August 2019 was a memorable time for a small group of us as that was when we reached the peak of Mount Fansipan, the highest peak in Indochina!
Our journey started out in Hanoi where we had half a day to explore around the vicinity of our hotel in the Old Quarters after we arrived. Surrounding our hotel are plenty of affordable restaurants, coffee places, shops and a lake!
I tried egg coffee for the first time! A popular coffee only available in Hanoi.
The next day, we took our private transfer to Sa Pa, stopping for a quick lunch break. The entire journey took about 6 hours and we arrived by late afternoon.
My plate of noodles bought at the lunch stop
Lots of snacks to be bought at the lunch stop
We came across a family of buffaloes along the journey to Sa Pa!
It was nice and cool in the town of Sa Pa in the evening and there were multiple nice viewing points around the town and roadside stalls and children peddling handicrafts. A warning though, once you start buying a souvenir from a child, the rest of them will swamp up to you.
Steamboat dinner on our first night in Sa Pa
We started our hike proper on Singapore’s National Day! A group photo before we set off is a must!
It was raining when we took the transfer from the hotel to the hiking base of the mountain. Thankfully, when we started our hike proper, the rain stopped and we had lovely weather throughout the way. I shall let these lovely photos taken along the hike speak for itself.
Picture taken right before we started our hike. It has just poured a short while ago.
Taking a moment to capture some pictures
Our way of river crossing versus the porters
Beautiful scenery captured along the way
Our lunch stop for the day
Resting and fueling up for the 2nd half of the hike
After lunch, here we go again
The scenery after lunch got even better! See it for yourself!
However, it's not going to be a walk in the park to appreciate these views. But with sufficient training, you will be able to enjoy the hike and the views along the way.
This is a sight we all welcome, our mountain lodge for the night!
Dinner was freshly prepared by our porters. It was simple yet delicious, just perfect for what we needed after a long day of hiking.
A nice warm meal after a hard hike is always welcomed!
Enjoying our torchlight dinner, a different kind of candlelight up in the mountains hahaha
The next morning, we started the day with a warm bowl of noodles and coffee or tea.
It was just a half day hike for today, so everyone was raring to go. But before that, we took a group photo together with our porters as some of them will not be joining us for the remaining hike.
There's a father and son duo among the porters and the father is teaching his son the ropes. This is a tough job and we appreciate all the assistance they rendered during our hike.
Today’s hike was just as challenging even though the distance was shorter.
We knew we were reaching the peak when we spotted the cable car lines. The last section of the climb was steep stairs all the way, and we had to jostle with the day tourists who took the cable car up.
There were words of encouragement given by the tourists as they see us make the climb with all our gears.
Us at the summit after 1.5 days of hike!
After celebrating our achievement at the summit with photos, we made our way back down to the base via cable car! All of us were relieved that we can finally let loose and enjoy the scenery as the cable car descended.
Taking a moment to enjoy the beautiful scenery as the cable car descends.
We had a quick lunch before heading back to our hotel to wash up and take a little rest before our celebration dinner. In between, we had time for a quick included 30-min foot massage and had lots of laugh chit-chatting and reminiscing about our hike.
Our sourvenir from the hike!
We chose this restaurant for dinner because of the suckling pig!
Enjoying our celebration dinner.
After dinner, we went our separate ways; some went for coffee, some went to shop at the weekend night market just in front of our hotel, and some decided to retire early.
We made our 6 hour journey back to Hanoi and everyone was off doing their last minute shopping and exploring more street food before their journey back home the next day.
It was such a memorable hike because of the great company we had, the beautiful scenery during the hike, and the relaxing way the whole itinerary was planned, allowing us to really enjoy each destination at a slower pace.
We will be running this trip again in year 2021. More information on the trip is available HERE. If you are keen, SUBMIT A QUERY and we will update you once we have fixed up the date and price.