Remote Vietnam at its best
The remote mountains of northeast Vietnam encapsulate every element of a superb bike ride; challenging climbs and fantastic descents are rewarded with breathtaking views and an extremely warm welcome from the hospitable locals. We start our journey passing through verdant rice paddies and lake-flanked national parks before pedalling through the spectacular karst limestone scenery of Ha Giang. A recent addition to the UNESCO list, this mountainous province is recognised for its high peaks and deep canyons which make for an entirely unique landscape. This area is also one of the last few places where traditional hilltribe life reigns strong; nearly 90% of the population are ethnic minorities, traditional subsistence farming is the mainstay of most and the colourful attire of many of the inhabitants signals the cultural diversity of the area. This insight into remote Vietnam is for many the absolute highlight but time spent in fascinating Hanoi and a cruise around the islands of Halong Bay is definitely the perfect reward after 10 days of challenging cycling.