The Fansipan Legend - Sapa


Staff member
Jan 16, 2003
Chiang Khong
Sapa Attractions

The Fanispan Legend......what's that you might say & so did we?
Parked on our Sapa Holiday hotel balcony a certain sharp eyed lady spotted in the far distance what appeared to be some sort of small cars going in a line across the mountain face.
Out came the camera telephoto lens.
Wow, that's a cable car. We didn't know about that one at all.....
Google is your friend in info need & so it turned out that the Fansipan Legend cable car was only opened in February 2016 & has two entries on the Guinness book of records!

Almost unbelievable some little lady spotted the cable car in the distance from this hotel balcony

you can't see it in the photo but it is there...

So what's so important about this cable car.
1. It goes to the top of the highest mountain in Vietnam - Mt Fansipan at 3194 metres.

Fansipan (Vietnamese: Phan Xi Păng) is a mountain in Vietnam, the highest in Indochina (comprising Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia), at 3,143 metres (10,312 ft). It is located in the Lào Cai Province of the Northwest region of Vietnam, 9 km southwest of Sa Pa Township in the Hoang Lien Son mountain range.
Fansipan is dubbed "the Roof of Indochina"; it is to be approved as one of the very few ecotourist spots of Vietnam, with about 2,024 floral varieties and 327 fauna species.


2. The Guinness Book of Records
A. At 6,292 meters, it has been recognized as the world's longest three-rope cable car
B. The world's biggest height gap, 1,410 meters, between its departure and arrival stations.

more to come.


Staff member
Jan 16, 2003
Chiang Khong
The cable was built & set up in 2 years at a cost of US$110.

Owned by by the Sun Group in Vietnam, they expect to increase Sapa's tourism by 30-40%.
Sun Group was established in Vietnam in 2007. Up to now, the Group has implemented a series of projects contributing to the socio-economic development of many localities, such as Ba Na Hills, InterContinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort, Premier Village Da Nang Resort, Asia Park, Ha Long Ocean Park, Fansipan Telpher, etc.
Sun Group focuses on the 4 main fields:
Convalescence tourism
Luxury real estate
Amusement and entertainment
Construction investment.


The construction was done by Doppelmayr, an Austrian based company. Doppelmayr was founded in Wolfurt, Austria in 1892 (originally as Konrad Doppelmayr & Sohn). In 1967, Artur Doppelmayr, the grandson of the founder, Konrad Doppelmayr, and son of Austrian businessman Emil Doppelmayr, became managing director of the company. As alpine recreation rapidly expanded around the world during the last half of the 20th century, Artur led and established the Vorarlberg cable car company as the world leader. In 1996, Doppelmayr's holding company purchased Von Roll, a Swiss maker of gondolas and cable cars. In 2002, Doppelmayr acquired CWA, a Swiss maker of gondola and cable car cabins. The merger of Doppelmayr and Garaventa was announced in 2001 and completed in 2002. When the Doppelmayr/Garaventa Group was formed in 2002 they formed the world's largest ropeway manufacturer.


Specs from Doppelmayr
Vertical rise 1,410.0 m
Inclined length 6,326.0 m
Speed 8.0 m/s
Capacity 2000 p/h

The Doppelmayr/Garaventa Group’s proven tricable gondola detachable (TGD) ropeways combine the benefits of gondola lift and reversible aerial tramway. The result is technical perfection. This 3S system has two fixed, fully locked track ropes on which the carrier travels and a circulating haul rope which is clamped to the 8-wheel carriages. This detachable continuous movement system offers top performance and reliability. It has cabins for up to 35 passengers and maintains top ride comfort even in extreme weather conditions. Very high wind stability, low energy consumption and the capability to cope with very long rope spans are the unmistakable strengths of 3S ropeways.

To enable all passengers to be safely returned to solid ground in an emergency scenario, an innovative recovery concept was developed for 3S lifts. All functionally relevant parts and equipment are duplicated and independent of one another. The aim of this novel development was to provide the technical and organizational means to ensure that all cabins can always be safely returned to the nearest station.


A view towards the starting station at Sapa

the higher up the mountains you go you can see some amazing "umbrella" pine trees.


more to come..


Staff member
Jan 16, 2003
Chiang Khong
You disembark from the cable car almost at the top & then you've got a few hundred steps to climb to the actual peak.
GTR-FansipanLegend- IMG_3802.JPG

if you're not fit or have any remote altitude problems, it can be a tough demanding hike.
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such that someone couldn't go the last bit of distance.
WE returned to the warmth of the air-con cafe & waited for Scotty & La to return from their ascent.
The wind howls strongly up the ridgeline & whips across it's face, such that you really do have to hang onto your hats, or take them off.

Newly opened just a couple of months there is still a lot of construction going on.
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GTR-FansipanLegend- IMG_3811.JPG

One of the items looks like a small railway to take the less able right to the very top.
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Get out there & enjoy it while you can & it is not totally over run.
The return fare was only US$30 per person & is excellent vale for ,money.
Don't miss it if you are in Sapa.

GTR-FansipanLegend- IMG_3803.JPG


Feb 23, 2004
Yes, a fantastic world class ride, worth the visit to Sapa alone, it was also very kind
of the operators to stop the cable car mid way down in the longest span for 10
minutes so we could admire the view for longer!

It was blowing a gale at the top and freezing cold, the 600 step climb from the cable car was quite hard work in the thin air,
but well worth it.

A must do in Northern Vietnam!


Mar 30, 2010
Looks an absolute ripper..
Thanks for the heads up and will be a must do in the future.


Mar 2, 2019
Here are some of my photos of Sapa when we were there in November 2019..........................our guide had been upto Sapa many times and he said we were extremely lucky to actually have blue skies about, that would change every 10 or 15min as the clouds move past, very similar feeling to looking out of an aeroplane window :cool:...........................












I remember it was quite cold on top of the mountain, about 4 degrees, we were popular with the tourists and many Vietnamese people asked could they get their picture taken with us :cool:.....................the girl in the leather shorts asked me at 3 x different locations to get her photo with me, the last pic that her friend took of us I gave her a big cuddle, she enjoyed that :p.....................I think it was about 3 or 4 days after we were at the top of Fansipan that it snowed on the peak :cold_sweat: