Where can you find the breath-taking landscapes in Vietnam? The best answer for you is Phong Nha Cave. Moreover, Phong Nha Cave is really a fascinating attraction for tourists to enjoy the significant vacations. After knowing more about Phong Nha, you will be impressive and want to have a trip to Phong Nha Cave right now. For this reason, we find and summarize travel experience to Phong Nha for your adventure. It is really worth spending your time and money to travel Phong Nha Cave – The Wonder of The Creator.
PHONG NHA CAVE OVERVIEW
Phong Nha Cave is a cave in Phong Nha – Ke Bang National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Quang Binh Province, Vietnam. Located in Son Trach Commune, Bo Trach District, Quang Binh Province, around 40 km North-West of Dong Hoi city, this cave was covered by rain forests and considered as “Thien Nam the first cave” of Vietnam.
According to scientists, the weathering process creating the cave in Phong Nha was the natural process that happened 250 million years ago. The main terrain form of Phong Nha- Ke Bang is limestone mountains and soil mountains with the average height of 600m. With 7.729 in length, 83m in depth and 50m in height, Phong Nha has various small and large grottos, including Bi Ki Grotto, Tien Grotto (Fairy Gotto) and Cung Dinh Grotto (Royal Grotto).
This is the kind of cave having undergrounds water in mountain’s entrails with specific stalactites. Additionally, this amazing cave’s underground river was ranked as one of the longest underground river in the world. Legend has it that stalagmites hanging down the cave’s entrance inspired the interesting name “Phong Nha”, meaning “Wind and Teeth”. In particular, it is famous for its rock formations, so it has given names such as the “Lion”, the “Fairy Cave”, the “Royal Court”, and the “Buddha”.
This cave was also voted as one of the most wonderful caves in the world for seven criteria:
- The longest subterranean river
- The highest and widest entrance
- The most beautiful sand and rock banks
- The most beautiful subterranean lake
- The widest and most beautiful dry branch cave
- The most significant and fanciful stalactites and stalagmites
- The longest water cave
BEST TIME TO TRAVEL TO PHONG NHA CAVE AND THE ENTRANCE FEE
QUANG BINH lies in the tropical monsoon region and is always influenced by the Northern and Southern climate, hence it is divided into two seasons:
Dry season (April to August): is an ideal time to enjoy the adventure tour in Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park. The temperature outside is 36-37 degree Celsius while the temperature in the cave is 20-21 degree Celsius that is cool and comfortable.
Rainy season (September to March): features the North-East monsoon, and the average rainfall is 2.000mm-2.3000mm/year. In rainy and stormy season, it is hard to discover because water from Son River rises up and floods the cave’s entrance.
+ Adult: 150.000 VND/ pax
+ Chidren (1.1m to 1.3m): 80.000 VND/ pax
+ Children (<1.1m): Free
Boat ticket: 360.000VNĐ/ boat
You can buy both tickets in Phong Nha – Ke Bang Tourism Center. The maximum number of people in a boat is 12 and the minimum is 1. Don’t need to book in advance, Phong Nha – Ke Bang Tourism Center will provide when you need, so don’t worry about decoy or cheating.
HOW TO GET TO PHONG NHA CAVE?
With our travel experience to Phong Nha, there are many means of transport to travel Phong Nha Cave. You can transfer by train, airport, bus, motorbike or car to get there; however, if you rent a private car to go, the rider will take you to right Phong Nha Cave. And if you travel by other transports, you will be taken to Dong Hoi City, then you must continue moving by other ways: bus, motorbike rental, taxi to reach Phong Nha Cave.
By Private Car
Although bus or train travel is cheaper than private car, private car is for those who want space. Taken on the car, you can visit famous and spectacular places on the way to Phong Nha. The rider knows to show you explore and give you explanations during the move, furthermore you will be taken right Phong Nha Cave. For this reason, private car is a perfect idea.
Bus seems to be the easiest and cheapest choice to move to Phong Nha. You can choose bus if your time is limited. There are many buses with various departure time for you to choose.
Going by train is also a good option. You can book a train from your location to Dong Hoi City. Train departures with different time for you to decide, and there are two kinds of seats, including hard seat and soft seat.
It’s free to go by scooters wherever you want. Riding a motorbike is very wonderful because you can admire the countryside along the way. Moreover, enjoying the wind and atmosphere while driving is an unforgettable experience. Motorbike rental service is available for you to move.
If you are in Hue city and you want to transfer to Phong Nha, you can visit our Best ways to travel from Hue to Phong Nha – Ke Bang to get a specific schedule for your travel.
WHAT TO DO IN PHONG NHA CAVE?
Coming to Phong Nha, visitors continue to travel by boat. It takes you about 30 minutes to go along Son River and enter Phong Nha Cave. Son River is about 35-40m in width, and is very limpid and pure so that you can clearly see schools of fish swimming. There are also green mountains along the two banks of the river. Besides, when travelling by boat, you are able to see some small boats catching fish, picking moss or see herds of bull drinking water,… This creates a peaceful scenery and makes viewers remember a beautiful village in their memory.
THE CAVE’S ENTRANCE
Reaching to the cave’s mouth, the boatman will turn off the engine and use paddles to keep going into the cave. In the cave’s entrails, the sultry atmosphere of summer immediately disappears because the temperature in cave is 17-19 degree Celsius. You will be comfortable and reduce your tiredness. Especially, when you come near its mouth, you can go up the bank, then walk to discover stalagmites and stalactites in different shapes. Here it is seen as a home for variety of animals to live under the sunlight. In hot days, animals often find their shelter in the cave, so visitors can see these animals: birds, monkey, fish, insects,…
BI KI GROTTO
Contrary to the tranquil scenery outside, travelling deep into the cave, the darkness makes the shimmer of stalactites twinkling, creating a mystic scenery. Going over 600m to the current of water, you will be amazed by the gorgeous scenes of the Bi Ki Grotto. This grotto is 130m in height and large like a big hall, and its underneath foundation is a smooth sand layer. Therefore, it is also called as Hall Grotto.
Besides, Bi Ki Grotto is one of the grottos owning the best admirable stalactite in Phong Nha, as well as received the best favour from nature. It is difficult to exactly describe the amazing beauty of limestone corridors with full stalactites, which are sparkling under the torchlight of the underground water. Thus, someday you should try to discover a beautiful and diversified Vietnam by yourself.
FAIRY GROTTO AND ROYAL GROTTO
Moving further, tourists will turn towards Fairy Grotto and Royal Grotto. Their pillars of stalactites have the high of 20m created by nature. Also, they are two typical grottos of Phong Nha Cave, which own the magical stalactite system, along with thousands of masterpieces created by The Creator. This brings the countless fascinating and unique images that you can’t forget.
In Fairy Grotto, nature created the shape of fairies with burnished long and blonde hair on cliffs. Moreover, Royal Grotto has the throne-shaped stalactites, carved finely by nature. If you lightly knock on the fret-shaped string of stalactites, you will feel like enjoying the melodies of the T’rung (a musical instrument similar to the xylophone).
RECOMMENDED NEARBY DESTINATIONS IN PHONG NHA – KE BANG
Apart from Phong Nha Cave, there are many popular and must-go places for tourists to explore in Phong Nha – Ke Bang. Let’s search for them and plan an unforgettable trip in Vietnam, especially in Quang Binh!!
About 20km further from Phong Nha Cave, Paradise Cave is one of the most tourist attractions in the area. It lies in the entrails of limestone mountain population with the height of 191m, and is surrounded by the primeval forest of Phong Nha – Ke Bang National Park. In addition, Paradise Cave is rated as the longest dry cave in South East Asian. Its length is 31.4km, the width is 30-100m, and the height from bottom to ceiling is about 60m. This one is longer than Phong Nha Cave, furthermore the limestone formation is more spectacular than that of Phong Nha Cave.
Entering the cave, explorers will be amazed by numberless stalagmites and stalactites in various shapes, making them imagine vividly. The magnificent cave is called as the “Royal in the Earth’s womb”, too. It is a magical!. Also, it brings a fantastic beauty that the Vietnamese proud of it.
The Entrance ticket: 250.000VND/pax
DARK CAVE IN CHAY RIVER
Dark Cave is a branch of the cave system of Phong Nha, and is the most popular destination in the area. Its gate is 20m in width and 40m in height. Moreover, it is both wet and dry cave with the length of 5.258m and the height of 80m. There is no artificial light installed inside the cave, and the rocks inside are dark, grey or black. This is the reason why it has the name like that. Dark Cave has still been pristine with specific and diversified stalactites pillars. Many kinds of animals live inside like bats and swallows, also. With a high humidity, the stalactites and stalagmites are covered by a large amount of moss, creating a specific green.
In this trip, you will have chances to experience zip lining and rowing the kayak. Its water temperature is about 18 degree Celsius, a very cool atmosphere. Furthermore, there is a natural mud-bath at the end of the narrow passage, which is very good for your skin. Another interesting thing for you to discover further is ancient fossils which were over a million years ago.
The Entrance ticket:
- Adult: 450.000 VND/pax (including kayak, zip lining, mud-bath, equipment, and other activities)
- Children (1.1m-1.3m): 110.000 VND/pax (only water games, not including adventure games)
- Children (<1m): Free (only use the swimming pool for children)
NUOC MOOC SPRING
Nuoc Mooc Spring is about 3km from the Paradise Cave, and has the wonderful natural landscape by the ecosystem diversity. Come here, you will enjoy fascinating experiences. This destination is really suitable for new experience during a hot summer. The temperature of the spring water is about 20 degree Celsius. Surrounded by majestic mountains together with the tranquil water, the scenery is like a fairy-land so that you will be full of admiration and want to stay longer. This a great place for you to relax when traveling a long distance.
The Entrance ticket:
- Adult: 80.000 VND/pax
- Children (1.1m-1.3m): 50.000 VND/pax
- Children (<1.1m): Free
WHERE TO STAY?
There are many places with different price to stay nearby Phong Nha – Ke Bang Nation Park, you can see some good suggestions below:
Address: Chay Lap Village, Phuc Trach Commune, Bo Trach District, Quang Binh Province.
Price: 800.000 VND
+ It’s 14km from Phong Nha Cave, 8km from Paradise Cave, and 5km from Nuoc Mooc Spring. It’s also 57km far away from Dong Hoi Airport, 54km from Dong Hoi Train Station.
+ Free Breakfast, Free Wifi, Swimming Pool.
Address: Ha Loi Village, Son Trach Commune, Bo Trach District, Quang Binh Province
+ It’s 32km far from Dong Hoi Airport.
+ Free wifi, Free breakfast, Safe Parking
+ Have the yard, garden and balcony
Address: Son Tien Village, Son Trach Commune, Bo Trach District, Quang Binh Province
Price: 423.960 VND
+ It’s 31,4km far away from Dong Hoi airport
+ Free wifi, free breakfast, free parking
+ Have bar/living room, swimming pool, BBQ, bicycle rental
Address: Phong Nha Town, Son Trach Commune, Bo Trach District, Quang Binh Province
+ It’s 32km far from Dong Hoi Airport
+ Free breakfast, free wifi.
+ Have a restaurant serving Asian cuisine, including vegan food
+Have play-ground for children, swimming pool, bar, bicycle and car rental.
Stay in Dong Hoi city is also a good choice for you. You can visist Nhat Le Beach at night, enjoy sea food, taste local cuisine as well. And it is convenient for you to travel to train station, bus station or airport.
Address: 119 Truong Phap Street, Hai Thanh Ward, Dong Hoi City, Quang Binh Province.
+ It’s 6km far from Dong Hoi airport and train station, and 50km from Phong Nha Cave and Paradise Cave.
+ It’s opposite Nhat Le Beach, it takes you 5 minutes to walk.
+ Free wifi, free parking, free breakfast
+ Have swimming pool, bar, spa service and fitness center
Address: Tran Hung Dao Street, Bao Ninh Commune, Dong Hoi City, Quang Binh Province
+ It’s next to Nhat Le Beach
+ Free wife, free breakfast, parking and have bar
Address: 56 Nguyen Du, Dong My Ward, Dong Hoi City, Quang Binh Province
+ It’s 850m far from Nhat Le Beach and 5km from Dong Hoi Airport
+ Free wifi, free breakfast, free parking
WHERE TO EAT?
Phong Nha- Ke Bang National Park has the plentiful system of rivers and springs, so ingredients have its special taste different from other places. When coming here, you shouldn’t miss to enjoy folk food of this land.
Here are some specialities that you should try:
+ Tarpon hotpot: is one of the best dishes in Quang Binh. The fish is both sweet and leathery.
Place to eat:
- Lau Binh An Restaurant: 49 Ba Trieu Lane, Dong Hoi City
- Minh Ha Restaurant: Truong Phap Street, Dong Hoi City
- Anh Dao Restaurant: 27 Phan Boi Chau Street, Dong Hoi City
+ Pancake: is made of rice flour, dried turmerich starch, shrimp, pork, bean sprout
Place to eat:
- Tu Quy Restaurant: Co Tam Street, Hai Ninh Ward, Dong Hoi City
- Co Nam Restaurant: 13 Tran Hung Dao Street, Dong Hoi City
+ Oyster Soup, oyster porridge, roasted oyster with onion: are sweet in taste and much nutritions
Place to eat:
- Nghe Tam Restaurant: Quan Hau Town, Quang Ninh District
- Hoa Huong Restaurant: Quan Hau Town, Quang Ninh District
- Thuy Duong Stall: Phan Boi Chau Street, Dong Hoi City
+ Loc Cake: includes shrimp, mushroom and tapioca; it is simple but nutrious.
Place to eat:
- Me Xuan Stall: Le Thanh Dong Street, Dong Hoi City
- Di Thuy Stall: 11 Thanh Nien Street, Dong Hoi City