Sapa is known as a strange heaven by the majestic mountains and valleys. This destination is, after all, one of the most beautiful areas of North Vietnam with its rice terraces carved into the beautiful mountains in the foothills of the chain Hoang Lien Son – the highest mountain of Vietnam. When you have a chance to immerse the picture of cascading rice paddies, majestically green plains, and towering mountain tops, you will be surprised by this landscape. Almost the important tips are showed in the article will help yu trek Sapa from easy to difficult.
What do you bring something?
Before each Sapa trekking tour, you should prepare the necessary things like light package, comfortable shoes, much water… And you can check the weather again because in Highland region, the route is difficult for you to trek, and you should prepare raincoat and plastic boot…
Search the forecast weather
Before coming to Vietnam, you need to search the forecast weather both in Hanoi and Sapa to prepare clothing. Sapa has a similar climate with the rest of the country – seasonal changing weather. In the summer, the humid and hot tropical weather is the norm while in the winter; the milder temperatures dominate the pretty town with fog and even snow in some recent years. It is recommended that the best time to visit Sapa Vietnam is from March to May or from September to November. In those times, you can enjoy the relatively cool with temperatures (15°C to 20°C) and humidity. The nice weather is ideal for visiting the spectacular natural landscapes and fascinating cultural diversity. However, it maybe happens the change of temperature and irregular cases. Therefore, you need to bring medicine to keep the good health.
Choose the local guide
If you have a lack of experience in the trekking, you should hire a local guide to be your companion who is familiar with the local tracks, changes in weather, terrain, and the best lookout spots in the destination. Once Sapa has emerged as one of the most attractive tourist destinations of the country, you can easily seek for any tourism services including guides. Hence, it is no need to make bookings in advance as it is cheaper when doing it in person, due to the fact that treks are easily arranged in Sapa. Especially in Sapa, there has been homestay model in which travelers will live with local families for authentic experiences of the local living, your host can also play as your guide who is enthusiastic and expert in local topography. In addition, most of the local guides in Sapa are good at English giving you no worries about communication.
Bring necessary items
As you known, trekking will waste your energy so you need to save the healthy by bringing small luggage to save the energy. In the experience of trekkers, towels and bedding were not necessary. If you do a long trek, hiring a local porter is a good idea. Taking a rope with you is somehow very useful. The accommodations arranged by the tour were at a small family-run guesthouse. It was a bit of an open-concept with lots of mattresses lined side by side and a mosquito net over top, but we had clean bed sheets, warm blankets for the night, and fresh towels. That really was all you needed. Besides, you will need the suitable clothes, coat, raincoats, sport shoes, compass, some medicines, vitamin, fastfood, and snack, candy… The most important thing is water as you will be thirsty during trekking process. Some skin care cosmetics are also required. And you should wear good shoes, bring a raincoat because of the changing weather. When it rains the trekking road leading be muddy so you would better have a walking pole.
As you known, coming to the mountain, you make sure you bring your camera and that the battery is fully charged as its dangerous. You are free to take lots of photo breaks every time. Especially, the best moment should be gained when you came over a hill or reached yet another lookout point. Additionally, you also bring the mobile phone, traveling notebook and camera to search more clearly the knowledge anytime you want.
Some tips for three types of trekking Sapa
Easy trek Sapa
You will be picked up by a car and forward the beautiful town of Sapa. On the road, you have a glimpse of the stunning vistas and impressive rice terraces. Then finishing the breakfast, you prepare for a great trek down to the Muong Hoa valley. Muong Hoa River is connected by the valley and through the foot mountains and nourishing the earth. Especially, if you visit to Sapa on rice season, you will admire the mixed different shades of green and yellow of rice farmland valley. Lao Chai is a Black H’mong ethnic minority village and you have lunch at a local house. Continuously, passing the terraced rice fields from Lao Chai to Ta Van village, you will meet the Giay minority people. Ta Van village is a real place attracting tourists in the world. This village is where many Vietnam ethnic minority groups live during a long time in harmony. It gives you a worth chance to learn about the local house architecture, daily lifestyle, and exclusive custom. Enjoy the landscape on the way.
If you have more free- time, let’s come to Ta Phin Village. You will admire the lively life of Red Dzao people with famous embroidery craft. Coming here, it is a chance for you getting the challenges by trekking in Sapa through many ethnic villages and go further into the residence of local people.
Medium trek Sapa
One more step, the medium level of trekking is quite different to the easy level so you need save your energy to get the target. Before heading to Muong Hoa valley, you will need two hours to walk through Cat Cat Village situated at the foot of Fansipan Peak. After catching up Cat Cat village, you can approach the local life including traditional crafts of the indigenous; stream-crossing bridge, terraced fields and some off-roads. With many ups-and-downs, Cat Cat Village could be a suitable choice for hikers, who would like to practice in advance, prior to conquering the Fansipan Peak, the roof of Indochina.
Nearly Cat Cat village is Y Linh Ho village, you have uphill to this village, which is a small commune composed by many small hamlets scattering on the very tough mountain terrain with high and steep mountains. Y Linh Ho village is home of Black H’mong who usually wear the dark clothing and navy dyed with indigo. You can see them in the hands of older H’mong women. Their houses are constructed on their farmland. As a result, the only way to get to the village is on foot on the road.
Difficulty trek Sapa
The most challenging level for you is trekking to the top of Fansipan Peak called the Roof of Indochina. Thus, you will need to spend two days and one night finishing the hike. For the safe, you should not trek by yourself and need a local experienced guide to lead the way and porter who brings your luggage as well as understand the route deeply. Continuously, you pass Cat Cat Village and trek upward for nearly 7 hours then reach the first campsite at a height of 2300 meters.
You should overnight in the tent in the mountain slope facing west, near a mountain stream. On the next day, you will climb to the peak of Fansipan Peak. The final step need three hours to the peak, you can grace the best panorama of Vietnam.
For the experience of trekkers, from October to May is the most suitable season to discover Fansipan as its advantages. When trekking in Fansipan Peak, you should prepare some necessary items. The one can hold about 3-4,5 kg and has straps on chest and abdomen, which should be strong and fixed. The shoes should be soft, thick, waterproof and have good friction, high neck and sweat absorbing or tourists had better choose the dedicated hiking shoes, if not,. If you travel in the months from March to May, bring the summer clothes. However, you need to bring the necessary goods like: sweat wicking, good wicking, good elasticity and ventilation when you visit Sapa in three months from October – December. Besides, you should carry important items such as phone, backup charger, medicine, notebook sleeping bag and so on.