Last updated: Nov 02, 2019

Contents

Overview | Train | Bus | Taxi |Secret Escapes

 

How To Get From SaPa to Ninh Binh?

When travelling the 405km distance from SaPa to Ninh Binh, you have 3 options: you can take the bus (7.5 hours), the train (11.5 hours) or a taxi (8 hours). Rates range between $19.50 to $240.

Taking the bus is the fastest and cheapest option when travelling from Sapa to Ninh Binh. Night buses are also available so you won’t lose a day travelling.

Another good option is to go by train. We think that trains in Vietnam are very convenient and much safer than taking the bus. However, this particular train route involves a few transfers and takes much longer than the other options. Continue reading for a step-by-step guide.

Booking a private car is a very convenient option if you are travelling with more people. You can get a spacious 5-seater car for $240. This will pick you up at your hotel in SaPa and drop you off at the doorstep of your hotel in Ninh Binh.

Transport modeDurationCostsAvailability
Bus7.5 hours450,000 VND ($19.50])Check bus tickets
Train11.5 hours545,000 VND ($24)Read article to book train rides
Taxi8 hours5,560,000 VND ($240)Reserve a private car

 

View itinerary from SaPa to Ninh Binh

SaPa to Ninh Binh travelroute

Bus icon

SaPa to Ninh Binh by Bus


Duration: 7.5 hours
Costs: 450,000 VND ($19.50)

Taking a direct bus is a cheap and easy way to travel from Sapa to Ninh Binh.

The bus ride takes at least 7.5 hours and you can consider taking a night bus to save day time. Just remember that travelling at night is not the safest option.

BusScheduleDurationCosts
The Long Travel08:00-15:30
16:00-23:30
21:00-04:30
7h 30m450,000 VND ($19.50)
Ha Son14:00-23:009h395,000 VND ($17)
Quang Anh
(not available)
21:00-5:30
7-8h270,000 VND ($12)
Sao Viet
(not available)
04:00-11:30
08:30-16:00
16:30-00:00
21:30-05:00
7h 30m280,000 VND ($12.50)
Viet Anh
(not available)
22:00-05:307h 30m300,000 VND ($13)

Quang Anh, Sao Viet and Viet Anh used to operate this route as well. Currently, they are not available on our preferred booking websites. But you can still try booking them via local agencies.

Check Available Bus Tickets

 

Train

SaPa to Ninh Binh by Train


Duration: 11.5 hours
Costs: 545,000 VND ($24)

There are no direct trains operating from Sapa to Ninh Binh so you will have to make a few transfers for this route.

First, you have to take a van from SaPa to Lao Cai railway station. From there you can take the sleeper train to Hanoi. When the train arrives in the early morning in Hanoi, you can switch trains to Ninh Binh and optionally take a taxi to Tam Coc.

Step 1: Sapa to Lao Cai by Van

Duration: 45min
Costs: 60,000 VND ($2.60)

In SaPa, you can arrange a van or take the public bus which brings you to Lao Cai train station in 45min.

Read more about this route on the page from Sapa to Hanoi.

Step 2: Lao Cai to Hanoi by Train

Duration: 7h 50min
Costs: 385,000 VND ($17)

From Lao Cai, you can take the train leaving at 20:55 or 21:40 for Hanoi. A bed at a 4-berth cabin costs 385,000 VND ($17).

Read more about this on the page from Sapa to Hanoi.

Check Available Train Tickets

Step 3: Hanoi to Ninh Binh by Train

Duration: 2h 14min
Costs: 100,000 VND ($4.50)

When you arrive in the early morning in Hanoi, you can switch to the train going to Ninh Binh. Two trains depart in the morning at 6:00 and 9:00. A soft seat costs 100,000 VND ($4.50).

This train takes a bit more than 2 hours. If you stay in Tam Coc, you can take a taxi from Ninh Binh railway station (15min).

Read more about this route on the page from Hanoi to Ninh Binh.

Check Available Train Tickets

Example itinerary

Method of transportTimeDuration
Van or public bus to Lao Cai
17:30-18:1545m
Sleeper train from Lao Cai to Hanoi21:40-05:307h 50m
Train from Hanoi to Ninh Binh09:00-11:172h 17m
Taxi from Ninh Binh to Tam Coc11:17-11:3215m

 

Taxi

SaPa to Ninh Binh by Taxi


Duration: 8 hours
Costs: 5,560,000 VND ($240)

A private car is by far the most convenient option to reach Ninh Binh. Definitely worth to consider when you want some more luxury and are travelling with a group.

With Hanoi VIP Transfer, you can rent a comfortable 5-seater car for 5,560,000 VND ($240). This option is much more expensive than taking the bus or the train. But it gives you the advantage of travelling door-to-door and you can stop anytime for food and bathroom breaks.

Check Available Private Cars 

 

  Hotel

My favourite places to stay in Tam Coc (Ninh Binh)


Ninh Binh Accommodation 1

Tam Coc Family Hotel

Want to stay in a real Vietnamese Guesthouse? Tam Coc Family Hotel is a perfect example why you don't have to spend more than $17 for a great guesthouse.

The super friendly owners will tell you the best spots to visit and will make sure you have a good start of your day with a delicious breakfast. It's a 1-minute walk from the Tam Coc river and drop-off point of the bus.

Read More

Ninh Binh Accommodation 2

Tam Coc Bungalow

Do you prefer to stay close to the river? Tam Coc Bungalow has spacious bamboo bungalows right next to the Tam Coc river. Bungalows start from $32 and dorm rooms from $6.

What we really liked about this place is their common area. From the terrace you can watch the locals paddling back to Tam Coc town during sunset and in the evening you can play a game of pool at the open restaurant area.

Read More

   

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