We booked the 3 night 2 day tour at the Rendezvous hostel for 63 USD per person. I can recommend booking here, as we heard from fellow trekkers they paid over a 100 dollars for the exact same tour. Even when you’re not staying at the Rendezvous hostel, you can still book the tour here.
Included in the tour package is the following:
- 9 PM nightbus from Hanoi to Sa Pa, including transfers
- Breakfast on arrival
- Tour guides
- Lunch and dinner on both trekking days (excluding drinks)
- 1 night in a home stay or hotel including breakfast (home stay recommended!)
- (Night)bus back to Hanoi
Here are some tips if you’re seduced by the pictures and booked a tour!
Check the weather forecast! We were extremely lucky which the clear sunny weather on both days. It rains very often in Sa Pa, and walking 12 KM in the rain on slippery paths just isn’t fun.
It gets seriously cold at night in Sa Pa! When we arrived at 5 AM it was only 5 degrees! That’s a huge difference compared to Hanoi. So bring warm clothes. On the other side, if the sun comes out, it gets hot real quick. So pack one set of clothes for cold weather and one for hot weather.
For the hike it is recommended to wear firm shoes with a good profile. Hiking shoes are best if you have them. If you don’t have them, don’t worry, I did it on my Nikes and I was fine! Do expect your shoes to get dirty though! Which is not a problem, as you can get them cleaned for 1 USD per pair by a shoe polisher while enjoying a beer at the beercorner back in Hanoi.
On the trekking you will be accompanied by several kind Vietnamese ladies who will guide you through the rice fields. If you’re lucky you’ll get a lady who speaks English and you’ll have a nice conversation partner whom will teach you lots about the Vietnamese culture and habits.
Even though a tour guide is included in the price, these ladies expect to be paid at the end of the trekking. They carry items varying from little pouches to scarfs and bracelets which they want to sell to you in return for their help along the way. In my opinion it’s fair because if it wasn’t for their help and guidance, we probably would have crashed down a valley and still be there now.