Located 300km from Hanoi, Lao Cai can be reached by car or train. There is National Highway No.70, 279, 4D linking Lao Cai to Yen Bai, Lai Chau and Ha Giang, China in turn. There are two trains depart from Hanoi daily to Lao Cai.
The Hanoi-Lao Cai railway is 296 kilometres (184 mi), of which 62 kilometres (39 mi) is in the province, and links to Chinese railways at the border. It can carry 1 billion tonnes of freight per year and thousands per day. Plans for a high-speed rail link between Hanoi and Lao Cai has been investigated by the Ministry of Transport and the Asian Development Bank. This is expected to create a high-speed rail corridor from Kunming – Lào Cai – Hanoi – Haiphong.
The provincial city is connected by road, rail and river transport links with Hanoi on its northwest (340 kilometres (210 mi)) and to Yunnan province in China. Within the province, road links exist to Sapa and Bac Ha. The Haiphong railway to Yunnan is of strategic importance. There are four national highways totaling to a length of 400 km, provincial roads of about 300 km length and 1000 km of village roads.