Two Wheels & Rice Fields | Motorbiking Vietnam
Try your best to avoid the herds of goats being transited by farmers on foot. Da Nang is different. I love it. Best of all, though, Da Nang avoids the tiresome commotion of Ho Chi Minh City yet still offers a charm unlike Hanoi in the form of a coastal beach paradise. You can relax here and just five minutes inland sits a stylish, clean and organised cityscape. The nightlife is bright and active.
The cuisine is spectacular.
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Palm trees line the far stretched white sands backed by tall, block hotels reminiscent of an early Australian Gold Coast. Just ten minutes south sit religious cave systems of limestone, the Marble Mountains, to an otherwise flat landscape. Does Da Nang sound like nowhere else in Vietnam? A no-brainer to check out and visit? The ancient town and the focus of the tourist masses is a world heritage UNESCO site and seen as one of the best examples of th century Chinese and Japanese trading influences in Vietnam. The riverfront is lined with a myriad of culinary options, so your daily struggle in Hoi-An will be making a decision.
I still wear the leather shoes I had custom-made overnight here 4 years on. Riding a motorbike in South-East Asia is dangerous. Country-wide, there are an estimated 40 road deaths a day. If anything terrible was to happen on this route, you could be about two hours away from the nearest hospital in Hue or Da Nang. Ambulance response times are not like London. Keep this in mind when those locals offer you that potent jungle juice halfway between Hue and Lang Co.
Luckily, this route from Hue avoids having others breathing down your neck, you also avoid the dangerous highways and instead hug the quiet, safe coastal roads dissecting villages and farmland which are populated only by those that live there. This is usually unheard of in just one to two days. So share it with me in the comments below! Elliott believes each country on earth offers a uniquely interesting travel experience worth having. Inspired by contemporary history, news media and international politics, he likes to visit and see for himself.
He's a poor golfer, tour manager, part-time software developer and has grown alongside one of Australia's oldest wombats. Read more here! Hi Elliott: Great post! Are deposits or passport surrender generally required for multi-day rentals? Hi Elliot What a great write up you have done on the Hai Van pass.
I own a small scooter in Australia and done a small amount of riding in Sapa,Cambodia and Laos which were all so very memorable trips. To some degree i have i initially done this in ignorance as i thought i was covered by my international liecence. As you correctly point out and i now realise that it counts for zip,………..
We were thinking of doing the reverse, Da Nang to Lang Co and back. Thanks for the super helpful info. So just ask around and be honest in your intentions and expect to pay a one-way fee which is standard. Just always be careful — International Drivers Licenses are useless in Vietnam which almost always makes travel insurance void. Hope this helps mate! Hi Elliott, new reader here! Also saves money and time although one has to be really brave to ride that thing in SEA! Just a question, did you drive alone? Anyway, I had found another interesting travel blog yay!
Motorcycle Tours in Vietnam: 6 Thrilling Road Trips to Add to Your Bucket List
Chicken good. The resources section is jammed with coupons for discounts from accommodation and motorcycle related tour companies. If you use any one of them you should easily recoup the cost of purchasing Two Wheels and Rice Fields and then some. Be aware that they all seem to expire in December Hopefully there is a plan to update them as progresses.
Overall Two Wheels and Rice Fields is an excellent primer for anyone planning a motorcycle trip in Vietnam. It covers all the bases and will give you a good idea of what's involved. I'd suggest buying it at least a few weeks before the beginning of your trip. Give yourself some time to read through it a few times and to plot a rough route using the list of suggested stops. At the time I wrote this review the guide is on sale for 17 bucks.
For a guide to the trip of a lifetime that's pretty damn good. You can pick up a copy by clicking here. This post is however my honest opinion. It's not perfect but it is a very useful guide book. I had another read of this eBook on the weekend. Personally, I wish they had of shared their itinerary as such. Their route and how long it took them. It would be handy to know, considering I will be the one sitting on the back of the motorbike for all that time! This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Maybe another cheeky bike trip in the future to catch it. This is such a great guide!
I would love to go back to Vietnam and do this motorcycle adventure! Your photos are amazing and breathtaking! Hi Becky, thank you for your comment. We hope you get there one day. It is a beautiful place to explore. Happy travels. Thank you for such an awesome detailed guide!
I have never ridden a motorbike but I am dying to take this journey. I was thinking about taking a motor cycle safety course for beginners in order to make this journey. Would you advise for such a novice? Glad you enjoyed our article. Definitely recommend taking a motorcycle safety course. It will really help with your confidence on the road. Who do you recommend to buy a bike from?
There was a guy who you mentioned but now I cannot find him on your site. Does anyone know if its just scooters you can rent there or are propper motorbiked also available? I am wondering about your motorcycles.
The Freewheelin’ Spirit
Did you own them and if so, where did you buy them and how much did they cost? When you left , were you able to sell them? Now it is USD for a 3 day 2 night tour with a driver. Thanks for advice Michael. Btw, do u know how much it will cost for rental of motorbike with a guide to cover Ha Giang- Dong Van- Meo Vac in 2 days? Plus does anyone know the frequency of busses from Hanoi to Hagiang? I prefer to travel in day bus rather than night busses. Anyone can help? You are welcome Jane.
Review: Two Wheels and Rice Fields (The Ultimate Guide to Motorbiking Vietnam)
You not need to worry, Vietnam is safe and you can travel yourself. Bus from hanoi to Ha giang is plenty. Most of them is sleep bus, not sure about price but it about They start at My Dinh Bus station, 15minutes each. It has some bus companies which organize Hanoi — Ha giang trip such as Hai Van recommened- — 04 , Hung Thanh , Bang Phan Renting a motorcycle in Ha Giang: Mr Nam: His shop is opposite Old Bus Station. He is tour leader as well. For more info, you can email me at michaelclark gmail.
- Temporary Tricks.
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Ha Giang is extremely cold this December, please wear much layers as you can. Especially when you ride motorcycle up there. Nowaday, Sapa and Dong Van are not peaceful at all. Thank you so much for wonderful topic. Motorbike ride northern Vietnam is best way to explore the hidden charm of Vietnam. My friends and I are doing this loop now, giving ourselves 3 weeks including a trip to Halong Bay so unfortunately we are skipping Ba Be Lake. Definitely still not enough time! Haha, right you are!
We got a lot of wrong directions throughout the whole country.
- Criss-Crossed (Wyckid Fruit Book 3).
- Guide to travel by motorcycle through Vietnam - International News.
- They Found a Cave: Text Classics;
Oh well, just adds to the adventure! We could definitely do that loop a whole bunch of times, and never get sick of it. That bike so taft for gravel road.. Thanks very much! Hope we get to Indonesia one day to ride around your beautiful country. Will we need full motorbike licences UK , Vietnamese licenses or will riding without either license be a possible option? Hey Charlie, International Drivers Permits are now accepted in Vietnam as well as in Cambodia expect the Cambodian police to fine you anyway though if they pull you over. As usual, amazingly awesome photographs… totally inspiring and such helpful instructions!
Hey, love your site and working my way through this route now. So… I rode this section of trail yesterday. There were sections of loose stones and gravel. But it was manageable for sure.
- Guide to travel by motorcycle through Vietnam.
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I realised that in small towns along Northern Vietnam, it is difficult to find the listings online. How do you generally deal with accomodation? Do you ride until you find a place to stay? How about petrol kiosks? Are there plenty along the way? We never booked anything ahead of time, especially not for the North. Just ride into town and ask around. And Petrol is everywhere, either in proper stations or with people selling bottles of it on the side of the road. We went in December, which normally should not have been so perfect.
We got really lucky with the weather though. Thanks very much Jade! We definitely got lucky with the weather while we were in the North. Make sure you get up there soon! While sleeping anything specific? Hi Yann!
Book Review: Two Wheels & Rice Fields- The Ultimate Guide To Motorbiking Vietnam
We had a chain we would wrap around our rear wheel, but often hotel owners would let us bring the motorbikes inside their property. Ride safe! Your email address will not be published. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam.
Beehive-like karst formations in the Dong Van Geopark. Amazing views over the Ba Be National Park! Our Path This is the route and itinerary that we took on our Northern Vietnam motorcycle adventure. One of the better sections of the road to Xin Man. Rice terraces near Xin Man. The road to Dong Van. Stoked to be riding through Ma Pi Leng. Rice fields outside of Than Uyen, back near the beginning of our journey.
Accommodation There are hotels, guesthouses and homestays just about everywhere in Northern Vietnam.
You do not need to carry a tent or hammock unless you really want to get off the beaten path. Expect cool temperatures it can snow in the mountains around Sapa , wet mist and dense fog. We rode in December and got lucky with the visibility most of the time, although it was quite cold.
Pack layers of clothes, a face mask and some thick gloves. In July and August there can be heavy rain. The monsoon season is from November to March and the hot, wet season from April to October. Although regardless of the weather, you should still ride your motorbike around Northern Vietnam. Honda Wins are the main type of bikes that locals ride and parts are readily available. We recommend getting an oil change every km, tightening and greasing your chain every morning and always check your brakes. This is something you should do anyway, however with the roads being extra mountainous in Northern Vietnam you want to make sure your bike is running in top condition.
There are very few signs that direct you to towns of interest. Ride Safely Again, this should be something you do anyway, but keep in mind that there are minimal well-equipped hospitals in Northern Vietnam. If you have a crash and are injured it can take a long time to get to Hanoi for treatment. Keep that in mind next time you go to open the throttle on a blind corner. Resources Chris from Flamingo Travels in Hanoi was a great help to us when it came to planning our Northern Vietnam motorcycle adventure.