Traveling to Hanoi, it is interesting to explore its beauty-spots inside the city within a day or 2 day tour. However, should you choose to hide away from the modern,hurry city rhythm for a while, do not be afraid to discover other surrounding destinations of Hanoi for your peaceful and relaxed moment in rural villages with their natural landscapes. In this article, we will provide you with useful information of top 5 places to visit outside Hanoi Capital. You can get a reference of and choose for yourselves places of interest for your Vietnam holiday packages of unforgettable experiences.
Ha Long Bay (recognized as one of the 7 Natural Wonders of the World), located in the northeastern area of Vietnam and takes only 3,5 hours car transfer to reach from Hanoi Capital. Ha Long Bay is distinguished for its natural setting of more than 3000 limestone islands & islets placed beautifully on emerald water, with natural caves and beaches around.
Distance from Hanoi : 160 Km ~ 3,5 hours drive.
Travel options : Car transfer to Ha Long Bay ( 3,5 hours), Seaplane ( 45 minutes flight).
Sapa, well-known for its stunning mountains, valleys and waterfalls, is also famous for its pleasant climate with cool weather due to its average height compared with the sea level ( 2000 meters) and for its rich cultures of local ethnics living around the region. You can choose a Sapa tour from Hanoi going by night train or by car that offer you different options with villages to explore by trekking, biking or homestaying in local villages that you like.
Travelling to Sapa is quite convenient now. To experience Vietnamese trains, you can easily book an overnight train ticket with soft sleeper berths to Lao Cai from Hanoi, then transfer to Sapa on a local bus. You can also get a shared-bus ticket, which depart daily, or a private car to Sapa from Hanoi city.
Distance from Hanoi : 320 Km ~ 5 hours drive
Transfer options : night trains ( 9 hours), car transfer to Sapa following the new highway (5 hour drive)
Ninh Binh Province is located in the southern part of Hanoi capital, endowed with impressive chains of limestone mountains, rivers & national park. Thanks to this craggy topography, Ninh Binh was chosen as the Capital of Vietnam in the 10th and 11th century (Hoa Lu Ancient Capital) during the Dinh and Le dynasty.
Your trip to Ninh Binh will be a big miss if forget to sit through nice rowing boat tours exploring Trang An Eco-Tourism Complex, Tam Coc grottoes, Van Long nature reserve, etc.
What a nice view of mountain setting along the rivers with cave system and rice fields you can capture during the boat journey. Also, for spectacular view of Ninh Binh city and splendid mountains, it is our suggestion to do a short trek with proper steps to Mua cave. It is actually worth your effort especially in the time of late April-early May (the period during which the rice changes its color from green to yellow). If you have another day, it is a great idea to discover Cuc Phuong National Park with soft & hard treks, surrounded by natural forest and bird’s melody.
Distance : 100 Km from Hanoi ~ 2 hours drive
Transfer option : car transfer to Ninh Binh or motorbike
Mai Chau is a beautiful valley and has been the home of local Thai people for a long time. The same distance as travelling to Ha Long Bay, but instead a 4-hour drive to the northwest with magnificent mountain view, then reach beautiful Mai Chau Valley.
A trip to Mai Chau offers you many things to do (trekking or biking) to multiple remote villages in the regions.You will experience local farming activities, enjoy local foods, their traditional dances and interact with friendly locals in their lovely rural hamlets. For more remote villages & picturesque scenery, you can extend your trip to Pu Luong nature reserve or Moc Chau plateau.
Distance from Hanoi : 160 Km ~ 4 hour drive
Transfer options : car transfer to Mai Chau, motorbike
Ha Giang is a remote and up-northern province of Vietnam, near China border. It is a less touristic & off-beaten- track travel route that you could think of. This is not a popular travel destination for tourists due to its far location from Hanoi and its small, winding roads to get there. However, if you do, you will be gifted with magnificent landscapes of deep valleys and mountains, specially in Dong Van, Meo Vac, Hoang Su Phi area. You can connect your travel routes to Ba Be lake & Ban Gioc waterfall, then pay your interesting visit to Ha Giang area in 5- 6 day tours from Hanoi.
Distance from Hanoi : 420 Km, in 9-10 hour drive
Transfer options : car transfer or motorbike
This summer, grab your backpack and discover Vietnam with Asia Eyes Travel!