Sapa is a lovely rural village with lots of ethnic minorities around. It was good to meet the women who hand craft all their products and the cable car is a must.
Rich in culture especially the villages with all the natives still living inside. There are still a lot of local festival celebrating during the festival seasons.
A must visit place if you have visited Hanoi.
A very cold place to spend your vacation. The daily fog can really put you off in most cases, you cannot see more 50m in front of you.
Good to Chill out with your partner or family, good trekking locations and places of interest. A home stay should be part of your itinery, thats where you get to know the people and culture better and appreciate how much the tribe had painstakingly sew or made their handicraft, so intracate work. Amazing and Glad that my family and I did this trip...overnight train to save day light travelling.
Lao Chai Village and Te Van Village are 'must-see' attractions if one likes to explore and understand the life of villagers.
Sapa town offered tours services and motorbike rental to visit these places. Another impressive sight seeing venue would be love waterfall which is located 12km away from Sapa town.
Figure out, right away, how to deal with the women on the street trying to sell you things. If you don't want a pack of them following you for four entire stay in Sapa, just say no.
Don't be rude.
We booked our train tickets, transfers and trekking with the Sapa Sisters - very well organised and helpful and efficient, highly recommended.
We trekked with our guide for 2 days and one night, and with an age range from 9-53 we all enjoyed the experience and amazing scenery. Local people range from quiet and shy to full-on saleswomen who will follow you till you send them away! Apart from that, this is a beautiful place to visit.
Need to join the local trekking tour to those villages. And need enjoying the local restaurants here.
Although I live in Viet Nam, this was my first visit to SaPa. The pace of life is much slower here, so for me, it was far more appealing than even the moderately sized cities elsewhere in this country.
I am even thinking about moving there, as there are relatively few motorbikes, and cars are more prevalent or at least it seems that way. Consequently, the air is fresh, the scenery is stunning and the people seem more friendly, even though some of them clearly just want your business. The place is already on many tourists' "must see" list, so it doesn't need too many recommendations, even in the rain!
Staying in Sapa, you should take the opportunity to trek and visit the villages. Walking there will be much for exciting them driving there because you would be able to witness the everyday lives of the villagers.
Try villages that is further away from Sapa like Lao Chai and Ta Phin Village. You can ask any villagers for direction, they would such point to you where to walk to. But remember to bring sufficient water for the hike and bring a camera with you because you would sure take alot of photos.
We booked a 3 day, 2 night trek with 'Sapa Sisters' and it is one of our highlights of Vietnam. The trek can be tailored to suit your level of fitness and what you want out of your stay.
The views are amazing! Our guide Chihn had fantastic English and was able to tell us a lot about the local area, customs, traditions etc. We were the only two on her trek and at the homestay she helped the owner cook our meals which we still claim as some of the best food we ate in Vietnam. Although the homestay was more welcoming and comfortable than the 3 star hotel we stayed in the night before in Sapa we think it was the right balance.. I suggest to get the most out of the area Trek for 2-3 days (it's a lot easier than you think) - stay at hotel one night and check out the area, eat at a restaurant, have a massage etc and then the following day trek with homestay.... by the end of it you will be tired enough to sleep on the public transport all the way back to Hanoi.
Sapa is not easy to go unless you would like to spend at least $80 to get there by train and bus. It's cheaper to travel by overnight bus but you will ended up laying in the uncomfortable seat for 6-7 hours.
I found out that's a little bit inconvenient for me I will come back when it's better transportation systems.
Sapa is the romantic place the weather very good but sometimes has many fog, and I recommend if you can ride the motorbike you should rent it around 4-6 $ per day then you can travel around Sapa but must be careful the road not safe.
We just fall in love with Sapa. If we are asked where we would go back to visit again, our first choice is definitely Sapa.
Sapa City is vibrant with alot with endless throngs of both tourists and locals, many are clad in traditional,colorful attires.
When the fog mildly blankets the area it came very mystical and give you a feeling of being in another world
We stayed in Sapa for 5 nights/7 days and filled each day with still alot more we could do in the area.
We did an overnight trek/homestay to Ta Phin Village, 2 x cooking classes, Bac Ha Markets on the Sunday - if we were to book our trip again we would do Bac Ha Markets on the Sunday and be dropped off at the end of the tour in Lao Cai to catch the train back to Hanoi as the timing is perfect.
Small town with the Sapa church as the main landscape. Full of ethnic minority groups who would sell you their wares.
Be patient with them as they are only trying to make a living. Accept and respect their culture and be nice.
Trekking shoes is must, be prepared for wet weather, one can rent bike at a very cheap daily rate of around US$5/-, great food as there are many choices of restaurants.
Sapa is an amazing city, full of life and ethnic cultures. The landscapes are incredible and the trekkings around Sapa are breath taking!! The only thing I didint like was how pushy the women were when they would sell to you, its like you were obligated to buy from them.
Also all the children that they had selling on the streets. This should be BANNED!!! If you happen to go to Sapa do not buy form the children! If you buy form them you are supporting child labour. Children should go to school and play.
Its a very beautiful place , there are many sightseeing trips available with the locals as tour guide, very relaxing place to go to, will definitely return to SAPA again
Beautiful sceneries, interesting to move around the different tribes, some more demanding than others.
Unfortunately, some times too much in the face and whining of the women. Overall, enjoyable and friendly. Fairly clean environment.
The transfer from Lao cai to sapa ruined the whole trip for me. I was wrongly sold a ticket by a tout which cost me 10x the usual price.
There are no signs or official signage. I was left out of pocket and annoyed. The infrastructure is decent but service orientation of those involved in the tourism sector is very poor.
A trekers paradise if thats your thing. Be prepared to deal with the persistent locals trying to sell their wares.
This can get a bit annoying !!
Sapa is just the starting Point for trekking activities in the surrounding. You've missed to take Outdoor gear with you? Don't worry, you will find everything here!
Sapa is a great town! It was great to escape the hustle and bustle of HCMC for a week holiday! It's very foggy in march, but we still enjoyed our time.
We rented a motorbike and it was great to explore that way.
The local ethnic women are in your face, pressuring you to buy their poor quality souvenir's. All the shops focus on North Face clothing and footwear - dull as.
Grab a local Hmung person / guide and be very specific that you do not want to be pestered by anyone for the rest of the day, and give her $20 to make sure that happens - she will!
Practically all the merchandise and fresh fruit are imported from China through Lao Cai which is near the border.
Only vegetables may be local.So beware when shopping. The upper region which is where the waterfall is is more interesting and better suited for mountain trekking.
Worth the stay on the overnight train for the visit! Choose the less touristy trails to trek and you'll be amazed.
My friends and I went on the trail to visit the Silver waterfall - Sin Chai Village - Cat Cat Village - Cat Cat Waterfall. Even though we could only finish 3/4 of the trail, due to time constraint, it was overall an awesome time spent trekking as we got to experience the live and sounds of Sapa through our native guide (from the Black Hmong tribe).
Visited in Late December, 2 days after snow fall. It was cold but there are plenty of places selling "Northface" jackets etc at low prices (~$25-$30).
Don't take a tour from Hanoi- just organize what you want to do when you get to Sapa. (Sapa Hotel receptions can organize tours.) Don't do a tour of Cat Cat - just walk it yourself. Saturday Bac Ha market is very colourful and worth the trip there. Sapa is one place that I would return to in Vietnam but I would come back in summer! Winter was nice for 1 or 2 nights especially with the snow but I would stay longer and do a lot more walking in the summer. Good quality & good priced restaurants on the approach road to Cat Cat. Others in main town are pricey. Sapa is a very relaxing and peaceful place!!