1. Overview

The Hanoi Sapa itinerary is a popular trip in Northern Vietnam that offers a blend of cultural and natural experiences. The journey typically starts in Hanoi, the capital city of Vietnam, where travelers can explore the city’s famous landmarks. From Hanoi, you can take a train or a coach ride to Sapa, a mountainous region in Northern Vietnam known for its stunning landscapes and ethnic minority communities and enjoy the best food. Below are the 4 days of the Hanoi – Sapa itinerary.

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2.1. Day 1: Arrival in Hanoi 

  • Arrive in Noi Bai International Airport and check in at your hotel 

You arrive at Noi Bai airport in the morning of the day, then take a taxi to your hotel for check-in procedures.

hanoi sapa itinerary

Recommended hotel in Hanoi:
Apricot Hotel – 136 Hang Trong, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi, Vietnam

Category: 5 stars hotel

Tel: 024 3828 9595

Email: [email protected]

  • Go around the Hanoi Old Quarter and Hoan Kiem Lake 

No one comes to Hanoi without visiting the Hanoi Old Quarter. This place is not only the central area of Hanoi’s capital but also a place to keep traces of the ups and downs of time where ancient houses, streets with historical memories, or Hanoi’s culture are preserved and handed down from thousands of generations.


Hoan Kiem Lake, also known as Sword Lake, has a deep historical culture in Vietnam, appearing a lot in the poetry of poets. Walking around the lake, you will feel the fresh, cool air. In the autumn, the yellow leaves fall all over the road, the strong smell of Alstonia Scholaris flowers and the street vendors sell green sticky rice, creating a light and pleasant scene.
hanoi sapa itinerary

  • Enjoy a traditional Vietnamese dinner

Hanoi has many delicious and diverse dishes that are worth a try. Specifically, the best choice food is Hanoi kebab rice noodles, a traditional, fragrant, and delicious dish. Or there is La Vong grilled fish, which consists of seabass prepared with many spices and fish sauce, served with vermicelli, raw vegetables, and dipping sauce. Or you can try Vietnamese Stew with Organ Meats, a staple of pork and beef intestines, with a rich and delicious sauce.

hanoi sapa itinerary

Recommend restaurants:
– Bun Cha Huong Lien – 24 Le Van Huu, Hai Ba Trung, Hanoi
Open time: From 8 AM to 8:30 PM
Tel: 024 3943 4106

Cha Ca La Vong Restaurant – 14 Cha Ca Street, Hang Dao, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
Open time: From 10:30 AM to 2 PM and From 5:30 AM to 9 PM

Tel: 024 382 398 75

2.2. Day 2: Visit outstanding places in Hanoi 

  • Visit The Temple of Literature  

The Temple of Literature was built in the 11th century and is a place to honor and record writers, teachers, saints, and court officials of the Ly, Tran, Le, and Nguyen dynasties. So, a very suitable spiritual space for visitors to learn the history and culture of Vietnam that you should not miss.

hanoi sapa itinerary

Location: 58 Quoc Tu Giam, Temple of Literature, Dong Da, Hanoi
Open time: From 8 AM to 5 PM
Ticket price: 1.27$ / adult

  • Visit the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum  

Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum is a place marking the history of Vietnam and the life of President Ho Chi Minh. The mausoleum has a mausoleum of the President put in a large space of 70m², guarded by guard soldiers dressed in traditional costumes.

hanoi sapa itinerary

Location:  2 Dien Bien Phu, Ba Dinh, Hanoi
Open time: From 8 AM to 11:30 PM / everyday (Closed on Monday and Friday)
Ticket price: 1.06$ / adult

  • Presidential Palace

Presidential Palace is the residence and working place of the President and Vice President of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. The palace is considered an important symbol of Vietnamese history and culture and is a popular destination for tourists visiting Hanoi. Today, the Presidential Palace is not open to the public, but tourists can view the exterior of the building from the outside and can take a guided tour of the surrounding gardens and grounds.

hanoi sapa itinerary

Location: 2 Hung Vuong, Ngoc Ho, Ba Dinh, Hanoi
Open time: From 7 AM to 4 PM / everyday (Closed on Saturday and Sunday)

  • Discover the Dong Xuan Market 

Dong Xuan Market is located in Hanoi Old Quarter, one of the busiest places, always active. The market offers various goods, including clothing, accessories, souvenirs, electronics, and food. It is particularly well-known for its street food vendors, where visitors can sample multiple traditional Vietnamese dishes.

hanoi sapa itinerary

Location: Hanoi Old Quarter, Dong Xuan street, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
Open time: From 6 AM to 6 PM

  • Move to Sapa by train or coach

After you have visited the prominent places in Hanoi and enjoyed the typical food in this city, you can move to Sapa by two ways. The best choice is by coach, the average time is 5-6 hours, depending on traffic conditions. Or you travel by train to Lao Cai station, from there you can travel to Sapa by taxi, the average time is 8-9 hours.

2.3. Day 3: Arrival in Sapa 

  • Check-in at your hotel 

According to the schedule, you will arrive in Sapa in the morning. At this time, you check in at your hotel and start your journey to discover Sapa.

Recommended resort in Sapa:
Victoria Sapa Resort & Spa – Xuan Vien Street, Sapa Town, Lao Cai Province
Category: 4 stars hotel

Tel: +84 214 3871 522

Email: [email protected] 

  • Visit Cat Cat Village and see the local Hmong community

Cat Cat Village is located in northwestern Vietnam, near Sapa. The village is home to the Hmong ethnic minority. On the way around Cat Cat Village, you will encounter factories powered by flowing water wheels, ethnic houses, Cat Cat Waterfall, and terraced fields. Another exciting thing is that you can try Hmong clothes and enjoy food and drink, such as bamboo-tube rice or corn wine.

hanoi sapa itinerary

Location: San Sa Ho commune, Sapa district, Lao Cai province

Open time: From 5 AM  to 10 PM
Ticket price: 3.08$ / adult  

  • Visit Fansipan by cable car 

At 3,143 meters, Fansipan has stunning views of the surrounding mountainous region. The cable car ride takes about 20 minutes, and you can see Hoang Lien Son mountain range, Muong Hoa Valley, and many other spiritual and cultural complexes.

hanoi sapa itinerary

Location: Sapa Station – 1st Floor Sun Plaza Trade Center, Sapa Town, Sapa District, Lao Cai Province
Open time: From 8 AM  to 5 PM
Ticket price: 31.14$ / adult  

  • Enjoy ethnic cuisines

The cuisine of Sapa is almost all the traditional dishes of the ethnic people. In particular, these local dishes are highly addictive, as are buffalo meat upstairs kitchen, armpit pigs, stream fish, etc. Their prices are not too high but definitely leave an unforgettable aftertaste for tourists.

hanoi sapa itinerary

Recommended restaurant:

A Phu Restaurant -15 Fansipan Street, Sapa town, Lao Cai
Open time: From 10 AM to 10 PM
Tel: 0868 159 900

2.4. Day 4: Enjoy the atmosphere of Sapa and return to Hanoi

  • Drink a morning coffee and see the terraced rice fields 

After exploring Sapa‘s culture and cuisine, treat yourself to an ideal morning with a cup of coffee and immerse yourself in the space of the mountains and forests, watching the poetic terraced fields in this land.

hanoi sapa itinerary

Recommended coffee shop:
The Haven Sapa Camp Site – Ta Van village, Sapa district, Lao Cai province

Open time: From 7 AM to 2 AM

Tel: 0214 3888 789

  • Explore Ham Rong mountain 

Ham Rong Mountain is a great place for you to experience the natural beauty and cultural richness of Sapa, such as see flower garden, and rice terraces, through lush forests and waterfalls, and learn about the culture and traditions of the local ethnic minorities, including the Hmong, Dao and Tay people.

hanoi sapa itinerary

Location: Ham Rong street, Sapa town, Lao Cai province
Open time: From 6 AM to 6 PM
Ticket price: 2.96$ / adult

  • Shopping for souvenir to take home 

Sapa is known for its unique and diverse cultural traditions, reflected in the handicrafts and souvenirs available in the town’s markets and shops. You can buy handwoven textiles, silver jewelry, clothing, local food, and drinks as gifts for family and friends.

  • Return to Hanoi  

The way back to Hanoi also has two ways to move as above: train or coach, depending on your choice.

So, this 4 days Hanoi – Sapa travel schedule is enough for you to experience cultures, cuisines and relax with nature in Vietnam for your vacation.

In conclusion, Metta Voyage hopes this information will help you consider a suitable trip and discover many interesting things in both Hanoi and Sapa, two famous tourist cities in Vietnam. Of course, this is just one possible itinerary and can be adjusted based on your interests, travel style, and available time.

3. Tips for travel to Hanoi – Sapa

Weather: Hanoi has cold and rainy winters and hot and humid summers, while Sapa generally has a cooler climate. Therefore, you should check the weather forecast and prepare appropriate clothes.

Accommodation: In Hanoi, there are many options for accommodation, from budget hotels to luxury resorts. In Sapa, you can find homestays and guest houses run by local people, which can offer a more authentic experience.

Language: While many locals in Hanoi can speak basic English. In Sapa, many ethnic minorities have their own languages, so a local guide can be helpful to translate for you.

So, exploring Hanoi to Sapa more comprehensively, you can book local tours to get a better experience.

You can explore more our tours including Hoi An below:

Contact us

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Email: [email protected]

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