The ecotourism destination of Pu Luong Nature Reserve is 95 miles (145 km) from Hanoi. Your best bet is to book a private transfer for the 4.5-hour journey, as there is no direct public transportation option.
Consider this 5-day hiking itinerary if you're interested in trekking through the Pu Luong Nature Reserve's rural villages and taking part in homestays with local farmers.
By Private Transfer
Duration: 4.5 hours, more with stops
The drive from Hanoi to Pu Luong Nature Reserve will take you along the most famous roadway in Vietnam—the Ho Chi Minh Highway. You may want to budget additional time to stop and take photographs whenever you happen upon an unforgettable viewpoint (there will be many) or explore the valleys and mountain caves found along the way.
Make sure you keep an eye out for Hoa Binh, a province you will be traveling through about 56 miles into your journey, as it is home to the unique wooden stilt houses of the Muong Bi people who live in the district.
You can find Bong Lai Temple, one of Vietnam's popular rural temples, about 10 miles past Hoa Binh. Here, you can stop and explore the grounds of the restored Buddhist temple and take a moment to enjoy the quiet atmosphere and the architectural features inside.
If you're feeling adventurous, consider taking some extra time to hike up the winding staircases behind the temple grounds in order to explore some of the caves.