The landscape you will encounter offers stunning scenery with productive land yielding coffee, rubber, tea, and various fruits
The Ho Chi Minh Highway winds through mountains and jungle trails and is as rich in landscape as it is in history
Observe Vietnamese river life as you ride through changing scenery
There will be plenty of time to drink in the historic landscapes that you encounter on this tour
The Ho Chi Minh Highway's smooth tarmac roads make it a pleasure to ride on, and the cows love it too!
Discover and learn more about Vietnam's rich cultural history as you glide along the pristine highway of the Ho Chi Minh trail
Feast your eyes on the abundant lands and green valleys that you will encounter along the Ho Chi Minh Highway

Road Biking the Ho Chi Minh Highway

11 days
Site savings
$2,570 USD

Wind through the fertile mountains and lush valleys, passing tribal villages and historical sites, discovering the cultural delights that this route follows. Our tour covers 922 km (572 mi) along the Ho Chi Minh Highway, with its atmospheric and rich history, spectacular landscapes, and warm, friendly people.

  • Category
    Road Cycling
  • Type
    Fully Guided
  • Duration
    11 days
  • Culture Level
  • Skill Level
    3 - Intermediate
  • Activity Level
    4 - Challenging
  • Elevation
    4 - Challenging
  • Terrain
  • Distance
    572.9 miles
  • Avg. Daily Distance
    63.4 miles
operated by
SpiceRoads Cycling
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Quick Stats

  • Duration
    11 days
  • Main Destination
  • Distance
    572.9 miles
  • Avg. Daily Distance
    63.4 miles
  • Elevation
    4 - Challenging
  • Terrain

Route Map (click to view larger image)

Plan your trip and discover the route you will be taking

Itinerary Details

  1. Day 1Meet in Hanoi
  2. Day 2Hanoi - Mai Chau - Phu Luong

    Leaving the hustle and bustle of Hanoi behind, you'll transfer to just outside the city to start riding. You will cycle along small roads, passing many Hmong, Dao, and Thai villages with spectacular views of lush vegetation and green rice paddies. Starting off easy, there will be some rolling climbs, but nothing too steep. Depending on how your legs feel, you may have a short transfer to the overnight stop in a Thai ethnic stilt house in Mai Chau Valley.

    • 43.5 miles
    • 439.6 ft
      4,252 ft
      3,812.3 ft
    • Mai Chau Sunset Hotel
    • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and Snacks
  3. Day 3Mai Chau - Ngoc Lac

    You will ride along the stunning and undulating valley of the Song Ma River as you head towards Hoi Xuan. This route was used to carry supplies and ammunition during the war and linked to the main part of the Ho Chi Minh Trail. The route then takes you away from the river through the range of mountains that stretch from Mai Chau to Cuc Phuong and to Hoa Lu. The road gets more beautiful as you ride closer to Ngoc Lac with looming limestone cliffs and lush vegetation. You will overnight in this small town.

    • 74.6 miles
    • 403.5 ft
      4,035.4 ft
      4,439 ft
    • Gold Time Hotel
    • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and Snacks
  4. Day 4Ngoc Lac - Thai Hoa

    You will start the day with a short transfer to avoid the main road to Lam Son. Today's ride is on the wide and newly-built Ho Chi Minh Highway, which you’ll have virtually to yourself. The tarmac makes for smooth and fast riding, with 360-degree picturesque scenery. Riding through the fertile area you'll see such crops as coffee, rubber, tea, and various fruits. You will arrive in Thai Hoa late in the afternoon.

    • 62.1 miles
    • 154.2 ft
      2,877.3 ft
      2,723.1 ft
    • Thai Hoa Guesthouse
    • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and Snacks
  5. Day 5Thai Hoa - Pho Chau

    Following breakfast, you are back on the Ho Chi Minh Highway. The road winds through lush jungle and beautiful villages nestled under the Truong Son mountain range. During your cycle, take the time to admire the stunning scenery and the serene karst formations. You will reach the remote town of Pho Chau in Nghe province at the end of the day, where you will stay at a local guesthouse.

    • 80.8 miles
    • 177.2 ft
      2,404.9 ft
      2,582 ft
    • Hai Thuong Eco Resort
    • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and Snacks
  6. Day 6Pho Chau - Phong Nha

    From Pho Chau, the Ho Chi Minh Highway is still a dream to ride on and you’ll appreciate the smooth tarmac as the mountains rise and the road winds up and down along the hillsides. The scenery is impressive, and the road is tranquil. You will ride to Phong Nha National Park, which contains one of the most magnificent caves in Vietnam. A true speleological wonder with 65 km (40 mi) of caves and underground rivers, formed approximately 250 million years ago, the caves were used as a hospital and ammunition depot during the war, and the entrance still shows evidence of attacks from fighter aircraft. Nearby, there are community projects underway with Flora and Fauna International, and it may be possible to visit village initiatives creating habitat corridors to help to maintain the forest’s ecosystem.

    • 93.2 miles
    • 19.7 ft
      5,426.5 ft
      5,446.2 ft
    • Saigon Phong Nha Hotel
    • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and Snacks
  7. Day 7Phong Nha - Dong Hoi

    This morning, you will board a boat to visit the first 600 m (1,970 ft) of Phong Nha Cave. When you reach the cave’s gaping entrance the engine is cut, and you’re transported to another world as you’re paddled through illuminated cavern after cavern. You then have the option to climb 330 steps up to Tien Son Cave, a dry cave in the mountainside used as a hospital and ammunition depot during the American War and consequently heavily bombed. Your afternoon cycle will be a gentle ride on a flat road to the seaside village of Dong Hoi. The village has beautiful white sand beaches of 12 km (7.5 mi) long.

    • 31.1 miles
    • 13.1 ft
      859.6 ft
      872.7 ft
    • Muong Thanh Hotel
    • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and Snacks
  8. Day 8Dong Hoi - Cam Lo - Khe Sanh

    Today, there will be many reminders of the war that forced the creation of the Ho Chi Minh Trail. The ride takes us across the DMZ (Demilitarized Zone, also known as the 17th Parallel) to Cam Lo. The DMZ was the dividing border between North and South Vietnam, and troops of both governments were barred from 5 km (3.1 mi) on either side of the border. The road is now quite flat, and you will make good time and stop to visit Truong Son Cemetery, a memorial to the tens of thousands of North Vietnamese soldiers who were killed on the DMZ and on the Ho Chi Minh Trail. It’s just 14 km (9 mi) further to the town of Cam Lo, and here the trail heads across the border into Laos. You then transfer to Khe Sanh, the site of a former US marine base and the infamous 1968 battle of Khe Sanh (longest battle in Vietnam War), near the Laos border to overnight.

    • 80.2 miles
    • 118.1 ft
      2,601.7 ft
      2,483.6 ft
    • Green Hotel
    • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and Snacks
  9. Day 9Khe Sanh - A Luoi

    You will start the morning with a visit to the Khe Sanh combat base, where relics of the war are exhibited, and see the airstrip used to transport troops and supplies, and where to this day nothing will grow. You will then ride through spectacular scenery, mainly downhill, from the Laos border to Dak Rong River. You will cross the bridge and ride along the river and what was considered the southern part of the Ho Chi Minh Trail. Again, enjoy a traffic-free road, the terrain undulates and it’s a nice contrast to the flat plains of the previous day's ride.

    • 64 miles
    • 597.1 ft
      5,013.1 ft
      4,416 ft
    • Thanh Quang Guesthouse
    • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and Snacks
  10. Day 10A Luoi - Hue

    Begin the beautiful ride downhill to Hue, Vietnam’s Imperial City, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You will ride through the middle of Vietnam for 60 km (37 mi) on backroads before hitting Highway 1, just a few kilometers south of Hue. You will stop on your way to visit the Imperial City, which once served as Vietnam's capital from 1802 to 1945, under the Nguyen Dynasty. The Citadel is protected by fortified ramparts and ringed by a moat. During the Vietnam War, the Imperial City was heavily damaged, but it is slowly being restored to its former glory. You will ride on backroads to the hotel and prepare for a farewell dinner.

    • 43.5 miles
    • 1,994.8 ft
      2,742.8 ft
      4,737.5 ft
    • Emm Hotel in Hue
    • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and Snacks
  11. Day 11Departure

    The tour ends, but you may choose to extend your time in Hue, visit Hoi An, or travel to Ho Chi Minh City.

    • Breakfast