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Lao Cai Province borders China in the idyllic north west of Vietnam and is now firmly on the tourist trail as it is the gateway to Sapa, the trekking Mecca of Vietnam. The train journey from Hanoi to Lao Cai is around 9 hours and most people choose to take the night train into the hills and arrive at Lao Cai in the early morning. This mountainous region rewards ... More>visitors with amazing views of verdant forest and the famed rice plateaus cut into the mountainside by generation after generation of hill tribes. There are many historical sites in Lao Cai due its proximity to the little remembered 1979 Sino-Vietnamese War. Hotels in Lao Cai are limited due to its role as chiefly a stopover town.