Vietnam] Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park Free Travel Tips Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park | World's Largest Karst Landscape | Paradise Cave | Phong Nha Cave

Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park | Introduction

Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, also known as Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park or Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, is located in the center of Vietnam, about four hours drive from Hue, this nature reserve is famous for its spectacular cave system and the largest karst landscape in the world. Famous for its spectacular cave system and the world's largest karst landscape, this UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site covers an area of about 2,000 square kilometers and is adjacent to Laos. The area is a limestone mountainous region comprising more than 400 caves, the most famous being Hansong Cave (also known as Sansui Cave), the world's largest cave discovered in 2009, with a single cave at least five kilometers long.

The peak season in Phong Nga is from February to April, which is the dry season and the temperature is moderate. The most popular tourist attractions in Phong Nga are Paradise Cave, Phong Nga Cave and Black Cave, which are accessible to free travelers with the purchase of a ticket, and can be arranged as a one- or two-day itinerary. If you have many days and are physically fit, you can consider a deeper tour to the primitive caves. In order to protect the environment in Phong Nga, except for the three caves mentioned above, such as Paradise Cave, which can be entered by buying a ticket directly, the largest Han Song Cave, and other famous Heng Eun Cave and other caves can be entered exclusively by the Oxalis Travel Agency, and the easiest ones also require a long distance hiking trip, which can be as short as a whole day, or as long as five days, which is a perfect service but relatively expensive. The service is excellent but the cost is relatively high.

Phong Nga Kepong National Park | Transportation

If you want to save time, the easiest thing to do is to look for the best products from therationalizationA day trip is available. If you are planning to stay for a few more days, you can take a bus from Da Nang or Hue. If you are traveling from farther cities, flying is probably the most time-saving way. If you are flying to Phong Nga, you can take a plane to Dong Hoi airport, and then take a taxi from Dong Hoi city to Phong Nga city for about 40 minutes.

After arriving in the area, you can find a travel agency, charter a car, or rent a motorcycle and drive around. Phong Nga is a small place, so if it's more convenient, you can find a hotel that can help you rent a car.

Vietnam - Phong Nga Tourism | Phong Nga Tourist Information | Phong Nga Kepong National Park - 2 Days | Paradise Cave | Phong Nga Cave

Phong Nga Ki Peng National Park | Attractions

The three major attractions that tourists will visit in Phong Nga are Paradise Cave, Phong Nga Cave and Black Cave, all of which can be visited by buying tickets on your own. If you know how to ride a motorcycle, I recommend renting a car to go to Black Hole and Paradise Hole. The whole area around Phong Nga City is within the national park, refer to the map below, start from Phong Nga City, follow Highway 20 to Ho Chi Minh Highway, you can go around the whole area. In fact, many places on this highway are quite beautiful, it is considered a scenic road. Renting a car gives you more freedom to stop whenever you want to, and you can enjoy Phong Nga from a closer distance, and the view of the mountains is much more beautiful than when you are sitting in the car.

If you're riding a bike rather than driving, there's a shortcut to Ho Chi Minh Highway East, which passes over a railroad bridge for motorcycles and then goes straight through the fields, eventually connecting to Ho Chi Minh Highway West, so if you're worried about getting lost, you can download Google Maps on your phone. Phong Nha residents should travel this kind of road often, but for us city dwellers, it becomes an interesting experience. There is mud on the road, and there are also buffalos blocking the road, so we need to honk our horn to ask them to move out of the way.

A full tank of gas should definitely be enough for a round trip. The 125 we rented was actually in very poor condition, and we used about a quarter of a barrel of gas in about an hour while riding to Paradise Cave via the back roads.

There is still time after the circle, you can continue to go south towards 8 lady cave to see different scenery on the road. On the way, there are some small temples which can barely be considered as scenic spots, but in fact, these places are only secondary, the most important thing is to enjoy the scenery on the road, far from the city of Phong Nha the mountain scenery is more pristine, the Vietnamese tourism industry is working hard to develop it, and I don't know if I can still see the pristine landscape of the mountain range in a few years' time.

Attractions | Dark Cave

The Black Hole is most suitable for tourists who like excitement and know how to swim. You need to swim to enter the Black Hole, and the side is designed as a water play area, where you can play zip line, mud bath, diving, etc. However, the season is right. However, the season has to be right, when we came here in December, it was a very cold winter for the locals, so all the water activities were closed, and the black hole and the nearby MOOC Spring Eco trail were simply not open.

Phong Nha, Phong Nha, Phong Nha Kepong National Park 18

Attractions | Paradise Cave

Paradise Cave is a must-visit cave in Phong Nga. It is the longest single cave in the world, with an actual length of at least 31 kilometers, which is quite spectacular. If you come by bike, you can park at the entrance parking lot for VND 5k. Tickets cost VND250K and can be bought directly from the kiosk, although the information on the kiosk doesn't say so, and we got a 20% discount because it was low season when we visited. From the ticket booth to the entrance of the caves, there is still a long way to walk, if you really can't walk, you can buy an extra ticket to enter the cave by electric car. The trail is a bit similar to the Nature trail, it takes about 10 minutes to walk, and is actually quite easy to walk.

When you arrive at the entrance of Paradise Cave, the entrance seems small from the outside, but when you walk in, you realize that the cave is very big and amazing. Only the first kilometer of the cave is open to general tourists, and there is a small gate at the end of this kilometer of the trail, beyond which you need a professional guide to lead you. The caves in Phong Nga are formed by rivers eroding the limestone, but they can be roughly categorized into dry caves, which are dry, and river caves, which still have rivers flowing through them. Paradise Cave is the most accessible of the huge dry caves, and the cave is much wider than it looks in the photos.

The Vietnamese government has lined the caves with well-trodden paths and lighted them to make the atmosphere inside more intimidating and seemingly solemn. There are many strange and huge limestone formations to be seen, some of which have naturally formed layers of pools, due to the different sizes of the rivers that flowed during erosion. But if you're the first to enter this cave, you might actually think you've entered the realm of magic, no wonder it's named Paradise Cave.

The one kilometer road has to be walked quickly if you are in a group, and we have observed that groups only stay at this point for about an hour, which is not enough for those who walk slowly to enjoy the sights. Many of the large stone towers actually have Vietnamese names, such as the Kai Tien Pagoda. Those stalactites that gradually dissolve from the top to the bottom, one centimeter will take 100 years to grow, and the formation of this amazing cave will take millions of years.

Attractions | Phong Nha Cave

Peak Tooth Cave belongs to River Cave, most of the cave is still below the river, so you need to take a boat to enter. The trip takes about two and a half hours and is relatively easy, mainly by boat, and on the way back, you can walk the upper part of the cave. According to the local people, the name of Phong Nga means "Windy Tooth" in Vietnamese, the wind refers to the sound of the wind that can be heard from the entrance of Phong Nga Cave in winter, and the tooth describes the shape of the stalactites.

Phong Nha, Phong Nha, Phong Nha Kepong National Park 55

The ticket counter is located at the intersection of Phong Nga City, and both tickets and boat tickets are sold together. Tickets are 200kK and 20% off in low season, while boat tickets are priced by boat, with a maximum of 12 people per boat of 55kK. If the number of people coming is small, you can share the boat with other travelers. Although it was low season, we told the lady at the ticket counter that we would like to share the boat with other people. We waited for less than a minute and there was a Vietnamese family with 5 people, the lady at the ticket counter explained to us and we were able to share the boat. The boat ride to the mouth of Phong Nga Cave took about 25 minutes, and the river and mountain views along the way were quite beautiful.

The boat went all the way to the entrance of the cave. After entering the cave, the motor was closed and the boat was paddled by hand. The front part of the cave is very narrow and the water level is high, so the aunty who rows the boat needs to stand up and use her hands to support the ceiling to control the direction of travel, which is very adventurous. After crossing the entrance of the cave, the interior is quite spectacular, the shape of the stone pillars in the cave in the imagination of the Vietnamese, some of them are like children in the cave, some of them are faces on the top of the cave, lions, Buddha and so on. If you are interested in the story, you can look for a tour guide, we traveled with the Vietnamese tourists are very enthusiastic, and occasionally use Google translate to illustrate with us.

The boat swung around to the end of the deep end of the cave and turned back, then docked in the middle of the cave for us to disembark and walk back to the entrance of the cave and then take the boat back to the departure point. This is a short walk, and like Paradise Cave, it's a bit of a work of art, but the terrain is slightly different. The water patterns on the rocks were more pronounced, and the pillars were thick and green in many places.

More Tours | Caving

In addition to the Paradise Cave and other caves, if you have already spent time in Phong Nga, it is highly recommended that you visit the original caves in depth if your time, money, and physical strength permit. Phong Nga has one of the largest karst landscapes in the world, and the caves have more than 400 in 2022 after only 40% has been explored so far. Although Paradise Cave and Phong Nga Cave are both very large, there are many more exciting caves, and in Phong Nga, there are open to the general public exploration tours byOxalisExclusively offered by a company guided by a British expedition team, their itinerary includes the world's largest cave, Hansong Cave, which is more difficult and takes four days and three nights to complete. The less difficult Hang Eun Cave, the third largest in the world, also takes two days and one night.

The itinerary includes rappelling, swimming, traversing through very narrow caves, climbing and so on. We traveled to The Horn of Africa in December because of time constraints and the cold weather was not suitable for swimming, so we only participated in two day trips to Oxalis which were simpler and included rappelling, climbing and so on, which were solid adventures. This part of the itinerary I've learned inThis articleShare in this article. What we can confirm from our own experience is that caving trips for the average person definitely require the assistance of a professional team. The price of the trip is not cheap, but the service provided by a professional team is definitely worth it.

Monya City | Food, Clothing & Transportation

If you are planning to stay in Bong Nga Kilbong for more than a few days, there are two choices of accommodation, either staying close to Bong Nga City or staying about 40 minutes farther away in the larger city of Dong Hoi.

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I recommend staying in Phong Nha City, not only because of its proximity, but also because this rural urban area is very different from other tourist cities in Vietnam. Phong Nha is a small place, according to the local residents, it was very poor until 2010, until 2011, when the discovery of the world's largest cave became a real world famous tourist attraction, then it began to seriously operate the tourism industry, most of the residents are still engaged in agriculture. Most of the residents are still engaged in farming. Even the foreign-speaking tour guides are farmers. If you have been to other famous tourist attractions in Vietnam, you will find that the atmosphere of this place is completely different, not to mention that you can see a large area of countryside scenery at any time on the roadside, and the people are also very, very simple.

One of the drawbacks of a small place is that there are fewer options for food, clothing and transportation, but it's not an inconvenience. When we wanted to buy something on the spot, we found a grocery store on the side of the road, and the prices were not too expensive, at least the snacks were cheaper than the ones sold in the hotel.

Hotel | Victory Road Villas

  • Room Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
  • Facility Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
  • Convenience: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
  • Price: $$
  • Overall Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

The hotel we stayed at this time was Victory Road Villas, which is considered to be on the expensive side in Phong Nga. It is a little bit away from the busiest part of the city, but we didn't feel inconvenienced because we either rode our bikes or the travel agency came to pick us up and drop us off. Apart from all the facilities, my favorite part of the hotel is the view of the river outside.

The interior of the room is very large, totaling two floors, with a living room, kitchen, dining room, and even an outdoor bath.

After a multi-day stay, we had one dinner and three days of breakfast in the hotel restaurant. Breakfast was included in the cost of the stay and was served a la carte, with a good selection of Vietnamese and Western dishes, as well as Western choices at a very high a la carte price, which tasted very good.

Victory Road Villas Booking Comparison

Recommended Restaurants | Thang Nhung Restaurant

  • Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
  • Price: $

 Thang Nhung is located just a block away from the ticket office in Phong Nga Cave, and looks like a small, unassuming roadside restaurant. The owner doesn't speak much English, but the menu is in both English and pictures, so it's not difficult for foreigners to order. There are many kinds of dishes here, including fried rice and Vietnamese rice noodles, but the must-try is the village-style roast pork. The first time we came here, we ordered pork fried rice and rice noodles mixed with beef and pork, and because the roast pork was so delicious, we came back from the hotel for a second time. The second time, we ordered roast pork rice and pork noodles, which were superb with a little chili sauce.

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