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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Sa Pa, Vietnam

Nov 11, 2013 - Sa Pa

Well, we made it back to Ha Noi, the driver was a bit more cautious than on the outward journey, so made it more pleasant. We wandered around a bit, found somewhere for dinner then got a taxi to the station. By this time it was starting to rain, so the storm was closing in on Ha Noi. We finally boarded the train, sharing the compartment with a young German couple. A bit more comfortable than the previous overnighters, but the train still rattled and rolled along the track. What a night! The train did really rock and roll, it felt as if we'd...

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Trip Journal


off we go!

Nov 2, 2013 - Trekking in Sapa Northern Vietnam

Through the generosity of Simon who we travelled with from Bangkok to Hanoi we have acquired a new torch. Due to a logistical error Helen's didn't get packed. "Simon's torch" is a Maglite and resembles a small truncheon,we think this could become quite useful later in the trip. As a thank you to Simon there will be further comment and pictures of "Simon's torch" in various locations throughout our trip We said goodbye to the "Good morning Vietnam" group (photo) and the five of us climbed aboard a top of the range Ford transit minibus for...

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Jul 21, 2013 - Sapa

Hi, we left Sapa town this morning which is a bit like Queenstown, but everything is green and lush. It is about 1600 metres above sea level with rice, corn, vegetables all grown here. It is so steep with the terraces all dug into the hill for growing the rice and corn. Our driver very good and am surprised how you can get three lanes of traffic to fit into two. There was many occasions that we had to breath in with fear of fitting through or scooters coming at us thinking we would hit. Our guide has been fantastic, who started at 15 years...

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Jul 20, 2013 - Sapa

A later start this morning which was nice drove about 7 km out to Sapa to be dropped off to walk to another village. This village is quite touristy and would be called high class living after yesterday's middle classed houses. These houses had iron roofs and concrete floors, better rice crops as they can afford fertiliser. As soon as our van stopped we were swarmed by the ladies trying to sell their wares. Our guide told us to say no shopping to them but still had 3 followers for some kms! Learnt abit more about the culture today definitely...

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Jul 19, 2013 - Hanoi to Sapa

We said goodbye to our guide of 8 days who had been great and flew up to Hanoi. Another busy city with lots of traffic. Had a nice lunch at a restaurant which trains street kids in the hospitality industry set up by Australians. Saw the sights of Hanoi, and went to a water puppet show which was quite clever, before being taken to the railway station to catch the overnight train to Sapa. A nice cabin with 4 bunk beds leaving Hanoi at 10 o'clock. Some sleep was had but an interesting ride with varying speeds and stoppages. Arrived at Lao Cai...

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Sep 21, 2012 - Sa Pa

Rain, rain, go away, come again another day. Or more accurately, rain and fog. And they did - mostly. We took the overnight train to Sa Pa. It left about 8:30 pm Thursday evening and arrived about 5 am Friday morning. We had 2 bunks in a "soft" sleeper compartment of 4, the other 2 being occupied by a young Dutch couple doing a similar tour to us. Also on the train were an Australian family of 5 (3 young boys) from a farm near Warrnambool and a young couple from Brisbane. I say "soft" because these were very firm beds indeed, made worse...

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Aug 12, 2012 - Sa Pa and the Bac Ha market

Today after breakfast we drove 110kms to experience the famous Bac Ha market where many of the ethnic minorities meet each Sunday. Our guide Cha is again dressed in a wonderfully coloured traditional outfit. On the way to the market as we pass endless rice terraces we are told Flower H'mong, Phu La, Black Dao, Tay and Nung minorities gather to buy and sell local products that can not be found anywhere else. The various minorities all specialise in their own handicrafts which are very colourful. We explored the horse sales and the buffalo...

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Aug 11, 2012 - Sa Pa and the hill tribes

Neither of us got much sleep as the train rattled through the night and the berths were quite narrow. I had a horrible headache which lasted all day. We arrived at 4.30 am and then it was another hour in the car as we made our way up to Sa Pa. After some confusion we were able to check into our room at the Sa Pa View Hotel and crashed for 90 mins before freshening up and heading out for breakfast. Our room has amazing views of the rice terraces and Fansipan Mountain, south east Asia's highest and the last major peak in the Himalayan chain....

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Aug 10, 2012 - Hanoi - overnight train to Sa Pa

Today after breakfast we met our guide May Pham and a Vivu travel representative. We were now finally able to pay the remaining monies we owed for our tour. All that US$ had been burning a hole in our pockets. We were given a gift of two enourmous bunches of rambutans, they taste a whole lot nicer than they look. We had a full day touring Hanoi, starting with a visit to the mausoleum of the nation's founder Ho Chi Minh. It and most things to do with Uncle Ho are closed on Fridays so we didn't get to see his embalmed body. We did get to see...

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Jun 10, 2012 - Mud-trekking in Sapa

Efter en hviledag i Hanoi, var turen så kommet til SaPa og et gensyn med lidt vandring. Sapa ligger i det nordlige Vietnam, og når man ankommer til Lao Cai, som er den nærmeste togby, er man kun 5minutter fra grænsen til Kina. Byen er kendt for nogen af Vietnam smukkeste ”vandre” ture, gennem rismarker, op og ned af og langs bjerge. Bonusinfo er desuden, at det er her man finder Vietnams højeste bjerg, fansipan, på 3,5km. Turen fra Hanoi til Sapa er en langsommelig affære og til at tilbagelægge de 333km skulle der næsten 8 timer til –...

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Apr 30, 2012 - Vietnam - Day 29 - Dawn & Melanie's journey into hill-tribe villages

Today marks the first day since we began our travels that Jason and I have not been together. Jason left at 5am to go meet up with David at his hotel. They rented a guide and are going to climb up Fansipan, Vietnam’s highest peak at 3141 meters. Normally the trek can take several days to complete, there are two base camps along the way but these two crazy guys are going to do it in just one day! I on the other hand met up with Melanie at 9am and we went on a guided walking tour from Sapa into the hill-tribe villages to Ta Van, where we will...

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Apr 29, 2012 - Vietnam - Day 28 - Mountain town of Sapa

Our journey into to Sapa from Lao Cai where the train dropped us off took just a little over an hours drive, the sun rising over the mountains welcomed us to a new day. The scenery was astounding, rice terraces, water buffalo, tribal villagers and their children welcomed us at every bend of the road. Very beautiful and serene. Sapa, a population of 40,000 and growing is perched on a steep slope. Sapa overlooks a plunging valley of cascading rice terraces, with mountains towering above the town on all sides. Founded as a French hill station...

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