"Sapa: another world" Fan Si Pan by SPW

Fan Si Pan Travel Guide: 3 reviews and 27 photos

Mountain Dreams

Colourful mountain tribes, incredible scenery, fresh cool air: these were the hopes we had when we embarked on our trip to Sapa.
But first there was the train. The soft sleeper was not exactly soft but we had had the sense to book the lower berths so were saved the indignity of climbing up and down, although returning we were unable to persuade the couple in occupation to surrender, but they grudgingly allowed my partner with 2 artificial hips to have one of the lower berths. Bottled water and a sweet bread roll were provided for the journey though sleeping tablets / alcohol might help with sleep as the train stopped and started going up. It might have done the same on the way back but we were too tired to notice.
Arriving at Lao Cai just before dawn broke over the mountains was amazing: mini buses everywhere and the beautiful light, then the procession up to Sapa. Valleys, tiered paddyfields, montain views and then the delays as vehicles were bogged, at one stage we had to get out and walk so the bus was able to get through the mud. Road works suggested this 'feature' might be deleted, though as men were breaking rocks with sledge hammers made the timing of this seem remote.
At last we reached the town of Sapa and the Cat Cat Hotel, up 120 steps to our room on a terrace overlooking the mountains. Every imaginable shade of green, little houses in the distance, the town climbing across the hillside to the left and a quaint brick chimney from the fireplace in the room below.
Breakfast was waiting for us at the little cafe a few steps up from our room and so we settled in for the next 3 nights.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Beautiful scenery, lovely people, simple existence
  • Cons:Only seen briefly because of cloud
  • In a nutshell:Another world
  • Last visit to Fan Si Pan: Oct 2002
  • Intro Written Nov 11, 2003
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Reviews (4)

Comments (10)

  • Feb 25, 2006 at 10:36 AM

    I was tempted to visit your pages again, Sue. A nice page on Fan Si Pan. Thank you!

  • Azhut's Profile Photo
    Oct 28, 2004 at 11:42 PM

    I'm looking for a cute Poldo's picture :-) Nice page you have here

  • o00o's Profile Photo
    Jul 20, 2004 at 11:42 PM

    stunning pictures, great tips and Thanks.

  • JetlagCity's Profile Photo
    May 18, 2004 at 12:26 PM

    I'm impressed with how much you interacted with the locals - what a memorable trip!

  • dvideira's Profile Photo
    May 17, 2004 at 8:51 PM

    Sue, Do you tell stories to Sienna?? If positive, she must be the luckiest girl in the world You are, definitely, a "Cronopio"... :o) Loved the travelogues.

  • Jim_Eliason's Profile Photo
    May 9, 2004 at 4:31 PM

    Great photos and story!

  • ukirsari's Profile Photo
    Apr 15, 2004 at 5:14 AM

    Beautiful piccies in the travelogues. Love them all!!!!

  • Christophe_Ons's Profile Photo
    Mar 28, 2004 at 4:32 PM

    Really love your "Rough Ride To Heaven" travelogues... great photography. Cheers !

  • genispp's Profile Photo
    Mar 14, 2004 at 3:28 PM

    Beautiful page. I like your photos

  • aussiedoug's Profile Photo
    Feb 19, 2004 at 10:32 PM

    What absolutely delightful travelogues Sue. I feel privileged & honoured to be the 1st to visit & comment on this page. MUST get here someday sooner rather than later.

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