Taste of Ho Chi Minh Trail by motorbike

Routing: Hanoi - Mai Chau valley - Pu Luong nature reserve - Tan Ky - President Ho Chi Minh homeland - Phong Nha - Hanoi

Trip Duration:

5 days 4 nights


Culture Tour, SightSeeing, Motorcycling, Nature Explore, Homestay,

Physical Grading:

Taste of Ho Chi Minh trail is our top picked motorcycling adventure because various highlights of nature, history, and riding experience are included in this very short tour. You first start on mountainous roads to Mai Chau with stunning Thung Khe pass and terrace fields. Then ride to Pu Luong Nature reserve before changing into the smooth rides on Ho Chi Minh trail and starting the historical stories. Visiting President Ho Chi Minh homeland, Dong Loc intersection, Huong Khe etc will show you how important the road was in wartime and why it is our legend. The fantastic ride via plenty plantations of tea, dragon fruits, and rubbers will end at Phong Nha awesome caves.

Tour Highlights
  • Stunning terrace fields at Mai Chau valley.
  • The mountainous twisting road at Pu Luong.
  • Visit homeland of our greatest President Ho Chi Minh.
  • Boat trip and cave visiting at Phong Nha.
  • Fantastic ride from Tan Ky to Phong Nha.

Day by Day Program:

Day 01: Hanoi - Mai Chau

Day 02: Mai Chau – Pu Luong Nature reserve – Tan Ky ( 280 km)
Day 03: Tan Ky - Phong Nha ( 290 km)
Day 04: Phong Nha cave – Dong hoi – night train to Hanoi (50 km)
Day 05: Arrive Hanoi 

Services and Activities included:

Semi-automatic Honda 125CC
Best Rated Hotel Accommodations
Unlimited Mileage
Helmets for the driver and passenger
Daily breakfast
Other meals as indicated in itinerary
Homestay permission
Professional English speaking tour leaders
Water & Snacks on driving days
First-aid kit
National Park and other Entrance Fees
Preparation and Orientation
All taxes, fees, and environmental surcharges
Mechanic & Support truck as in price option

Tour Exclusions:

Travel insurance
Tips and gratitude
Gasoline about average US$ 10/day
Transportation between hotel and check-point location (restrictions may apply at certain locations)
Personal expenses
Personal motorbike protection gears
Others not mentioned


    If none of our package tours satisfy you, let our travel experts tailor make a tour for you based on our answers for following questions:

    1. When will you travel?
    2. Length of your stay?
    3. Number of traveler?
    4. What is the field of your interest? Please specify: Kayaking / Biking / Trekking / Motorcycling / Multi-sport
    5. Any extra interest you want to combine? Please specify: Culture experience / Beach holiday
    6. Grade of adventure activities: Introductory / Moderate / Challenging
    7. Any extra information that help us to identify your travel need?

    Please use our Contact form to send the above information. You will get our answer within 12 hours. Thank you and Happy travels!

    Day 1: Hanoi - Mai Chau

    Being greeted by our motorcycling tour guide. You will have some time to get familiar with the bikes while our guide brief about the program, Vietnamese laws, and safety guide.
    Start riding up to the famous Mai Chau valley that is about 170km from Hanoi. The road is paved but twisting around mountains and you are expected to climb up then down several passes. One of the most notable passes is Thung Khe where you can stop to watch over a local fair of Muong ethics. You can even try some local products if interested. 
    Before arriving in Mai Chau about 7km, there is a flagpole where you will have an overview to Mai Chau valley with vast terrace fields dotted by lovely, tiny stilted houses. That is the great chance for photos.
    We reach to Mai Chau then check in our homestay. Leaving your things and bikes at the house, we take a short walk into the Thai village whose costume is the most charming and beautiful. You can join dinner with the host, taste the local wine if you are fancy. Our suggestion for wrapping this day is a music performance by local artists (expenses excluded). You can join and... sing and.... dance. That’s so much fun.
    Overnight in a stilt house of the Thai people.
    Distance:  170 km
    Meals:   Breakfast, Lunch
    Accommodation: Homestay in Mai Chau village

    Day 2: Mai Chau – Pu Luong Nature reserve – Tan Ky ( 280 km)

    Breakfast at the homestay then we say goodbye to our nice host. After 15km driving on national road No15, we reach to a bamboo chopstick making factory then take a turn into a small road to pass Pu Luong Nature Reserve. “Pù Luông” in Thai ethnic language is “big mountain” then you can definitely expect for awesome twisting, up and down hill ride along beautiful terrace fields, stilt houses by Thai and Muong people. After that, we will ride along Ma River to Ngoc Lac where we meet the first part of Ho Chi Minh Trail.
    Stop en route for lunch after 30km commencing ride on Ho Chi Minh trail.
    After lunch, we are into a nice ride for about 130km to Tan Ky Town. Our road is fantastic with the views of rubber plantations and especially the 370000ha grass farm – the biggest in Asia by TH True Milk Company, at 40km prior to Tan Ky town. We arrive in Tan Ky, check in the hotel and overnight.
    Distance:  280 km
    Meals:   Breakfast, Lunch
    Accommodation: hotel in Tan Ky

    Day 3 : Tan Ky - Phong Nha ( 290 km)

    Today is a day for historical and wartime stories. Breakfast at a local shop, we start our motorbikes to Do Luong with en route stop at Truong Bon – a strategic intersection for North to South logistic. The next stop is the highlight of the day when we visit President Ho Chi Minh homeland to admire his humble family and his great life. 
    Stop for lunch after taking a turn to road No1 – that is parallel with Ho Chi Minh trail with heavier traffic - and passing Ben Thuy bridge about 10km.
    After that, we keep our riding along National road No1 for more 15km and turn right to get back to Ho Chi Minh trail again. We will visit Dong Loc intersection where the story of 10 volunteer girls sacrificed their youth heroically is admired by next generations ever. Then we keep our motorbikes along Ho Chi Minh trail passing Huong Khe, Tan Ap etc. to Phong Nha. On the way, we may take some stops at tea, rubber plantations. 
    Check in hotel in Phong Nha and relax.
    Distance:  290 km
    Meals:   Breakfast, Lunch
    Accommodation: hotel in Phong Nha

    Day 4: Phong Nha cave – Dong hoi – night train to Hanoi (50 km)

    After breakfast, this morning we will take a boat trip and visit one of Phong Nha caves. So leave all your items at the hotels, just bring with a camera and really necessary things, we will get in a boat along Son river to Uot (Wet) cave in Phong Nha. The visit takes place for about 2-3 hours then you walk back to the hotel for checking out.
    In this trip, we manage a night train ride back to Hanoi at around 5pm then you will have the afternoon for awesome swimming at the white sand and absolutely quiet beach, Nhat Le. Refreshing after a few days motor riding, we back to Dong Hoi station, load up our motorbikes and take the overnight train back to Hanoi. 
    If you connect your trip from Dong Hoi to Danang or Ho Chi Minh City, get ready for the flight after we finishing the cave visit. 
    Distance:  50 km
    Meals:   Breakfast, Lunch
    Accommodation: Night train to Hanoi

    Day 05: Arrive Hanoi 

    04.30 AM arrive in Hanoi railway station. You can easily find a taxi at the station for a short transfer to your hotel in the center. Our service for “Tastes of Ho Chi Minh trails motorcycling” ends here.
    Meals: Not included
    Accommodation: Not available.
    Group size Price guide (USD/person)
    We use Future Neo 2009 125CC in this quotation by default. The reason is that the neat and very good design by Honda Vietnam is perfectly suitable for Vietnam road paths. The gear shift is changed easily and smoothly. This models can give you good experiences over almost motorcycling paths of Vietnam. Honda Future Neo is our choice in the quotation as its very affordable price, popular spare parts, easy-to-control even for motorcycling beginners
    Curb weight : 105 kg
    Overall length: 1890mm
    Overall width: 705mm
    Overall height: 1085 mm
    Wheel base: 1,240 mm
    Seat height : 767 mm
    Fuel tank capacity: 3.7l
    Engine oil capacity: 0.9 litre when dismantling machine; 0.7 litre when changing lubricant
    Engine type: Gasoline, 04-stroke, single, air-cooled
    Gear box: Mechanical, 4-step rotary system
    Starting system: Electric/kick starter
    For Upgrade Dirt Bikes options: our top picked Dirt Bike upgrade is YAMAHA ZTX 125. This is a real offroad bikes by the second player in Vietnam motor market - Yamaha. The company focuses on young customers with active lifestyle. Our model is 2015 with many improvement in performance and give you real motorbiking experience in Vietnam. The upgrade surcharge is very affordable while the experience brought back is far more.
    Overall length: 2090mm
    Overall width: 830mm
    Overall height: 1115mm
    Minimum ground clearance: 260mm
    Weight (with full fuel tank): 118kg
    Seat height: 840mm
    Maximum horse power: 12.5PS/8000r/min
    Fuel tank capacity: 11 liter
    Engine type single cylinder, cool air, 5 strokes
    High Quality Helmets - Manufacturer: Vietnam: Injection-molded thermoplastic shell construction. Full-face helmet, provided in long motorbiking trips, offers maximum protection during off-road use. Half face helmet will be provided for traversing inside the city.
    Saddle bags (roughly 7 kg each side)
    Extra rucksack or bag strapped 
    ATA first-aid kit: Available on any ATA trip
    If you pick the price option Incl. Mechanic and Support truck, we will supply:
    Support truck: Vietnam with various terrain and great scenery is an ideal place for adventure motorcycling. Although it is so fun and adventurous to ride in Vietnam it is surely a challenge for any foreign rider since the traffic is so different from the rest of the world. Moreover, we want everyone to enjoy their motorbiking experience on this trip and we recognize the importance of group members being allowed to ride at their own pace. At times there can be a fair distance between the front and rear riders in the group, with the support vehicle and tour leader out of sight. The support vehicle will pick up any group members who wish to take a break from motorcycling at any time. 
    01 professional mechanic along the motorbiking trip who greatly understand the technical issues and fix our motorbikes as manufacturer's requirements. That will maximize your safety and the duration of our motorbikes usages.
    Spare parts of the motorbike such as: Tyres, Pump, Plastic tyre levers, Brake cable, Gear cable etc.
    Original passport
    Good quality helmet (your own helmet is recommended)
    Wellington/riding boots
    Water waterproof gloves
    Summer gloves
    Balaclava to cover your face
    Turtleneck shirts
    Long-sleeved shirts
    A pair of extra jeans
    Goggles and sunglasses
    Light waterproof jackets
    Basic toiletries, Sun block, anti-insect repellent, rain coat.
    GoPro Camera - optional
    Mobile phone with multi sockets - optional

    Depart from:   Hanoi - End at:   Hanoi
    When:    Year round
    Activities:   Motorcycling
    Transportation:  Honda Future neo 125CC (semi-automatic gear) 
    Accommodation:  2 nights homestay
    Tour guide:   English speaking guide
    Support crew:  support vehicle, mechanic

    Introductory Grade that means the tour involve up to 2-3 hours of active, physical-required activities per day at a slow but steady pace. Your track trails are predominately on good conditions and tracks and might include some easy pass crossings such as a mix of quiet paved roads, forestry tracks and easy double tracks. 
    Your muscles are going to relatively tense sometimes, especially for adventurous newcomers however there are some relax intervals helping you back to the phase. You should have an average level of fitness. No special notices required.
    *  Suggested preparation: having good routines of exercises, active lifestyle with physical-related activites, 2-3 times per week.
    Who suits:  Great for newcomers to active travel. 
    Activity: 2-3 hours most days 
    Distances: Hike average 5 miles (8km),  motorbiking 100-125miles (or 150– 200km) on paved, no or few twist road most days
    Surfaces: flat or rolling terrain with some possible steeps 
    Elevation change: up to 2,000 ft/day (about 600m)
    Altitude: up to 4,000 ft (about 1200m) 

    Day 1: Lunch, Dinner
    Day 2: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
    Day 3: Breakfast, Lunch
    All meals, which are indicated in the itinerary, are included in the price of this trip. As we travel away from big towns, the emphasis will be on healthy and nutritious fresh local produce. Dinners will be cooked by family that we stay overnight with. Lunches will be at local restaurant on the way.

    Home stay in villages is basic in term of bedding condition and amenities. We stay overnight in the traditional house-on-stilt of the Thai and Muong people and, as the locals do, we will sleep on bamboo floor with mattress, clean sheet, pillows and mosquito nets. Toilet is usually steps away from the house and in western style.

    The tour will be led by one of our tour guides who are experienced in guiding motorcycling tours in Vietnam. He has been carefully selected and trained in this field and is fully licensed in tour guiding by the government. In addition, he has been trained in first-aid by SOS International and he knows how to deal with difficult situations. You will have a great time traveling with him.
    A typical motorcycle riding day starts at about 8.30 am after breakfast. Lunch times can vary depending on the distance. We aim to reach the next overnight stop by 4.30 or 5. During the riding we will have short breaks for rest, snack and photographing.
    The upgrade to Dirt Bikes are always available and upon your request. We have many Dirt Bike models various from 125CC up to 650cc for wide range of riders' experience. They are very much suit to Vietnam roads.
    Due to the road conditions of Vietnam, big-size or big-engine motorbikes (such as: 1000cc up) are not popular and expensive. Such big-engine motorbikes may not maximize their power as well as technical specs while highway express in Vietnam is not good enough and the awareness of traffic attendants are relatively low. Moreover, the rental prices can be very high due to high imported taxes added into the price. We strongly encourage you contact to our team if you decided to take those ones.
    Vietnam with various terrain and great scenery is an ideal place for adventure motorcycling. Although it is so fun and adventurous to ride in Vietnam it is surely a challenge for any foreign rider since the traffic is so different from the rest of the world. Moreover, we want everyone to enjoy their motorbiking experience on this trip and we recognize the importance of group members being allowed to ride at their own pace. At times there can be a fair distance between the front and rear riders in the group, with the support vehicle and tour leader out of sight. The support vehicle will pick up any group members who wish to take a break from motorcycling at any time. 
    Note on client safety
    We reserve the right to deviate from this itinerary for any reasons, including road and weather conditions, frequency of visits to a village, or for any other factor which may influence client safety.

    hochiminhtrail Adventure Travel & Tours

    Contact activetravel asia

    trekking activetravelcambodia.com