48 hours in Hoa Binh


Hoa Binh has many landscapes, you can go many times on different routes and experience different things.

Hoa Binh borders Hanoi, is the gateway to famous tourist destinations in the northern mountains. In recent years, Hoa Binh has been a popular weekend getaway for tourists from the capital, famous places such as Mai Chau, Kim Boi, Thung Nai, and Hoa Binh Hydropower Plant.

Hoa Binh has diverse landscapes from rivers, lakes, mineral springs, national parks and ethnic cultures. Hoa Binh also has many resorts, suitable for the trends of rest, health care, and sports tourism. The 48-hour itinerary was advised by Mr. Hong Thang, who works at a travel company, and the experience of a VnExpress reporter in Kim Boi district and surrounding areas.

Day 1

Morning and noon

Have breakfast in Hanoi, travel along Thang Long Avenue (Lang – Hoa Lac highway), continue through Xuan Mai and reach Cuoi Ha commune in Kim Boi district, trekking Eagle Mountain.

View of Kim Boi from Eagle Peak.  Photo: Linh Huong
View of Kim Boi from Eagle Peak. Photo: Linh Huong

Eagle Mountain is about 75 km from Hanoi, a place that is not too popular on the tourist map of Vietnam but is experienced by many people. The name is Eagle Mountain because people living here often see eagles when standing on the top.

“The trekking route is about 8 km, not difficult to climb because of the gentle slope, the highest peak is about 800 m above sea level, on the way there are many beautiful scenes to climb and admire,” Mr. Thang said.

Reaching the top around noon, visitors can see Kim Boi land with alternating mountain ranges, stacked in layers, creating a beautiful scene. After taking photos to check in and rest, visitors will go down and have a meal at an empty land about 15 minutes from the top. Depending on needs, visitors can bring their own food and drinks, book local services at the foot of the mountain or take package tours.

Lunch with grilled pork and chicken.  Photo: Linh Huong
Lunch with grilled pork and chicken. Photo: Linh Huong


Coming down the mountain, visitors move to the resort about 5 km from the foot of Eagle Mountain to take a hot mineral bath and stay overnight. In addition, within a radius of 10 km from the mountain, there are also a number of good service resorts with local experience activities.

For dinner, try some typical dishes of the Hoa Binh region such as bamboo-tube rice, grilled chicken, pork belly, grilled fish, upland sticky rice, and wild vegetables at restaurants around or inside the resort. Some reference addresses: Hoa Qua Son, Hung Van, Vietnamese Cuisine, Son Hanh Quan.

Day 2

Morning and noon

Relax at the resort after an active day and have a late breakfast. This area has fresh air, visitors can “live slowly” with activities such as sauna massage, reading books, listening to music, and walking.

At about 10:00, leave the resort, visit Cuu Thac Tu Son, about 30 km from the resort along DT128 road and about 20 km from Hoa Binh city center.

A waterfall at Cuu Thac Tu Son.  Photo: S-Travel
A waterfall at Cuu Thac Tu Son. Photo: S-Travel

This place is called the “first scenic spot” of Muong. Surrounded by the natural beauty of the mountains and forests, Cuu Thac Tu Son is a chain of 9 waterfalls and a diverse ecosystem, clear blue water, and cool climate.

“If you come here in the summer, you can swim comfortably,” Mr. Thang said.

On the way from Hoa Binh to Hanoi, one of the dishes not to be missed is crab hotpot. The restaurant is located around Km 1 of Ho Chi Minh Street, near the intersection of Xuan Mai and Thang Long Avenue.

In addition, some restaurants have this dish: Khong Ten, Phu Binh, Thanh Vu, Nguyen Gia, La Vong, of which Khong Ten is the most popular. “This is a restaurant that is always crowded but has fast service and quality food.”

Dishes visitors can choose from include hotpot, grilled chicken, steamed chicken, fried chicken with fish sauce, and sticky rice such as cassava sticky rice, white sticky rice with onion fat.

A hotpot meal in Hoa Lac.  Photo: Crab hotpot
A hotpot meal in Hoa Lac. Photo: Crab hotpot

($1~24,000 VND)
Photo: Internet (Vinlove.net)