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Sapa Travel Guide

Deep in the remote Hoang Lien Son mountains near the Chinese border, the town of Sapa offers awe-inspiring landscapes. In the summer, the weather can be beautiful; in the winter, it’s foggy with bone-chilling temperatures.

Avid hikers can climb Mount Fansipan, the tallest mountain in Vietnam, located a short distance from Sapa town. This mountain is actually located at the tail end of the Himalaya chain, so you can boast that you climbed one of Mount Everest’s relatives. There are also shorter day hikes that provide magnificent views, such as the trek to Silver Waterfall and Heaven’s Gate.

sapa people 
Photo from Mr. David Newbegin ( 

Eight of Vietnam’s 54 ethnic minority groups also call Sapa their home, including the H’mong, Dao and Tay people. Village tours and homestays offer the opportunity to learn how these rural people live. You can also find some unique handmade products, such as silver hoop earrings and printed scarves. But avoid the children selling trinkets, as they are likely part of an exploitation scheme.

travel guide sapa 

The closest ethnic village to Sapa town is Cat Cat, a few kilometers’ walk up and down the hilly roads. There’s not much - just a few stores and homes - but it gives you an idea of what life is like here, and the mountain views on the way can’t be beat. If you rent a motorbike in Sapa town, you can continue out to more remote villages.

The Sunday market in Bac Ha (about 100 km from Sapa) also makes a good day trip. In this colourful extravaganza, ethnic groups from around the region gather to sell their handmade goods and livestock. Here, you’ll find hand-embroidered textiles and handbags sold alongside live buffalo and chickens. If you’re brave enough, sample the Flower H’Mong homemade alcohol. Made from corn, it packs a hefty wallop.



Top Things to do in Sapa                                        +  Sapa Photography Guide
Sapa Trekking Bac Ha market Tour                      +  Sapa Cao Son Biking Tour
Sapa Trekking Adventure 


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