Tribal Trails

9 Day Off-Road Motorbike Tour of Vietnam

An incredible adventure into the stunning and rugged Northwest highlands of Vietnam, ticking all the essential boxes of an epic off-road motorbike tour…

Tour Highlights

Ride some of Asia's best singletrack trails!

Stay in a luxury lodge listed on National Geographic's 'Unique Lodges of the World'.

Visit the Sapa region and witness some of the most impressive terraced rice fields in the world.

Stay in the bustling 'Old Quarter' of Hanoi.

Take a tour of Hanoi city in an open top Willys Jeep.

Witness the stunning mountain landscapes of Northern Vietnam.

Enjoy an excellent mix of riding terrain, from singletrack riverside trails to steep tracks in the hills.

Ride through small rivers and cross large ones on local ferries.

Enjoy a variety of Vietnamese cuisine and western style picnics provided by our support crew.

Stay with a local family.

An incredible adventure into the stunning and rugged Northwest highlands of Vietnam, ticking all the essential boxes of an epic off-road motorbike tour of Vietnam in just 9 days.

You’ll ride winding singletrack trails up to remote hill tribe villages, pass through the world famous terraced rice fields, stay with a local family and spend a night in a luxury lodge (listed on National Geographic’s ‘Unique Lodges of the World’)!

Experience rural culture, eat delicious Vietnamese food, stay in an incredible variety of accommodation, cross wide rivers and ride some of the best singletrack trails in Asia!

You’ll be greeted from Hanoi’s ‘Noi Bai’ international airport and transferred to our luxury hotel, ideally located in the Old Quarter of the city. Relax by the pool or take some time to explore the bustling streets before meeting with the group in the afternoon for a trip briefing.

In the evening we’ll go out for an excellent welcome meal at an authentic Vietnamese restaurant. If you weren’t in love with Vietnamese food before, you will be now!

  • Accommodation: 5* hotel.
  • Included Meals: Dinner.

A minivan will collect us from the hotel after breakfast and take us over to the workshop to meet the local team and our trusty steeds. There’s space to test the bikes, so we can make some personal adjustments and ensure you’re comfortable on the Honda’s before we hit the streets.

The first riding day of this off-road motorbike tour of Vietnam kicks off with a 45km stretch of highway that’ll get us away from the city. We then branch off onto smaller roads that wind through the hills and villages to meet the Black River (much more beautiful than it sounds!).

In the afternoon we hit the trails and carve through the forests to our destination of Pu Luong Valley. Tonight we stay in a stilted house with a local family. It’s a beautiful setting that feels a world away from the city we left behind this morning!

Enjoy a stroll around the village before enjoying the incredible feast put on by the local family.

  • Accommodation: Homestay.
  • Included Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Plenty of singletrack and dirt roads today as we pass through remote areas inhabited by the Hmong tribes, where the locals are dressed in their colourful attire.

  • Accommodation: Guesthouse.
  • Included Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

An incredible day of challenging trails, steep tracks and more amazing views. We meet the Black River where a local ferry chugs us over to the other side. From here, we head high up into the hills on off-road trails that lead us to tiny mountain villages before we descend to our destination of Tram Tau.

Finishing with a challenging ride up to our overnight stop, we will be greeted with some much appreciated cold beers! This will have been one hell of a day’s riding!

  • Accommodation: Hotel.
  • Included Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Today we venture further into the remote regions of the Hmong and Dao minority villages. Make sure your cameras are charged today – the colourfully dressed locals combined with the beautiful villages and mountainous backdrop make for some truly incredible sights.

More technical off-road riding today as we traverse the rugged landscapes on our way to Mu Cang Chai.

  • Accommodation: Guesthouse.
  • Included Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Today we pass through forests and alongside tea plantations as we continue through the highlands. We cross numerous passes, including the highest pass in Vietnam: Tram Thon pass, at 1900m. This pass is known as ‘Heaven’s Gate’, due to the incredible views that open up in front of you at the top.

The terraced rice fields of the Sapa region are some of the most spectacular in the world and tonight’s accommodation is perched atop a hill, slap bang in the middle of it all. Listed on National Geographic’s ‘Unique Lodges of the World’, this place is the perfect place to relax for an afternoon and morning before the final day of riding and overnight train back to Hanoi.

  • Accommodation: Luxury lodge.
  • Included Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

It’s the final day of riding on this off-road motorbike tour of Vietnam and it will not disappoint! We pass through more tribal villages and reach the Red River and the border of China.

Descending from the highlands, we reach Lao Cai. Here we will have time to take a shower and have dinner before boarding an overnight train to Hanoi.

  • Accommodation: Overnight sleeper train – twin bed cabins (or private cabin if you opt for single room accommodation).
  • Included Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Arriving in Hanoi at 6:30am, we will collect the bikes from the train and take a short ride through the backstreets of Hanoi to the workshop. After saying our farewells to the local team, a minivan will collect us and take us back to our hotel in the Old Quarter of the city.

We include an afternoon tour of the city in open top ‘Willys Jeeps’ – it’s a lot of fun and a great way to enjoy the chaos of the city – but if you’d prefer to relax, why not chill by the rooftop pool with a cocktail!

We’ll go out for a farewell dinner, and no doubt a few celebratory drinks. Hanoi is a very lively city!

  • Accommodation: 5* hotel.
  • Included Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Saying our goodbyes, we’ll arrange for a taxi to take you to Noi Bai international airport. Bon voyage!

  • Accommodation: Not included.
  • Included Meals: Breakfast only.

On this trip we stay in a mixture of hotels & resorts, traditional homestays and guesthouses. Please see the daily itinerary detail for more info on each nights accommodation.

You’ll be collected from Nội Bài International Airport in Hanoi (airport code: HAN) on the morning of the first day. (You are of course welcome to arrive a day or two earlier, but there will be an extra cost for airport pickup).

At the end of the trip we will arrange transfers from our the hotel back to the same airport.

All entrance fees or boat fees for river crossings during the ride.

Your tour will be led and managed by a highly experienced member of the Ride Expeditions team (trained as a wilderness first response medic).

Ride Expeditions Ltd is committed to customer satisfaction and consumer financial protection. At no extra cost to you, and in accordance with ‘The Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018’, all passengers booking with Ride Expeditions Ltd are fully insured for the initial deposit, and subsequently the balance of monies paid as detailed in your booking confirmation form.

The policy also includes repatriation if required, arising from the cancellation or curtailment of your travel arrangements due to the insolvency of Ride Expeditions Ltd. This insurance has been arranged by Towergate Travel through Evolution Insurance.

During the COVID-19 crisis, every rider that requested a refund was issued a cash refund.

All fuel for your motorcycle is provided by us.

This motorcycle tour is accompanied by a GPS tracker that displays our live location and track history on an online map. We will provide you with the link and login details which you can then share with your family at home so they can track your progress throughout the trip.

This motorcycle tour will be guided by an experienced local Vietnamese guide.

Breakfast, lunch and dinner is provided on most days.

Please see the daily itinerary to see what meals are included on each day.

A mechanic will be riding at the back of the group, ready to attend to any issues that may arise.

At least one member of the support team will have been trained as a Wilderness First Response medic.

An extensive medical kit including a defibrillator (AED) & stretcher is carried in the support vehicle.

We also have consulting doctors on call, 24/7, who are always ready to assist in the case of an emergency. Our doctors are fully briefed on all riders medical info prior to the tour, they know what we do, where we are riding, exactly what we have in our medical kit and what training our medics have.

Tours are accompanied by GPS trackers and a satellite messenger device so our doctor and office can see exactly where we are and can maintain communication.

If you have you your own suitable & reliable motorcycle at the start point, you are quite welcome to use that for this trip. If not, we will provide a rental motorcycle for you… Please see the Dates & Prices section for available bikes.

The cost of shipping your motorcycle to and from the start and end destination is also included.

Overnight sleeper train from Lao Cai – Hanoi.

Since the day Ride Expeditions started running tours in Cambodia back in 2012, we have been dedicated to supporting the local community.

Part profits from every motorcycle tour are donated to M’Lop Tapang – a local Cambodian charity dedicated to bettering the lives of young children & their families.

A Ride Expeditions jersey with your name printed on the back.

Playing our part in rainforest & wildlife conservation and in an effort to off-set our carbon emissions, we donate part profits to World Land Trust.

This tour is accompanied by a large support vehicle, equipped to carry your luggage, an extensive medical kit + stretcher + defibrillator (AED), drinking water, snacks, tools, and spare parts.

We’ll welcome you with a bag of Ride Expeditions goodies which will include:

  • T-shirt;
  • Baseball cap;
  • Map;
  • Stickers;
  • Mug;
  • Keyring;
  • Neck tube.

3rd party motorcycle insurance is a legal requirement in Vietnam. We advise you first check if this is included (or can be added as an extra) in your travel insurance policy. If not, we can arrange this within Vietnam for an additional cost. Please see the 'Optional Extras' section for more information.

You’ll need to book a return flight to arrive in Nội Bài International Airport in Hanoi (airport code: HAN) on or before the morning of Day 1 of this trip. You will then fly out of the same airport on the last day of the trip.

It is important you either:

  • Book a flexible flight ticket that allows you to make amendments or cancel without penalty;
  • Have travel insurance that you will reimburse you for out of pocket expenses incurred by a cancelled trip;
  • Do not book your flights until we have notified you that this departure is guaranteed.

Please be aware that you are liable for all damage to the motorcycle. Please see the 'Optional Extras' information on 'Damage Protection Plan'.

  • Alcohol;
  • Laundry;
  • Souvenirs;
  • Any meals that are not mentioned in the itinerary;
  • Recovery, oil, spare parts, labour or other indirect costs resulting from the damage or repair of your motorcycle;
  • Emergency transportation;
  • Any other item, optional excursion, activity or entrance fee that is not specifically mentioned as being included.

It is a condition of booking that you obtain appropriate travel insurance that covers you for riding the same capacity motorcycle that you’ll be riding on this motorcycle tour.

The insurance must cover emergency evacuation, medical bills, repatriation etc.

Enduro / summer weight adventure style kit is the way to go on this motorcycle tour, rather than road riding kit. If you are opting for enduro kit, we’d recommend you bring extra layers and waterproofs to keep out the wet stuff.

You'll want some decent armoured protection and please do bear in mind that we will sometimes be riding on the road... 'dress for the slide, not the ride!'

If you're unable to obtain this with your travel insurance, we can organise this within Vietnam.

All damage to the motorcycle is then covered by us. Please bear in mind that this excludes damage caused by irresponsible riding.

Single room accommodation is available at all of the resorts, guesthouses and hotels, but not the homestay.

Yes, there are ATMs in the larger towns, but not the villages.

Don’t forget to tell your bank you are heading to Vietnam, as without this information they will most likely think some rogue hacker is dipping into your account and promptly block your card.

Yes, and we advise you do. They’re cheap to top up and easily obtainable at the airport or small shops in the cities.

While the Vietnamese locals love their meat, it’s no problem for the restaurants / hotels to prepare vegetarian meals. Fresh vegetables & fish are plentiful in Vietnam. That said, the vegetarian options will be quite limited in the more rural areas.

As for food allergies, we will make every effort to communicate your requirements to the kitchen. If you have concerns, please do get in touch so we can discuss these with you.

For the most accurate and up to date info on travel advice for Vietnam, we advise you to visit the foreign office website.

Follow this link for Vietnam’s entry requirements. This is a link to the UK foreign office website – if you are not a UK resident, please search for the equivalent info from your home country’s foreign office.

To secure your place we simply need a £500 non-refundable deposit. The remainder does not need to be paid until 60 days prior to the tour start date.

As this is a largely inclusive tour, you won’t need much. You will only need money for the items not listed as inclusions, which is mainly just alcohol, souvenirs and any other personal spending. Unless you go mad in the gift shops and bars, around £5 – £10 per day should be adequate. Shopping in Vietnam tends to be very reasonable so you can get quite a lot for not much!

Yes. Here at Ride Expeditions, we take the necessary precautions to ensure that we protect both ourselves and you as the customer, with insurances covering financial failure, public liability, professional indemnity and employers liability (you will need your own travel insurance).

To obtain this insurance we must meet strict safety standards and local regulations. We must also carry out thorough risk assessments about all aspects of a tour before tyres can hit tarmac (…or dirt!).

Yes. All passengers booking with Ride Expeditions Ltd are fully insured for the initial deposit, and subsequently the balance of monies paid as detailed in your booking confirmation form. The policy also includes repatriation if required, arising from the cancellation or curtailment of your travel arrangements due to the insolvency of Ride Expeditions Ltd. This insurance has been arranged by Towergate Travel through Evolution Insurance.

Not riding the motorcycle, no (although this will of course depend on the extent of your limited mobility). However, we may be able to accommodate you in our support vehicle. We advise you to give us a call and we can discuss.

Yes, there is wi-fi at almost every overnight accommodation.

For the most accurate and up to date info, we advise you visit the ‘Travel Health Pro’ website. Follow this link for Vietnam info.

Please also consult with your own doctor at home at least 8 weeks before your trip.

To be legally riding in Vietnam you are required to carry your local driving licence, which must cover the size of bike you will be riding. This will also be a stipulation of any travel insurance company too.

You will also need an International Driving Permit (IDP). An IDP is basically an official, multi-language translation of your driving licence.

Average group sizes are 8-9 riders and we limit the groups to 12 riders.

If you cancel your booking before departure, cancellation charges will be applied as follows:

  • 61 days or more before tour start date – retention of deposit
  • 42-60 days before tour start date – retention of 50% of tour price
  • 28-41 days before tour start date – retention of 70% of tour price
  • 0-27 days before tour start date – retention of 100% tour price

Please refer to our Terms & Conditions for further info regarding cancellations, changes and transferring your trip to a friend.

For the most accurate and up to date info on travel advice for Vietnam, we advise you to visit the foreign office website.

Follow this link for Vietnam travel advice from the UK foreign office. As we are a UK company, this is the official government advice we follow. If you are not a UK resident, we advise you search for the equivalent info from your own country’s foreign office, as travel advice may differ.

We’d like all of our riders to have at least two years active riding experience.

As this tour is predominantly off-road, it is more than preferable if you have a good amount of off-road riding experience before booking up. Should you have any doubts, give us a call and we can talk you through it in more detail.

Expect a mix of conditions! We’ll be riding at varying altitudes where the temperatures will differ and the weather can become unpredictable. It could be very warm, it could be very cold. It could be bone dry, or we could get very wet!

While the average riding temperatures should be 20 – 25°C, you should prepare to ride in temperatures anywhere between 5 – 35°C!

As with all of our tours, we only schedule the trips for the very best riding months of the year. But it’s always better to be safe than sorry, so please pack plenty of layers and waterproofs to cover all bases!

Please also bring warm clothes for the evenings.

The minimum required number for this trip to run is 6 riders. We reserve the right to cancel the tour if this number is not met and we will provide you with a minimum of 56 days notice. Please know that this is an absolute last resort for us and we will always do everything in our power to avoid this happening.

We accept GBP payments by Visa, Mastercard & American Express and direct bank transfers. Please get in touch if you would rather pay in another currency – we’ll do our best to accommodate!

For Vietnam there are three associated plug types, types A, C and F. Plug type A is the plug which has two flat parallel pins, plug type C is the plug with two round pins and plug type F has two round pins with two earth clips on the side.

Dates & Pricing

Tour Price

  • Rider (Incl. bike rental): £1995
  • Rider (own bike): £1595

The Motorcycles

  • Honda CRF 250L (Included)

Optional Extras

  • Single Room Supplement + £150
  • 3rd Party Insurance + £160
  • Motorcycle Damage Protection Plan + £160
  • Start Date: October 1, 2022
  • End Date: October 9, 2022

Expedition Leader:

Ian