta Van Village

Located about 8 kilometers from Sapa Town, Ta Van Village is a wonderful alternative for a trekking trip to a hill tribe village in Sapa. The village belongs to Ta Van commune, is home to almost 150 households with approximately 1000 residents mainly from Hmong, Zay, Red Zao ethnic minorities.

The path leading to Ta Van village is small and narrow, running through two sides of terraced fields. Coming deeper into the village, visitors can’t help to be amazed by the harmonious beauty of the natural landscape and the idyllic wooden traditional stilt houses.

The Zao culture shows most influence in Ta Van through their prominent Red costumes to cuisine and cultural festivals. Ta Van shouldn’t be missed on your bucket list if you’re looking for a true adventure.

- Sin Chai Village

Sin Chai is another Hmong village with a population of 1400 peole, lying about 4 kilometers away from town’s center. Sin Chai belongs to Ta Giang Phinh commune, located at the lower part of Thau Stream and the foot of Ngu Chi Son Moutain Range.

From the village, you can see the mysterious Ngu Chi Son Mt, gentle curves of terraced fields, hundred-year-old Mong valley, traditional Hmong houses and more. Sin Chai is no doubt the best spot for views in Sapa.

Characterized by its majestic scenery, cool weather, and outstanding culture, Sapa is also known as the heaven of food in the northwest of Vietnam. If you visit Sapa, in addition to enjoying the beautiful landscape, you must try the local food. Explore the special cuisine culture of this land and you’ll understand yet another trait that makes it outstanding.

#1 - Thang Co (horse meat soup)

Known as a horrifying food due to its extremely unpleasant odor, thang co is actually favored by many travelers, even a few are addicted to its very “special” smell! Thang co is a traditional dish of the H’mong people in Sapa and is believed to have first appeared more than 200 years ago.

Thang co literally means soup cooked in a big pan. The main ingredients are meat, bone, blood, and organs of the horse combined with more than 20 botanical herbs including cardamom, citronella, ginger, star aniseed, cinnamon twig, and Thang Co plant (special taste named after the dish’s name).

Previously, this dish was only served for special occasions such as Tet (Vietnamese New Year) and crop festival. However, with the fast development of tourism, thang co has become more popular than ever and you can see thang co in the menus of any restaurant in Sapa. Eat thang co and sip on assam apple wine as you observe the one-of-a-kind landscape of Sapa.

Where to eat it

+ A Quynh Restaurant

  • Address: 15 Thach Son Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: 7 AM – 10:30 PM
  • Contact: (+84) 214 3871 555

+ Moment Romantic Restaurant

  • Address: 26 Muong Hoa Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: 6:30 AM – 10 PM
  • Contact: (+84) 902 021 002

+ A Nguyen Restaurant

  • Address: Xuan Nguyen Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: 9 AM – 10 PM

#2 - Com Lam (fried rice-in-bamboo-tube)

This is a cheap and delicious specialty of Sapa. Com means rice, lam is a word used by the Thai tribe, meaning fried. Com lam means fried rice, but this rice is special because it’s fried in bamboo tubes. Every restaurant and food stall in Sapa offers this dish.

In the past, life in northwestern Vietnam was so difficult that the tribal people didn’t have any saucepans or pots to cook with. Therefore, they came up with a method to cook the rice without a saucepan: bamboo tubes instead. First, the tubes are stuffed with salty sticky rice and water, then capped with banana leaves. The bamboo is then fried on a fire and continuously rotated until the rice is well cooked.

In Sapa, com lam is enjoyed with salted roasted sesame, grilled pork, or chicken skewers. The combination of the smell and taste of the ingredients make travelers want to take com lam home with them.

Where to eat it?

+ A Quynh Restaurant

  • Address: 15 Thach Son Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: 7 AM – 10:30 PM
  • Contact: (+84) 214 3871 555

+ Sapa Grilling Area

  • Address: Cau May Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: in the evening.

+ Bon Mua Restaurant

  • Address: 9 Thac Bac Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: 6:30 AM – 11 PM
  • Contact: (+84) 214 3771 125

#3 - Thit Lon Cap Nach (free-range pig)

In Sapa, locals do not lock pigs up in a pen but let them free to find food in the forest and garden. This explains the special sweetness of Sapa’s pork that you can’t find anywhere else.

You might be wondering about the name of this dish: thit lon cap nach (literally means pig brought by armpit). Ranchers bring their pigs by the arms, under the armpits, to the market for sale, and the buyers bring them home in the same way. Thit lon cap nach is usually grilled or roasted. Roasted thit lon cap nach turns the color of honey, its skin is brittle and the meat inside is soft and sweet.

Where to eat it?

+ Anh Dung Restaurant

  • Address: 69 Xuan Vien Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: 8 AM – 10:30 PM
  • Contact: (+84) 91 960 1499

+ Hoang Minh Restaurant

  • Address: 22-23 Sapa Food Court (at the corner of Xuan Vien Street and Fansipan Street)
  • Hours: 9 AM – 10 PM
  • Contact: (+84) 98 368 4666

+ A Quynh Restaurant

  • Address: 15 Thach Son Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: 7 AM – 10:30 PM
  • Contact: (+84) 214 3871 555

+ Sapa Grilling Area

  • Address: Cau May Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: in the evening.

#4 - Thit Trau Gac Bep (dried buffalo meat)

Thit trau gac bep literally means buffalo meat hanging in the kitchen. This dish originated from the need to preserve food for the rainy season. The Black Thai people of Sapa marinate and then dry the buffalo meat in order to have food through the entire rainy season. The meat hangs from their kitchens for about eight months to a year. The buffalo meat is then lowered down to be grilled, stewed, and cooked into many dishes.

The smoke from the kitchen gives the meat a distinct smell. On the outside, the meat is dark brown, but the meat inside is bright red. It’s usually flavored with salt, pepper, garlic, and ginger. The first bite may be a little tough, but after that, you will savor the sweetness.

Where to eat it?

+ Sapa Grilling Area

  • Address: Cau May Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: in the evening

+ Fansipan Restaurant

  • Address: 25 Cau May Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: 9 AM – 10 PM
  • Contact: (+84) 214 387 1556

#5 - Mam Da (a kind of vegetable)

Mam da is harvested from November to March of the lunar calendar and it’s not easy to buy. It has a similar taste to Chinese broccoli but it smells better and tastes sweeter.

Typically, locals boil mam da. It can be dipped in fish sauce with an egg or salted and roasted in sesame. You should explore this way to eat mam da if you want to enjoy its original taste.

You should also try mam da pan fried with buffalo meat. When boiled, the sweetness of mam da dissolves in the water. When fried with buffalo meat, that sweetness infuses the meat.

In any restaurant in Sapa, you can order a dish of boiled mam da or fried mam da with buffalo meat.

Where to eat it?

+ Hong Tai Restaurant

  • Address: 751 Dien Bien Phu Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: open 24/7
  • Contact: (+84) 69 256 6738

+ Sapa Grilling Area

  • Address: Cau May Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: in the evening.

#6 - Men Men Sapa (rice made of corn)

Men men is one of the most popular foods of the H’momg people made of corn. Making men men requires subtlety and patience because you must follow a picky recipe with many steps. After the crop harvest, H’mong people will grind the corn to remove the grit. This step used to take a lot of time because in the past the corn was hand ground but nowadays machines have replaced the laborious hand word. Once you have ground cornmeal, it’s put in a pan and mixed with a little water before cooking.

Apart from many other dishes, men men is steamed two times. After cooking, men men has a distinct sweetness and softness which can be eaten with bone broth and pumpkin soup.

Where to eat it?

+ Sapa Grilling Area

  • Address: Cau May Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: in the evening.

#7 - Ga Den (black chicken)

It is said that when you visit Sapa, there is one thing you should not skip: trying the black chicken, one of the most delicious foods of Sapa.

In Sapa, black chickens rove free range, just like the pigs eaten in thit lon cap nach. The locals let the chickens feed themselves with natural food in the area, so their meat is fragrant and delicious, though the chicken itself is quite small. A black chicken just weighs approximately 1.2 kilograms and wears a delicate coat of black feathers.

Black chicken can be cooked into many dishes through frying, boiling, and steaming. However, I highly recommend eating grilled black chicken marinated with honey. After it soaks in honey, the chicken will be grilled directly on charcoal. The sweetness of the meat and of the honey combine, giving you an unforgettable experience.

Where to eat it?

+ Hoa Dao Restaurant:

  • Address: 48 Le Van Tam Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: 9 AM – 10 PM
  • Contact: (+84) 214 3873 055

+ Sapa Cuisine Restaurant

  • Address: 17 Xuan Vien Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: 6:30 AM – 9 PM
  • Contact: (+84) 91 328 7981

#8 - Cuon Sui (dry pho)

Cuon sui or so-called pho khan is a dish that originated from the Chinese people living in Sapa. When you go into a restaurant and order cuon sui, a bowl with rice noodles, crispy roasted shallots, herbs, roasted peanuts, pepper, chili, beef, and a small bowl of flavored sauce will be whisked onto your table. The rice noodles used in this dish are very similar to ones used in pho, a symbol of Vietnamese food culture. The main difference is that pho has beef soup while cuon sui is eaten with flavored sauce, not soup.

To eat cuon sui, you need to pour the sauce into the bowl of rice noodles incrementally. Cuon sui is also served with fresh vegetables harvested in the area. Adding a little chili sauce will make the dish more delicious because with the cool weather of Sapa, eating spicy food can warm you up.

You can eat cuon sui in any restaurant of Sapa.

Where to eat it?

+ Viet-Hoa Restaurant

  • Address: 73 Phan Dinh Phung Street, Lao Cai City
  • Hours: 7:30 AM – 10 PM
  • Contact: (+84) 214 3830 082

+ An Phu Restaurant

  • Address: 68 An Phu Street, Lao Cai City
  • Hours: 7 AM – 3 PM
  • Contact: (+84) 913 961 988

#9 - Mac Cop (Sapa’s pear)

Mac cop is a special fruit of Sapa. This kind of pear is usually harvested in September from the surrounding natural forests. You can visit the mac cop gardens and choose a tasty mac cop.

Because mac cop grows naturally without any pesticides or growing agents, it’s small and slightly unattractive. However, I encourage you to take a bite, savor the soft sour taste mixing with the sweetness of the pear. Not only does this fruit have an impeccable taste, it also has many health benefits. Eating mac cop is good for the digestive system, helping you absorb more nutrients. Moreover, it also helps decrease the risk of cancer, blood diseases, and liver diseases. Mac cop is an ideal gift for your friend and family.

You can buy mac cop at Sapa Market (4D National Road, Sapa Town).

#10 - Tao Meo Wine of Sapa (wine from assam apple)

Tao meo wine originated from the H’mong people and it’s very popular in Sapa as well as northwestern Vietnam. As the name suggests, it’s made from tao meo, assam apple, a kind of apple grown naturally on Hoang Lien Son Mountain. It’s harvested from August to October and you can buy fresh assam apple at that time, although it’s mostly used to make wine.

To make tao meo wine, assam apples are soaked in water and kept covered for days before fermentation. The wine is extracted after six to eight months. You can taste the natural flavor of the wine unique to this mountainous area. Tao meo wine is the perfect friend to join you on your food adventures of Sapa.

Where to drink it?

+ Rendez Vous Restaurant

  • Address: 6 Muong Hoa Street, Sapa Town
  • Hours: 9 AM – 10 PM

+ Hoang Minh Restaurant

  • Address: 22-23 Sapa Food Court (at the corner of Xuan Vien Street and Fansipan Street)
  • Hours: 9 AM – 10 PM
  • Contact: (+84) 98 368 4666

Got your train to Sapa booked and excited to spend a few days away from the big city? Then all you need is a great place to stay to make your time in Sapa the best it can be. Since tourism has taken some great leaps forward there in recent years and quickly turned a sleepy mountain town into a bustling city, you’ll easily find good accommodation in Sapa. From cheap homestays to luxury hotels, there’s a bit of everything here!

Luxury Accommodation in Sapa

Want to spoil yourself with a luxurious room and fantastic views? Here are some hotels and resorts in and around Sapa to check out.

Victoria Sapa Resort

Right next to Sapa’s lake and the city park, you’ll find the city’s most luxurious abode, the Victoria Sapa Resort. For everyone who wants to enjoy the hill station in style and without missing out on all the luxuries which make a stay at a five-star resort so special, this is the place to book a room. With splendid views of the mountains and only a few steps to shops, restaurants and bars, the Victoria offers the best of both worlds. To make sure you explore all of Sapa’s best spots, ask the staff to help you find a guide or let them point you to the best trekking trails.

While staying here, enjoy the rooms decorated with traditional fabrics and patterns designed by the local hill tribes, get pampered at the state-of-the-art spa and indulge in the delicious culinary creations the chefs present at the resort’s restaurants. 

Address: Xuan Vien Street, Sapa Town

The Aira Boutique Hotel

A little ways from the city center, you’ll find the beautiful Aira Boutique Hotel. Known for its breathtaking views of Sapa’s mountains, this hotel is the perfect place if you’re ready to splurge. Its beautiful rooms, elegant restaurants and relaxing spa offer everything you need to have a leisurely time in Vietnam’s most popular hill station.

Apart from the great location and beautiful rooms, the team is what makes the Aira so unique. The friendly staff will happily help you organize tours and treks, so you can get to know Sapa from its best, off the beaten track side. And once you’re spent from all the hiking, come back to Aira for a much-earned spa treatment or a delicious dinner.

Address: No.30, Hoang Lien Street, Sapa

Silk Path Grand Resort & Spa Sapa

Outside of the hustle and bustle of the busy downtown area, the Silk Path Grand Resort & Spa welcomes its guests to a beautiful, quiet property. Decorated with traditional arts and crafts, the rooms look out over Sapa’s endless mountains and rice paddies. No matter whether you come during spring when everything is starting to turn green or just before the harvest when the fields are a glowing yellow, the view will always leave you wanting more.

Another great reason to stay at the Silk Path Grand Resort is their great selection of restaurants. Whether you would like to try traditional north Vietnamese dishes or prefer to take a break from culinary adventures and have Italian food instead, you’ll find something here. The views from the restaurants are wonderful and will probably keep you there until well after you have finished your meal.

Address: Doi Quan 6, Group 10, Sapa

Mid-range Accommodation in Sapa

If you don’t need luxury but want to take a step up from shared dorms, you’re in luck because Sapa has plenty of hotels which offer good value for money in terms of service, quality, and location.

Sapa Horizon Hotel

Close to the city center and all the happening areas, the Sapa Horizon Hotel is a great choice for travelers looking for a mid to upscale hotel at a reasonable rate. The rooms are tastefully decorated, and many have balconies with a stunning view of the mountains and rice fields surrounding Sapa. Add a bottle of wine and something to nibble on, and you’ve got yourself the perfect evening.

To make the most of your time in Sapa, ask the staff to help you plan a trek or two. There are many trails close to the city, but since some of them are quite crowded, an insider’s tip will be necessary to find the quieter ones. Want to head out overnight? Ask the reception team and they’ll help you find a guide and host to take you further off the beaten path.

Address: 18 Pham Xuan Huan Street, Sapa

Eco Hills Homestay

To get away from the crowds flocking to Sapa Town, stay at Eco Hills Homestay. Since it’s only a short drive from the city, it’s easy to reach and the hosts are happy to help you organize your transfer. Once you get there, you’ll fall in love. Eco Tree’s rooms are all on stilts, so you have a fantastic view of the valleys and mountains around you. Built from bamboo and other local materials, everything looks beautifully rustic, but inside you will find all the amenities you need to have a comfortable stay, including private bathrooms, water heaters, and air conditioning.

During your stay, be sure to take the host up on their offer of dinner. They will prepare a feast of specialties you probably haven’t tried anywhere else. Of course, there will be plenty of rice wine too, so be sure to eat enough to offset its effects! You’ll thank yourself the next morning when you get up early for a trek. 

Address: Thôn Tả Van Mông – Xã Tả Van – Sapa

Eco Palms House Sapa Retreat

The Eco Palms House Sapa Retreat is only six kilometers from Sapa town and can be reached via a local bus. Alternatively, you can ask your hosts to arrange a pick-up in a private car. The extra drive from the busy city of Sapa is totally worth it. Eco Palms is a bit off the main drag, so you’ll be able to chill out and relax in a calm, quiet place after long days of trekking around Sapa’s mountains.

What makes this place unique, is that each of the individual bungalows is built like the house of a local ethnic minority. Architecture, style and decoration are carefully brought together to honor the heritage of these groups and provide you with an authentic experience. If you’re happy to stay in a dorm, Eco Palms offers futon beds in four-person dorms which are ideal for families or groups of friends.

Address: Thôn Tả Van Mông – Xã Tả Van – Sapa

Budget Guesthouses and Homestays in Sapa

When traveling around Vietnam, you should stay in a homestay at least once. For one, it’s a great chance to give your bank account a break and it’s also a great way to have a good time while getting to know locals and other travelers.
If you go for a homestay, remember that you are going to stay in or very close to your host’s own home. It’s important to be respectful of their privacy, family, and culture. Also, do expect some of the facilities to be a bit simpler than those in hotels and hostels in other cities in Vietnam. Remember, it’s all part of the experience and makes your time with a local host more unique.

Since there are so many homestays to choose from, it can be a bit difficult to find the good ones. That’s why we’ve put together a list of the best homestays and guest houses in Sapa. Now you can save time making a choice and focus more on planning the rest of your trip!

Lao Chai Bamboo Homestay

A few kilometers outside of Sapa, the Lao Chai Bamboo Homestay will welcome you to a peaceful space where you can rest and relax after a long trek. The hosts, members of the Hmong community, are exceptionally helpful and welcoming, always giving their all to make you feel comfortable.

Several types of rooms are available, including double rooms with sweeping views of the surrounding mountains and valleys as well as dorm rooms which you can share with up to five other travelers. The house is quite modern and recently renovated, so you’ll have everything you need.

In the evening, join your hosts and the other guests for dinner. Their homecooked meals are unique and delicious! You’ll also have a wonderful time hearing stories about local life from your host and making friends with your fellow travelers.

Address: TL152, Lao Chai, Sa Pa

Tavan Countryside Homestay

To get closer to mother nature and some of the best hiking trails, stay at Tavan Countryside Homestay. A few kilometers outside of Sapa and easily reachable by bus, this homestay is worth a visit if you want to dive headfirst into local culture. The hosts are welcoming and go to great lengths to make your stay unforgettable.

The beautifully decorated dorm rooms which sport a variety of handicrafts and embroideries, the delicious meals served by the host family and impressive views of the countryside make this homestay a fantastic choice. Especially if you love socializing with other travelers and learning more about the way of life in the community you’re visiting, Tavan is the ideal spot.

Address: Ta Van Village, Ta Van Day 1 Hamlet, Siao Mi Ti

ChienDe Homestay

At ChienDe Homestay guests get to experience the everyday life of farmers in the mountains of Sapa. Book one of their cozy rooms or dorm beds and enjoy the incredibly warm welcome. In the morning, if you’re up in time, you can see how the family feeds their animals and takes care of farm work. Maybe you can even lend a hand? In the evening, you’ll likely be invited to a dinner of amazing homecooked food unlike any you’ve ever had anywhere else. Be sure to come with an empty stomach!

Need some tips on where to go during the day? Your hosts can point you to some great trails, help you get a guide for one-day hikes or even overnight treks. Ask them to help you organize a motorbike for the day, so you can further explore. All you have to do is ask!

Address: At the Foot of Mt. Fansipan, Sapa

Mountain River Homestay Sapa

A bit fancier than some of the other homestays you’ll come across in Sapa, the Mountain River Homestay is ideal if you want a personal experience and close contact with your hosts all while enjoying a few simple luxuries.

The rooms, made completely from wood, are decorated with rich fabrics embroidered with traditional patterns. This gives each room a warm, cozy feel which is exactly what you need after the long trip to Sapa or a long trek. To get fully energized for the next day, enjoy the host’s homemade dinner and breakfast and learn about some of the traditional specialties people enjoy here all throughout the day. Guided treks can be organized if you like and if you need a motorbike, your host will be happy to assist you too.

Address: Ta Van Dzay, Ta Van, Sapa

By Train from Hanoi

Traveling by train takes about 8-9 hours and the train only stops in Lao Cai, the province which Sapa belongs to. It then takes another hour to get to Sapa from Lao Cai station.

There are a number of tourists train operating the route from Hanoi. Each of these companies run a carriage which are all attached to the national train carrier. It is suggested that you book your ticket in advance, especially during peak time of the week such as Hanoi to Lao Cai on Thursday and Friday; Lao Cai to Hanoi on Sunday and Monday. This is normally due to the weekend retreat of local tourists, and also on Sunday there is a special market fair in Bac Ha which attracts many visitors.

  • Train often departs at between 8:00pm and 10:00pm, and you can catch a good sleep before getting woked up by the beautiful mountain sceneray at dawn.
  • There are also day trains which are not as comfortable as night train. It also takes longer time to travel as it makes more stops.
  • Ticket for night train is $35-180/person/way (the most expensive one is Victoria express which is exclusively for in-house guests)
  • Ticket for day train is $10-20/person/way 

By Bus from Hanoi

 

Another option is to take the bus to Sapa Vietnam. With the bus, the journey time is slightly shorter; it usually takes around six hours from Hanoi. As the terminus is in the center of town, you don’t have to mess around finding a shuttle bus.

Buses depart at all times of day from Hanoi. Prices fluctuate depending on if you take one of the luxury lines or one of the more basic ones; some even drop you at wherever you have arranged to stay in Sapa.

Prices range from $11 for the cheaper bus lines up to around $20 or more for the nicer ones.

While you do pass some lovely scenery on the way to Sapa Vietnam, and the buses are certainly comfortable, the mountain roads can be quite windy and dangerous. You may be better off taking the longer but safer train journey after all!

TOUR PACKAGES INCLUDING "Sapa"

The Unseen Northern Vietnam The Unseen Northern Vietnam

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Absolute Vietnam Absolute Vietnam

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Absolute Vietnam
Must-see / 25 days / fr. $2,150

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Trek the Northwestern Vietnam in Style Trek the Northwestern Vietnam in Style

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Trek & Hike / 24 days / fr. $2,590

Venture into Vietnam’s north, escaping the modern world and delving into a land rich in culture and natural beauty. Spend the night in the middle of nowhere, trek through vibrant rice terrace... More

The Mysterious Northeast Mountains The Mysterious Northeast Mountains

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The Mysterious Northeast Mountains
Trek & Hike / 19 days / fr. $2,190

Head to the hills for a challenging, yet rewarding, trekking adventure. In the far northeast of Vietnam discover a land of immense beauty and intriguing hilltribe villages. Spend the days hiking up... More

Explore the Untouched Corner of Sapa Explore the Untouched Corner of Sapa

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Trek & Hike / 10 days / fr. $1,099

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Northern Vietnam Family Holiday Northern Vietnam Family Holiday

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Family / 10 days / fr. $995

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Trekking Sapa Secret Mountains Trekking Sapa Secret Mountains

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Trek & Hike / 10 days / fr. $1,098

Explore the fairy-tale landscapes of Northern Vietnam in style. Travel to Sapa by comfortable overnight train then spend the days hiking through verdant landscapes to colorful hilltribe villages. S... More

Cycling Sapa to Hanoi Cycling Sapa to Hanoi

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Cycling Sapa to Hanoi
Cycling / 11 days / fr. $1,523

Ride across the soaring landscapes of Northern Vietnam on an unforgettable biking adventure. Pedal from Sapa to Hanoi, crossing over vibrant mountain ranges and through lush valleys. Stop to mingle... More

Unforgettable Vietnam Honeymoon Unforgettable Vietnam Honeymoon

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Honeymoon / 15 days / fr. $4,286

Vietnam is rapidly gaining a reputation as one of the most romantic countries in Asia and has become a popular destination for an unforgettable and extraordinary honeymoon or wedding anniversary ce... More

Active Indochina Honeymoon Active Indochina Honeymoon

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Honeymoon / 29 days / fr. $8,390

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Vietnam BLOG ARTICLES

On June 7th, 2012, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has eased travel recommendations for more than a hundred countries and territories, including Vietnam and Laos in the list of "safest to travel".

Time to travel now? We do not think so! Let's check more detail below.

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The Hmong New Year celebration is a cultural tradition that takes place annually in select areas where large Hmong communities exist and in a modified form where smaller communities come together. During the New Year's celebration, Hmong dress in traditional clothing and enjoy Hmong traditional foods, dance, music, bull fights, and other forms of entertainment. Hmong New Year celebrations have Hmong ethnic traditions and culture and may also serve to educate those who have an interest in Hmong tradition. Hmong New Year celebrations frequently occur in November and December (traditionally at the end of the harvest season when all work is done), serving as a Thanksgiving holiday for the Hmong people.

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Backpacking Vietnam… If you are seeking epic adventures, unique experiences, mouth watering foods and ancient historical sights; Vietnam is the place for you. Once upon a time, the very mention of Vietnam conjured up images of war-torn destination but now Vietnam is a backpacker haven and travelling in Vietnam is a popular part of many Southeast Asian adventures.

Backpacking Vietnam offers an incredible opportunity to get off the beaten track… Explore dramatic mountains in the North, stop in for some corn wine and a friendly chat with the locals before heading south to party the night away…

Many travelers opt to explore Vietnam by motorcycle. Vietnam is a big country and there are lots of Vietnam backpacking itineraries on offer… The most popular backpacking route is heading from Hanoi to Saigon.

Backpacking in Vietnam is a great choice for backpackers on account of the super cheap cost of living and the plentiful adventures.

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The phrase ‘banana pancakes trail’ is the stuff of legend in Southeast Asia’s backpacker route. Along the banks of the Mekong, across many a dorm room and questionable dive bar, backpackers come to learn the story of the first tourists to travel ‘on the ground’, making a conscious effort to immerse themselves in local life. Decades later, their influence is having transformed the region: tourism here is now the fastest growing on Earth, receiving a quarter of total travelers worldwide. 

When you travel through Southeast Asia these days, it is hard to imagine that tourism was almost non-existent just a half century ago. Here is the story of how hippies, guidebooks and banana pancakes helped to create one of the most famous backpacker routes in the world.
 

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Lantern Festival is celebrated in China and other Asian countries that honors deceased ancestors on the 15th day of the first month of the lunar calendar (usually falls around mid-February of Gregorian calendar). The Lantern Festival aims to promote reconciliation, peace, and forgiveness. 

Originally, the holiday marks the first full moon of the new lunar year and the end of the Chinese New Year. In some other Asian countries such as Thailand or Laos, the festival is celebrated around late October or early November to mark the end of the Buddhist Lent & the beginning of the festive season.

During the festival, houses are festooned with colorful lanterns, often with riddles written on them; if the riddle is answered correctly, the solver earns a small gift. Festival celebrations also include lion and dragon dances, parades, and fireworks. 

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In Vietnam, nibbling on mooncakes and sipping tea with loved ones is an essential part of the Mid-autumn Festival, or Tết Trung Thu. As long as we can remember, it is tradition to serve bánh nướng and bánh dẻo — golden baked mooncakes and soft sticky rice mooncakes — on the night of the harvest moon. If you are in Vietnam during this festival, you can experience the fun of your own mooncake celebration. Here is all you need to know about Vietnam’s mooncake tradition.

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