Vietnam Trekking: the most popular Vietnam Trekking Routes
Trekking in Vietnam is becoming more and more popular among the adventurous travelers these years. Thanks to the long history and diversified geography, Vietnam offers many stunning trekking routes with vary levels of difficulty. It will be suitable for those who have different health conditions and individual preference.
If you prefer a cozy and comfortable trekking in Vietnam, then please choose a city trekking route to experience the combinations of eastern and western cultures. Trekking through the historic architectures, places of interest, landmarks and parks, you can not only feel the charm of exotic Vietnamese culture but also observe the real daily life of local people.
And if you are going to challenge something new with your adventurous spirit, the countryside trekking routes are perfect for you. You can watch the dazzling natural scenery with the views of towering mountain, highland valleys, pristine coastal and the vivid rice terraces during the trekking trip. No matter your trekking experience or physical fitness, you will find a certain trekking route for yourself. Here are the several popular destinations I recommend for your trekking plans in Vietnam ranging from easy to difficult.
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Best Time to Having a Trekking Tour in Vietnam
As Vietnam is a really long coastal country, the climate here is multifarious tropical. So there is not a right or wrong time to trek in Vietnam. In general, September to December, March to April could be a popular best time for you to trek in Vietnam, because it will not rain too much during the monsoon season. And according to the different regions you are plan to trek, I will mention the specific best time in the certain route.
Classic Routes for Trekking in Vietnam
1. Trekking in Ho Chi Minh City
Ho Chi Minh City is the biggest of Vietnam and also the center for culture and history. So there are several attractions for you as your trekking destinations to experience the city enchantment and historical process. Through walking across the streets and hot places, you could experience the realistic local life and obtain leisure time. As it is an easy-level trekking in city, it will be a 2-day trekking route to walk through the city.
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You can go to 23/9 Park, a downtown centerpiece in Ho Chi Minh City. It is a popular park for local people to relax and exercise but also a quite a perfect trekking place in Ho Chi Minh City because there are always festivals and celebrations organized in the park. So you could watch their traditional unique parade while trekking across the park and experiencing the local life. Also, the park is located on the famous Phan Ngu Lao Street where always gathers plenty of trekkers.
You can trek across the street and go to Ben Thanh market which is the biggest trading market and an important symbol of Ho Chi Minh City over a century. There are all kinds of traditional Vietnamese food, commodity and handcraft in this market. Just trek across the big market, have traditional dishes just like pho and buy some souvenir for family members.
If you are interest in architectures, start trekking from the Fine Arts Museum, passing the Red Church and finally end at Reunification Palace. You can not only enjoy the charm of historic architecture but also the special culture fusion of Vietnam since the three architectures are all built influenced by French, Gothic and Renaissance.
Best time to have a trekking tour in Ho Chi Minh City
The City is located closer to the equator, so it has a very pleasant climate all year around. It will be comfortable for you to trek here during the dry season which runs from December to April to avoid the high humidity and rains.
2. Trekking in Hanoi
Hanoi is the capital city of Vietnam, most of the country provides direct flights to Hanoi. Hanoi is on the right bank of Red River, and is also a popular destination of trekking. You could follow the route below and enjoy your comfortable 1-day city trekking in Hanoi.
The first station could usually be Hoan Kie Lake, meaning ‘lake of the returned sword’ or ‘lake of the restored sword’, is a lake in the historical center of Hanoi. It has picturesque scenery with lush green trees surrounded and clear lake water so that is a sensible option for you to trek far from crowd while walking along the lakeside and taking a fresh breath here
Next to the lake, there is the Bach Ma Temple which is the Buddhist temple that has the longest history in Hanoi and free for tourists. After trekking across the Hoan Kie Lake, you can go to the temple and appreciate the architecture of 18th century.
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Best time to have a trekking tour in Hanoi
During the summer days, there are downpours in the afternoon. So the best time to trek in Hanoi is the dry season which from March to April and October to November
3. Trekking in SAPA
SAPA, the capital of SAPA District in Long Cai Province in north-west Vietnam, is a frontier township that considered one of the attractive destinations for trekking tourists. Especially for those who are tired of the normal travel course, taking a trekking in SAPA, overlooking the plunging valley with mountains towering above on all sides will be really an impressive experience. In consideration of the landform of SAPA, I recommend a 3-day trekking in SAPA.
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As we know, SAPA is known as its unique scenery of rice paddies with green vegetational covering, and the whole SAPA town is always hidden in the mysterious mist. So it will be a very easy start to depart for a walk Muong Hoa Valley by following the main road. Muong Hoa valley is always blooming with all kinds of beautiful and colorful flowers. It is also amazing to see the reflections of the sunshine as the rice terraces are full of water. So you can overlook the best scenery on the field’s surface.
You may have the opportunity to watch the Fansipan Peak-----the highest part of Muang Lien Son mountain range if there is a fine weather there. It is known as the roof of Indochina and is the most challenging route for most of the trekking tourists. It will be pretty dangerous for trekking by yourself so if you want to challenge, please contact a local guide to help you for enduring safety. You will take more than 3 hours to climb the 3143m peak though it will be exhausted. But it is also worthy because you could see the best panorama of Vietnam on the top of Fansipan Peak.
On the second day, you will trek to Cat Cat village which is also a perfect trekking route for those who prefer more challenge. Also, Cat Cat village is a perfect place to watch the making of traditional clothes. The local women will spend much time to teach textile weaving and dying.
Then you can visit local people’s house and have a close encounter of their daily routines and activities after cross a bridge to uphill to Y Lin Ho village, which is a small commune composed by many small hamlets on the top of the mountain terrain. During the home visiting, it could be easily to get close to the friendly local people with seeing the lovely smiles of children and women. And the only way to get this village is trekking on the road no matter the local people or tourists due to the special geographical position.
On the last day, there is also a popular trekking place for many foreign visitors-----Ham Rong Mountain, which is located not far from the center of SAPA town. Ham Rong Mountain is famous for its botanical garden where there are so many types of flowers growing and blooming here such as Lily of the Nile, cherry blossom, ox-eyed daisy, geranium and hydrangea. So you can have a really cozy walk here with the beautiful flowers around and smelling the natural perfume. You can also find fruits here: plum, peach or bear.
Best to have a trekking tour in SAPA
During March to April and August to December in SAPA, the weather condition is best for you to see the natural beauty clearly and have a nice trekking time.
How to get SAPA
You can start from Hanoi first and transfer to SAPA by bus, train, private car or motorbike. More information about how to get SAPA, PLEASE CHECK THE CONTENT.
4. Trekking in Cat Tien National Park
Cat Tien National Park is a national park located in three provinces Dong Nai, Lam Dong and Binh Thuan, in the south of Vietnam, approximately 150km north of Ho Chi Minh City. It has an area of about 720km² and protects one of the largest areas of lowland tropical forests left in Vietnam with an arid climate and rolling hills. You can get here from Ho Chi Minh City and take a 1-day trekking tour here.
Cat Tien National Park
Cat Tien comprises an amazingly biodiverse area of lowland tropical rainforest. The national park is well-reserved with impressive biodiversity including many ancient trees which may live for thousand years. The system of waterfalls, rivers are also stunningly striking. Most of extraordinary sights and attractions are not mentioned in travel books, probably because they are located too far from tourism routes. But it will also be a natural treasure for the trekking visitors, walking through a real juggle, mountain, and hearing the birds’ chirp. It will be really impressive when you see the magnificent giant trees and several creatures such as monkeys, deer and gaurs. Some of the must-see destinations are Ngok Linh Mountain, Chu Mon Ray Juggle, Dak to hot spring and so on.
Best time to have a trekking tour in Cat Tien National Park
From April to December (dry season)
How to get Cat Tien National Park
You can get there by bus from Ho Chi Minh City.
Tips during trekking tour in Vietnam
Please wear comfortable hiking shoes during trekking tour. Bring a warm jacket and raincoat in case of the cold rainy weather. It may take several hours when you trek in countryside especially on the mountain, so please prepare some snacks and water in your backpack to avoid physical down. At last, please take your smart phone with a map APP in order to guide you at any time.
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