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How to get from Hanoi to Sapa by bus?

How to get the Bus from Hanoi to Sapa and Train?

Need tips on how to get the Hanoi to Sapa bus and other routes such as the train to Sapa?

In this guide is the best ways to get the bus from Hanoi to Sapa for the best travel routes for you!

When visiting Vietnam most travellers start their journey in Hanoi, a vibrant multi-cultural city filled with tasty street food, incredible night markets, unique architecture and friendly locals. Most people tend to make the onward journey North West to Sapa, a beautiful mountain region famed for its picturesque rice fields, mammoth hikes, magical waterfalls and ethnic minority hillside tribes.  But what’s the best way to get there?

Don’t worry we’ve got you covered. Due to mass tourism, more methods of transport have become available, compared to other regions in Vietnam. This post will give you a detailed insight into all your travel options to make this 316km journey as stress-free as possible!

Bus Schedule Duration
Green Sapa Bus 07:00-13:00 14:00-20:00 22:00-04:00 6h
Sapa Express 07:00-13:00 22:00-04:00 6h
Goodmorning Sapa 06:30-12:30 13:30-19:30 22:00-04:00 6h
Interbuslines 07:00-13:00 13:30-19:30 21:30-03:30 22:00-03:30 6h

Getting the Hanoi to Sapa Day Bus

By experiencing the Hanoi to Sapa day bus, you’ll get to witness the incredible scenery that Vietnam has to offer, as well as making for some epic insta shots. The bus takes around 6 hours to reach Sapa and will pick you up from your hotel in Hanoi and drop you off just outside the village centre.

As you step off the bus you’ll be welcomed by numerous trekking guides offering bespoke tours, we decided to head straight to our hotel and book directly with them which inevitably saved us money and we had a chance to choose the best tour that suited us.

Best time to get the bus?

I’d recommend catching the 07:00 bus from Hanoi, which arrives in Sapa around 1 pm, giving you the afternoon to explore the village. There is plenty of rest stops along the way for toilet breaks and to grab some snacks, but I’d take your favourite goodies, as well as toilet paper, hand sanitizer and headphones to keep you entertained. There’s also free WIFI (if it works) and charger points on board so you can make use of all your gadgets and be ready to explore Sapa straight off the bus.

sleeper bus hanoi to sapa timetable

Research each individual company to what suits you best – even though we booked a day bus, we still had the sleeper seats so we’re able to catch up on a few hours’ sleep on the route – winner!

There are plenty of storefront shops dotted throughout Hanoi where travellers can purchase tickets or you can easily book online at ….

Top tip – if you suffer from travel sickness, taking the bus may not be the best option for you, as roads to the latter end of the journey are very windy and the drivers don’t seem to slow down when hitting the bends, making for an intense drive at times.

Average Price = $11-$13

You can book the Hanoi bus to Sapa here!

How to get the Hanoi to Sapa overnight bus?

As you’d expect the only difference between the day bus and night bus it the time of departure. Most of the overnight buses depart from Hanoi between 21:00-22:00 and arrives in Sapa between 03:00 and 04:00. Yes this may save you time, but also means searching for your hotel in the early hours of the morning in darkness and some hotels may not let you check in until later in the day, which one means you’re stuck until daylight arrives and the village starts to wake up or you fork out for an extra nights accommodation that you may on need to use for a few hours. If you’re lucky some bus companies stay in the village until 6am to let travellers have a few extra hours of sleep but as this is Asia, anything can happen so don’t rely on this when booking the Hanoi to Sapa overnight bus.

 sapa bus overnight timetable

Passengers aren’t always that considerate so too make the journey as comfortable as possible, take an eye mask to block out the rest of the world, play relaxing music through your headphones, take extra layers of clothing as the air conditioning can get nippy and purchase a blow-up pillow to prevent your neck going stiff. If you’re like me and struggle to sleep with the faintest of noise or light why not buy some sleeping aid tables to help get a good night’s sleep.

Average Price = $11-$22

You can book the Hanoi bus to Sapa here!

Getting the Hanoi to Sapa overnight train!

If you’ve only got a limited amount of time why not take the overnight train, which inevitably saves money on a night’s accommodation and means you have more time to explore Sapa and trust me you’ll need it, there are so many incredible things to do.

There are several different overnight trains to choose from;

  • all departing from Tran Quy Cap (Hanoi Station B) and takes around 8 hours
  • Sapa doesn’t have its own train station, so you’ll arrive in Lao Cai where you can easily catch a taxi or bus into Sapa Village, which takes around 45 minutes, or your accommodation may offer to pick you up for a small fee
  • These trains depart at night, at 10:00 p.m., arriving in Lao Cai at around 6:00 a.m. Just make sure you arrive at the station an hour before the scheduled departure.

If you’re travelling as a couple and want some privacy there are options to book 2 berth cabins or if you’re travelling as a group, 4 berth cabins are also available. The cabins are super cosy and passengers receive soft pillows and mattresses and slippers under the bed – you’ll be sure so have a good night’s sleep readily for your adventure. Most travel companies also provide free water, snacks, and toothbrushes in each cabin, but there’s no harm in stocking up beforehand at the train station with all your favourite goodies.

Hanoi timetable to Sapa including times and price

There are also plenty of electrical points to charge all your digital belongings so you can start exploring straight away!  Trains also have western-style toilets so you don’t have to balance and squat at the same time. Even though the toilet was fairly clean, I always recommend to bring your own hand sanitizer and toilet paper in case they run out – they don’t take up much room and can definitely be a lifesaver. I’d also recommend taking headphones as the train running along the tracks can be noisy at times.

The only downside of taking the overnight train is missing out on the beautiful scenery on route, so it might be an option to take the overnight train there and the day bus back to Hanoi so you get to experience both. I’d also recommend booking early as seats fill up quickly, which may not always be beneficial for those don’t like to plan ahead.

Average Prices;

  • 4 Berth Cabin = $22- $46 per person depending on the train company
  • 2 Berth Cabin = $71 to $88 per person depending on the train company

You can book the Hanoi to Sapa train here!

Hanoi private car to Sapa

If you have the cash to splash and want a total stress free journey you can book a private car from Hanoi to Sapa from any local travel agent in the Old Quarter, directly at your hotel or easily online using 12 Go Asia. By booking a private car you have the total freedom to choose your departure time, have multiple pit stops along the way and take detours to other nearby villages if you’re feeling adventuress.

Average Price = $150 – $200 depending on the quality of car!

You can book the Hanoi to Sapa taxi here!

Hire a motorbike from Hanoi to Sapa and see the lush scenery

Advised only for experience hardcore riders, renting a motorbike to take on the mammoth route from Hanoi to Sapa is certainly a once in a lifetime adventure, but not for the faint-hearted. There are plenty of motorbike rental shops in Hanoi to choose from, but do your research to source out the most reliable ones.

Before heading out on your 316km voyage thoroughly check the bike for any defects, scratches or dents. Top tip – Take pictures beforehand as evidence of the condition of the bike and keep safe until you’ve completed the return trip back to Hanoi. It’s a good idea to bring along an extra fuel bottle as petrol stations are far apart and the last thing you want is to run out of petrol in the middle of nowhere.

There are several different routes to choose from that take anywhere from 2-4 days winding through some of Vietnam’s most picturesque countryside. Most companies will give you expert guidance in choosing which route best suits your skillset, the type of bike you’ve rented and any time restraints.

Some companies also offer one-way rentals where they’ll send your luggage onwards to the next destination for free and choose either the bus or train to travel back to Hanoi at the end of your Sapa adventure.

Remember to always wear a helmet and abide by the road signs both for your own safety and others. It’s also important to be aware that the rainy season lasts from June to September where roads can often become slippery so extra care may be needed.

Average price = $10 per day (Helmet included)


1. What is the best time of year to visit Hanoi and sapa?

There is no definitive answer to this question as it depends on what you are looking for in a holiday. However, we can give you some general advice on when the best time to visit Hanoi and Sapa might be. The climate in Hanoi is tropical and the city experiences two distinct seasons – the wet season (from May to October) and the dry season (from November to April).

2. What are the must-see attractions in Hanoi and sapa?

There are many must-see attractions in Hanoi and Sapa. However, some of the most popular tourist attractions include the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, the One Pillar Pagoda, the Temple of Literature, Hoan Kiem Lake, the Old Quarter, and the Vietnam Museum of Ethnology. The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum is a must-see for any visitor to Hanoi.

3. How do I get from Hanoi to sapa?

The best way to get from Hanoi to Sapa is to take a bus. There are several companies that operate buses from Hanoi to Sapa, and the journey takes around 8 hours. Tickets can be booked in advance, or on the day of travel. The bus will drop you off at the Sapa bus station, from where you can take a taxi or walk to your accommodation.

4. What is the best way to get around Hanoi and sapa?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the best way to get around Hanoi and Sapa will vary depending on your individual needs and preferences. However, some tips on how to get around these two popular Vietnamese destinations efficiently and easily are as follows: In Hanoi, the best way to get around is by motorbike or scooter.

5. What are some good places to eat in Hanoi and sapa?

Hanoi and Sapa are two of Vietnam’s most popular tourist destinations, and for good reason – they offer a wide variety of delicious food options! Here are just a few of the many great places to eat in these two amazing cities: In Hanoi, one of the best places to eat is definitely Koto. This restaurant offers a wide range of traditional Vietnamese dishes, as well as some Western favorites.

6. What are some good hotels in Hanoi and sapa?

There are many good hotels in Hanoi and Sa Pa, but here are just a few that come to mind: The Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi is a luxurious and historic hotel located in the heart of Hanoi’s Old Quarter. The hotel has been welcoming guests since 1901, and its French colonial-style architecture and decor is truly unique.

7. What is the nightlife like in Hanoi and sapa?

Hanoi and SaPa are two very different places when it comes to nightlife. In Hanoi, there are a lot of bars and nightclubs that stay open until the early morning hours. There are also a lot of karaoke bars. SaPa is a much more laid-back place and most of the nightlife revolves around restaurants and cafes.

8. What are some good shopping options in Hanoi and sapa?

There are a variety of shopping options available in Hanoi and Sapa. For those looking for traditional Vietnamese goods, the Old Quarter is the best place to start. Here, shoppers can find a wide range of items, including lacquerware, textiles, and ceramics. For those looking for more modern items, Hanoi’s French Quarter is the place to go. This area is home to a number of high-end boutiques and shops selling international brands.

9. What are some good activities to do in Hanoi and sapa?

Assuming you are asking about activities to do in Hanoi and Sapa: Some good activities to do in Hanoi would be to visit Hoan Kiem Lake, the Old Quarter, and the Temple of Literature. You could also take a day trip to Halong Bay. In Sapa, you could go hiking, visit waterfalls and caves, and explore the rice terraces.

10. What are some tips for visiting Hanoi and sapa?

Assuming you would like tips for visiting Hanoi and Sapa: When visiting Hanoi, it is important to try the local cuisine as it is very unique and delicious. A lot of the food is made with fresh ingredients, so it is important to ask about the food before you order it. Many of the dishes are quite spicy, so if you are not a fan of spicy food, you may want to ask for a milder dish.

Final Thoughts

So there you have it our complete guide of ‘How to get from Hanoi to Sapa?’ Whatever option you choose you’ll be sure to have a great time in Sapa, one of Vietnam’s most beautiful picture-postcard destinations.

 Check out all the Sapa to Hanoi journeys here!

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