With 11-day motorcycling tour in Ho Chi Minh trail in total 18 day trip from Hanoi to Saigon, this motorcycling grading of tour is considered as Moderate to challenging by Active Travel Asia
The legendary Ho Chi Minh Trail was the supply line used by North Vietnam to link North and South Vietnam during the American War. Soldiers, ammunition, travelersapons and supplies travelersre carried by hand, bicycle and truck for hundreds of kilometers through the otherwise impenetrable jungle that covered Vietnam’s mountainous border with Laos.
A testimony to the ingenuity, fortitude and commitment of the northern Vietnamese, the trail slipped from use at the end of the war and was taken back by the jungle. Recent road work that follow original sections of the trail have changed this.
Besides incredible driving, deep in the Vietnamese countryside, this ride takes in the charming ancient trading town of Hoian, Khe Sanh battle site and DMZ. Travelers also take time to stay overnight in a traditional Thai hill tribe and visit to some tribal villages on the way.
Start this trip in Hanoi, travelers have Hanoi city tour to visit Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, and the “Uncle Ho” house and other famous sightseeings and a relaxing cyclo tour through the ancient part of Hanoi.
Next day, travelers take a short bus drive the Ho Chi Minh Trail Museum on the outskirts of Hanoi. The museum is a great place to learn about the historic trail which travelers will ride on. After the visit to the museum travelers will jump on our Minsks and spend sometime to get familiar with the bikes. Travelers cross two short mountain passes then descent to the mountain valley settlement of Mai Chau. Dinner and overnight in a stilt house of the Thai people.
Next day, travelers then head south on a beautiful winding road which follow the banks of the Ma River. After some hours riding on undulating quiet road travelers join the new Ho Chi Minh Highway. This newly carved route leads us due south, through remote back country, not far from the Laos border. In the afternoon travelers cut eastward towards the coast and stay overnight in the peaceful city of Vinh, which is close to where Ho Chi Minh was born.
The next morning, travelers head inland towards the Laos border after 40min riding travelers can reach the birthplace of Ho Chi Minh in Kim Lien Village. The place is truly a shrine to the Vietnamese and visited by few westerners.
Travelers continue on the quiet highway to Dong Loc Intersection, (main junction for supply lines during the war) which is widely regarded in Vietnamese eyes as the beginning of Ho Chi Minh Trail. Travelers then pass through remote back country, close to the border , as the scenery steadily becomes dominated by karst limestone rock formations. Travelers will reach our overnight spot, Huong Khe Town, around 5pm.
Next day, travelers will arrive in Phong Nha around noon. Travelers board a dragon boat to explore the famous Nature World Heritage Site of Phong Nha cave.
After the exploration of Phong Nga, travelers ride 30km eastward to the costal town of Dong Hoi, our today’s overnight spot.
Next day’s ride is also on the new, quiet highway. Along the way, travelers will have a short stop at Truong Son National Cemetery to pay respect to the soldiers who fought and died on the trail during the American War. After here travelers head to Dong Ha Town passing Ben Tat Bridge, built by the VC over the Ben Hai River.
Arriving in Dong Ha, travelers will check into the hotel, and have some lunch. In the afternoon, travelers drive to the mystic Vinh Moc Tunnel and the famous DMZ, Doc Mieu fire base and the historic Hien Luong Bridge.
Next day, continuing west on Highway 9, travelers will climb into the Truong Son foothills. About 16km from Khe Sanh is the Dakrong Bridge and the road turns winding and narrow. A bit further, travelers will come to Huang Hoa, once known as Khe Sanh Base, which was established as a forward base by General Westmoreland near Laos to secure Highway 9. About 3km from Khe Sanh is Ta Con Airbase.
Lunch in Khe Sanh and then head out across the famous Dakrong River Bridge on Rte. 14 Near the town of Ta Rut, travelers will stop for a visit with the Pa Co people and a walk through their village.
Next day’s riding is the best riding of the whole route. For the first 110 km, travelers cross one of the longest and most stunning pass on new and quiet road, through stunning scenery of primitive forests backed by the imposing Truong Son mountain range. There are also two long tunnels and very little traffic. The next 68 km from Hien to Thanh My are on good road with some gentle climbs.
Next day, Travelers will spend the day visiting the town of Hoian on your own.
Next day, travelers leave Hoi An in the morning and head to My Son, a world heritage site that is the Cham version of Angkor Wat.
From My Son, travelers will continue along the highway, busy at first, until the road shifts and becomes smaller, although paved. Then the drive becomes challenging, but a lot of fun and progress is far slower.
Travelers will continue driving along the river, but the road itself, new and not very busy, climbs up along a very steep valley with the river rushing below. The river below is dotted with unique rock formations and there are waterfalls along the way. Lunch will be in Dong Phu.
Next day, travelers continue driving north on Highway 14 today on a bit of a bumpy section of the road to Kon Tum.
Next day to visit different minority villages, travelers will drive over Lo Xo Pass, making lots of stops along the way to meet De and Trieng minorities, who live along the Dak Po Ko river. Along the river are many amazing hanging bridges, built by the local people to cross to the opposite shore.
Along the way, travelers also pass one of the key towns and battle sites of the Vietnam War – Dak To and outpost Charlie.
In Kon Tum travelers can visit the Catholic church and the orphanage, based behind the Catholic Church in town and run by a group of French nuns. If time permits, you can also visit a beautiful Bahnar village near town.
The new Ho Chi Minh Highway was built on the old trail, but from Kon Tum to Daklak, the historic HCM trail (Highway 14C), runs parallel to Highway 14 linking Kon Tum, Pleiku, and Buon Me Thuot.
Travelers will continue riding Highway 14 today, finding that traffic is busier than usual. Lunch will be in Pleiku. From here, travelers ride along the Tun River and up over a pass. Along the way are coffee plantations and the stilt houses of the Central Highland’s largest ethnic group, the Gia Rai. Eventually, travelers will cross the Nha Rong pass down into Buon Me Thuot, the provincial capital of Dac Lac Province, and the site of the last battle of the Vietnam war in March 1975.
At night travelers can stop by the beer parlors or sample the local coffee grown in the region. It is far and away the best coffee in Vietnam and worth bringing home.
Next day, travelers drive to Lak Lake on Rte. 27, a small paved road with poor surfacing and quite busy. Here travelers can have a break for refreshment and troll around the by the lake. There are said to be about 31 different ethnic groups in Dac Lac, each with their own traditional dress and customs. Some of the villages are known for elephant hunting and taming, some for travelersaving and other arts.
After lunch in Lak Lake, travelers continue on to Da Lat. The road is narrow, winding, but not busy. Travelers have three passes to cross – Krong No, Chuoi, and Phu Son. The drive itself is quite beautiful and lined with dense forests. Late in the afternoon, travelers will arrive in the hill town of Da Lat.
Travelers can spend the day visiting the highlights of Dalat – its gardens, cathedral, waterfalls, market, Valley of Love, convent, university and key pagodas.
Next day, travelers head to Saigon on bus, since the road is so very crowded and busy! On the way, travelers will stop for lunch in Bao Loc, where travelers can also see the impressive Dambri Waterfall. In the afternoon, travelers will finally arrive in Ho Chi Minh City and the famous Rex Hotel.
Travelers might want to visit Saigon famous sightseeings such as Re-Unification Palace, the former palace of President Thieu and his predecessors, Cu Chi tunnel, Ben Thanh Market…
Book the Cheaper Option and save from 4% to 7% (depending on your group size)
From 9 persons: on request.
This Cheaper Option is offered to those who seek for good travel experience at an affordable budget. Activ Trvael Asia offer the finest 2-star hotels instead of 3-star hotels in all destinations. These 2-star hotels are selected for good location, clean, comfortable room and nice staff. Since most of overnight towns are small and remote where 2-star hotel (or no-star hotel) is the only choice, the down grade of hotel only applied for big town like Hanoi, Hoian, Buon Ma Thuot…
More information at http://www.activetravel.asia/taste-of-ho-chi-minh-trail-t246.html