Top 3 destinations for walking in north Vietnam

Sapa, Lao Cai

As a land of lush greenery and dramatic scenery, it’s no wonder Vietnam is a popular destination for those who love to be outdoors and get around on two feet. Here are our tips for the ultimate walking tour in Vietnam.

1. Ba Be National Park
This National Park was originally created to protect the freshwater Ba Be Lake. Covering an area of more than 230 km2 (89 sq mi), Ba Be National Park is full of waterfalls, rivers, lakes, caves, valleys and mountain tops. An ideal spot to incorporate into a walking tour in Vietnam, Ba Be National Park is full of postcard-perfect evergreen forests and a range of fascinating flora and fauna. The signature hike of the National Park sees walkers travel along the spine of the Pia Booc mountain range. Spending a few days in Ba Be National Park allows keen hikers to experience more of what the region has to offer too. With a number of ethnic villages there, walkers can arrange to eat traditional meals with local families and stay overnight in homestays. Swimming and kayaking in the lake can be a welcome change in activity for those tired legs too!

Ba Be national park, top 3 destinations for walking in north Vietnam
Ba Be National Park. Vietnam

2. Cat Ba National Park
Part of a World Heritage Site in Halong Bay – characterised by its emerald waters peppered with thousands of rainforest-topped limestone islands – Cat Bat National Park isn’t short of visitors keen to catch a glimpse of paradise. However, on Cat Ba island itself, there are plenty of opportunities to wander off-the-beaten-track on its 173km2 (67 sq mi) surface area. The National Park is home to thousands of species of plants – 160 of which have medicinal properties – and hundreds of animals, some of which are endangered. An ideal place for a walking tour in Vietnam, it’s possible to trek through the National Park to the traditional Viet Hai Village. Along the way, it’s common for walkers to spot native cats, squirrels, deer, snakes, butterflies and the endangered Cat Ba langur, one of the rarest primates in the world. Hikers can stay overnight in bungalows in Viet Hai Village, where it’s possible to try a traditional fish massage too.

Catba island, top 3 destinations for walking in north Vietnam
Catba island, Cat Ba national park.

3. Sapa
A town perfectly positioned to overlook some of the best scenery in Vietnam, Sapa is a base from which many walking adventures in Vietnam begin. With valleys, mountains, rice paddies and culturally rich ethnic communities, walking tours in Vietnam hit the jackpot here. Vietnam’s main trekking base, avid walkers feel a sense of awe as soon as they start hiking. The best way to experience a walking tour in Sapa is to spend at least a couple of days in the area. Trek alongside stepped rice paddies and the dramatic Muong Hoa Valley, passing through various villages along the way, with local people who love to say ‘hello’ and share lunch with you. Get the full experience by staying with a local family in homestay accommodation. The next day, after enjoying a traditional breakfast with the family, and then more lush mountain scenery awaits. Take a wending route back to Sapa to enjoy this walking tour in Vietnam to its fullest.

Mr Linh’s Adventures has multiple walking tours in Vietnam suitable for all tastes and abilities – choose one to suit you.
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