Get to Sapa from Hanoi

Sapa Lao Cai, Hanoi, Ha Long Bay are the most visited places in northern Vietnam. Sapa is among the top 3 most visited places in northern Vietnam after Hanoi and Ha Long Bay. It is good to know it. If you do not like the places full of tourists, it will be better you skip this place and you can go for example to Ha Giang. Sapa is a good place for trekking in Vietnam, but it is good to know, Sapa is overcrowded by tourists and travellers.
You will find there the highest mountain in Vietnam – Fansipan (3 143 m) and you can visit this place very easily, by a new cable car from the town.

Sapa Tavan Village

Travel distance from Hanoi to Sapa is about 320 km.

Lots of visitors travel by a night train from Hanoi to Lao Cai. It takes about 8 hours by train and you will arrive to Lao Cai in 5-6.30 am. Lao Cai is about 30 km from Sapa and you can travel on this route by a local public bus (much cheaper) or private bus companies. There are also some very comfortable direct tourist buses from Hanoi to Sapa (Hung Thanh, Inter Bus Lines, Good Morning Sapa, EcoSapa).

1. BUS from Hanoi to Sapa  

– The best way is to use day or night direct bus from Hanoi to Sapa town.
– It takes about 5,5 - 6 hours by bus from Hanoi to Sapa.
– Bus stations in Hanoi you will find in the map, see article about Hanoi.
– Buses depart from Hanoi to Sapa (Hanoi Old Quarter), another private bus companies depart from other places.
– One-way bus ticket costs about $13 - 16 from Hanoi to Sapa.
– You can book and buy bus e-tickets online of Hung Thanh, Inter Bus Lines, EcoSapa, Sapa Express, Goodmorning Sapa, Queen Buss…
- Bus from Hanoi to Sapa: 28 seats & Sleeper bus 32 beds.

Bus from Hanoi to Sapa

Sapa Express Bus Schedules.

Travel to Sapa by Bus is the best way to travel between Hanoi and Sapa. The travel time takes about 5 hours with our Luxury Open Buses. The bus fares are less expensive than train tickets.
 
Hanoi to Sapa 28 Soft seats Bus, Price: 16$ Hanoi to Sapa: 5,5 hours 07:00 AM (04 buses)
Hanoi to Sapa round-trip 28 Soft seats Bus, Price: 32$ Hanoi to Sapa: 5,5 hours 07:00 AM (04 buses)
Sleeper Bus Hanoi to Sapa 32 Soft beds Bus, Price: 13$ Hanoi to Sapa: 5,5 hours 07:30 AM, 22:00PM (02 buses)
 Hanoi to Sapa round trip 32 Soft beds Bus, Price: 26$ Hanoi to Sapa: 5,5 hours 07:30 AM, 22:00PM (02 buses)

Sapa Express  using the Luxury 28 seats and Luxury 32 beds bus manufactured by South Korea in business class.
Our services included: English speaking tour guide on board, Air-conditioner, Wifi, Wet tissue, mineral water, Travel blanket and pillow, Bread and some snacks on board, Toilet ( Soft bed Bus only ).
 

2. TRAIN from Hanoi to Lao Cai  

– lots of travelers go to Sapa with a night train from Hanoi to Lao Cai
– all the trains go to Lao Cai town (340 km from Hanoi), it is the end station (25 km from Sapa)
– a cheap trains of Vietnam Railways with less comfort (ofic.vietnamese railways)
– tourists trains (also 2-bed cabin in train), but also more expensive (Orient Express, King Express, Fansipan, Livitrans…)
– you can search, book and buy train e-tickets online
– seat selection available on Baolau and also on 12go.asia
– Vietnam Railways may change the orientation of the carriage at the departure station anytime at their convenience
book and buy train e-tickets from Hanoi to Lao Cai online on Baolau or 12go.asia
– this is a top travel route from Hanoi to Lao Cai – recommended – book your train e-tickets online!

Vietnam Railways trains – SP1, SP3, SP7, LC3  

– hard or soft seat – price of the one-way train ticket is about 120 000 – 160 000 viet.dongs / 1 person ($7, soft seat)
– hard berth (price of the ticket $12, 6-bed cabin) or soft berth (price of the cheap ticket $17, 4-bed cabin)
– SP = new trains, LC3 = old train, carry-on baggage – 20 kg
– seat or berth/bed selection available on Baolau and 12go.asia
Tourist and private train operators (added to SP1 + SP3)  

– Livitrans, Violette Train, Oriental Express, King Express, Sapaly, PV2, Fansipan Express, Victoria Express
– price of the train tickets is about 700 000 – 1 800 000 Viet.dongs / 1 person – soft bed (depend on the type of cabin)
– better quality and service, 2 or 4-bed cabins, carry-on baggage – 20 kg
– the most deluxe train – Victoria Express Train (price of the train ticket is about 2 500 000 – 3 500 000 viet.dongs)
– all the tourist trains are very nice and comfortable, but the price is a bit higher.

Train tickets booking – Hanoi to Lao Cai 

For bookings with Royal Railway and private railway companies Victoria Express, Fanxipan Express, King Express, Orient Express, Sapaly Express, Chapa Express, you will be required to complete the payment before submitting your order. Your reservation will be processed and you will receive a voucher by email to collect the physical ticket at the station before boarding the train.
For bookings with Vietnam Railways and private railway companies Livitrans Express and Violette Train, you will be required to complete the payment before submitting your order. Your reservation will be processed and you will receive your e-ticket by email, ready to print or carry in your mobile phone or tablet and present when boarding the train.
If you book and buy bus tickets online on Baolau or 12go.asia, you will receive your e-ticket by email, ready to print or carry in your mobile phone or tablet and present at the ticket counter of the station before boarding the bus
Travelling with children in the train 

 For trains operated by Vietnam Railways:
– passengers under 6 years old do not need to buy train ticket if they seat with their parents, or else benefit from 25% discount in all fares when they book a separate ticket. If you do not wish to take this passenger into account when making the booking, please select a smaller number of passengers
– passengers from 6 to 9 years old need to buy train ticket but benefit from 25% discount in all fares
– passengers with 10 years old or over are not eligible for children discount, need to book train ticket as adults
 For trains operated by Victoria Express, Fanxipan Express, King Express, Orient Express, Sapaly Express, Chapa Express, Livitrans Express, Violette Train or Saigon Golden Train:
– passengers under 3 years old do not need to buy ticket if they seat with their parents. If you do not wish to take this passenger into account when making the booking, please select a smaller number of passengers.

Buses from Lao Cai town to Sapa:

If you’re traveling from Hanoi to Sapa by train >>> all the trains end in Lao Cai town, 10 km from the Chinese border in northern Vietnam. Trains run throughout the day and many travellers and tourist travel in the evening (20.30 – 22.00 pm). The nigth train arrives to Lao Cai town at 6.00 – 7.00 am. You have to take a public bus or taxi from Lao Cai town to Sapa, lots of tourist buses are waiting outside the train station. Be careful they are overprized. The public bus station is in the center of town, 300 meters from the train station, see the map below.

Hanoi to Sapa by Motorbike.

You won’t need to worry about being stranded without lunch or petrol on this trip, as there are many small towns with food and gas along the way. Some of the roads are busier than others, but after Hanoi anything seems quieter by comparison. Take a look at the map (you can zoom in, move around etc.

Option 1: Hanoi => Hoa Binh => Son La => Lao Cai
Day 1: Hanoi motorbike to Mai Chau. 190 km.
Day 2: Mai Chau – Phu Yen. 140 km.
Day 3: Phu Yen – Than Uyen 210km.
Day 4 : Than Uyen – Sapa. 110km.
Day 5: Motorbike ride around Sapa.

Option 2: Hanoi => Vinh Phuc => Tuyen Quang => Yen Bai => Lao Cai
Day 1: Hanoi - Vulinh, 180 km, 5hr ride, home stay
Day 2: Vu linh - Bac Ha, 180km, 5hr ride, hotel.
Day 3: Bac Ha - Sapa, 100km 2h30' ride, hotel.
 

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