The dusty town of Bao Lac makes for a good rest stop between Meo Vac and Ha Giang. It is situated on a river bend tucked in a small jungle valley and is fairly long. Bao Lac is located in Cao Bang Province, east of Ha Giang. Most of the hotels are located before the city center and have nice views of the river which flows silently towards the Nho Que River 12 km away. The town can be walked through in a couple of hours and there is a large market located next to the bridge. There are several pho stands in the city center, which also doubles as the bus station. The town does not see many tourists and has no attractions that would draw anyone there. It is merely a crossroads but as a result visitors won’t receive any pressure to buy anything and get only curious looks from the locals.
To get here from Meo Vac turn left after crossing the Nho Que River. It will be 12 km down highway 34, which means you’ll have to backtrack to the bridge the next day t o get to Ha Giang. If you want to press on to Ha Giang turn right after the bridge but be warned, it’s over 90 km back to Ha Giang and there is usually road construction.