We caught an overnight train from
Hanoi to Sai Pai. I had memories from my Thailand to Laos train from back in the day on a boys trip, and thought if it was anything like that, then a lot of complaints would be coming Dads way from Ruby. However it was the opposite, with cabins of four resulting in Dad and myself with two randoms, who I thought were Malaysians as I could understand their dialogue to a degree due to my Indonesian.
We arrived in Lai Moi around 7 in the morning, where a taxi was waiting for us to take us another hour to Sa Pa up in the mountains. We were quickly herded into our hotel, away from the prying hands of the local women attempting to make a quick buck.
The hotel was pretty fancy, with views to match as the picture will attest to. However we quickly smashed out breakfast out and kicked onto a 15km walking tour throughout the valley and villages of Sa Pa.
We quickly picked up an entourage of villager women attempting to sell their wares, while the family minus myself sported some cheap wet weather gear.
We strolled through fields of rice paddies as far as you could see, witnessing their basic yet full-filling life that they led. The girls finally succumbed to the haggling women and bought some woven crap before we stopped for lunch at one of their houses which was interesting to say the least.
Came back to nap, and finished the night off again with a big meal in one of the local restaurants.