When trekking in Sapa, as in any other place, is important to wear appropriate clothing and shoes. If you don’t wear suitable shoes and clothes, your experience may not be the same, as you will not feel comfortable during the trip. It is also important to know how the weather is in the area and dress up according to it. A good advice is to ask always the locals, they know, better than anyone, what you should wear and take with you, depending on the trek you are doing and the time of the year it is, but as you need to think what to pack before you leave, here are some quick tips to help you, so you can enjoy your trekking trips as much as possible.
You will see locals going everywhere with their slippers, but don’t get confused, they are used to the paths and the roads and don’t need to wear special shoes when they go to the mountain. The rest of the people should wear mountain boots or walking shoes when going on a trip, as the way will be muddy and slippery most of the times. Even if you are used to go to the mountain, you should not be too confident and be careful. It is not necessary to spend a lot of money buying shoes that are the best for trekking, waterproof, and high-tech; with some walking shoes that fill hold tight to your feet and will not slip in the ground is enough. If it is raining though, you should as for some rubber boots in your homestay/hotel, as if you go with your own boots, you will end up with your feet soaked.
Clothing is not as important as the footwear, but it needs to be taken into account. As with the clothes, you don’t need to wear the newest and most expensive clothes, but yes the appropriate ones. What does this mean? It means that wearing jeans or a skirt is not the best choice. This can be very logical for most of us, but there is people that thinks that as they are going in a trek though the valley, it will be fine. Wrong assumption. Wearing a t-shirt, if breathable better, and a light raincoat is summer, a thicker one in winter, will be enough. For those trekking in summer, a good option would be to wear a hat too, as the sun can be a bad friend when walking.
It is quite important to take some basic things with you when you go in a trekking trip, no matter how long it is going to be. As the climate in this area is quite humid, it is highly recommendable to take a water bottle everywhere you go. With the ups and downs of the mountain and the humidity, you will need to drink water, and there are not many places during the treks to buy water. It is better if you take a ice-cold water bottle, as it will get warm very fast.
To take sun cream is a good idea too. You should apply some before you leave your homestay/hotel, but take it with you too. Even if it is not completely sunny, you will get sunburn, as the sun in between clouds is strong.
Apart from your guide, many local women will join you during a part of your trip, and they will try to sell you hand-made souvenirs, so you may want to buy some bracelets or anything they sell you.
The weather in Sapa is fresher than in the rest of Vietnam as it is in the mountains. During the months of April-May is the best moment to visit this area, as it should not rain that much and the weather is warm. If you are visiting it in summer period, it will be hotter, but don’t forget that it is the rainy season. I t is important, as said before to wear a light but waterproof raincoat, as you will need it for sure.
No matter when you are visiting Sapa, do not trust the sky you see when you wake up. The weather may change in a minute and start raining, or just the opposite, get completely sunny. Always take a raincoat just in case, and a light t-shirt.