Route overview from Ninh Binh to SaPa
Train + Train + Van from Ninh Binh to SaPa (recommended)
11,5 hours, 565.000 VND (€21,50)
Traveling directly from Ninh Binh to Sapa, is a good option if you have already seen Hanoi or want to visit Hanoi at the end of your trip.
Besides the great experience of the train from Hanoi to Sapa, it is also a very convenient option and much safer than the bus. First, you have to take the train to from Ninh Binh to Hanoi. Once you arrive at Hanoi railway station you have to switch trains to Lao Cai and take a van or public bus the next morning from Lao Cai to Sapa.
We recommend to take an afternoon train to Hanoi and then continue by sleeper train to Lao Cai. When you take this sleeper train from Hanoi to Lao Cai, you will arrive in the early morning in Lao Cai. From this station, you can take a van or public bus to SaPa.
Continue reading to book your train tickets online.
Bus from Ninh Binh to SaP
9,5 hours, 280.000 VND (€11)
If you don’t mind being on a bus for 10 hours, the bus is also a good (but less) safe option. This is a cheaper option but be aware that most buses arrive in the middle of the night in SaPa. This means you still have to book your accommodation. Also, make sure to check the drop-off spot. Some bus stops require another taxi ride to Sapa center.
Private car (4 pers) from Ninh Binh to SaP
7,5 hours, 1.986.145 VND (€75)
A private taxi is a great option if you are traveling with a group. It provides more privacy and gets you straight to your hotel in Sapa. No need to worry about switching transport and quicker than the bus or train.
Option 1: Train + Train + Van
Route: Ninh Binh Hanoi Lao Cai
Duration: 11,5 hours
Costs: 565.000 VND (€21,50)
Train: Ninh Binh Hanoi
Duration: 2,5 hours
Costs: 110.000 VND (€4)
The first route you have to take is the train from Ninh Binh to Hanoi which takes about 2,5 hrs. We recommend taking the SE6 afternoon train which arrives around 20:00 or earlier in Hanoi.
You can check our page about Ninh Binh to Hanoi or directly book your train ticket by clicking the button below.
Train: Hanoi Lao Cai
Duration: 8 hours
Costs: 415.000 VND (€16)
When you arrive at around 20:00 at Hanoi railway station, you still have some time to grab some food before the train from Hanoi to SaPa leaves around 22:00. This train will arrive at 6:05 in Lao Cai from where you can hop on a van or public bus to SaPa.
You can check the page from Hanoi to SaPa for more details and check the availability of train tickets by clicking the button provided below.
We recommend to use the two provided buttons or to search for the routes separately. Searching for a combined ticket from Ninh Binh to Lao Cai will not show you the best results.
Van: Lao Cai Sapa
Costs: 40.000 VND (€1,50)
When you arrive in the early morning in Lao Cai, you can take a van or public bus to SaPa. See the page about Hanoi to Sapa for more details.
Here is an example itinerary:
|Method of transport||Time||Duration|
|Train from Ninh Binh to Hanoi||17:27 - 19:58||2h 30m|
|Train from Hanoi to Lao Cai||22:00 - 06:05||8h|
|Van from Lao Cai to SaPa||06:15 - 07:00||45m|
Option 2: Bus
Route: Ninh Binh Sapa
Duration: 9,5 hours
Costs: 300.000 VND (€11,50)
Don’t like the hassle of switching trains and to another bus? Consider taking a direct bus from Ninh Binh to SaPa. The bus ride takes about 7 hours and there are two bus companies operating this route. See the options below:
|9h 30m||280.000 VND (€11)|
|16:30-03:00||11h 30m||270.000 VND (€10)|
|Viet Anh||17:30-01:00||7h 30m||300.000 VND (€11,50)|
Quang Anh Bus Company picks you up at your hotel in Ninh Binh City or Tam Coc. Their drop-off location in SaPa is at ‘Sapa Ethnic Travel’ office which requires a 10-minute taxi ride to the city center. Since you arrive around 3:00 in the morning, you also have to let your hotel know that you arrive at this time. Especially in the winter months (January/February), you don’t want to wait outside till the reception opens.
A better option is to book with Sao Viet or to ask a local agency in Ninh Binh for more options. The bus from Sao Viet leaves at 18:30 from Ninh Binh City and the drop-off point is in front of ‘Hong Long Sapa Restaurant’. The restaurant is just a 10-minute walk from Sapa center.
You can book tickets for Sao Viet online on Vexere.com . For the other companies, you will have to ask your hotel or a local agency in Ninh Binh or Tam Coc.
Note: This route is not confirmed by us so any feedback about one of these routes is very much welcomed!
Option 3: Private Car
Route: Ninh Binh Sapa
Duration: 7,5 hours
Costs: 1.986.145 VND (€75)
If you are traveling with a group of people, you can also book a private car to Sapa. You won’t have the hassle of switching transport and will be dropped right on the doorstep of your hotel.
“Ab Vietnam Travel” provides reliable taxi services for €75 per taxi.
My favourite places to stay in Sapa
When visiting Sapa, there is no better way than waking up with a stunning view over the rice-fields while enjoying an outstanding breakfast. An experience not to miss and probably one of the best during your trip in Vietnam! Private bungalows start from €85, but you can already stay in a dormitory for just €15 or book a double bed in an open area for €30.
Looking for a great value deal? Olympia Sapa Hotel offers clean and spacious rooms for a budget below €15,a night. After a long day of trekking, you will appreciate the big quen-sized beds and airco to warm up your room (it can get pretty cold in the winterdays). The hotel is located next to Sapa lake which is a short 10 minute walk to the center.
Want to stay around the center but prefer a homestay instead of a hotel? The rooms of Little Viet Homestay are all made from pine wood and instead of a heating system, you will get a heated blanked that keeps you warm at night. The friendly owners and creative sapa style decorations will make this an extraordinary stay!
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