The biggest draw of the Ha Giang Province in the north-east is the beautiful scenery. So rather sitting in one place most visitors head out to explore the area. And nothing beats sitting on a motorbike and riding along mountainous roads – over passes, through valleys, passing rice fields and minority villages. The landscape will make most visitors wanting to stop every 5 minutes to take in the sights.
While the northern provinces are still off-the-beaten Ha Giang town has a good tourist infrastructures with plenty of accommodations and places to rent a bike. Due to some ascends and descends a semi-automatic would be better than an automatic. The roads are in some bits very good, in others full with potholes and gravels. In addition animals (cattle etc) and locals will be on the road – so be aware of obstacles appearing suddenly in front of you. You do not want to injure a local – as it could result in prison time. Also, make sure you do not ride at night. Drink driving and animals on the road are just some of the risks and could lead to some serious accidents.
The most popular route is the Ha Giang Loop. Most start and finish this 320 km loop in Ha Giang town, though there are various alternative routes.
I have never been to Ha Giang town (I started and finished the loop from Meo Vac), but I met numerous travellers who had no issues getting semi- and full-automatic bikes there. Apparently you will also not having any issues finding a place to stay. There are bus connections from Hanoi and Lao Cai (near Sapa). So it is not a bad place to start the loop.
The loop could be done in 3 days, but I would recommend doing the loop in 4 or 5 days to avoid rushing. I split the loop into 5 sections. Each section can be easily done per day, but you could also incorporate section 3 & 4 or 4 & 5 into a day tour. It all depends how much time you have.
If you arrive from Cao Bang start the loop from section 4, followed by 2 and 3 if you do not want to cover Ha Giang town itself.
Please note that you still require a permit to travel through Ha Gaign province. Most guesthouses in Ha Gaing, Yen Minh, Dong Van and Meo Vac can get one for you, so there is no need to travel to the police station. They require your passport though – so best option is to get it on day of arrival.