Great Loop
Follow the border over epic mountains.
From $1440/rider
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Vietnam Motorcycle Tour Map - 12 Day Great Loop - Rentabike Vietnam - White


12 Days, 11 Nights
1700 km
Pillions Welcome


A massive tour for those who want to see it all. This is a huge loop through north Vietnam, where you'll ride the Chinese border through some of Asia's most stunning landscapes. Cover more than 1,700km on tarmac, dirt, and single track, spending your evenings staying with and getting to know the ethnic highlanders who inhabit this remote region.

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4 riders
this little cave is tucked away just a little south of Ha Giang
220 km
7 hours
country roads; Secret Cave
We obviously need to get out of town today and we do that with minimal hassle but with some traffic. We get off the main highway as quickly as possible and then head for That Khe on the smaller back roads. Along the way, we will pass through small valleys, custard apple groves, and tiny hamlets. There is not much going on in That Khe but that is the charm of the countryside.
fields of corn in ba khan on the waterfall road
80 km
3 hours
karst scenery
Today, we head into Cao Bang Province and take a visit to the Ban Gioc Waterfall before heading back down to our homestay which is tucked away from the madding crowd. Another peaceful night here means we are rested and ready for the next day.
John Nadalin at Ban Gioc Waterfall
160 km
6 hours
Ban Gioc Waterfall; Uncle Ho's Cave
We pass through the provincial capital of Cao Bang and head up to the Chinese border to visit Uncle Ho’s Cave (Pac Bo). It is a great drive on small country roads and we stay in a small homestay hear the cave ready to take the tricky road the next day.
the 14 level road in Xuan Truong, Cao Bang
160 km
6 hours
sneaky back route; 14 level pass; Ma Pi Leng Canyon
We take the cross country route rather than backtrack on roads already travelled and head for Bao Lac. We get great views of China over the border and ride on some very remote roads. We can stop in Bao Lac, Bao Lam, Meo Vac or Dong Van depending on how we do for time. At each of these locations, we have homestays ready to greet us with hot food and warm beds.
the mountains outside Dong Van
150 km
5 hours
Dong Van Plateau
We can make the choice to take the inner or outer roads today knowing that there will be more traffic on the outer loop. There are a lot of places to stop and hang out so we need to choose carefully as it may not look far but riding in the mountains takes a little more time. Once in Ha Giang we can rest up at a homestay a little way outside of town, which is more peaceful.
XR on a ledge in Ha Giang
120 km
6 hours
rugged roads over mountains
Today is not a difficult day and it is one of the most scenic. We enter the UNESCO world heritage site of Hoang Su Phi, which is known for its beautiful rice terracing, and can stop to take photos as we ascend the hills. We stay at a hilltop bungalow resort, which looks down on the beautiful valley. It is worth getting up early the next day to witness the sunrise.
O Quy Ho Pass Sa Pa Lai Chau
225 km
8 hours
Windy Pass; Sa Pa back roads
This is a good long drive that takes us around the Kiou Leou Ti mountain and along the river valley bordering China to Bac Ha and then Sa Pa. There is a lot of good scenery and a few local markets on the route so we will definitely see some interesting things.
sunset in Sapa, North Vietnam
trekking; Fansipan Mountain; exploring
After a couple of hard days, it is good to have a rest so we take the opportunity to do so in Sa Pa. We can choose to stay in the main town which is useful if we plan to ascend Fansipan or to head down the valley to stay with the villagers. Either way, we will get some good western food and see some interesting sights.
the O Quy Ho mountain pass near Sapa
170 km
7 hours
Fansipan Mountain; O Quy Ho Pass
We loop around Fansipan and down the O Quy Ho Pass, which drops down some 17km. We get stunning views of fansipan and the valley ahead and the road is relatively peaceful and easy to drive. After Than Uyen, we turn into the Mu Cang Chai Valley which has beautiful rice terracing and lots of fun places to stop and hang out.
some beautiful rice fields in Mu Cang Chai
200 km
7 hours
Mu Cang Chai rice terracing; Tram Tau; Ta Xua
We need to loop around Ta Xua Nature Reserve today as we can’t go over this mountain and we do that via Nghia Lo. The road is good, as it was yesterday and we can make good time, but we have a long way to go. We will still pass through a whole host of small villages and see lots of ethnic people on the road. However, things will start to get a little busier from now on.
Ta Xua Lu Tre Homestay-looking North towards the dinosaur spine
185 km
7 hours
Van Yen ferry crossing; old Highway 6; Mai Chau Valley
We head down to the BlacK River and take a ferry to get across before climbing up to the Moc Chau Plateau. We can take a stretch of the old Highway 4, built by the French to get to Dien Bien Phu before heading past Mai Chau and down intothe Pu Luong Nature Reserve. Once we are off the main highway and into the reserve it is plain sailing and we stay in a secluded bungalow away from the hubbub.
the view from the Pu Luong Road looking to Muong Khen
170 km
5 hours
Pu Luong Nature Reserve; ATK roads on the way back to Hanoi
This is a journey of two halves. The first is quiet and scenic and we can amble along and really enjoy the ride. The second is busier as we are coming back into Hanoi and need to pay more attention. We can easily make it back to our hotel in time to wash up and be ready for our farewell meal.