Northern Hold Out
Two lakes. The Ha Giang mountains.
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11 Days, 10 Nights
1350 km
Pillions Welcome


Ride north from Hanoi, past Thac Ba lake and up into Ha Giang for the western portion of the world-famous Ha Giang Loop. From there, skirt the mountainous Chinese border before looping back and heading south towards Ban Gioc waterfall and Ba Be lake. The lakes are great places to relax, and this tour provides a fantastic balance between high mountain roads and chill rest days.

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4 riders
A view out over Thac Ba Lake, Yen Bai
180 km
7 hours
Thac Ba Lake
We need to get out of Hanoi and this is never fun. So, we suck it up for the first half of this day and get as much distance under our belt as we can. Then we head off onto quieter roads that take us to our lakeside resort where we can swim and then relax over a home cooked meal.
140 km
6 hours
Gam River Lake; Na Hang Nature Reserve
We head for Na Hang in preparation for our next day’s drive, however, on the way we get off the main roads and look out for any small tracks we can take. Na Hang is a small place rarely visited so you’ll be unlikely to see anyone other than the locals. Once we get to our homestay we can take a boat trip to a local waterfall if time permits.
a road winding its way down to the valley in Ha Giang
150 km
6 hours
Dong Van Plateau; Ha Giang
We take some cross country road today to get up to Ha Giang province.
the nine turn pass in Ha Giang
50 km
4 hours
Yen Minh pine forest
This looks like a very easy ride on paper but we take a long detour and skirt the border with China just for fun. We then get back on to Happiness road and head for Yen Minh where we stay in a small enclave of homestays very much on the backpacker route so we can tell the tales.
Lũng Cú, Vietnam’s ‘North Pole’, a popular pilgrimage for young Vietnamese travelers
110 km
6 hours
Hmong King’s Palace; Lung Cu Flag Tower
We need to retrace our last 10km today and follow the Happiness road but that isn’t a problem because it’s a fun drive. We get to stop off at a few sites if we wish as this is a very scenic area. In particular we need to visit the H’Mong King’s Palace and Xa Phin Market. If there is time when we get in to Dong Van a visit to the Don Cao Fortress for the view over the town.
the mountains outside Dong Van
50 km
4 hours
Ma Pi Leng Gorge