15:52 (GMT +7) - Wednesday 08/04/2020

Biz Traveler

Vietnam Mountain Bike Marathon set for Nov 4-6 in Sapa

Released at: 14:02, 03/11/2016

Vietnam Mountain Bike Marathon set for Nov 4-6 in Sapa

Photos: Topas Travel

Race takes riders through remote mountains and villages around hill retreat.

by Nhi Linh

The Vietnam Mountain Bike Marathon will take place in Sapa from November 4 to 6.

With participants from 22 countries registered the race truly is an international event. Organized by Topas Travel, it covers large parts of remote mountains, meaning competitors will see parts of the region that normally remain well out of reach. Racers will be the first to take on these trails through rice terraces and among ethnic minority villages.

The 50-km Day One heads north from Sapa to an area populated largely by the Flower Hmong minority. The 68-km Stage Two heads to the southern area, populated by the Tay and Red Dao people, and the race then concludes with a shorter stage around Sapa town through Black Hmong villages.

“We have spent countless hours as a team out in the mountains seeking out great trails for people to race on,” said Mr. David Lloyd, one of the Race Directors. “The result is a hard but extremely beautiful race borne from our collective passion for Vietnam and riding bikes. We are now very excited to welcome the international riders and show them what Vietnam has to offer.”

Topas has also organized the Vietnam Mountain Marathon (VMM) in Sapa for the last four years, which attracted about 1,500 runners in this year’s edition in September. For the first time in its four years the VMM included a 100 km race, making it the longest one-day run ever held in Vietnam. Other options were 70 km, 42 km, 21 km and 10 km.

It has donated thousands of dollars to good causes and the mountain bike race will also benefit the communities that live along the route. A charity donation of $20 is included in every race entry, so as well as riding around the area’s beautiful trails the racers are also giving something back.

Sapa was recently listed among the 50 most beautiful places in Asia by Condé Nast Traveler, a global luxury travel magazine. It was also cited by tourism website Lifehack as two among seven reasons why tourists should take a holiday in Vietnam.

Lao Cai province is also making an effort to develop tourism in Sapa in particular and the province as a whole. The province is planning to build the Sapa cultural park on 118 ha, in the style of Disneyland but with ecotourism and luxurious international-standard resorts.

In the 2016-2020 period Lao Cai has a number of large projects on the drawing board, such as building three- to five-star hotels with a total of 6,000 rooms and shopping and conference centers with total investment of VND10 trillion ($448.3 million).

Sapa is expected to welcome 2 million and 5.2 million tourist arrivals by 2020 and 2030, respectively, according to the general master plan for development for the Sapa National Tourism Area to 2030. The Ministry of Transport has also decided to build Lao Cai Airport at the end of this year, which is expected to be completed by late 2018. 

User comment (0)

Send comment