Day 3 Lao Cai – Sa Pa (1500 masl)
We arrived early morning (5am) in Lao Cai. We had to wait coz our bikes were in the 2nd train, which arrived an hour later. After a coffee we started the biking. The first 8km is all flat and easy cycling. After that its 27 km serious uphill to Sa Pa from 150 masl up to 1500 masl. The first 20km is quite a boring scenery but after that the 1st rice terraces show up and the scenery gets nicer. I was quite shoked from Sa Pa. I was there 15 years ago and remember a nice mountain village/town with atmosphere.
Now its very big horrible city with construction everywhere and lots of Hmong women and kids “selling” or begging to sell handicrafts. Sad to see the difference compared to 15 years ago. The “old town” or “restaurant street” has still a nice atmosphere.
Thats where we ended up for having some food.
Total km: 35
Total hm up: 1662 m
Total hm down: 226m
Highest point: 1500masl Sa Pa
Sa Pa coordinates 22.3364° N, 103.8438° E