Best Places For Cycling In Vietnam
Cycling in the countryside of Vietnam has been a good choice for both leisure bikers and professional ones. In the countryside, people are more conservative and preserve better the traditional value and culture of Vietnam. Escape the busy cities, we choose the route through the villages, mountains roads or along the sea and get away from the crowd where you get close to the local. In the biking routes you could meet, talk to local at their farm or visit their home, feel and touch the local culture and bring home the good memory.
In the crowded country of more than 96 million people, we arrange the support van and mechanic- tour guide for this type of trip and only bike in the beautiful & safe area. We recommend some routes and location for bikers and hope it help when you plan the trip.
Table of Contents
1. North Vietnam
With the breathtaking magnificent landscapes, Sapa is the perfect place for nature lovers. The natural landscape provides the perfect terrain for mountain biking as well as other outdoor activities. By cycling to descend from valleys or ethnic villages, visitors have the opportunity to meet the ethnic minority communities in Sapa.
There are several Sapa cycling routes for your reference such as:
• Ride from Sapa to Ta Van village, Lao Chai village, along Muong Hoa Valley
• Cycle Laocai to Sapa (33km) – uphill or vice versa (downhill)
• Sapa to Bac Ha (~ 100km). You can complete this route in 1 day with backup vehicle or 2 days with the chance to visit Bac Ha Sunday market
• Sapa to Lai Chau. There are about 70km to ride with steep up climbs from Sapa town to the Heaven Gate. Backup vehicle is also recommended.
The new biking routes has been inspected and updated every years for our clients.
Read more: The Sapa weather
1.2. Mai Chau
This site is located only 3 hours from Hanoi, that is home of Thai, Muong and Hmong people.
Mai Chau is renowned for its colorful ethnic markets, friendly inhabitants, peaceful atmosphere and magnificent landscapes. It is one of the ideal destinations for cycling during your tour to Northern Vietnam. The trip start in the villages and end in Mai Chau, we don’t access the main road. After biking, we eat the home hosted dinner in the long house, stay in the comfortable resort and join the dance with local.
Here are the villages that you can choose for your ride:
• Khun Pheo, Phieng Ve, Xam Khoe: It seduces tourists not only by the rustic beauty of the mountains, by the sweetness of the girls in the highlands, but also by the warm hearts of the inhabitants. This has become an ideal destination for all those seeking tranquility away from urban luxury.
We also have option for leisure bikers with easy level but max funs and affordable challenges
• Mai Hich, Cum Village and mountain roads: Located just few km from the village of Lac, our support van will escort you the spectacular to start the bike.
There is a little secrets and we want to remain this beautiful area for only clients of Vietnam Travel.
1.3. Ninh Binh
Biking through Ninh Binh countryside and passing the typical villages of Redriver delta.
The routes take you through green rice fields, small rivers, nice rock formation similar to Halong bay. On the biking tracks, you will meet the local, talk to them at the field or visit their home.
Luch at some remote sites on the route.
You can choose many cycling routes here, including:
• Tam Coc biking route to Bich Dong pagoda. It is a quiet biking route on flat road & dams with a very nice scenery of mountains & local villages. The round trip is about 10km long.
• Tam Coc to Mua cave, Trang An Scenic Landscape, Hoa Lu ancient capital & Bai Dinh Pagoda. This is a long & scenic biking route along the mountain ranges & the villages that may take you the whole day cycling & sightseeing. The round trip is about 40km with some highlighted stops to visit Mua Cave, Trang An Ecotourism Complex, Hoa Lu ancient capital & massive Bai Dinh Pagoda.
• Cycling route in Cuc Phuong national park. The round bike trip is around 40km on the trail covered by jungle and it may take you the whole day to cycle & sightsee. This biking route is not for everyone but for the one who is good at biking in mountainous terrain. It is a long biking route into the forest, you should well prepare for the adventure such as choosing a good bicycle, bringing drinking water or picnic lunch along….
There are several stops and additional sites and Vietnam Travel will only share to their own clients
1.4. Cat Ba Island
About 40km away from Hai Phong city or 23km from Halong city, Cat Ba island is blessed with a pristine beauty with forests, sea, mountains, hills, beaches, pine trees, cave caves…
Some Cat Ba cycling routes for your choice:
• Around Cat Ba town
• Cat Ba National Park: The combination of hiking and cycling around the National Park will give you a great chance to see a variety of plants and animals with some that are native in Vietnam. What is unique about Cat Ba National Park is a wide scope of experience you can get cycling around the recreation center.
• Viet Hai village: Cycling passing a forest road 6 km to the village where you can visit old houses, meet local people, see buffalo working on the green fields. While riding from Viet Hai harbor to the village, you can stop on the way to take pictures of green lake or the beautiful trees on the water. There is a road on the left where you will go through a cave. It is fantastic road for your ride.
Our professional guide will always choose the right time and right start to avoid the crowd and gain the max fun of the trip.
2. Central Vietnam
Even though Hue is famous but people in Hue are not ready for the changes of modern life. A part of Royal blood and big proud of the country ‘s citadel made people here more conservative. All the great value won’t be faded through the time. You will explore them when you get close to local in these biking trip.
With favorable and ideal features where you can feel the slower pace of life when pedaling around town, Hue is one of the best cities for cycling. Surrounded by the elaborate and beautiful tombs of its former rulers, making Hue the ideal place to get out of the city and explore the countryside on two wheels. During the journey, several visit stops are planned to discover local everyday life and to interact with the locals.
Best places for cycling in Hue can include:
• The village of Thuy Bieu: This is an ancient village located along the bank upstream of the Perfume River. In Thuy Bieu, you can participate in the cooking class, discover the life of the locals or enjoy an excellent herbal massage.
• Along the Huong River (Perfume River): This beautiful river flows through the center of Hue and is renowned for its poetic beauty. The Huong River has two large branches from the Truong Son mountain range. It is 100 km long, which is very ideal for cycling in Vietnam.
Hoi An is getting more well-known and inside Hoian is getting more crowed. In these biking rotes, we will bring you the countryside of Hoian where visitors will be immerged in the local culture. Discover Vietnam in the slow pace and feel part of countryside in the central Vietnam.
All the bikes start from Hoian ancient town but spend most of the time in the villages and country lanes.
• Around Hoian Old Town.
• The plant village of Tra Que: The village is around 3 km far from the town. This land is surrounded by De Vong River and Tra Que Lagoon, so it has very good atmosphere with fresh air… Many kinds of organic and sweet smelling herbs have been planting in this area for ages.
• Cam Kim Island: Located on the south side of the Thu Bon river, about 3.5km from the Old Town in Hoian or a 15 minute bike ride. It’s a world away from the busy streets of the Old Town.
• Thanh Ha pottery village or Kim Bong village.
Dalat is known as “ Sapa in the South”. It is a famous city in the Central Highland of Vietnam on the Langbian Plateau and a former French colonial retreat. Even though Dalat is a favored for honeymoons, it can also make a worthwhile place to visit for the mountain bike enthusiasts.
There are a few great places to cycle such as the forest trails to reach places like the Valley of Love and Victory Lake. Plus, the terrain can vary significantly with uphill and downhill rides, technical sections; single track passes, and on reaching the top there is stunning views of mountains, forests and fields. Other attractions while cycling through the central highlands of Dalat include the waterfalls and local hill tribe people.
2.4 Nha Trang
Nha Trang is well-known for its pristine beaches and excellent scuba diving and is fast becoming a popular destination for international tourists. The descent down here from Dalat’s cool mountain air will get your feelings great and the views will be etched into your mind forever before you glide into the city and along the beach. We highly recommend you start the tour early to see the busy boat jetty where fishermen carry to mainland their night catch and end at busy local market to know more about local life, what they shop and how they prepare for the daily meal.
• half-day tour of Nha Trang City can include must-visit sites such as Nha Trang Cathedral, Long Son Pagoda, Po Nagar Cham Towers, followed by Chong Rock and Dam Market.
• A full-day cycling tour of the countryside offers a scenic route along the coastline, visiting Po Nagar Cham Towers and The White Buddha, Chong Rocks, Ngoc Son Pagoda, Ninh Ich Village. Ba Ho Waterfalls.
3. South Vietnam
3.1. Mekong Delta
The most recommend biking route in the area of more than 5 thousand bridges, we bike trough the green orchard or along the canals. Meet local and even listen to their fork songs in the garden.
Thanks to huge trail systems, unique trails that crisscross flat land, rice fields, orchards, forest and huge water transportation, Mekong Delta is one of the perfect destinations for all cyclists of different levels when cycling in Vietnam.
Cycling through small irrigation canals, orchards and rice paddies makes it possible to witness the more unique side of the country. By traveling from one small riverside town to the next it is possible to experience the close up and authentic cycling tour that really highlights the life on the river. Bikers get to see a variety of colorful floating fruits and green on the rivers, as well as rice paddies that extend into the horizon.
3.2. Cat Tien National Park
The Cat Tien National Park is roughly 150 km from Ho Chi Minh City. This protected area of natural beauty spans 72,000 hectares and rich in lowland tropical rain forest to create a perfect destination for wildlife-spotting and mountain biking. It is home to a variety of recreational trails, botanical gardens and centuries-old trees.
A half-day cycling tour through the dense forest of the park makes it possible to not only catch a sight of the amazing wildlife, but also to appreciate the fresh air and picturesque views. Other attractions likely to be encountered includes the nearly crocodile swamps.
4. Things to know when cycling in Vietnam
• Even though, many guidebook and local website recommend you to bike from October through February of the next year but as the Tour Operators in Vietnam since 2005. We recommend you could bike in Vietnam in high season and green season too. Except May, June and July when it is too hot and too much rain falls. Each month in the rest of the year Vietnam has its own beauty and waiting for you to come and discover it on the bikes.
• Note with your local tour operator to avoid the main road with heavy traffic. Get used to liberal use of horns by the locals, because local custom demands they be used often.
• The Vietnamese drive on the right-hand side of the road. However, that isn’t always the case. Cars, motorcycles, bicycles and pedestrians tend to converge from every direction, often using both sides of the road so a good tour guide is essential part of the trip.
• Note with local organizer to arrange the tour guide combine mechanic to make it easy when you need to fix. Most of the interest route is not known by many people. So the professional biking guide and unique routes are the key to make the success trip.
• All related items, helmet, water bottle, cycling shoes, toiletry kit, personal first-aid kit, towel, favorite snack, picnic lunch… should keep in your support van.
• Only the professional Tour Operators and Professional Biking guide could organize a good biking trip. The rest could copy the Vietnam Biking Itinerary from Vietnam Travel easily but they don’t really know how to operate it. So you should be smart when choosing local Organizer.
• The countrysides of Vietnam has changing each year so the biking route need to be updated annually.