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Motorbiking in Asia

Motorbiking in Asia forum

Sample Vietnam motorbike itinerary

Posted by Deanidge on 6/8/2009 at 16:28

HI guys Im new to the forum and after scanning the pages thought this would be the best place to ask for some advice on our trip.

Me an 2 mates are flying into HCMC on the 7th of september and hope to rent 3 motorbikes and ride all the way up to hanoi (ha long bay) with various stops on the way then either ride back or stick our bikes on a train with ourselves before catching a flight back on the 28th of sep

how realistic is this trip we are all experianced riders

all advise welcome :D

#1 Deanidge has been a member since 6/8/2009. Posts: 6

Posted by somtam2000 on 6/8/2009 at 18:36 admin

You're better off to buy the bikes.

See this story for more info: https://www.travelfish.org/getting_there/vietnam

Have fun -- I'm jealous already!

#2 somtam2000 has been a member since 21/1/2004. Location: Indonesia. Posts: 8,099

Posted by BruceMoon on 6/8/2009 at 19:21


21 days to ride from SaiGon to HaNoi & return - are you kidding????

What else but ride did you have in mind???

Any partying, if so, where, how long???

When will you sleep???

What 'uppers' will you pop???


Some people...


#3 BruceMoon has been a member since 27/12/2008. Location: Australia. Posts: 1,941

Posted by tingers on 7/8/2009 at 13:40

This is totally do-able.

I did Hanoi to Saigon with some mates earlier this year. The trip took 17 days.

We rented the bikes (Honda Waves) for 1 month which cost us 40USD each.

We'd average around 150km's per day. Sometimes more, sometimes less.

Had a few bike troubles along the way, mostly just punctures and small things. There's mechanics everywhere so don't worry about that. If you've broken down somewhere remote it won't be long before the locals are there to help.

Absolutely essential that you get yourself a copy of 'Giao thông đường bộ Việt Nam'. A little out of date but still the best map you can buy for Vietnam. It's got a blue cover with a white bridge on it. Hardcover, A4 in size - avaialble in nearly every bookstore in Hanoi and Saigon.

You'll want to spend as much time away from Highway 1 as possible. It's so busy and dusty and noisy. Cruising through the countryside is much more enjoyable. The above mentioned map will be your best friend for doing this. There are some beautiful rides away from Highway 1 between Hanoi and Hue.

Returning the bikes was surprisingly easy. Locals do this all the time. Go to the train station, find the freighting section. It'll take 3-4 days for the bike to arrive at the other end and costs about 400,000 VND. But you won't be on the same train as your bike.

Have fun! I'd love to do this again.

#4 tingers has been a member since 9/4/2009. Posts: 36

Posted by somtam2000 on 7/8/2009 at 13:44 admin

Thanks for the report Tingers -- if you've got time, would be great if you could post some info on the route you took -- we've had quite a few motorbiking Vietnam questions and am thinking of making a separate section on the forum for it.


#5 somtam2000 has been a member since 21/1/2004. Location: Indonesia. Posts: 8,099

Posted by tingers on 7/8/2009 at 14:22

I imagine there will be a lot of people who want to follow in the footsteps of Clarkson and co.

#6 tingers has been a member since 9/4/2009. Posts: 36

Posted by BruceMoon on 7/8/2009 at 14:32


(and Tingers)

The point I was making is not whether you CAN do the trip like that. But WHY would you want to.

Here you are, a few guys wanting to ride from Saigon to HaNoi in between 21 days. That's some 1500km (and with twists & turns = some 1800km). To me, that's about 100km a day. In Australia, I could easily ride more than 1000km. Sure, I would be on a 4 lane bitumen table top, but I wouldn't be seeing anything, doing anything, etc.

As Tingers suggested, it would be folly to 'do' Hwy 1A, rather better to venture along Hwy's 14 & 15. (pushing the distance 'out' some more).

If a visitor goes to Dalat. Do they take transport to the place, and drive right through and move on to Buon Mat Thout? Of course not. The visitor would go spend some time in/around Dalat.

Similarly, would you go ride through Hoi An - or anywhere else - and not check out the attractions that people go there for?

If it were just a ride, why leave home?

So, as I said above, the trip averages about 100km per day (over 18 days). Every day you stop to stay in/around a town pushes the average distance to be covered up higher. So, say you spent 9 days 'hanging'. That means you have to average 200km / day. On and on.

I come back to my post at #3, above...

What else but ride did you have in mind???

Any partying, if so, where, how long???

When will you sleep???

What 'uppers' will you pop???


If it were just a ride, why leave home?


#7 BruceMoon has been a member since 27/12/2008. Location: Australia. Posts: 1,941

Posted by tingers on 7/8/2009 at 14:57

somtam2000 - I would be happy to write a more detailed report on our trip (i've also done this on a bicycle - a lot harder) but it seems like a total waste of time when other forum members want to burn you for offering advice....

Deanidge - go for it mate, you'll have a blast. Despite what other members say, riding motorbikes in VN is a lot of FUN!!!! You'll see things that very few other tourists see, interact with locals in a complete different way than in the tourist centres and the riding is great.

#8 tingers has been a member since 9/4/2009. Posts: 36

Posted by BruceMoon on 7/8/2009 at 15:09


"riding motorbikes in VN is a lot of FUN!!!! You'll see things that very few other tourists see, interact with locals in a complete different way than in the tourist centres and the riding is great."

I totally agree.

I also ride a bike when in Vietnam. But, not at breakneck speed.


#9 BruceMoon has been a member since 27/12/2008. Location: Australia. Posts: 1,941

Posted by Deanidge on 7/8/2009 at 16:02

Thanks Tingers you advice is very helpful cant wait for my trip just 4 weeks to go if you have time could you tell me where you stopped and for how long etc just so i can get a rough idea of the time i will have between riding i would really appreciate it difinatly gonna get that map you suggested

and BruceMoon maybe your trips and to everyone elses taste me and my 3 mates love biking and this is our sort of trip and unlike you i wont be popping any uppers which you obviously do as you manage to post in every topic no matter what time of day it is

Any usefull info???

Any thing else you do rather then sit on this forum, if so, what, When???

When Do you sleep???

So What 'uppers' Do you pop???


If you love this forum so much, why leave home?


#10 Deanidge has been a member since 6/8/2009. Posts: 6

Posted by tingers on 7/8/2009 at 16:46

Your trip will be a bit different to mine as you're going the other way, from memory it went something like this:

Day 1: Hanoi - Ninh Binh
Day 2: Ninh Binh - Yen Cat (checked out Tam Coc)
day 3: Yen Cat - Huong Khe
Day 4: Huong Khe - Dong Hoi (really fun ride)
Day 5: Dong Hoi - Hue (Arrive early afternoon checked out Tu Duc's Tomb and Citadel)
Day 6: Hue - China Beach (stopped at Elephant Springs on the way)
Day 7: Chilling at China Beach (Hoa's place)
Day 8: Hoi An (full moon festival)
Day 9: Hoi An - Phuoc Son (really fun ride)
Day 10: Phuoc Son - Kon Tum
Day 11: Kon Tum - A Yum Pa
Day 12: A Yum Pa - Dai Lanh (arrived early afternoon for beers on the beach)
Day 13: Dai Lanh - Nha Trang (partied)
Day 14: Nha Trang
Day 15: Nha Trang - Dalat (on the new road - not in the map I told you about)
Day 16: Dalat (did all the tourist stuff there)
Day 17: Dalat - Phan Thiet (awesome riding down the mountain)
Day 18: Phan Thiet - Vung Tau
Day 19: Vung Tau - Saigon

I said 17 days in an earlier post - my apologies, after writing it down it I realised it was 19.

Do Ha Long Bay as part of a tour when you get here. Much easier.

Despite what has been suggested by other posters, we never hit "breakneck speeds", and my mates (who had never been here) were happy with the tourist spots we did see. More than anything, they enjoyed the riding in between the towns, the stops or drinks and lunch, the random interactions with the locals.

It's a great thing to do with your mates, especially if you're experienced riders. Having a few beers after a day on the bikes, in a little town somewhere, looking at the photos you've taken, chatting about the things you saw that day.... it is a fantastic experience.

You'll have a great time.

#11 tingers has been a member since 9/4/2009. Posts: 36

Posted by BruceMoon on 7/8/2009 at 19:59


I understand your alacrity to reject what I wrote: clearly, you have a purpose other than that which I proffered. But, your pursuit to denigrate merely because I offered a different point of view appears spiteful.

I note Travelfish quotes words from Lonely Planet about those contributing here (ie. those ANSWERING)...

Crammed with opinionated articles and reviews about the region, contributed by independent travellers.

I underlined the word opinionated because that is what you get when you ask for feedback - opinions!

Clearly, you like the opinions of tingers as they parallel your thoughts. To me, that's OK. It shows that you are focussed on getting support from people who have done what you want to do.

That you reject my view matters little. It was a contrast to what you intend.

But the point of my comment was not only a contrast for your consideration. There are also readers of this 'post' that may be entertaining hiring a bike and motoring along the length of Vietnam. My contrasting point of view reveals that all is not a bed of roses. Hopefully, they would rationalise their thoughts and determine what is best for them.

Hope all goes well.


The road between Phan Thiet and SaiGon (highway 1A) is horrible. There is a beachfront road (highway 55) that is awesome.

From Vung Tau (if you go that way: you can take the hydrofoil)) head for BaRia - turn onto the Long Hai road (off to the right) and travel past Loc An, etc. all the way to Phan Thiet. Much nicer.

Also, from Dalat, highway 27 takes you to highway 14 - now, that's a cool road. There's a post on that ride here at #6. You miss Nha Trang, but the back road has much less traffic and great scenery. Much less western tourism too.


#12 BruceMoon has been a member since 27/12/2008. Location: Australia. Posts: 1,941

Posted by somtam2000 on 7/8/2009 at 21:49 admin

Sounds like a terrific trip.

For those not familiar with where places are, here's a rough map of Tinger's trip -- I've guessed the route, Tinger feel free to shoot over any corrections. The Hoi An - Phuoc Son stuff is great riding in particular.

Here's the map:

View Tinger's Vietnam ride in a larger map

#13 somtam2000 has been a member since 21/1/2004. Location: Indonesia. Posts: 8,099

Posted by SBE on 7/8/2009 at 22:20

That looks and sounds like a really cool road trip!

Hmm. Maybe I should try and learn how to master one of those contraptions yet again....I've always ended up in a ditch whenever I've tried in the past.

#14 SBE has been a member since 14/4/2008. Location: Global Village. Posts: 2,055

Posted by tingers on 8/8/2009 at 10:22

hi somtam2000, yep that looks about right.

#15 tingers has been a member since 9/4/2009. Posts: 36

Posted by c1ee on 12/10/2009 at 07:43

I am also planning a trip like this starting in November (on my own). My plan is to buy a bike (pref a Minsk) from Saigon and replicate the trip made by Clarkson and co on Topgear.

I will have 4 weeks. That should be enough time to ride and have some time to enjoy the country right?

Also, on Topgear, I remember the crew took a train trip from Hue to Hanoi . I am wondering, did they really do this because they were trying to "cheat", or whether the scenery between Hue and Hanoi isn't much to look at? If it's the latter, then I plan to take the train also.

Any help with this would be appreciated. Thanks.

#16 c1ee has been a member since 13/5/2009. Posts: 15

Posted by somtam2000 on 12/10/2009 at 08:55 admin


The "back road" marked on the map above covers the train leg (though the train runs closer to the coast). I've not ridden it myself, but have heard it is very pretty. I'd imagine the TopGear mob took the train due to production issues (for eg they'd be riding through places 99% of people have never heard of) rather than a scenery call, but I could be wrong.

have fun!

#17 somtam2000 has been a member since 21/1/2004. Location: Indonesia. Posts: 8,099

Posted by shminchik on 6/12/2009 at 00:53

I'm travelling alone from Saigon to the north (Sapa, Ha Long) and cathing a flight home from Hanoi, from Dec 11 to the 30th.
My question is, is this enough time to:

Find a motorcycle.

Find someone in Saigon to ride with.

See all the sights without rushing.

Finding someone to buy the bike back from me in Hanoi?

I'm kind of stressed because its next week and I havn't had time to arrange anything in advance.
Please share your wisdom.

#18 shminchik has been a member since 16/11/2009. Posts: 2

Posted by johnysac on 16/6/2010 at 09:14

hi all
21 days to the the trip is ok as long as you do not spend too much time in na trang or hoi anh
<b>Promo removed - see FAQ</b>

#19 johnysac has been a member since 25/10/2009. Posts: 71

Posted by johnysac on 16/6/2010 at 09:17

oh ps the map on this thread is the eassiest and the sqafest route there are plenty of places for gas and hotels and mechanics it is highly recomended

#20 johnysac has been a member since 25/10/2009. Posts: 71

Posted by bikerbabe2004 on 9/7/2010 at 14:10

There is a guy that i dealt with in Hanoi named Anthony. He has a warehouse full of different bikes, own mechanic and gave me a really good lesson on how to ride a bike. I just arrived in HCMC and Anthony also gave me Kevin Ravins number to sell the bike back.

If anyone is thinking about doing this ride, I would call Ant 0932566003 or e-mail him on kobrowisky@gmail.com.

He gave me a tool kit and a list of mechanics from north to south that are reliable. didnt have any serious problems but i did have a dog run infront of my bike causing me to crash into a fence. Took it to his mechanic, he fixed the front rim, clutch leaver, changed my oil which he didnt need to do and repacked the one front suspension for 20$.

Some suggestions, wear glasses at all times, a mask , helmet and a good pair of shoes.

Ride safe, Loretta and Dave.

#21 bikerbabe2004 has been a member since 9/7/2010. Posts: 5

Posted by reef829 on 25/7/2010 at 14:24

Hi Guys,

I will be arriving in Hanoi from Laos in late August. I would like to take 4 weeks to drive Vietnam by motorcycle (1 week exploring the north around Sapa and then to Halong Bay, then 3 weeks to get to HCM), but I have never ridden a motorcycle. I have experience on a semi-automatic scooter in Indonesia, but that's it. Here are my questions:

1.) How hard will it be for me to buy a bike in Hanoi, learn to ride, and complete the trip?

2.)My last 3 weeks will be alone since my friend is leaving. Is it unadvisable to ride alone or is it easy to meet others along the way?

3.) Is 1 week in northern vietnam more than enough time and is 3 weeks too short of a time to make it to HCM?

4.) And last, if 3 weeks is too rushed to make it to HCM, what if I were to bus/train the less interesting legs? I've heard they can put the bikes on top of the bus or on a train.

5.) Actually this is the last, what size and type moto do you recommend?

Thanks for all the help.


#22 reef829 has been a member since 9/2/2010. Posts: 8

Posted by Nofoldgold on 5/8/2010 at 22:34

I was hoping someone could shed some light on a few questions I have. I have been reading you can't buy or rent a motorcycle and drive it without a vietnamese licence or an international licence. I am going to Hanoi and was hoping to do some exploring outside of the city via motorcycle.I am an experienced rider. Do you tink this is do-able? Do you think I'm crazy just wanting to pop into Vietnam as a tourist and ride? I don't really have a plan other than land in Hanoi and explore till my 30 day visa runs out(working my way south of course)Any tips or advice would be appreciated!

#23 Nofoldgold has been a member since 5/8/2010. Posts: 1

Posted by bikerbabe2004 on 6/8/2010 at 11:43

I have got to say that it would be better to start from Hanoi . I found that the mechanics up here were a lot more supportive and it is a much easier ride down. It would also be a bettewr iea to start from Hanoi because you could do the northern route(Ha Giang, Sapa) and then come back through a big city like Hanoi on your way down to get any work done on the bike properly!

Mechanics can be a big problem in Vietnam. This should be one of your most important points to consider before your departure as you get loads of riders who get stuck in the middle of nowhere and have inexperienced mechanics working on there bike causing more problems than fixing them and end up ripping you off at the same time!Great feeling!

There is a company in Hanoi named Vietnam Motorbikes run by 2 expats. They give you a full run down of good mechanics, stops and a 24/7 assistance from Hanoi all the way down. I used them and when i had a problem, i called the number and they assisted by talking to the mechanic and translating for me, getting a "CORRECT" price for the spare parts and directing me to a good hotel to stay in. This was all included in the price. Think there e-mail address was vietnam.motorbikes@gmail.com They might have a website too!

#24 bikerbabe2004 has been a member since 9/7/2010. Posts: 5

Posted by johnysac on 6/8/2010 at 12:14

hi every one
yes mechanic rippoff is a big problem now . one mech to be avoided in hanoi is called zom i dont know how to spell his name but thats how its pronounced he recently did some work on a bike which had a faulty coil which was creating a weak spark He changed the complete generator the clutch and then wanted to change the carb its only the fact that the boys contacted raven that he was not allowed to continue raven told them its the coil or the electric box both under 200 000 vnd items this xao lon mech charged 1500000 vnd for his work and the bike did not work any better they took ravens advice and are now on the way through laos
stay away from this guy no matter who recomends him he is a crook not a mech

#25 johnysac has been a member since 25/10/2009. Posts: 71

Posted by theminskman on 8/8/2010 at 18:03

Hey, if anyone is interested. I am in Hanoi and have a few minsks, hondas and scooters for sale. Hit me with an e-mail on theminskman@gmail.com if you are interested. Will also give you some great tips for your journey down south and a list of reliable mechanics.....

#26 theminskman has been a member since 20/7/2010. Posts: 23

Posted by gdansk on 21/9/2010 at 22:59

Hi all

I'm starting my trip on Nov 13th in Saigon. Plan is to buy a good minsk that can take me all the way to Hanoi. Anyone wants to join?

#27 gdansk has been a member since 8/7/2010. Posts: 19

Posted by theminskman on 20/10/2010 at 15:17

Ah this forum was so much help. I started in Hanoi and bought my bikes off 2 western guys( Anthony and felix) they have a massive warehouse with loads of bikes. I spent a full day with their riding instructor who taught us to ride and went over the mechanics of the bike too. think the website was www.vietnam-motorbikes.com

I just did the North and sold it when i got back to Hanoi. Most beautiful place i have ever seen. Ha giang province is beautiful and so is Ba be lake!

#28 theminskman has been a member since 20/7/2010. Posts: 23

Posted by backpackseasia on 20/10/2010 at 17:00

Hello everyone,

Myself and two friends just finished riding up from Saigon. We are now looking to sell our bikes before heading off to Laos. Give us a shout if you are looking to buy - they are good bikes and treated us well on the journey up.

Email: zachary.a.farmer@gmail.com


#29 backpackseasia has been a member since 19/10/2010. Posts: 2

Posted by reef829 on 24/1/2011 at 21:41

Try posting your bikes for sale on the classifieds section of newhanoian.com. I was able to sell mine in only a day for a good price.

Ahh, I wish I could do the trip over again...

#30 reef829 has been a member since 9/2/2010. Posts: 8

Posted by travelhungryboy on 26/1/2011 at 19:26

Hey guys. I did the Hanoi to HCMC ride in June of 2010 and have to say it was truly breathtaking. I bought a bike from Felix and through him met a few other guys to ride with. Took us around 3 weeks in total but we were riding all the time but even so it was great to be free on the open road enjoying the cooling breeze and fantastic views. I had a few issues with the bike I bought but I would go back and do it all again and if it wasn't for Felix being on the end of the phone whenever needed I think I would have been buggered! Running out of petrol as it got dark, seized piston, punctures - all part and parcel of a bike trip in Vietnam. If you are looking to rent or buy a bike I would highly reccommend getting in touch with Felix. He's friendly, easy to chat to and has a laid back attitude to life which all makes for a pleasant experience overall. Hey Felix, took me a long time but I got there in the end, what can I say, I'm a procrastinator lol

#31 travelhungryboy has been a member since 29/4/2010. Location: United Kingdom. Posts: 17

Posted by newlyweds on 5/2/2011 at 16:06

hi guys,
I need two bikes to rent or buy from 13 to 31 March (from HCMC to Hanoi). You can hint where to look on this information?If anyone will be selling just let me know. I will be grateful for your help.
anna.bedkowska (at) o2.pl

#32 newlyweds has been a member since 14/8/2010. Posts: 2

Posted by TitusSlapbone on 4/3/2011 at 10:42

Hey Guys,

I'm arriving in Hanoi around the 13th of March 2011 and am planning to replicate the journey posted above. In a stroke of bad luck, my mate that I was planning to ride with has pulled out at the last minute. I'm hoping to meet up with some people in Hanoi that would like to link up and make the ride together as I'm sure it's much safer to travel in numbers. Really looking forward to the trip right now but I'm still unsure about how to go about it if I end up by myself. Any travellers with suggestions or an interest to ride can contact me at


Looking forward to replies.


#33 TitusSlapbone has been a member since 4/3/2011. Posts: 2

Posted by Positivetravel on 9/3/2011 at 00:21

Hey Everyone,

Last year we spent 2 months riding from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City and it was the best experience ever!
It seems there are a lot of people here who only have a few weeks or so to do a similar a trip. It can be done, but they will be long rides throughout the day (and a sore bum!)
When we rode we spent really only 4 hours riding a day and stopped at a lot of small little towns along the way (some days we were riding longer-especially along the ho chi minh trail where there were not as many towns).

We have written an extensive Article on riding in Vietnam http://positiveworldtravel.com/10-tips-buying-motorbike-vietnam/ if you are interested in reading more.

Feel free to email us: admin [at] positiveworldtravel [dot] com if you need any questions answered about motorbiking throughout Asia.

It is such a great experience and you meet amazing people!

Ant & Elise

#34 Positivetravel has been a member since 8/3/2011. Posts: 17

Posted by kobrowisky on 15/4/2011 at 13:04

Felix is one of the owners of vietnam-motorbikes.com in Hanoi. the 24/7 after sale service is really helpful as i dont know anyone else that offers that in Hanoi.

#35 kobrowisky has been a member since 5/3/2010. Location: South Africa. Posts: 11

Posted by jayden14 on 14/7/2011 at 18:17

Hi all,
two mates and I (all in our mid-20's from Australia) did a 4 week ride through Vietnam in January this year. This forum was a huge help in planning the trip! (along with the Lonely Planet).
It was a truly amazing experience, everything we hoped for and so much more! We started in Hanoi and bought our bikes (Honda Win 100cc) off Anthony and Felix (Vietnam-motorbikes.com). We spent a day with Humphrey at their warehouse who helped to hone-in our riding skills and went over the mechanics of the bike, explaining the problems that we were likely to (and did) encounter!
Our brief "Vietnam Adventure" intinerary went like this:
Hanoi (3 nights - including NYE which was a fairly big night!)
Hanoi to Hai Duong (1 night) - 60km - didn't leave Hanoi until afternoon so only got 60km done before it was dark.
Hai Duong to Cat Ba Island (2 nights) ~ 90km. The riding on Cat Ba is excellent, beautiful scenery. Kayaking on the bay, national park walk.
Cat Ba to Nam Dinh (1 night) ~ 140km. The road to Nam Dinh was very busy.
Nam Dinh to Vinh (on the train ~ 200km) then ride to Ha Tinh (1 night) ~ 50km. Rained the whole day.
Ha Tinh to Dong Hoi (1 night) ~ 145km. Rain most of day.
Dong Hoi to Dong Ha (1 night) ~ 160km. Exploring DMZ, Vinh Moc tunnels. Rain.
Dong Ha to Hue via Khe Sanh (3 nights) ~ 177km. Exploring DMZ, Khe Sanh museum. Rain most of day.
Hue to Hoi An (4 nights) ~ 160km. Relax, explore and we spent approx AU$500 each on suits, shoes etc at the Tailors! Ran into a German guy who joined us for the next 4 days riding.
Hoi An to Song Tra (1 night) ~ 100km. My Son ruins. We had an unplanned 'home stay' with some friendly people in this small village (Song Tra) who gave up their beds for us! Interesting & authentic experience!
Song Tra to Dak Glei (1 night) ~ 100km. Into the hills - best riding of the trip. Randomly ran into another Aussie guy same age who was heading our way, so he rode with us for a couple of days! Coincidentaly he'd bought his motorbike from the same place in Hanoi!
Dak Glei to Kon Tum (1 night) ~ 105km. Another amazing day riding!
Kon Tum to Pleiku (1 night) ~ 55km. Orphanage visits & donations.
Pleiku to Tuy Hoa (1 night) ~ 230km. We didn't get as far as we thought the previous day so today was a HUGE ride - very sore bum at end of the day! Amazing scenery.
Tuy Hoa to Nha Trang (4 nights) ~ 121km. Relax & party time! Scuba diving, sell bikes (only took 1 hour to sell them!)
Nha Trang fly to HCMC (1 night)
Mekong Delta tour (2 nights) - organised group trip.
HCMC (1 night)

The best riding was definitely through the mountains (Hoi An to Tuy Hoa). The weather was better then too, the scenery amazing and we really felt like we were "off the tourist trail" a bit. We didn't book any accomodation in advance, we just rocked up to a hotel or backpackers each night and had no problems. It was cold and dry in the north, cool and wet through the center, and south of Hue it was warm and dry. Although each day's riding doesn't sound far on paper (e.g. 150km), it takes a lot longer than you think! We were only able to average ~50km/hr on the bikes and had to stop every 60 to 90min to stretch the legs & let the bikes cool. They overheated a couple of times but no major problems, all in all we were very lucky! Next time I would definitely buy a bigger bike (for comfort and speed). Something like what the German fella was riding - Suzuki 125cc. He bought that from Anthony also, more expensive but well worth it!
If anyone wants to know more about our trip I'm happy to help out!
My email is jayden14@hotmail.com
Happy riding!

#36 jayden14 has been a member since 14/7/2010. Posts: 1

Posted by Adam_83 on 10/10/2011 at 22:27

Hello Everyone

This is such a fantastic thread and as you can see my first post is here in the motorbike bit,

I defiantly think Ant and Felix need a visit as they seem to be in the know,

It has been mentioned previously in the thread but didn’t seem to be answered.

Do you need a licence to ride in Vietnam?

And I assume insurance is really not an issue?

How is it for bike thefts? Any tricky areas I mean leaving bikes over night etc ,

Cheers again all for a fantastic thread.


#37 Adam_83 has been a member since 1/10/2011. Posts: 8

Posted by Deanidge on 10/10/2011 at 22:37

hi there adam
seems lke forever ago i started this thread lol
in answer to your questions you are supposed to have a license
but me and my 2 mates didnt when we went and although we got pulled over 3 times and threatened with jail and having our bikes confiscated we got away with it each time :-) didnt have insurance either lol
on a side note my name is adam aswell and i was born in 83 crazy eh
but we did have an awsome time as for thefts i had no problem there most hotels we stayed at had somewhere to put our bikes at night

have fun

#38 Deanidge has been a member since 6/8/2009. Posts: 6

Posted by Positivetravel on 10/10/2011 at 22:38

Hey guys we have put together an extensive guide on this now. We are looking to release this in late October or Early November.

We have also teamed up with Anthony from Vietnam Motorbikes with this book.

Hope that this book is invaluable knowledge to help you with your travel through Vietnam.


#39 Positivetravel has been a member since 8/3/2011. Posts: 17

Posted by Adam_83 on 11/10/2011 at 04:39


Aka Adam lol like a fine wine my friend 83 was a good year lol

So your trip has come and gone and I take it from the rapid response to the thread you had a great time as you are still getting updates etc

I thought I would start where my heart is and that is motorbikes and cars, my girlfriend sarah7196 is researching her head off so I wanted to do my bit as we are travelling Jan, just happened to stumble upon your thread lol

So no insurance or license? The insurance thing I assume is the norm but are the licenses easy to get hold of?

The link to ant about the Vietnam bike shop place looks a good idea I will look in to that, any must sees from your trip or places to avoid and any regrets biking it and not any other form of transport,?

Nice one for the reply,

In a separate note where dis deanidge come from if your name is Adam



#40 Adam_83 has been a member since 1/10/2011. Posts: 8

Posted by bikerbabe2004 on 18/11/2011 at 00:28

Hey guys. Just finished another trip up North. You guys have to check out Ha Giang. This is my second time up here and it is still as amazing as ever! Mountains for as far as the eye can see and beautiful waterfalls and rivers. You really get to experience something beautiful travelling out here. Best to plan around a 10 day trip to do the North properly.

Just a few hints on getting bikes. I bought a bike from Ant again in Hanoi and a person i teamed up with bought a bike from a local guy that sells books outside the Hanoi Backpackers on Ngo Huyen.

My bike from Anthony went smoothly. Had to change the inner tube on the back tire. Called Anthony for a few things and he dealt with me on every call and spoke to the locals in Vietnamese to get the correct price for the inner tube.

The bike from the local guy( think his name is Twan) gave problems most the way. tried ringing the guy back and he hung up the phone and didnt answer again after calls.

Word of advice, pay the bit extra and get a bike thats in better condition for long journeys. The locals seem to be one hit wonders and they will not help you if needed after a sale.

Anthonys website is vietnam.motorbikes@gmail.com and i do suggest using him. this is my second time using there services and once again it was a great experience.

Any questions on travelling, Contact me on bikerbabe2004@gmail.com

#41 bikerbabe2004 has been a member since 9/7/2010. Posts: 5

Posted by Adam_83 on 11/3/2012 at 09:38

Hay Guys

just a quick note to say that we am now in Vietnam and have just purchased 2 bikes from Vietnam-Motorbikes and will be heading south in the next couple of days.

Anthony (on email) is great and super fast at replying,

Clay (in the shop) is a top top guy and knows so much and sat with us for 3 hours planning and helping us out with the trip, discussing the bikes, setting them up, adding a frame for our bags, providing tools for the trip in case of any minor fixes, provided maps, help guide, recommended mechanics on the way down, safety advice etc etc. he hooked us up with two WIN's and they are really good bikes that i am confident will get us all the way to HCMC as they have been re built. (Hop the mechanic knows everything about these bikes. he even adjusted the foot pegs for me, altered the leavers to exactly where i wanted them. fantastic..

if you are reading this thred you are thinking about riding Vietnam, Vietnam-Motorbikes are the people to see, knowledgeable, honest and most of all really cool guys.



#42 Adam_83 has been a member since 1/10/2011. Posts: 8

Posted by rrockwell on 17/3/2012 at 15:04

Can anyone recall the price of their trip from Hanoi to Saigon. I see that tingers rented his bike for $40USD. Likewise, I am looking to rent a bike to ride from Hanoi to Saigon later this year. What did expenses amount to after accommodations, food, gas, repairs, etc? I plan to do the trip in roughly 18 days on an economical budget.



#43 rrockwell has been a member since 14/1/2012. Posts: 5

Posted by MarnusNel on 26/11/2012 at 10:41

Any help needed.

We are two friends arriving in Bangkok on 22 December 2012.

Our plan so far is :
22 Dec - Bangkok
23 Dec - Bangkok

Then heading off to Cambodia side (dunno how yet)
Spend some time in Cambodia and possibly Vietnam (we would like to do some biking around for a few days up to 27 Dec.

Then somehow get to Koh Samui side (can we take a ferry across the gulf of Thailand or must we fly)

Then spend time in Thailand (possibly renting bikes)

Flying back to South Africa from Bangkok on 4 January 2013.

So - no real plans but would like to get some info wrt travelling around etc.

We not concerned about accommodation as hotels are cheap enough and Im sure there are enough places to chose from.
(I have previously only been in Phuket for 10 days so this is a wild trip)

Please suggest what can be done in the time we have etc etc.

#44 MarnusNel has been a member since 26/11/2012. Posts: 3

Posted by purcitron on 31/1/2015 at 19:36

northern Vietnam motorbike tour advice please...
-is $1500 for 10 days for a guided private tour too expensive please?
-is northern Laos a better place to do a 10-day motorbike tour?


#45 purcitron has been a member since 15/6/2014. Location: United States. Posts: 45

Posted by RentabikeVN on 28/2/2015 at 02:41


It is very difficult to tell if that is overpriced or not. You have included no details. However, you should expect to pay at least 150$ per day for a quality tour with a knowledgeable guide staying in reasonable accomodation and eating reasonable food. Less than this and you will find that those things are not of a good standard and this can make or break a trip.

I have no idea about northern Laos.


#46 RentabikeVN has been a member since 28/2/2015. Posts: 1

Posted by IndigoTraveller on 21/2/2017 at 08:44

Hey there, I recently spent 2 months in Vietnam and motorbiked the entire length of the country. I made a video with the top 10 tips you need to know before you go to Vietnam: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SvvMi_o-4rk

Feel free to check it out. Cheers, Nick

#47 IndigoTraveller has been a member since 21/2/2017. Posts: 2

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