Ta Van village – 6 reasons to stay here instead of Sapa

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With Sapa getting more and more famous, travelers that are looking for a more a local and authentic experience trying to find alternatives. The great thing is, if you are a person like that, you don’t have to look far. Just 12 km from the town of Sapa you will find Ta Van village, a small place that has not lost it’s charm and right between the rice fields.

About the Ta Van village

Ta Van is a town located in the Muong Hoa valley and home to a group of ethnic minorities. There are around a 1000 residents of mainly HMong , Dao and Giay. In the town you will find traditional stilt houses and simple wooden houses. Besides some of the families that run tourism related activities or a homestay, the life of the village is still normal and authentic. Most of them work on the fields, but they also produce instruments and engraved silver. 

Ta Van rice fields
The rice fields around Ta Va are stunning and a great place for trekking.
ethnic minority in Ta Van village near Sapa
Ethnic minority in Ta Van village near Sapa.
Ta Van village
A small part of the village, directly next to the rice fields.

How to get there

From Hanoi to Ta Van village

There is a direct and comfortable limousine bus that drives straight to Ta Van village from Hanoi. This means you don’t have to transfer in Sapa to a taxi. You can also take a night bus to Sapa or the train from Hanoi to Lao Cai. The benefit is that you don’t spend half a day travelling of your precious holiday time, but In both cases you need to take car or taxi for the last part to the village.

From Sapa to Ta Van village

Ta Van village is located 12 km from the center of Sapa. The easiest and most comfortable way is taking a taxi from the town. You can also rent a motorbike from 100,000 VND per day and drive there yourself. The small road to the village is stunning, with rice fields on both sides.

You can also leave your main luggage in town and go trekking to the village over the smaller paths through the rice fields. There are also different trekking tours avaiable that go through Ta Van or even with an overnight stay here.

6 reasons why you should stay in Ta Van village

1. Right between the rice fields

When you have an accommodation in Sapa, there is a good change you are not close to the rice fields. This is especially the case if you are staying in the center or around the lake. And the Sapa rice fields are one of the main reasons to visit the area. Because Ta Van village is very small and spread out through the countryside, it is never more then a minute walk to see the stunning fields. A lot of accommodation in the village even have views straight on the rice fields!

2. Away from the tourist & more authentic

Even though Ta Van village is the most popular village outside of Sapa to look for accommodation, it is by far not as busy and crowded as the main town can gets. If you are looking for more peace and quietness, then this is the better option. In addition, you get the feeling of staying in a way more authentic area, which is a lot less commercialized then Sapa.

3. Great options for accommodation

Ta Van village is a real minority village and by far not as big as Sapa. Most of the accommodations in Ta Van are homestays. Some of these homestays are owned by ethnic minorities and are very basic. It is a great place to learn more about the local cultures. Don’t expect any fancy hotels. Though there are homestays that are a lot more modern, including an AC, rooms with stunning rice field views, modern bedroom, private bathrooms and other comforts. So you get the best of both worlds; a more authentic experience with western comforts.

Check out some of the recommended accommodations in Ta Van village.

3. Great trekking base

From Ta Van village are a few paths that are great for when you want to do trekking in Sapa. You can go to nearby villages while walking through small roads along the rice paddy fields. It is recommended to always go by guide though. But trekking tours can be easily arranged onside, so you don’t need to go first to Sapa.

4. Not too far from Sapa

Sapa is just 12 km away from Ta Van village. Even though the town has lost a bit of it’s picturesque vibe, there are still some nice things to do in Sapa. For instance you can find the mountain train and cable car to Fansipan, the highest mountain in Vietnam. You can also finda stone church, Ham Rong mountain and a local market in Sapa. In addition, you also have to go through Sapa when you want to go to the Tram Ton Pass, the highest mountain pass of Vietnam, together with two waterfalls in Sapa.

5. Direct transfers from Hanoi

Ta Van is the only village outside of Sapa that has direct transfers from Hanoi. There are comfortable limousines buses that commute between Hanoi and Ta Van. This means you don’t first need to travel to Sapa, to arrange another transfer from Sapa to your accommodation in the village.

Accommodations in Ta Van village

The accommodations in Ta Van village are from very basic homestays to well equipped bungalows with stunning views. Below are some of the recommended places to stay:

  • Luckydaisy Buffalo House – Much more comfort and a slightly modern homestay, this is the best option. There are, among other things, heated mattresses.
  • Eco Hills Homestay – Basic and not very traditional, but the bungalow style rooms have a spectacular view of the rice fields and mountains
  • Zmonghomestay – This homestay is beautifully situated among the rice fields and hosted by a friendly family
  • Indigo Snail Boutique Hmong Homestay – Excellent homestay and helpful family.
  • Sapa Eco Bungalows & Spa – Bungalow style rooms with even a swimming pool overlooking the rice fields.
Sapa eco lodge bungalow
Sapa Eco Bungalows & Spa
Eco Hills Homestay
Eco Hills Homestay

Best time to visit

Every day of the year it is a charming place to stay. But the best time to visit Sapa and all of the villages around it is from May to September. In May they start with watering the rice fields, making them a giant mirror. In the month after that you can see the rice fields in different faces. Then in September and the beginning of October it is time for the harvest, when the fields are turned gold and yellow.

Other villages you can stay

Ta Van is not the only authentic village where you can stay in a local minority homestay. The village of Ta Phin is smaller and has less accommodations, but very authentic. Lao Chai, Y Linh Ho and Sin Chai are other villages where you can find some of the best homestays around Sapa.

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