BUFFALO RUN: How to Travel from Hanoi to Hoi An, Vietnam
Travel Hanoi to Hoi An in an epic way by seeing tons of lovely attractions, discovering hidden gems and even riding a motorbike!
Are you tired of being that tourist and regular traveller jumping on buses, trains or airplane? Would you like to level up your adventure in more exciting way? Do you fancy to visit places that you thought doesn’t exist? Or maybe push yourself into your limits? Might as well do it in Vietnam with the ultimate trip with Vietnam Backpackers Hostels’ Buffalo Run!
Trang An : Ha Long Bay by Land
Buffalo Run is organized by Vietnam Backpacker Hostels, where you will be experiencing an amazing, challenging and mind blowing 7 days of your life. Travelling from Hanoi to Hoi An of Vietnam with various types of transportation, strolling through different hidden gems of Vietnam, tasting Vietnamese foods in a very local way.
A trip that has been designed by travellers for travellers where they aim to showcase the beauty of Vietnam while taking the off beaten track. You will be travelling with other cool and adventurous souls too.
Screen shot Credits: www.vietnambackpackerhostels.com
Related Article: Looking for affordable accommodation? Check out the Ultimate list of Best Hostels in Hanoi.
BUFFALO RUN – 7 DAYS – HANOI TO HOI AN
Join the Buffalo Run for a hassle-free trip because it includes all accommodations, transportation, drinking water and local tour guide. Refer to the itinerary to know which meals are included – most are. If you will be booking as an early bird, you’ll get a discount.
Note: Drinks, personal expenses and insurance are not included. At the time of crossing Hue to Hoi An, you will be driving a motorbike with an experienced driver. If you want to drive yourself, this will be at an extra cost.
DO YOU RECOMMEND USING THE SERVICES OF A TOUR/VISA AGENCY?
Yes, I highly recommend availing the services of iVisa, if you feel more comfortable having your application submitted by a professional organisation. They have been providing expedited processing and guidance services for any e-visa applications since 2013 so they have a lot of experience. Here are some advantages of getting your visa from them:
- They have 24/7 support in many languages.
- Application forms are all available on one page;
- You can get your Tourist eVisa, Medical eVisa, and Business eVisa within 24 hours if you apply for the Rush Service; and
- They provide a full refund under their approval guarantee in case your visa gets rejected!
Go to the iVisa website to discover how they can help you with your visa application.
The whole trip has literally made me rode different types of transportation; from buses, sleeper bus, bicycle, boat, motorbike and even a traditional basket boat. Vietnam Backpacker Hostel has arranged the transportation perfectly from the day we depart from the Hanoi to the last day of the trip in Hoi An. It was fantastic and hassle free.
Ready to drive from Hue to Hoi An
Transportation Tip: If you’re looking for the cheapest way to book the Trains, Buses, Ferries, Transfers on this route, we use 12Go.Asia to compare the prices!
We had great local foods throughout the trip. Most of the time, it was prepared and served in a very local way. Every meal time, we were able to eat different kinds of dishes and ate in Vietnamese way. Vegetarian options are also available. Great food after a long day of trip was one of the best parts.
All accommodations during the whole trip were indeed awesome! We spent our first night in a local place hostel in the middle of the mountain. We slept in a dorm bed, hostel room in a small town and even in a sleeper bus. If you haven’t tried a sleeper bus, this will definitely surprise you, but indeed quite an experience. They arranged the accommodation smoothly and worry free.
Our accommodation in Cuc Phuong National Park
We had a Vietnamese tour guide named Chung. He’s great, fun and down for crazy ideas. A very reliable guy and approachable. Chung surely knows what he’s doing, from the history of places we visited, providing useful information, giving instructions, explaining the next adventure we will go through, baby sitting grownups (just kidding!) and the ability to start a motor bike even it seems broken. Our trip was extra special because of him.
Coolest tour guide: Chung
WHAT TO BRING
Buffalo Run is a week-long trip. It’s advisable to bring all your luggage as you will travel at least 900 kilometres; from Hanoi to Hoi An. Remember to keep an eye to your belongings especially when checking out. Buffalo Run trip will be an intense adventure; you wouldn’t want to leave something behind every time you have to move.
7- DAY MOTORBIKE TRIP ITINERARY
DAY 1 – CUC PHUONG NATIONAL PARK
This national park is packed with amazing nature and animals. We have visited a center where they kept and looked after endangered animals of different races of monkeys and turtles. The center will send out the animals to the jungle when they are fully prepared for the wild life. Walking through the national park will give you chance to try to spot a monkey that lives freely.
Cycled up to the mountain
Riding a motor bike, mountain bike or bus is available to reach the next destination (8kms), which is an enormous cave. Then a 12 kilometres ride to the mountain where the accommodation is located. In the evening after a luscious dinner, an after dark jungle hike will be happening.
DAY 2 – TRANG AN
After a fulfilling breakfast, be ready to do a mild trek to see the 1000-year old tree. Then hop in the bus for a drive down to Trang An. A fantastic lunch will be serve before getting into a boat to see the most beautiful caves. Trang An is also called as Ha Long Bay by Land. You will enjoy an hour boat trip and a chance to see the 10th century old pagodas and temples. Remember to make it clear to the rower that you want to get off and see the pagoda.
Trang An: Ha Long Bay by Land
A stop by for a shower and dinner at centre of Ninh Binh town before taking the overnight sleeper bus.
DAY 3 – PARADISE CAVE
One of the biggest and most beautiful caves I have ever been. When you enter the cave, you’ll forget where you are as this cave looks like a set up in Lord of the Rings. This cave is more than 30 kilometres long but only 1 kilometre is available to the tourists.
After the visit in Paradise cave, you will be taken to the jungle for lunch, swim and extreme activity in Moc spring in the middle of the jungle. Great way to refresh from a sunny day.
DAY 4 – VINH MOC TUNNEL
Leaving the hostel in the morning with all your bags for the drive down to Hue, on the way you will be visiting a museum and the popular Vinh Moc Tunnel. The place where the Vietnamese dug a tunnel that serves as their home during the war.
Vinh Moc Tunnel
If you’re lucky, you will be able to witness what they do with the bomb that hasn’t been exploded. The NPA (Norwegian Peoples Aid) will show how they deal with this massive bomb issue.
DAY 5 – THIEN MU PAGODA and BEACH DAY
Hop in to your motor bikes, you will be driving for 20 kilometres to visit the tallest Pagoda in Vietnam that was built in 1602, rich for its history and Buddhism culture. After that, you will head to a secluded and relaxing beach where you will have lunch, cold beers, play volley ball, swim or just lie down.
Thien Mu Pagoda
DAY 6 – HAI VAN PASS
A thrilling motorbike ride from Hue to Hoi An through the beautiful Hai Van Pass. You will be departing your hostel in the morning and will start the top gear style ride. A late lunch break in the breathtaking Elephant Spring. Take a small hike and hop through the big rocks to reach this beautiful place and eat Vietnamese food. You can also take a dip in the water or a quick nap before you set off to your second leg of the ride.
Hai Van Pass
A quick stop on the top of the mountain, take care as the clouds will be present and seeing the road could be challenging. Descending from the mountain, you will see the beautiful view of Da Nang City.
DAY 7 – HOI AN: BASKET BOAT TRIP
A 20 minute bike ride to the small village where you will have the chance to ride a traditional basket boat, let the boat rower make some small gift for you from a leaf while crab fishing. A traditional rice wine will be served as well. Remember to try some fresh coconut.
Traditional Basket Boat
Related Article: Some of the activities will be a bit adventurous; you might as well want to get a Travel Insurance here.
THINGS TO REMEMBER
The Buffalo Run trip requires a higher than normal risk. If you enjoy riding a bike up to the mountain, swimming into the jungle with a heavy current of waves, exploring caves, long treks and riding a motor bike for long hours then this trip is perfect for you. If you’re in doubt of your level of fitness, feel free to ask Vietnam Backpacker Hostel for more detailed information regarding this. As some travellers could be surprised (like me) how much physical activities are required in this trip.
The Buffalo Run trip was an amazing one. It had challenged me, personally, physically and mentally. The trip requires me to test how fit I was to do extreme activities, how adventurous my soul is, how open my mind is, how much I can grow my social skills and importantly the trips showed me places I never thought exists. I don’t think I would have the chance to visit those massive numbers of caves, or the beautiful spring in the middle of the jungle, or meet amazing local people of Vietnam in a very memorable way.
I highly recommend to prepare yourself for high risk during the trip, making sure you have insurance. The trip could be pricey, but it’s all worth it in terms of convenience to your part and the amount of magnificent places you will be and see.
Hoi An is a nice place where you can see the culture of the people in Vietnam, it is also popular with its tailoring products. A lot of tourists visit this place to have their suits, dresses, bags, shoes and even boots to be customized. It should only take you less than 24 hours to have your customized clothes or shoes with you.
This trip exhausts me physically. We did a lot of thrilling activities every day, I suggest, if you have time, to take a break in a secluded and less touristic beach like The Jungle Beach in Ninh Hoa, North of Nha Trang or continue your adventure in Saigon/Ho Chi Minh City of Vietnam.
The Jungle Beach
NOTE: THIS AMAZING TRIP WAS CREATED IN COLLABORATION WITH VIETNAM BACKPACKER HOSTELS, ALTHOUGH ALL THOUGHTS, IDEAS AND OPINION ARE ENTIRELY ON MY OWN.
About the Writer:
Hello! I am Mary Charie Ramos Ylagan I’m a bookworm, ice cream hyped (only chocolate flavour or something with chocolate on it, ah, I don’t even know why I’m babbling about this), writer and a traveller. I am a private person, like very. One of my friends even said that maybe I was a hooker before. But if you are highly curious about my personality (which I profoundly doubt), we should travel together. I’m sarcastic in an annoying way but my very close friends love it, though! Pulling some jokes is like a hobby to me, although this gives me hard time to open up my feelings. That’s why I looove my blog, it lets me express myself in a different angle.
Join me on my adventures here amaryroad.com.