15 activities to discover Sapa for foreign tourists

Located at an average altitude of 1500 - 1800 m above sea level, Sapa is always immersed in floating clouds, creating a beautiful and fanciful picture. The climate is cool and fresh all year round, with an average temperature of 15 -18°C.

Unspoiled beauty of terraced fields, waterfalls, mountains, valleys, and cultural beauty of ethnic groups but H'Mongm Dzao, Tay is the attraction of foreign tourists to Sapa.

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1. Conquering Fansipan Mountain Peak

Fansipan -  known as the "roof of Indochina" is always in the top tourist activities that can not be ignored when coming to Sapa. The most ideal time to conquer Fansipan peak is from September to April of the following year. This is the time frame that the weather and climate in Fansipan is the most stable, little rain and cool.

Buying tickets for Fansipan cable car at Vitravel is a convenient solution for those who do not intend to use the mountain road. From the cable car cage, you can enjoy an impressive panoramic view of Hoang Lien Son range and Muong Hoa valley. Don't miss the Bamboo Garden, Bao An Zen Monastery, Bich Van Zen Monastery, shopping area, etc. located in Fansipan Legend area.

2. Exploring Cat Cat Village

Most tourists are not interested in the city—rather, they love exploring the tiny villages scattered around it. A particularly famous village is called Cat Cat, attracting tourists from all over the world for its distinctive customs and practices that have remained influential in the area, international.

Cat Cat Village is nested at the bottom of Muong Hoa Valley, about two miles (three kilometers) from Sapa town. This village was formed in the 19th century, after the arrival of the Hmong and Dao ethnic families from other mountainous areas in Northern Vietnam. They began to grow rice and corn in the area, as well as weave cloth and create handicrafts.

3. Trekking Lao Chai - Ta Van Villages

About 10km from Sapa town center to Ta Van commune, you will reach Ta Van village. On the way, you will pass through Lao Chai - where the natural scenery of mountains and forests is so beautiful, there is also the famous Sapa ancient rocks. When treckking, tourists can feel the hospitality of the local people and try the local foods.

When you reach Ta Van, you will feel that this place is completely separate from the rhythm of the town. The fields stretch endlessly, the rustic cottages weaving in the small road create an irresistible attraction with "legs" that like to move.

4. Visit the Rice Terraces in Ma Tra Village & Ta Phin Village

Ma Tra and Ta Phin villages are located about 12km east of Sapa town. On the way, you can enjoy panoramic views of majestic and unspoiled nature. Coming to Ma Tra village, visitors will be warmly welcomed by the H'Mong people and visit the terraced fields.
Not far away is Ta Phin village, the residence of the Red Dao ethnic people. Coming to Ta Phin, do not forget to visit Ta Phin stalactite cave with interesting shapes. 

5. Ta Phin Ancient Monastery

Ta Phin Ancient Monastery is an interesting place when visiting Ta Phin village. This monastery was built during the French period with unique architecture. Although abandoned for a long time, it still has a mysterious and magical beauty, attracting many tourists to the unspoiled mountain space.

6. Exploring Unspoiled Nature in Sin Chai Village

Sin Chai village is located in San Sa Ho commune, about 4km from Sapa town and next to Cat Cat village. If you are afraid that Cat Cat village is always crowded with tourists, then you should look to a quieter and more rustic place of Sin Chai with terraced fields with hundreds of years old.

7. Walk to Silver Waterfalls

Sapa is famous for its waterfalls and one of these is Silver Waterfalls. This is a collection of gushing cataracts that tower to a height of some 200 meters. Located just up the path from Silver Waterfalls is the beautifully named Love Waterfall which is a place that is steeped in local legend.
Locals will tell you that fairies used to bathe in the waters here and although it is a long trek to both waterfalls it is more than worth it for the pretty scenery.

8. Immerse yourself in the nature of Ham Rong Mountain

Ham Rong Mountain, right next to Sapa town center, is a famous eco-tourist site in Sapa, Vietnam that attracts millions of visitors each year.  Ham Rong boasts its unique features that you cannot find anywhere else. The mountain has a shape like a dragon holding its head up towards the sky. It has the name Ham Rong (Dragon Head) because of this special shape. 

This is home to many different types of flora. On the way to the top of Ham Rong mountain, you can discover up to 6000 orchid vegetation. There are also a lot of wild and unique flowers grown alongside the paths like cherry blossom, hydrangea, geraniums, Lily of the Nile,… Besides, you also have a chance to taste many kinds of Sapa fruits like peach, plum, and pear. Ham Rong mountain looks like a heaven on the earth surrounded by the drifting clouds and echo sound from Mong boys’ bamboo flute

9. View towards Muong Hoa Valley

Mường Hoa Valley, Hầu Thào Commune lies eight kilometres southeast of Sa Pa Town. Visitors get to the beautiful valley after crossing a high mountain pass.

The northwest mountainous area is famous for its extraordinary and poetic beauty, which changes with every season of the year. For Sa Pa lovers, Mường Hoa Valley is especially delightful. It is beautiful during both the new rice and harvest seasons thanks to the unique terraced fields. Tourists have enjoyed taking a mid-mountain hike to treat themselves to this spectacular view. However, the best way to enjoy this unique specialty of the town in fog is to view it from above, choosing a mid-mountain spot to appreciate this magical green trail.

10. Explore Sapa Stone Church

Sapa Church (a catholic church with a stone belltower) is considered the most attractive place for sightseeing in Sapa, Vietnam. Located in the center of the Sapa town, this old church was built in the 20th century by the French colonizers. It is also known as the Church of Our Lady of the Rosary and has become a suitable location for traditional cultural practices of ethnic minority groups there. The Sapa Church is built by stones linked by the mixture of sand, molasses, and lime.  Inspired by the French architectural style, this church is the only remained structure in Sapa which still preserves the soul and beauty of Catholic Architecture.

11. Go boating on Sapa Lake

Sapa Lake is one of the main attractions in town and is just a 5 minute walk away from the main church.
The lake allows you to take in the beauty of Sapa from the water and this is a popular place to come for local families at the weekends.
One of the great highlights of the lake is that you can rent a peal boat for an hour and shoot all over the glassy surface of the water and enjoy the sights.

12. Conquer Tram Ton pass

Most tourists know the pass with the name O Quy Ho, but Tram Ton is an official one. Local people often call Cong Troi (means “Sky Gate”). This proves that Tram Ton Pass is extremely high and close to the cloud. According to an oral story, the pass attaches a love legend of a couple. They fall in love with each other, but they can’t come together to create a new family. Because of nostalgia, a young woman suddenly turns into a yellow bird.

Day by day, the birch perches on the top of the pass and cries out endlessly the name “O Quy Ho”(the name of her beloved person). Besides, Hoang Lien is very Tram Ton Pass because it penetrates Hoang Lien Son Mountain. These days, many routes are upgraded to attract a lot of backpackers. The craggy turn is always the challenge to long distance drivers. With staggering height and length, Tram Ton Pass deserves the King of the Northwest pass. 

13. Tour the terraced rice fields

Sapa is a great and wonderful place to see amazing Sapa Rice Fields and stay for a few days.

Afterward try to visit the villages of Y Linh Ho, Lao Chai and Ta Van, Giang Ta Chai and Su Pan, Ban Ho and Nam Tong, and Ta Phin villages... which will take you through the best beautiful rice fields in the valley of Muong Hoa.
The rice paddies are very famous to the people of Sapa and every tourist. There are various homestay, hostels, and meals that a traveler could ever imagine.The majority of people come to Sapa to go trekking through the rice fields and stay one night or two in a local homestay.

14. Have a cafe drink at some coffee shop with the best view

Not only the cold weather will have snow and ice which make the people eagerly looking up the mountain to watch the snow, or the villas, homestays. Coming to Sapa, you also have a fun is sitting with a cup of coffee on the high and then sipping, watching the mountains, terraced fields far away and enjoy the peaceful feeling. But, coming to Sapa, where to enjoy coffee? Note both 5 old and new coffee shops for your entire trip

15. Explore Sapa cuisine

Sapa’s traditional cuisine is one of the cuisines in Vietnam, and consists mainly of soups, stews, and grilled food.

Fresh, light, locally-grown ingredients characterize all Sapa dishes. Most feature meat and fish, but there are always plenty of vegetables in the dishes, as well as completely vegetarian dishes.

Subtle combinations of herbs and spices create the characteristic flavors of Sapa’s cuisine. Most dishes feature garlic, ginger, lime, and hot spices.

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