Hiking in Vietnam off the beaten track: Preparation & Safety


With its spectacular scenery and wild trails, Vietnam is a paradise for hiking enthusiasts. While an off-the-beaten-path hike is an authentic and unforgettable experience, it is crucial to prepare well to ensure a safe and enjoyable hike. This detailed guide will give you the tips and information you need to enjoy your hike safely.

Vietnam is a paradise for hiking enthusiasts - Photo : Mr Linh's adventures

Know the potential risks

Brief: Before embarking on a hike, gather as much information as possible about the chosen destination. Study the terrain if you have the opportunity, learn about weather conditions and potential risks. Go fishing for information on local customs, regulations and the availability of emergency services. Create a detailed itinerary and share it with someone you know.
It goes without saying that you are warmly encouraged to contact one of our team to talk about your project!

The environment

Rugged terrain, wildlife (snakes, leeches), changing weather conditions (flash floods, fog)… Sift through everything!
The lack of infrastructure
Unmarked trails, no drinking water, limited phone coverage…identify potential hazards.


Avoid the risk of getting lost, or the difficulty of getting help in an emergency. Try to look at everything.
You may also read oour Hiking Travel Guide

Select a trail that matches your fitness level and experience - Photo : Mr Linh's adventures

Carefully prepare

Brief: Select a trail that matches your fitness level and experience. Off-the-beaten-path trails may lack clear markers, so be prepared for some navigational challenges. Consider hiring a local guide who knows the area well.


Choose a route that matches your experience level and fitness level. Learn about the area you want to explore, weather conditions and potential hazards. Check out the marked trails, water points and nearby villages. It is important to keep an eye on seasonality: it is also recommended to favor the dry season to avoid the risks associated with rainfall and flooding.

Prepare physically

Train before your departure and make sure you are in good physical condition for the hike or hikes you have chosen. Don’t overestimate your hiking experience or fitness when choosing a suitable region and route.

List your equipment

Bring clothing and shoes suitable for hiking and weather conditions. Consider taking a detailed map, compass, GPS, and a complete first aid kit with you.
Inform your entourage
Give your itinerary and return dates to someone you trust.
Read more : Hiking Pack Weight


Make sure to go hiking with favorable weather conditions - Photo : Mr Linh's adventures

Preparing for your hike

Choose the right hike

There are hikes for all levels of experience in Vietnam. Choose a hike that matches your physical condition and your desires.

Learn about permits and authorizations

Some areas, such as the border with China, may require a special permit for hiking.

Check the weather forecast

Make sure to go hiking with favorable weather conditions.

Download a hiking app

A hiking app can help you stay on the trail and find your way if something goes wrong.  

Choose a hike that matches your physical condition and your desires. - Photo : Mr Linh's adventures

Safety during the hike

Stay on the trail

Do not venture off marked trails and pay attention to warning signs. Off-piste, it is more than advisable to put your steps in those of your guide.

Manage natural hazards

Stay alert to wildlife, do not cross rivers in flood. Similarly, pay attention to landslides by remaining particularly vigilant in steep areas after heavy rains. In general, stay on your guard in case of sudden weather changes and think about protecting yourself from the sun and rain.

Prevent accidents

Proceed cautiously, hydrate regularly, take frequent breaks.

Know how to react in an emergency

Learn first aid gestures and have the local emergency number on hand – 115 in Vietnam.
Read our tips : Water Cross in Hikking

Do not venture off marked trails and pay attention to warning signs - Photo : Mr Linh's adventures

Practical tips

Hire a local guide

An experienced guide can help you choose a safe route and make you discover the area in depth.

Learn some notions of Vietnamese

This will facilitate communication with your guide and local residents.

Learn about the local culture

Respect the customs and traditions

Be respectful of local traditions

Dress appropriately (especially in temples and temples) and respect local customs.

Respect the environment

Leave no trace of your passage and respect the local fauna and flora.

Purchase travel insurance

Choose insurance that covers hiking activities and search and rescue costs in case of emergency.

Leave no trace of your passage and respect the local fauna and flora - Photo : Mr Linh's adventures

In an emergency

Keep calm

Identify the situation and take the necessary measures.

Call for help

The emergency number in Vietnam is 115.

Report position

Indicate its location as accurately as possible.

Enjoy your adventure, respect nature and go home safely! Photo : Mr Linh's adventures

In conclusion

Good preparation and constant vigilance are the keys to a safe off the beaten track hike in Vietnam. Do not forget to take full advantage of the beauty of the landscapes and the richness of the human encounters that you will make during your adventure!
And remember that the appeal of off-the-beaten-track hikes lies in their pristine beauty, but safety must always come first.
Enjoy your adventure, respect nature and go home safely!
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