There are many ways to travel between Sapa and Hanoi. Previously, tourists were often choosing to return from Sapa by train but now bus travel is becoming much more popular than before as it is one of the most convenient ways to travel between Hanoi and Sapa. In this article, we will guide you on how to travel from Sapa to Hanoi by Sapa Dragon Express bus.
Booking Bus Ticket
We booked Sapa Dragon Express bus ticket for a trip from Sapa to Hanoi online here: Shuttle Bus Transfers between Hanoi and Sapa. It was more convenient and cheaper than booking at the tour company.
Bus Ticket Price
Bus ticket price for a trip from Sapa to Hanoi starts at 386,000 VND per person but we booked tickets online and it was cheaper than that.
Things included in the ticket price:
- Travel ticket from Sapa to Hanoi (One way)
- 1 bottle of mineral water
- Free drop off service at hotels in Hanoi Old Quarter
Sapa Dragon Express had only one scheduled time for a trip back from Sapa to Hanoi:
- Departure time - 15:00
- Arrival time - around 21:30
For more bus departure options on this route check here: Bus from Sapa to Hanoi.
Traveling by bus from Sapa to Hanoi
Our journey from Sapa to Hanoi by Sapa Dragon Express bus was as follows.
14:30 Going to the meeting point
We booked a bus that departed from Sapa to Hanoi in the afternoon. According to the bus schedule, the bus had to leave at 15:00. For the departure from Sapa, the company didn’t provide pick up service so all passengers had to go to the meeting point by themselves.
Sapa Dragon Express buses depart from the territory of Thanh Binh Hotel (35 Thac Bac, Sapa), which is located not far from the center of Sapa town. You can easily take a taxi or motorcycle to get there. If you are staying in the hotel near Sapa town center, it is possible to walk to the meeting point.
We arrived at the meeting point 30 minutes before the scheduled departure time. The boarding area doesn’t have seats for waiting but there is a coffee shop in the hotel.
15:00 Taking the bus to Hanoi
The bus company’s staff arrived at the meeting point and let the passengers get on the bus exactly at 15:00. The bus from Sapa to Hanoi that we took was a sleeper bus so before getting on the bus, the shoes must be taken off. There were plastic bags provided for keeping shoes. Due to the limited space inside the bus, the staff didn't bring us water to the seats but asked us to get it by ourselves.
The space in the bus was narrower than we expected. As it was a sleeping bus, the journey on it could be comfortable only for smaller people. For us this bus was less than convenient. At least free Wi-Fi was available on the bus.
The road on the way from Sapa to Hanoi was initially downhill so the driver was driving faster than on the way to Sapa. Along the way, we could enjoy the beauty of the mountains and the rice fields.
17:00 Rest Stop (1st time)
After traveling from Sapa for about 2 hours the bus made a stop for passengers to take a rest and grab something for eating. The bus stopped for 15-20 minutes. Old slippers were provided for getting out from the bus.
There are few restaurants to choose a quick bite. Anyone willing to buy souvenirs can get them here as well.
18:00 Rest Stop (2nd time)
The bus stopped for the second time just after 1 hour. There were more shops and restaurants than at the first stop. Since it was time to have dinner, the break was much longer and lasted for more than 40 minutes. If you will be hungry or will want to go to the toilet, you need take care of your needs here because there will be no other stop until the final destination which will be reached after more than 2 hours.
21.30 Arriving at Hanoi
The bus dropped off passengers at the office of the bus company in Hanoi. Everyone had to take their bags and wait for another bus which had to take people to their hotels in Hanoi Old Quarter. However, instructions from company’s staff were lacking so some of the passengers were confused about what’s going to happen next.
The journey by bus from Sapa to Hanoi took around 7 hours. However, it could be shorter if the bus didn’t make too long stops.
Overall, traveling by bus from Sapa to Hanoi was convenient enough and reasonably priced. Sapa Dragon Express bus was quite new but the space inside the bus was too narrow and it was uncomfortable sometimes. However, it is normal for sleeping buses in Vietnam. Actually, we prefer to take seating buses but we didn't have much choice as most of bus companies on Sapa-Hanoi route offer only sleeping buses.
Trip to Sapa
We came to Sapa by the bus of the same company as well, but it was a bit different experience. More details about our trip from Hanoi to Sapa can be found here: From Hanoi to Sapa by Sapa Dragon Express Bus [Review].
Our complete guide covering everything you need to know about travelling from Hanoi to Sapa by bus can be found here: How to Travel from Hanoi to Sapa by Bus.