While not having anywhere near the range of Sapa, some good value rooms are available, although do book ahead if you want to stay at Congfu or Sao Mai.
Ngan Nga is dominated by acres of restaurant space which at lunchtime fills with hordes of tourists. Don't be put off though, if you bother to fight your way through the crowds and up the stairs the rooms that await are worth it. Large, refurbished rooms contain smart wood-effect furnishings, including a desk, well-dressed beds, huge TVs – albeit with limited reception -- and smart wet rooms... Read our full review of Ngan Nga Hotel.
One of the newer hotels in town, Congfu is getting a bit worn but rooms are clean and light and there are market views from six of their 21 rooms. They all have double or twin beds, air-con, tubs in the bath and satellite TV and many rooms feature some kind of balcony. The large restaurant downstairs serves the included breakfast then gets taken over at lunchtime by tour groups. We were quoted... Read our full review of Congfu Hotel.
For an out of town experience, try Highlands Homestay. It's a homestay in the manufactured sense of the word -- a purpose-built stilt house next to the real house – and is still being finalised, but it's open for business and shows promise. Downstairs will be a restaurant, where Hoa Sua trained owner Ly Dung will cook up traditional food, and upstairs is open plan sleeping – although there... Read our full review of Highlands Homestay.
Hoang Vu Hotel is one of a few hotels in the same stretch that offer basic fan rooms for around the US$10 mark – and very little English. Here, the cheaper rooms are a bit cramped and lack a window but are big enough for a night or two, and the larger rooms are decently sized with more natural light.. All contain mossie nets, TVs — which we doubt show anything but local stations — and tatty... Read our full review of Hoang Vu Hotel.
The large two-star Sao Mai is a popular tour-group choice. With one building done in a nod to stilt house style, it's really just a typical, L-shaped box around a courtyard, done up in a more-attractive-than-usual way. This continues on into the interiors, with lots of wood panelling, good furnishings, and your typical Vietnamese shower/bathrooms. We weren't expecting much when they took us to... Read our full review of Sao Mai Hotel.
This is the cheapest option in Bac Ha and boy does it look it. The reception is full of clutter, dusty and dirty, and the rooms really aren't much better at all, with cobwebs on the walls, broken furniture, small and grimy bathrooms and beds which feel like the springs (what few there were) gave up hope 20 years ago. But if you can handle a back room with no view, it doesn't get cheaper than this... Read our full review of Tan Nguyet Guest House.