An overnight train ride from Hanoi, we made it to Sapa.
We booked a 2 day/1 night trekking adventure with Sapa Sisters. I couldn’t speak more highly of this company. We got to plan our trek with our guide Zo before we left Sapa, and the route difficulty was constantly flexible over the 2 days. We would often opt for the harder trail (which meant we got better views). Its always nice doing tours and meeting other travellers, however we loved having a private guide and getting Zo all to ourselves. She was the best! We had heard some homestays are basically a hostel in a village, but this was literally a room in Zo’s family home (which is what we wanted). It was clean and safe, and we felt very relaxed. Also – the food was amazing! A bit more expensive than other tours around, but it sounds like the guides get better pay with this company and for us it was worth any extra cost. Walking through the villages you see many of the other traditional homes, it was nice for us to see the positive impact tourism has had for Zo and her family. Her house felt quite nice in comparison.
We loved how diverse the trek was…through rice paddy fields (sometimes literally along the wall of a terrace), in bamboo forests, through small villages, along a river and up and down the muddiest hills I have ever experienced. On the first day we walked 12km, and the second we walked 7km.