The Charm of Ricefield-9 Days

A trip reserved for those who are passionate about the beauty of the rice terraces and unusual encounters with the minority ethnic groups of northern Vietnam.



Itinerary :

Day 1: Arrival
Day 2: Ha Noi - Visits
Day 3: Ha Noi - Nghia Lo
Day 4: Nghia Lo - Mu Cang Chai
Day 5: Mu Cang Chai - Sapa
Day 6: Sapa - Bac Ha
Day 7: Bac Ha Market - Ha Noi
Day 8: Ha Noi - Ninh Binh - Halong Bay land
Day 9: Ninh Binh - Cat Ba - Cruise in Halong Bay
Day 10: Cat Ba - Ha Noi
Day 11: Ha Noi - Departure


Possibility of extending to Laos or Cambodia and changing the stages


- Depending on your desires and your budget, this tour can be adapted and modified in terms of duration, content, as well as the date of departure.

- The price of this trip varies according to the number of participants, the services chosen (accommodation category, activities and board during the trip, ...) as well as the tourist period of the year.

- Do not hesitate to contact us for more information. We are always ready to listen to you.




Day 1: Hanoi - Arrival
(guide, private car, lunch, dinner, accommodation, visits)


Welcome by Zen Vietnam Travel guide and driver. Transfer to Hà Nôi city center. 

An orientation walk on foot or by pedicab in the old town district, otherwise known as the 36 trades streets of Ha Noi because most of the shops on the same street sold the same thing: Rue des bambous, Rue de silk, Traditional medicine street, Bronze street, etc. A truly typical and charming district, with its shops on the sidewalks, small narrow houses, scooters everywhere.

Installation at the hotel for the shower and rest. Warning ! hotel rooms are only available from 2 p.m.

Gourmet dinner at the famous ¨Cha Ca¨ dish in a local restaurant. Overnight at hotel in Hanoi.


Day 2: Hanoi - Visits
(guide, private car, lunch, dinner, accommodation, visits)


Today you will start the visit of the capital Hà Nội with a very old Buddhist pagoda, the 6th century Trấn Quốc pagoda, located in a beautiful setting by the large West Lake. Then, you will visit the Quán Thánh temple at 300m.

Then, the visit of the ethnographic museum, which gives you a panoramic view of the life of the 54 ethnic groups with 54 different cultures in the territory of Vietnam.

Time for lunch at the restaurant.

In the afternoon, visit of the political district with the mausoleum of Hồ Chí Minh, the founding father of modern Vietnam, the presidential palace, the house on stilts of Hồ Chí Minh, the pagoda with the one pillar. Visit of the Temple of Literature, the first university in the history of the country.

At the end of the day, you will witness the spectacle of the Water Puppet Theater, a unique culture that you will never find in any other country in the world. Vietnam is the only country that practices this art.

Dinner at the local restaurant. Overnight at hotel in Hanoi.


Day 3: Ha Noi - Nghia Lo
(guide, private car, lunch, dinner, accommodation, visits)


Breakfast at the hotel.

Departure at 8:00 am towards Nghia Lo passing through the tea hills in Thanh Son. Visit of the small villages along the road. Visit of a small tea factory (depending on their work). On the road, stop and visit small villages of Muong and Thai ethnic groups with their typical houses, unexpected encounters!

Lunch at the local restaurant.

In the afternoon, visit Suối Giàng where there are centuries-old tea plantations created by the H’mong at an altitude of 1000m. Arrival in Nghia Lo, a large and very peaceful valley surrounded by mountains, villages on the edge of rice fields. A picturesque landscape.

Dinner and overnight at the inhabitant in the house on stilts, Thai White ethnic group.


Day 4: Nghia Lo - Tu Le - Mu Cang Chai
(guide, private car, lunch, dinner, accommodation, visits)


Breakfast at the inhabitant's.

Departure at 9:00 am to Mu Cang Chai. Visit the daily market of Nghia Lo before heading to the most beautiful rice terraces in Vietnam.

Arrive in Tu Le, a small town by the road, famous for its rice fields, sticky rice and chicken. You will take a walk in the small villages of the Black Thai, unexpected encounters with the local inhabitants, a little discovery of local life in a place where the stress and worries of urban life are not yet known.

Lunch at the local restaurant with good sticky rice and sporty chicken. In the afternoon we will go up to altitude and admire the most beautiful rice terraces in the country. A magnificent landscape awaits you.

Visit of the black Hmong village at La Pan Tan. A natural spectacle made by human hands.

Arrival in Mu Cang Chai, a very quiet little town.

Dinner and overnight at the inhabitant.


Day 5: Mu Cang Chai - Sapa
(guide, private car, lunch, dinner, accommodation, visits)


Breakfast at the inhabitant's. On the road to Sapa, you will still see kilometers of tea plantations, very beautiful rice fields and beautiful villages with houses on stilts.

At 8:30 am, departure to Sapa, the old summer resort founded by the French during the colonial era.
Lunch on the road.

Before arriving in Sapa, you will visit the beautiful Thac Bac waterfall which is located on the longest pass in Vietnam, the O Quy Ho pass, a magnificent landscape.

Arrived in Sapa, you will visit its market, its church, Catcat village inhabited by the Black Hmong, a minority ethnic group from Vietnam who still keeps very well its customs as well as its pretty traditional dress.

Dinner at the restaurant. Night at the hotel.


Day 6: Sapa - Matra Village, Ta Phin - Bac Ha
(guide, private car, lunch, dinner, accommodation, visits)


Breakfast at the hotel.

This morning, a short 3 hour hike through Ma Tra and Ta Phin villages, the two villages that are inhabited by the Black Hmong and the Red Dao, the two main ethnic minorities in Sapa. A small meeting, the ddiscovery of their daily life and contemplate the magnificent landscapes, this is what awaits you.

Lunch at the inhabitant in the village Ta Phin. In the afternoon, departure to Bac Ha. Arrival and walk in the village Na No.

Dinner and overnight at the inhabitant.


Day 7: Bac Ha Market - Ha Noi
(guide, lunch, private car, accommodation, visit)


Breakfast at the hotel.

Today is Sunday, the day of the weekly market at the Hmong Fleur, Bac Ha market where the Hmong Fleur of the region come to exchange their agricultural products, have a drink together after a week. In fact, the market is not only an opportunity for shopping but also an opportunity to meet local people, a small local festival for young people, to meet each other. An opportunity to find the husband or wife of their life.

Lunch at the restaurant.

Road to Ha Noi.

Free dinner. 

Day 8: Ha Noi - Van Long - Ninh Binh
(guide, lunch, private car, accommodation, visit)


Breakfast at the inhabitant's.

Road in the direction of Ninh Binh, nicknamed the terrestrial Ha Long Bay because of the similarity between the landscapes and the geological formation with thousands of rocks covered by beautiful vegetation, succession of natural cirques linked together by caves dug by erosions.

Arriving at Van Long Nature Reserve, known as the “preserved natural area” of Halong Bay on land, Van Long offers us magnificent views of the countryside and rural life. In comparison to Tam Coc, Van Long is much more primitive and completely intact. The rivers, the mountains, the caves, the rice fields, its warm inhabitants, the small bamboo boats and especially its biodiversity give Van Long a different charm. Bamboo sampam ride.

Continue to Dong Dinh village, a small Catholic village on the edge of a small river. Mr. Sang and his family welcome you to their home. Here you can learn to fish, row the concrete boat, participate in agricultural activities in the village. A pleasant little moment, in a nice village, around smiling people.

Arrive at Mr. Huan's house where you will sleep tonight in Hoa Lu, crossing the World Heritage Center of Trang An, the center of Halong Bay on land with stunning scenery.

Dinner and overnight at Huan's in Hoa Lu.


Day 9: Ninh Binh - Cat Ba - Cruise in Halong Bay - Overnight on board
(guide on board, bus, lunch, dinner, accommodation, visits, private junk or collective boat)


Breakfast at the hotel.

At 7:30 am, departure for Hai Phong 150km away to embark on a shuttle that takes you to Cat Ba Island. 30 minutes more bus and you arrive at the Ben Beo pier where you will board our beautiful private junk (or collective boat) and start the 24 hours on board for a discovery of one of the natural wonders of the world, the Halong Bay.

From our ¨zen¨ criteria for trips, we have chosen the part of the south of the bay where the large mass tourism boats do not pass yet, just a few small traditional junks in this area. A part of the bay that is still very authentic with thousands of rocks, wild beaches and huge floating villages that you cannot find in the other part of Ha Long Bay.

Lunch on board with seafood. Time for swimming or simply resting on the deck to admire this miracle that nature offers us. After 3 hours of navigation, we arrive at Hang Ca, a beautiful place for the kayak ride, another way to see the bay up close.

Around 5:30 p.m., we anchor in a magnificent circus in the middle of the bay where you will be alone. A hell of a time to watch the sunset over the bay.
Dinner on board and a test of squid fishing in the evening will be great memories.

Overnight on board.

Note: The order of visits during the cruise may be changed depending on local weather conditions.


Day 10: Cat Ba - Ha Noi
(guide on board, bus, lunch, accommodation, visits)


An early morning awakening in a magical setting around 5 am to admire the sunrise over the bay, why not?

After a good breakfast, the junk continues to sail in the bay and takes you to Viet Hai village for a nice bike ride or visit the fish farm or just enjoy the tranquility on a beach. You choose !

Lunch on board and disembarkation around 11:30 am. Visit of the old French fort cannon, panoramic point of view to see the bay again.

Road to Ha Noi. Dinner and overnight at the hotel.


Day 11: Ha Noi - Departure


Breakfast at hotel. Completely free day, until the meeting with the guide and the driver, for the transfer to the airport for your return flight.



End of the trip!


Travel with passion!



3 Stars
4 Stars
5 Stars
Ha Noi
Golden Lotus Hotel
Impressive Hotel
Golden Lotus Luxury Hotel
The Ann Hotel
Opéra Hotel
Métropole Légende
Ha Long
Traditional Cruises
Traditional Cruises
Traditional Cruises
Nghia Lo
Mien Tay Hotel
Muong Lo Hotel
Nghia Lo Hotel
Mu Cang Chai
Mu Cang Chai   Ecolodge
Nomad Trails Boutique Hotel
Sapa Wings Hotel
La Fressia Hotel
Paris Boutique Sapa Hotel
Pao's Hotel
Victoria Hotel
Bac Ha
Sao Mai Hotel
Kungfu Hotel
Note: These are simply hotels that Zen Vietnam  often works with but depending on your desire, budget or the availability of these hotels, we can find other equivalent hotels for you.



Discover the impressions and opions from our customers after their explorations with us