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How to get to Hue from Sapa [Updated 2024]

January 03, 2024 - 1223 views

Vietnam is divided into 3 regions with different characteristics of climate, culture, and topography. If Hue is the best place to learn history in Central Vietnam, Sapa is always at the top choice of natural sites in the North. Let’s see how you can get from Sapa to Hue in this article.

If you are looking for the best transfer or how to get to Hue from Sapa, this article is right for you.

Distance from Sapa to Hue

Sapa is a highland town located in the upper North of Vietnam, close to China. And Hue is a small city located right in the middle of the Central area. From Sapa to Hue, the total trip is about 1000km long by road, and the flying distance is about 770km. Depending on the transportations you choose, the travelling time can take from 7.5 hours to nearly a day. 

In general, there’s no direct public transportation going from Sapa to Hue, you will have to stop by at least 1 place to change the vehicle, and normally, that place will be Hanoi. You can think of an aeroplane, train, bus, or personal vehicle like a motorbike to travel this route, and the information provided below will help you have a deeper understanding of all the options and choose the best one for yourself.

Sapa to Hue

4 best ways to travel from Sapa to Hue

1. By flight

Since there’s not yet an airport in Sapa, you can’t fly directly from Sapa to Hue. And not until we build one in Sapa, there is only 1 option for your consideration: travel to Hanoi and fly to Hue later. From Sapa to Hanoi, you can think of a bus or train as your transportation. 

The Sapa - Hanoi bus takes approximately 5.5 hours from Sapa town to Noi Bai Airport by the Noi Bai - Lao Cai new highway, ticket price starts from 12 USD depending on the bus type and bus class you choose. About a minimum 1-hour check-in time and 1 hour flying from Hanoi to Hue, the total travelling time can sometimes take only 7.5 hours. The flight ticket from Hanoi to Hue ranges from 40 USD and changes according to the time you book for it.

Going from Sapa to Hanoi by train will take longer than the bus, but a sleeper berth on the train is much more comfortable. The closest train station to Sapa is at Lao Cai city, about 35km away from Sapa town. It’s very convenient now when the train tickets from Lao Cai to Hanoi include an option of bus pick up from Sapa town to the train station. The total time to come to Noi Bai Airport in Hanoi is about 10 hours including bus transfer from Sapa to Lao Cai, check-in time, and train from Lao Cai to Hanoi Train Station, and this process costs you from 15-50 USD. From Hanoi Railway Station, you can take the Express Bus 86 that costs 1.5 USD to go to the airport, and then fly to Hue as usual.

Sapa to Hue flight

 

2. By train

In fact, it’s not possible to go directly to Hue from Sapa by train. You will have to take transit in Hanoi but it’s really convenient because, in Vietnam, there are trains called Vietnam National Trains running from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh city several times a day every day. And of course, the National Trains pass by Hue. You can take a look at the tables below to find all the necessary information about this train route. 

Departs

Arrives

Train No

Soft Berth(4)

21:40

5:30

King Express Train SP4

$35

20:55

4:32

Fansipan Express Train SP2

$34

20:55

4:32

Livitrans Express Train SP2

$33

20:55

4:32

Reunification Express Train SP2

$32

21:40

5:30

Reunification Express Train SP4

$32

20:55

4:32

Orient Express Train SP2

$31

21:40

5:30

Victoria Express Train SP4

N/A

21:40

5:30

Sapaly Express Train SP4 8hr 50min

$35

21:40

5:30

Hoa Phuong Train (Flamboyant Train) SP4

N/A

21:40

5:30

Chapa Express Train SP4

$37

20:55

4:32

The Pumpkin Express Train SP2

N/A

21:40

5:40

Laman Express Train SP4

N/A

Trains from Sapa to Hanoi

 

Departs

Arrives

Train No

Hard Seat

Soft Seat

Hard Berth(6)

Soft Berth(4)

22:20

10:52

Reunification Express Train SE1 13hr 32min

N/A

$36

$50

$52

19:25

8:42

Reunification Express Train SE3 13hr 17min

N/A

$38

$52

$55

15:20

5:31

Reunification Express Train SE5 -10hr -49min

$33

$36

$50

$52

6:00

19:54

Reunification Express Train SE7 14hr 54min

$33

$36

$50

$52

19:30

8:30

Livitrans Express Train SE3 13hr 0min

N/A

N/A

N/A

$67

20:10

9:30

Reunification Express Train SE19 13hr 20min

N/A

$36

$50

$52

22:20

10:52

Viollete Express Train SE1 13hr 32min

N/A

N/A

N/A

$58

19:30

8:30

Viollete Express Train SE3 13hr 0min

N/A

N/A

N/A

$63

20:10

9:20

Lotus Express Train SE19

N/A

N/A

N/A

$58

20:00

9:34

Laman Express Train SE19 14hr 34min

N/A

N/A

N/A

$76

Trains from Hanoi to Hue

Sapa to Hue train

 

3. By bus

Same as the train, there’s no direct bus from Sapa to Hue, you still need to stop in Hanoi to change to another bus. The travelling time from Sapa to Hanoi is approximately 6 hours, and from Hanoi to Hue, it takes 13-15 hours. Depending on different routes,  the travelling time can be different.

There are too many bus companies that provide services for this route and you can catch one any time during the day, so we basically can’t mention every one of them.  You can see the overall price of different Sapa to Hanoi bus types and prices in the table below, the price may change depending on different bus quality, seat positions, and service providers.

Bus Types

Tradition sleeper

Cabin Sleeper

Couple Cabin Sleeper

Limousine

Price

12 USD

22 USD

43 USD

20 USD

 

The Hanoi to Hue bus route is quite long and the buses are not as many as the Sapa-Hanoi route, so you can see all information about the Hanoi - Hue bus schedule in the table below.

Bus Schedule

Departure in Hanoi

Arrival in Hue

Ticket Price

Hung Thanh

18:30

7:30

From 13 USD

The Sinh

18:00

7:00

From 14 USD

Queen Cafe

18:00

7:30

From 13 USD

Hoang Long

7:00

19:30

From 18 USD

Hoang Long

13:00

1:30

From 18 USD

Hoang Long

20:00

8:30

From 18 USD

Hoang Long

21:30

10:00

From 18 USD

Grouptour

18:30

9:00

From 15 USD

Full Moon Party

17:30

5:50

From 15 USD

Hey Travel

18:30

6:50

From 16 USD

 

Sapa to Hue bus

 

4. Sapa to Hue motorbike

The distance of 1000km from Sapa to Hue is not close at all, and the northern mountainous area roads are quite dangerous too, so traveling from Sapa to Hue by motorbike is a real challenge. You will have to keep your physical health always in perfect condition, as well as practice making acquaintance with the dangerous bends, slopes, and limited views created by the thick fog of the highland in North Vietnam. 

It’s always high risk - high return. The view on this long route is thrilling and miraculous. It may take days to travel from Sapa to Hue with a motorbike, but by this way, you can have thousands of chances to soak into nature or immerse yourself in the local life. The motorbike rental price in Vietnam is about 5-10 USD per day, or if you pay for the whole month, it’s ranging around 40-60 USD. Many tourists choose to buy an old motorbike from the previous tourists with a low price, use it for the whole trip, and at the end of the trip, they can sell the bike to another tourist or the hotel/bike rental company.

Local tips to get from Sapa to Hue

  • The train is an excellent option to get from Sapa to Hue if you have plenty of time.
  • Mind your luggage at train or bus stations.
  • This is a really long journey, so don’t forget to prepare food, snacks, and water.
  • An interesting book is really helpful to kill time while travelling.
  • Always keep your important documents with you and make some copies of them for backups.
  • Travelling by motorbike, equip yourself with a set of protective gear, that helps a lot in case you have some small crash.

Sapa and Hue are quite far away from each other, so normally, not many people plan to just visit these 2 places only. Most tourists prefer choosing a Vietnam 15 days tour, to visit Sapa, Hue, and the surrounding destinations like Halong Bay, Hanoi, Da Nang, Hoi An, and Ho Chi Minh city, etc.

A Thailand - Vietnam - Cambodia 3-4 weeks tour is another top favorite tour many visitors choose when visiting Southeast Asia. Not only offering a chance to visit both Hue and Sapa, but the tour is also an amazing time to discover the nature, history, culture, delicious cuisine, and spiritual beliefs of each country. 

Sapa and Hue are amazing! No matter what kind of transportation you get, the places will certainly surprise you with their culture, history, and stunning scenery. For all tour information, just contact BestPrice Travel.

Hue Pham

Image source: Internet

Questions & Answers (2)

Ask a Question
09/10/2023

Is there a morning train to Hanoi ? Than night train to from Hanoi to Hue?

Reply
1
10/10/2023
@Alnoor Hashmani:

Hi! Usually, train from Sapa to Hanoi starts at late night and arrives in Hanoi in early morning. Also, most of the trains from Hanoi to Hue departs at night. You can check for schedule and ticket at dsvn.vn

1 Reply
09/10/2023

Is there a direct train from Sapa to Hue? If not what time can I take a train to HANOI and from Hanoi to Hue. How many hours I am looking in total. I don't mind taking express train or you can suggest me otherwise? I am spending 3 nights in Sapa . Is 3 nights too much in Sapa . On 4 day I want to go to Hue. I will appreciate for your help. Thanking you in advance .

Reply
1
10/10/2023
@Alnoor Hashmani:

Hi! There's no direct train from Sapa to Hue. There are many Hanoi - Hue trains depart everyday; however, we suggest you should book the SE3 for the shortest transfer time (around 9 hours). You can book the train ticket online at dsvn.vn (official booking website of Vietnam Railways).

About the time spended in Sapa, it depends on your travel purpose, but in average, most of our guests spend 2-3 nights in Sapa.

1 Reply