The base resort for Mount Fansipan sits 2km drive up from the town of Sapa. The best way to accomplish this is via the mountainside tram that leads from Sapa town to the ticketing office at the start of the Fansipan Cable Car.
There are three main ways to get to the Sun World Fansipan Cable Car from Sapa town:
- Car or motorbike taxi
- 30 minute uphill walk
- Mountainside Tram
If you are driving your own motorbike, you can leave it parked with your hotel, or drive it up and park it for the day at Sun World Fansipan. Or better yet, consider the awesome tram.
Taxi car or motorbike
Depending on your group size, a motorbike taxi may be fine to transport one passenger each. This might be okay for a couple of friends looking for cheap transport. You can hail these via the Grab app, which usually has some cars too available offering rides.
Opting for the slightly pricier taxi offers space for many, vans are usually available and on quick notice. It’s a short, inexpensive trip either way. There are plenty of taxis and people offering rides by just stepping outside in Sapa town.
Take a Walk
In my opinion, save your strength and get a ride. You’ll be hiking once you get to the top of the cable car to reach the summit, many, many steps. If you opt to walk, just ask for directions, it’ll be pretty apparent. Then keep your head on a swivel and one foot in front of the other. It’s a thirty minute trek.
Sapa Tram to Fansipan Cable Car
Ride like a boss, you’re in Vietnam for a limited time. Vietnam dazzles up its mountainside resorts, from Bana Hills to Fansipan. These are world class attractions and resorts set around them.
You can buy tickets and board the tram to the cable car in the shops at the base of the 5 star Hotel de la Coupole (affiliate link). This attraction-in-itself, is a spectacularly massive hotel in the center of Sapa town. Consider booking a night here to explore the property, they have a lot of rooms to fill so you might get a deal.
Don’t enter the main hotel door check-in, which is around the back, but enter on the main street down the hill of the hotel, which has an entrance for shops. This indoor market features a slew of clothing and souvenir shops, plus a ticket counter where you’ll purchase the tram passes and wait for the fairly frequent trips. The cost is nominal.
There’s an escalator down to reach the boarding station. Enjoy the journey!
We’ll spare you the magnificent ride up to experience for yourself the first time. Once at the top of the Fansipan Station you’ll depart and head on up to buy your ticket to ride the cable car to Fansipan mountain.
There’s a restaurant, gift shop and other amenities at the base village here before you take the cable car up. Once at the top, resources are more limited to a big gift shop and some small vendors.
Once you reach the top of the cable car, you’ll have the option of furthering the transportation fun via a funicular to get even closer to the peak of Fansipan. If your conditioning is in question, probably opt for this smooth easy way up. From the top of the funicular it’s a quick walk up. However, a lot of the reward and attractions are found on the trail up by skipping the funicular.
You have to hike a long series of multiple staircases, and trails. It’s uphill at elevation, to 3,143 meters (10,312 ft) at the very top. So take it slow, expect at least an hour. There are some amazing monuments and sculptures along the way. Or opt for the short and I’m sure terrific funicular ride, as icing on the cake to the tram and cable car.
While in the country, consider checking out one of these other gondola rides in Vietnam.