How to travel from Hanoi to Moc Chau

Moc Chau Plateau is in Son La Province in the Northwest of Vietnam. The plateau has an average altitude over 1,000m above sea level with cool temperatures all year round. At Moc Chau, you can go climbing the Pha Luong Mountain (2,000m), cycle or take photographs amid the flower fields or tea plantations, or learn about agricultural works.

 Moc Chau is popular for young travelers from Hanoi and is a hot destination in the summer. The plateau is 180km from Hanoi via Route6, and 260km via Route 32, Route 37 and Route 43. Let’s find out the means of transportation available between Hanoi and Moc Chau.

Moc Chau Plateau in Son La, Vietnam
Moc Chau Plateau in Son La, Vietnam

By private car: the road trip by private car is the most convenient way to travel from Hanoi to Moc Chau. The road is mostly good and the scenery on the way is beautiful. The road is mostly flat near Hanoi, hilly near Hoa Binh and goes up all the way to Moc Chau Plateau. The total one-way trip should be around 5 hours.

By local bus: There are several local buses from Hanoi to Moc Chau from the bus stations: My Dinh, Yen Nghia. The ticket cost is 100.000VND-150.000VND/one-way ticket. All buses have air-conditioning nowadays. A bus trip should take about 4-5 hours to get to Moc Chau from Hanoi.

By motorbike: Route 6 from Hanoi to Moc Chau is fairly good and not too busy. The motorbike trip should take about 5-6 hours one-way. On the way, you’ll start to have a feel of the wild mountains in the Northwest of Vietnam close to Hoa Binh City. Then the road goes up and up. The gradient descends briefly at Mai Chau then goes up again more steeply. You’ll quickly feel the freshness and coolness of the temperatures as you climb your way up the Moc Chau Plateau. The forests by the roadsides are wilder and the the scenery is amazing. When you find yourself traveling on a flat road again, then you are in the center of Moc Chau Plateau. There are flower farms and organic vegetable farms all around you.

Alternatively, you can travel via Route 32 from Hanoi to Thu Cuc Township (Tan Son, Phu Tho), then turn into Route 37 for Phu Yen at Thu Cuc (Tan Son, Phu Tho), then turn into Route 43 at Gia Phu traveling along the Da River for Moc Chau Plateau. You’ll have to cross the Da River on a ferry at Van Yen before entering an uphill road with spectacular landscape all the way to the center of Moc Chau Plateau.

By bicycle: You can travel to Moc Chau by bicycle but the trip may take a couple of days via Route 6. It is suggested you take Route 6 instead of the other route as the latter seems not in good conditions for cycling and that the gradients uphill to Moc Chau Plateau may be too much for biking.

There are a few spots en route that you can spend a night at before continuing the journey: Hoa Binh City, Tan Lac or Mai Chau Valley. Most gradients on the way are not that steep along Route 6. The road conditions are excellent from Mai Chau uphill to Moc Chau Plateau which makes cycling a wonderful experience.