Sapa is a charming mountain town in Lao Cai which is located in the northwest region of Vietnam. It is known for its breathtaking landscapes, rich cultural diversity, and vibrant local markets. With its cool climate, stunning trekking trails, and warm hospitality, Sapa has become a popular destination for both domestic and international tourists.

With the purpose of helping visitors find information about beautiful tourist places in Sapa. In this article, we will take a closer look at the beauty and highlight some attractions in Sapa for you to consult and plan with your friends and family.

sapa local life
Things to do in Sapa

Planning Your Sapa Getaway – Top 15 Must Visit Attractions In Sapa Vietnam

1. Best things to do in sapa

1.1 Marvel at the Terraced Rice Fields

Sapa is surrounded by towering mountains, cascading rice terraces, and quaint villages inhabited by ethnic minority groups. When traveling in Vietnam, you definitely visit Sapa to contemplate terraced rice fields – the best thing to do in Sapa in the summer. The terraced fields in Sapa are arranged in equal steps with many different shapes that contribute to creating a majestic natural picture.

If you want to see the terraced fields in Sapa at the most beautiful time, you should visit this destination from late April to early May or September to October to fully enjoy the beautiful natural scenery. At this time, it is the season to collect the ripe rice, so you will be able to see the golden terraced fields of ripe rice. Under the sunlight, you will definitely not be able to take your eyes off the beautiful scenery of the mountains and forests.

checkin sapa
best thing to do in Sapa in the summer

1.2 Go hiking

Go hiking is the best thing to do in Sapa when you visit this mountainous area, which is an incredible experience for those who are intrepid explorers when you hike through the green paddy fields and minority villages around the town. 

The cool climate here is also well-conditioned for adventure, you can find gorgeous glittering waterfalls and stunning valleys as well as the beautiful rolling mountains.

hiking sapa
hiking sapa – the best things to do in sapa

1.3 Ride the Cable Car to Fansipan – The Roof of Indochina

Riding the cable car to Fansipan is a great thing to do in Sapa. It only takes 15 minutes by cable car to conquer Fansipan Peak. Here, visitors will contemplate the majestic natural beauty of Hoang Lien Son mountain, the green beauty of Hoang Lien National Park, or the pristine beauty of  Muong Hoa valley.

Furthermore, with this form of transportation, people of all ages can easily reach Fansipan Peak, help visitors shorten travel time, and not waste energy, especially, it is wonderful to see the beautiful scenery along the way.

Cable Car to Fansipan
Cable Car to Fansipan

1.4 Immerse Yourself in Hill Tribe Culture

Tourists coming to Sapa are not only attracted by the majestic natural beauty but also love the cultural values and the beauty of ethnic minorities who live in this Northwest mountain.  Sapa is a place where the colorful multi-culture of the ethnic minority community living there such as H’Mong, Dao, Tay, Giay, etc Coming to Sapa in the spring months, visitors will have the opportunity to participate in traditional festivals of ethnic minorities with many strange and interesting local activities.

vietnam sapa
Sapa in Vietnam

1.5 Shop at the Sapa Market

Shopping at the local market is an interesting destination when visiting Sapa Vietnam. There are a number of local markets that display many local products such as handicrafts, traditional clothes, souvenirs, food,… 

Spread around the town, there will be many more small shops providing handmade items, however, the price of these items is a bit higher than the markets outside the city. The best place to buy unique stuff is at truly local markets in small villages. Here, you can get the most original and beautiful products at reasonable prices.

sapa night market
Sapa night Market

1.6 Explore Sapa Town on Foot

Walking tours in Sapa will bring you unforgettable experiences. Walk around the town or villages to observe and learn more about the life and culture of the local people here. Visitors can also see many beautiful scenes such as Ham Rong mountain, and Sapa ancient stone church, or visit and shop at the central market of Sapa town.

1.7 Indulge in Local Cuisine

Every trip will not be complete without sampling the best local cuisine. Sapa Food Court is a great place that is famous as a culinary paradise with a diversity of food and flavor to enjoy the most various culinary experiences. The place is very bustling and offers many delicious food stalls at reasonable prices such as eggs, grilled sweet potatoes, grilled meat, sturgeon hotpot… The cool weather in Sapa will be very suitable for enjoying hot pots or grilled food with friends and relatives.

sapa local life
Sapa local market

1.8 Witness the Love Waterfall

This is the ideal place for trips to Sapa located in Hoang Lien National Park. It originates from the top of Fansipan and the waterfall is nearly 100m high but the water of the waterfall flows very gently. Below the waterfall there is a small lake, visitors can go down to the lake to bathe because the water is very clear and cool. The beautiful natural scenery here also gives visitors wonderful nature photos.

Love Waterfall
Love Waterfall in Sapa

1.9 Visiting Muong Hoa Valley

Muong Hoa Valley has a reputation as the Eden in Sapa or a hidden pearl behind the mist where travelers can find the most lovely view of terraced fields in Vietnam. Highlights of the valley are the Hoa stream (flower stream) with a length of 15 kilometers and large terraced fields along the mountainsides. This place still remains an almost pristine beauty of nature and not nearly under the effect of modernization. Muong Hoa Valley always has an interesting attraction for tourists at any time of the year and each season has its own unique beauty making tourists unforgettable.

local life in sapa
Visiting Muong Hoa Valley

1.10 Discover the Silver Waterfall

When you visit Sapa, the silver waterfall is a must-visit place. It looks like spectacular mountain scenery from afar, creating a wild and mysterious feeling. From Sapa town center, you can ride a motorbike or car along the trail and park to visit the waterfall. The ticket price is only 20,000 VND for a person, you can visit and contemplate the natural beauty at this place.

Silver Waterfall
Silver Waterfall

1.11 Explore Cat Cat Village

Cat Cat is known as the most beautiful ancient village in the Northwest with a unique culture, traditional architecture, and poetic scenery.Coming here, visitors will have the opportunity to see the handmade product with a sophisticated product system. Cultural beauty has been maintained and preserved by the Mong people for many generations. You also can learn all about these traditional techniques as well as special features of different Vietnamese ethnic minority groups.

vietnam sapa
Cat Cat Village

1.12 Visit Sapa Museum

Sapa Museum is a place to store many antiques and artifacts of Sapa ethnic groups through historical periods. In addition to ancient artifacts, visitors can also learn more about the rituals, customs, weddings… of the Sapa ethnic people through ancient paintings and photos. Sapa Museum is truly an ideal destination as it brings the culture and long-standing customs of ethnic minorities in the mountains realistic. The museum is open free for people so if you want to better understand the cultural beauty of Sapa’s mountains and forests, don’t miss this special attraction.

Sapa Museum
Sapa Museum

1.13 Enjoy breakfast and coffee in the clouds

There’s nothing better than waking up in a fresh climate with a cup of coffee and a healthy breakfast and watching the sunrise in the clouds. This is a wonderful experience of things to do in Sapa Vietnam, you can try a range of drinks here as well as basic local and international dishes and take in the lush views, and enjoy the beautiful nature with the green valley below.

sapa in vietnam
breakfast and coffee

1.14 Buy some local handicrafts

Sapa is known as a place that has a large number of different ethnic minorities. These families include the Dao, the Yay, the H’mong, and the Phu La and each of these ethnic groups is known for making amazing local handicrafts. Here, you can buy the most original and beautiful local items at reasonable prices. Some handmade items like musical instruments, leather bags, or locally designed items

1.15 Drink some wine in Ban Pho Village

Ban Pho Village is located in the Sapa region of Vietnam and is known for its picturesque landscapes and beautiful rice terraces. While enjoying the natural beauty of the village, you can also sample the local wine.

In Ban Pho Village, the local ethnic minority people are skilled in making their own rice wine. The wine is usually made from fermented sticky rice and has a unique flavor. It is a traditional drink that is often offered to guests as a sign of hospitality.

mu cang chai
Ban Pho Village

2. How to get to sapa vietnam

Sapa in Vietnam map: Sapa is located in the Lao Cai province in the northwestern part of Vietnam. It is situated near the border with China, about 376 kilometers (234 miles) from Hanoi, the capital city of Vietnam

To get to Sapa, Vietnam, you can follow these steps:

  • By Air: The nearest airport to Sapa is Hanoi’s Noi Bai International Airport. You can book a flight to Hanoi from your location and arrive at Noi Bai Airport.
  • From Hanoi to Sapa by Bus: From Noi Bai Airport, you can take a shuttle bus or a taxi to Hanoi city center. From Hanoi, you need to book a bus ticket to Sapa. There are several bus companies that operate direct buses from Hanoi to Sapa, with a travel time of approximately 5-6 hours.
  • From Hanoi to Sapa by Train: Alternatively, you can also take a train from Hanoi to Sapa. The Hanoi to Lao Cai train station is about 40 km from Sapa. There are overnight trains available, and the journey takes around 8-9 hours. From Lao Cai train station, you can take a bus or taxi to Sapa town.
  • Private Transfer: If you prefer a more convenient and direct option, you can arrange a private car from Hanoi to Sapa. This option allows you to have a dedicated vehicle and driver who will take you directly to Sapa without any additional stops.

It is advisable to check the latest schedules and availability of transportation options before your trip.

3. When to visit Sapa Vietnam

The temperature in Sapa, Vietnam varies throughout the year. In general, Sapa experiences a temperate climate with mild summers and cool winters.

During the summer months (May to August), the average temperature in Sapa ranges from 15°C to 25°C (59°F to 77°F). However, temperatures can occasionally reach up to 30°C (86°F) during this period.

In the winter months (December to February), Sapa gets much colder, with average temperatures ranging from 0°C to 10°C (32°F to 50°F). It is not uncommon for temperatures to drop below freezing during this time, and snowfall can occur in the higher elevations.

Overall, Sapa has a cool climate year-round, with temperatures remaining relatively mild compared to other parts of Vietnam.

restaurant in sapa vietnam
When to visit Sapa Vietnam

There are best thing you to do in Sapa Vietnam

  • Trekking: The Sapa area is known for its stunning landscapes, rice terraces, and traditional hill tribes. Trekking is a popular activity to explore these areas, and you can opt for short or multi-day hikes.
  • Visit local hill tribes: Sapa is home to several ethnic hill tribes, such as the Hmong, Dao, and Tay people. Interacting with these communities can provide insight into their culture, traditions, and crafts.
  • Explore the markets: Sapa has vibrant local markets where you can shop for local handicrafts, textiles, and fresh produce. The Bac Ha Market and the Sapa Market are worth visiting.
  • Discover the Love Waterfall and Silver Waterfall: These beautiful waterfalls are located near Sapa and can be visited either by trekking or hiring a local guide.
  • Relax in hot springs: Sapa is known for its hot springs, and you can enjoy a rejuvenating soak in one of the many hot spring resorts in the area.
  • Sample local cuisine: Sapa offers a range of local dishes, often featuring fresh herbs, vegetables, and locally sourced ingredients. Don’t miss trying some traditional specialties like grilled fish, bamboo-tube rice, and “thang co” (a local stew).

Remember to respect the local culture and natural surroundings during your visit and consider hiring a local guide to assist you in exploring the region.

tram ton pass
Tram Ton pass

4. Sapa Vietnam luxury hotels

Sapa has been a popular tourist destination in recent years where you can visit nearly all year round. The 5-star hotels in Sapa have spacious and modern rooms with services such as airport shuttle, free wifi, indoor pool, daily housekeeping and bars, nightclubs to help guests relax.

  • Hotel de la Coupole – MGallery: A vibrant and stylish hotel, Hotel de la Coupole – MGallery is known for its unique design inspired by the region’s ethnic minority tribes. Enjoy panoramic views from the rooftop bar, indulge in the in-house spa, or relax in the indoor heated pool.
  • Victoria Sapa Resort & Spa: Set in a French colonial-style building, Victoria Sapa Resort & Spa combines luxury and comfort. The resort offers beautiful rooms, a heated indoor pool, and a spa that offers traditional Vietnamese treatments.
  • Hotel de la Coupole – MGallery: A vibrant and stylish hotel, Hotel de la Coupole – MGallery is known for its unique design inspired by the region’s ethnic minority tribes. Enjoy panoramic views from the rooftop bar, indulge in the in-house spa, or relax in the indoor heated pool.
  • Aira Boutique Sapa Hotel & Spa: Nestled amidst the mountains, Aira Boutique Sapa Hotel & Spa provides a tranquil escape. The hotel boasts spacious and elegantly decorated rooms, a rooftop bar with stunning views, and a spa offering soothing treatments.
  • Topas Ecolodge: Located on a hilltop with stunning views of the surrounding mountains, Topas Ecolodge offers a peaceful and eco-friendly retreat. The spacious bungalows, infinity pool, and on-site spa make it a perfect place to relax and unwind.
  • Eco Palms House: For a unique and eco-friendly experience, Eco Palms House is a great choice. The hotel features traditional wooden stilt houses overlooking the rice terraces. Enjoy the serene surroundings, delicious local cuisine, and participate in activities like farming and trekking.
  • The Hill Station Signature Hotel: Nestled amidst the lush forests of Sapa, The Hill Station Signature Hotel offers a boutique experience. The hotel features stylish rooms, a cozy fireplace, a library, and a restaurant serving delectable local cuisine.
  • Auberge Dang Trung Hotel: Located near Sapa’s main square, Auberge Dang Trung Hotel is a charming hotel with cozy rooms and friendly staff. The hotel offers a rooftop terrace with panoramic views of the town and the surrounding mountains

Sapa is the best place when you travel in Vietnam, with more beautiful attractions and many interesting things waiting for you to discover and explore when you visit Vietnam.