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Trains To Sapa - Other Than Victoria

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Chicago, Illinois
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7 posts
30 reviews
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Trains To Sapa - Other Than Victoria


My boyfriend and I are traveling to Sapa for a weekend in October. I have read so much about how wonderful the Victoria train is, but I don't want to stay at the Victoria hotel, and unfortunately, that's the only way to book a ticket on the train.

The vast majority of posts about the trains to Sapa are focused on how Victoria is the best and everything else is unbearable. But I have to wonder if that's true. I know not everyone who goes to Sapa takes the Victoria train - so I'd love to hear about the experience and recommendation from those who have taken others trains.

Thanks in advance for your help.


Cologne, Germany
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1. Re: Trains To Sapa - Other Than Victoria

I would take the ordinary soft sleeper. It's only one night on the train and soft sleepers are ok on every route. Bring some food and drinks.

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2. Re: Trains To Sapa - Other Than Victoria

For more than a year it has been possible to travel on the Victoria train without staying at the Victoria Resort. To book by email, click on the 'contact us' link in the scroll-down box on the Victoria website:


By all accounts the next best option for a quality train is Sapaly, but note that none of the so-called 'trains' (including Victoria) are actually trains, rather they are private compartments hitched to state-run engines, in tandem with state-run sleeper compartments.

Adelaide S.A.
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933 posts
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3. Re: Trains To Sapa - Other Than Victoria

I just returned from Sapa yesterday, am in Hue at the moment. We went on the Sapaly it was fine. We booked all 4 berths for the two of us. The toilets were not cleaned during the trip and people were sleeping outside them on the floor. The cabin was clean and the bed reasonably comfortable. The door locks securely. The train rocked and rolled grunted groaned and banged a lot but we slept pretty well. Its breathtakingly beautiful in Sapa. If you want a recommendation for a guide (charges $20 per day regardless of how many people) please contact me she is lovely ,excellent English and even invited us back to her tiny flat in Sapa and cooked lunch for us.

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1 post
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4. Re: Trains To Sapa - Other Than Victoria

Hi, can you tell me, is it easy enough to book the trains once on Vietnam or is there a way to book onlone before we travel? Will be in Vietnam this October

rural West Aussie
Destination Expert
for Perth
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20,930 posts
69 reviews
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5. Re: Trains To Sapa - Other Than Victoria

If you're planning on going to the weekend markets you should get your hotel to book early for you, as closer to the date Friday night departures and Sunday night returns are pretty well booked out.

Saskatoon, Canada
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877 posts
2 reviews
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6. Re: Trains To Sapa - Other Than Victoria

We haven't yet been to Vietnam, but our tour operator (who seems to have good taste in hotel selections) has put us on the Fanxipan train for our Sapa portion of our holiday.

Toronto, Canada
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345 posts
90 reviews
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7. Re: Trains To Sapa - Other Than Victoria

I traveled with Fanxipan as a solo female and would use them again without hesitation. Was in a cabin with 3 males on the way up and with a male and female (unrelated) on the way down. People were either friendly or private. Able to sleep using earplugs. Was fine with either the upper or lower bunk.

Employees did sleep at the ends between carriages -- No big deal. When it gets really bumpy, the toilet tank can overflow. The level of cleanliness and feeling of safely exceeded my expectations (I had nervous/gross expectations). The toothpaste provided tasted like cough medicine so use your own if you prefer. Got a bottle of water and snacks complementary.

Adelaide S.A.
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933 posts
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8. Re: Trains To Sapa - Other Than Victoria

I think you should book for Sapa in advance. We used Vietnam impressive who emailed me a voucher that I changed at the station into a ticket.

Sapa, Vietnam
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222 posts
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9. Re: Trains To Sapa - Other Than Victoria


You can take a Sapaly train, it is also one of best train From Hanoi - Lao Cai, ( the first best one is Victoria, the second one is Sapaly). Take a VIP Cabin with 2 beds, it is also very good.

You should book the train ticket before 1or 2 weeks, it is better, because it is weekend and high season, so there will be a lot of tourists also go to Sapa in that time.

Sapa original trek

Hanoi, Vietnam
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212 posts
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10. Re: Trains To Sapa - Other Than Victoria

Victoria is the best but too expensive

I go to Sapa many time by Sapaly, Fanxpan, Orient, Livitran.

Recommeded Sapaly and Fanxipan.

Livitran and Orient is quite old.