Hanoi Biking To Luang Prabang – 13 days

Hanoi Biking To Luang Prabang – 13 days
Tour Itinerary

Hanoi Biking To Luang Prabang - This is an adventurous, moving-on tour through the mountainous Northwest provinces of Vietnam and Laos. Luggage transfer and vehicle support will be provided. The tour is suitable for fit, experienced cycling enthusiasts. Vietnam’s far North West is undoubtedly the best place to cycle in the country as the roads see virtually no tourists and avoid Vietnam’s notorious highways. It wasn’t until the late 1990s that travel restrictions were lifted. Starting in Hanoi, we'll pass through stunning landscapes, amazing karst rock formations, stilted houses with thatched roofs, mountains nestled between limestone outcrops, and the highest concentration of hill-tribe people in the country.

Day 1: Hanoi – Arrival.

Upon arrival at Hanoi Airport, our guide who will accompany you to your hotel will welcome you. There are no activities planned for today but your guide will be able to offer advice and assistance as required. Overnight in Hanoi

 Day 2: Hanoi Free Day Night train to – Lao Cai (B)

21h00: Transfer to Hanoi railway station to catch the night train to Lao Cai. O/N on the train.

Day 3: Lao Cai – Sapa (B/ L / D) 32 km

We’ll disembark from the train very early in the morning and either bike or transfer to Sapa. It’s not all that far but it is virtually ALL uphill. Sapa is the hill tribe capital of North Vietnam. There are a variety of minority people in this area and they all come to Sapa for the market. 

Day 4: Sapa -Tam Duong (B/ L / D) 78 km

Started from Sapa by cycling about 16 kilometers uphill to Vietnam's highest pass at 2000 meters above sea level where you see beautiful Silver Waterfall and Tram Ton heaven gate then it is downhill for around 26 kilometers on the road described as the most beautiful one in Vietnam with breathtaking scenery to Binh Lu. In the late afternoon, you will arrive in Tam Duong, where you will stay overnight in a comfortable Hotel.

Day 5: TamDuong – Sin Ho (B/ L / D) 60 km

We cycled through Tam Duong plain which is covered in shark’s teeth-like limestone karst. We would visit a village of Mang people near Sin Ho with the next stop being Sin Ho which is the homeland of the Red Hmong, Kho Mu, Mang, and Dao ethnic minorities. They settled there a long time ago and still retain their traditional culture and habits. The trip to Sin Ho is occasionally suspended due to the restriction of the local authority.

Day 6: Sin Ho – Chan Nua – MuongLay (B/ L / D) 60 km

We are Cycling hill to Chan Nua then cycling to Lai Chau have a couple of pretty big climbs and then follow the picturesque Nam Na river into Muang Say (aka “Old Lai Chau”). We stay at the hip Lan Anh hotel where there no doubt will be an active badminton game in the evening. 

Day 7: Lai Chau – Dien Bien Phu (B/ L / D) 106 km

In 1954, the French Garrison at Dien Bien Phu was pinned down when the Vietnamese were able to do something thought impossible….carry heavy artillery into the mountains. When you ride in this area you will wonder yourself how they ever did it. The siege at Dien Bien Phu ended in a French surrender and marked the end of French Indochina. Little known is the fact that the US had developed a plan to aid the French by using tactical nuclear weapons at Dien Bien Phu. 

Day 8: Dien Bien Phu to Muang Khua, Laos (B/ L / D) 108 km

We depart Dien Bien and cross into Northeast Laos at the Tay Trang border. This is the least populated section of Laos. We continue to Muang Khua on the banks of the Nam Ou river. 

Day 9: Muang Khua to Oudomxai (B/ L / D) 99,9 km

This is a scenic lightly traveled road to bustling Odomxai. Odomxai seems to be undergoing a renaissance. Lots of construction and activity in the town these days. They have an airport here also (with less than daily service). We stay at the nicest place in town. Friendship Hotel 3 stars

Day 10: Odomxai to Pak Mong (B/ L / D)

A tough climbing day at the start and then rolling hills with magnificent scenery before a 29 k Descent to Pak Mong.

 Day 11: Pak Mong to Luang Prabang (B/ L / ) 113,5 km

On to the historic and enchanting city of Luang Prabang. We follow the banks of the Mekong before entering the city proper. It’s also possible, with planning, to bike the 20k in the opposite direction to Nong Khiaw and then take a boat down the Nam Ou River. This will take you right by the Pak Ou caves at the confluence of the Nam Ou and Mekong Rivers. Luang Prabang Inn 

Day 12: Rest day in Luang Prabang (B )

Today is a rest day in Luang Prabang. Luang Prabang is encircled by mountains and situated on the banks of the Mekong where it meets the Nam Khan river. There is a lot to see in this World Heritage Town: Temples, Monasteries, the Royal Palace, and French Colonial Architecture as well as the beautiful falls outside of town. It’s worthwhile to get up and observe the monks collecting alms at 6 am. Luang Prabang Inn

Day13: Luang Prabang departure (B)

At leisure until transfer to Airport for onward flight.

 

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Departure date: Join in group departure on 7th Monthly

Group Size: From 2 to 22 riders

Tour cost: Contact Us

TOP THINGS TO DO IN LAOS

Laos is a treasure trove of natural and architectural wonders. With a little patience and some time you can see incredible man-made and natural wonders from north to south in the Lao PDR. Don’t miss these top 10 things to see and do.

Wat Xieng Thong

Luang Prabang's best-known monastery is centered on a 1560 sǐm (ordination hall). Its roofs sweep low to the ground and there's a stunning 'tree of life' mosaic set on its western exterior wall. Close by are several stupas and three compact little chapel halls called hŏr. Hŏr Ɖąi, shaped like a tall tomb, houses a standing Buddha. The Hŏr Ɖąi Pha Sai-nyàat, dubbed La Chapelle Rouge – the Red Chapel – by the French, contains a rare reclining Buddha.

Fronted in lavish gilt work, the Hóhng Kép Mîen stores a ceremonial carriage, festooned with red-tongued naga (river serpents) designed to carry the golden funeral urns of Lao royalty.

Pha That Luang

Pha That Luang, Vientiane Laos
Pha That Luang, Vientiane Laos |
Boun That Luang takes place every November, over three days around the full moon. The stupa in Vientiane is the national symbol of Laos and is said to house a piece of Buddha’s breastbone. Thousands of pilgrims gather at That Luang to give offerings to the monks who come from all over Laos. Processions, parties, and a trade show follow. Even if you don’t make it to the festival, the stupa is a sight to behold any time of year. Join the faithful and place offerings of flowers, candles, and incense at the alter, or quietly stroll around the massive enclosed yard.

Vat Phou / Wat Phou

Wat Phou
Along with the Champasak Cultural Landscape, the 5th century Khmer ruins of Wat Phou is the second inclusion in the UNESCO World Heritage List of Laos. Wat Phou, meaning ‘mountain temple.’ Blended into the surrounding nature, the remains of Wat Phou are dotted all over the mountain face. Oriented toward the east, the ruins have two large reservoirs on either side of a long column-lined road, leading toward the mountains. Past the palace ruins, up a steep staircase, you’ll find the sanctuary with a modern Buddhist shrine and a natural spring considered to be sacred.

Tad Lo

Tad Lo
Tad Lo is 56 miles (90 kilometers) away from the southern town of Pakse. Soak in the visual and aural splendor of the falls or take a dip and cool off from the heat. Three cascades make up the falls: Tad Hang, Tad Lo itself, and Tad Suong. Accommodations are available to spend the night and enjoy the surrounding scenery. Tad Lo is an impressive three-tiered waterfall in Salavan Province. Several guesthouses and restaurants around the falls make it an ideal lunch spot or stopover for trekking, swimming, and tubing. Tad Lo is accessible by bus, motorbike, or as part of a group tour package of the Bolaven Plateau.

Swim in the Mekong at 4000 Islands

French Bridge at Sunset on Don Det
French Bridge at Sunset on Don Det |
Don Det has a beach at its northern tip that doubles as a ferry landing. You can also take a dip in the Mekong, the largest river in Southeast Asia, on either of the two beaches on Don Khon–one by Liphi Falls and one farther south. Easy Go Backpackers Hostel on Don Det has a beach area and Don Som Riverside Guesthouse has a swimming spot on Don Som. If river swimming isn’t your thing and you’d rather lounge by the pool, check out the one by Little Eden Guesthouse at the north end of Don Det or the Blue Lagoon Swimming pool at the southern tip of the island.

Tat Kuang Si

Thirty kilometers southwest of Luang Prabang, Tat Kuang Si is a many-tiered waterfall tumbling over limestone formations into a series of cool, swimmable turquoise pools; the term 'Edenic' doesn't do it justice. When you're not swinging off ropes into the water, there's a public park with shelters and picnic tables where you can eat lunch. Don't miss the Tat Kuang Si Bear Rescue Centre, where wild Asiatic moon bears, confiscated from poachers, are given a new lease of life.

Many cheap eateries line the entrance car park at the top end of the Khamu village of Ban Thapene, selling everything from local snacks to grilled chicken and fish.

Visiting Kuang Si by hired motorcycle is very pleasant now that the road here is decently paved and allows stops in villages along the way. By bicycle, be prepared for two long, steady hills to climb. A tuk-tuk from Luang Prabang costs 150,000K for one person, and 50,000K per person in a group of three, so it's best to get a group together. A private minivan will cost 350,000K.

Plain of Jars

Plain of Jars - Site One
Plain of Jars
Plain of Jars’ thousands of mysterious megalithic jars are scattered throughout Xiang Khuang Province in northeastern Laos. Dating from the iron age, the oldest jars go back to 500 BC. The largest “King Jar” is at Site 1 and the longest jar is at Site 2. It’s possible to hire a guide to take you on a trek from Site 2, which is behind a rice paddy to Site 3, which is in the forest on top of a hill. The leading theory suggests these stone vessels were used in burial rituals. Evidence suggests that bodies were distilled in the jars until only bones remained. The bones were then removed and interred in a ceramic jar or on the ground. Nine of the 90 sites containing jars have been cleared of UXOs, so stick to the established routes and bring a guide out trekking with you.

Kuang Si Falls

Kuang Si Falls
Kuang Si Falls |
In the north of Laos lies Luang Prabang, a portion of the old town that is a UNESCO World Heritage-listed site. Ride or cycle to Kuang Si or Tad Saw waterfalls, take a boat cruise down the Mekong river, and eat local Lao or fantastic French food at one of the restaurants in town. This former royal capital is home to some of the most elaborate and best-preserved temples in the country. Visit the Royal Palace and the watermelon-shaped Wat Wisunarat or hike up Mount Phousi for sunrise or sunset.

Tour Cost Includes:

  • MTB Bikes for complete Tour and helmet
  • Accommodation in tour - 12 nights
  • All Meals B = Breakfast , L = Lunch , D = Dinner
  • Lunch in Midway restaurant/City Restaurant or Pack Lunch
  • Mechanic throughout the tour
  • Boat trip, local ferry in tour
  • Back up AC vehicle for the complete tour ( Bus, + Truck for the group )
  • English speaking Local Guide - Cum biking guide
  • Fresh Fruits/Snacks (Only Cycling Part)
  • Unlimited filter water during cycling (Only Cycling Part)
  • All road and transport taxes
  • Driver Allowance
  • Toll and Parking charges
  • 10% Government Taxe

Tour Cost Excludes:

  • International flight tickets, visa
  • Accommodation not on tour
  • Other personal expenses
  • Tips and Gratitude
  • Travel insurance
  • Any Hard and Soft Drinks with meals

Travel Information

Bikes: Trek MTB Bikes

Bike Hire: Includes on Tour Cost. You may bring your bikes, but in this case, let us know in advance. Other equipment provided: Pedals, helmet, water bottles.

Accommodation

Accommodation is offered at all locations. Most of the hotels are Culture Resort, Home-stay, guesthouse, Eco Resorts & family-run hotels - all with a common line of quality in service. Our costs are based on a 'twin-sharing' foundation. For those who want a single room, we offer a single room, but at an extra cost.

Terrain

The landscape is a mountain, biking through the village streets, fields, fruits garden, local ferry, and monkey bridges

Climate

The annual monsoon cycles that affect all of mainland Southeast Asia produce a ‘dry and wet monsoon climate’ with three basic seasons for most of Laos. The southwest monsoon arrives in Laos between May and July and lasts into November.
The monsoon is followed by a dry period (from November to May), beginning with lower relative temperatures and cool breezes created by Asia’s northeast monsoon (which bypasses most of Laos), lasting until mid-February. Exceptions to this general pattern include Xieng Khuang, Hua Phan, and Phongsali Provinces, which may receive rainfall coming from Vietnam and China during April and May.
Rainfall varies substantially according to latitude and altitude, with the highlands of Vientiane, Bolikhamsai, Khammuan, and eastern Champasak Provinces receiving the most.
Temperatures also vary according to altitude. In the humid, low-lying Mekong River valley, temperatures range from 15°C to 38°C, while in the mountains of Xieng Khuang can drop to 0°C at night.
When to go
The best time for visiting most of Laos is between November and February when it rains the least and is not too hot. It’s also Laos’s main season for both national and regional bun (festivals).
If you plan to focus on the mountainous northern provinces, the hot season (from March to May) and the early rainy season (around June) are not bad either, as temperatures are moderate at higher elevations. Southern Laos, on the other hand, is best avoided from March to May, when daytime temperatures break into the 40s and nights aren’t much cooler.
The rainy season is not as bad as you might think. While it will rain – very heavily – the downpours are often fairly brief and can be bracketed by long periods of sunshine. The rains also clear dust from the skies and land, making everything clearer and brighter. Of course, there are downsides; unsealed roads can become quagmires, and extensive travel in remote areas like Salavan, Phongsali, and Sainyabuli might be impossible. River travel can be a good alternative during these months. If you intend to travel extensively by river, November is the best; flooding has usually subsided yet river levels are still high enough for maximum navigability. Between January and June, low water can make navigating some rivers difficult.
December to February and August are the peak tourist times. January, in particular, is very busy and booking ahead is advisable.

Transportation/Support Vehicles

All transport is involved in the cost. We provide a backup vehicle at all times during cycling trips. The vehicle can be used to boat your baggage & yourself as required.

Food

Food is a very essential part of these trips. We make sure that the meals we offer are method delicious unless you ask for dull meals. You are also permitted the choice of veggie or non-vegetarian meals. We suggest that you consume only the canned standard water. Please make sure that the container is enclosed.

What to bring

  • Footwear
  • Bike shoes
  • Helmet
  • Pedal
  • Water Bottle
  • Sun cream lotion
  • Relaxed shoes for walking
  • Shoes for other sightseeing
  • Socks

Clothing

  • In Laos, the conventional outfit is more traditional. We counsel you to prevent very short shorts/skirts and limited tops/tanktops when viewing small non-urban places, pagodas, temples, mosques, or other sacred sites as this may limit your access.
  • Water-resistant jacket.
  • Riding bike equipment like safety gloves and shorts.

Others

  • Torch
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Eyewear, cap
  • Sun lotion of SPF of at least 35
  • Individual Bike riding equipment like bar finishes, pedals, chairs, and headgear
  • Helmets for riding a bike

Health

Malaria is an avoidable disease that can create trouble if neglected. One can prevent disease by taking recommended anti-malarial drugs and defending against insect attacks. The areas you will be passing are Malaria-free. Make sure that your insurance provider includes illnesses and injuries overseas.

Precautions

  • Bring all the important medications and OTC medications. Do not ignore to have the brands as well as the general titles of the medications one needs to have.
  • Use a sun hat when revealed.
  • Consume a lot of liquids. Don't drink tap water. Use only bottled water which is always kept in the back of your automobile.
  • Bring your medical kit and pest resilience.
  • To avoid fungus and parasitic attacks, keep legs clean and dry, and do not go without shoes.
  • Do not eat food bought from road providers.
  • Do not drink drinks with ice.
  • Do not eat milk products unless it is known that they have been pasteurized.
  • Prevent managing creatures (especially apes, pets, and cats) to avoid attacks and serious illnesses.

Medical Information Update

Details given above are liable to change now and then and one should contact the Native Lao tasks of the specific country or the government vacationer offices for more details.

Shopping

You will get possibilities en route to do a bit of purchasing. However unless particularly requested, our guide will not suggest any particular store. Neither we nor our driver/guides take any percentage on purchasing.

Spending Money

Every visitor will have different cash specifications and varying personal costs. Please assess your spending routines while enabling for beverages, purchasing, and falling. Also keep aside cash for extra costs like:

  • Foods that are not included
  • Emergencies
  • Optionally available activities /additional sightseeing
  • Shopping/Souvenirs/Tips

Foreign Exchange

As Laos currency value tends to go up and down, refer to the following website for daily return rates: https://www.ldblao.la

Airport Taxes

There is no airport terminal or leaving taxation from any airport terminal in Laos.

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