Top things to do

Top Choice Market in Bac Ha

Bac Ha Market

This Sunday market is Bac Ha’s big draw. There's an increasing range of handicrafts for sale, but it’s still pretty much a local affair. Bac Ha market is a magnet for the local hill-tribe people, above all the exoti…
Top Choice Museum in Dien Bien Phu

Dien Bien Phu Museum

This well-laid-out museum, contained in a space-agey modern structure, features an eclectic collection that commemorates the 1954 battle. Alongside weaponry and guns, there’s a bath tub that belonged to the French c…
Top Choice Monument in Dien Bien Phu

A1 Hill

There are tanks and a monument to Viet Minh casualties on this former French position, known to the French as Eliane and to the Vietnamese as A1 Hill. The elaborate trenches at the heart of the French defenses have …
Top Choice Vietnamese in Sapa

Hill Station Signature Restaurant

A showcase of Hmong cuisine with cool Zen decor and superb views. Dishes include flash-cooked pork with lime, ash-baked trout in banana leaves, and traditional Hmong-style black pudding. Tasting sets of local rice a…
Top Choice Museum in Sapa

Sapa Museum

Excellent showcase of the history and ethnology of the Sapa area, including the colonial times of the French. Exhibitions demonstrate the differences between the various ethnic minority people of the area, so it's d…
Top Choice Market in Dong Van

Dong Van Market

Once a week, local villagers from the surrounding hills, including the Hmong, Tay, Nung and Hoa ethnic minorities, flood into Dong Van for the Sunday market. It's an entirely local affair full of noise, colour, and …
International in Sapa

Viet Emotion

This intimate bistro features a cosy fireplace for cold mountain nights. The menu rambles from pizza, pasta and steaks to Vietnamese with a couple of Sapa specialities, such as herbal medicine hotpot (with lemongras…
Cafe in Sapa

Baguette & Chocolat

Head to this converted villa for a fine breakfast, baguette or tasty slab of lemon tart. Many of the staff are students at the Hoa Sua School for disadvantaged youth and are being trained in the cooking and hospital…
Museum in Son La

Old French Prison & Museum

Son La’s Old French Prison & Museum was a French penal colony where anticolonial revolutionaries were incarcerated. It was destroyed by the ‘off-loading’ of unused ammunition by US war planes after bombing raids…
Vietnamese in Son La

Long Phuong Restaurant

Located at one of the busier junctions in town, this restaurant features local minority dishes. Try sour mang dang (bamboo shoots) soup with sticky rice dipped in sesame-seed salt.