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Boat ride to Trang An complex
1. Trang An weather – Best Time To Visit
The period from January to March is the most appropriate time to visit Trang An Ninh Binh Vietnam. At this time, the weather is not too cold but blue and a little rainy so it is favorable for taking a boat and sightseeing the spectacular landscapes. This time is also the season of festivals, hence, tourists can combine visiting and joining festivals or going to pagodas for praying.
Check the weather before visiting Trang An
If you come here in the time between July and September, you can seek a chance to enjoy the charm of the ripe rice paddy fields in Ninh Binh Trang An. For those who are keen on observing ripe yellow paddies on a boat, you can’t miss this time. In June, the weather is so hot but the sky is blue and a little rainy. In addition, this is also the season of lotus blossoms, which is very suitable for traveling.
In November and December, the weather is bad and heavily rainy, thus, you should avoid visiting Trang An at that time.
2. How To Get To Trang An from Hanoi?
Located about 300 meters to the south from the center of Hanoi, you can reach Ninh Binh by many means of transportation such as train, passenger car and private vehicles. The way from Ninh Binh city to Trang An is also not difficult to transfer.
On the passenger car, you can catch a lot of cars back to Ninh Binh at My Dinh bus station. Ticket price is about VND 80,000/ 1 person. Travel time only takes about 2 hours.
From Hoan Kiem Lake to My Dinh bus station
Getting Around Ninh Binh Trang An By Boat Tour
Tourists who love river and mountain tourism will have time to enjoy the feeling of sitting on a boat floating on the river and passing through 12 caves and 3 spiritual places in three hours. Departing from the central ship port, you can capture lots of beautiful pictures when stopping by Dia Linh cave, Toi cave, Sang cave and Nau Ruou cave.
Or you can try to ride on your own
Afterward, you get out the boat and climb about 500 steps to enter Tran Temple. To continue the journey, tourists will take the boat to Sing cave, Ba Giot cave, Seo cave and Son Duong cave. Then you head to Khong Palace, Bao Hieu Temple then continue visiting Khong cave, Tran cave and Quy Lau cave and come back the starting point.
3. What To See in Trang An Grottoes Ninh Binh
The entrance price of Trang An is 200.000 VND/adult. The price level includes the ticket of a boat trip in Trang An by waterway across Sao Khe river. Every boat has the capacity of about 4-5 people and the journey lasts approximately 3-4 hours.
Boat trip across Sao Khe river
Natural Karst Tower in Trang An Landscape Complex
Natural Karst Tower is also the reason why Trang An is called “Halong Bay on land”. The scenery of karst mountains here look just like in Halong Bay and both are an awe-inspiring sight.
Some of the limestone shapes resemble the mythical swords and mighty power of the king and his nation – a reason for the king to move the capital to this area. Some of the karst towers collapse within itself and create such mysterious caves inside, which are accessible for visitors by riverboat.
Karst towers collapse and create mysterious caves
Tropical Forests and Rivers in Trang An Landscape Complex
Immense rain forest, plant and moss cover the landscape, blending with the vast paddy fields below. Rivers cross rivers and rice fields, wrapping themselves around the base of the majestic karst towers.
The river system in Trang An is very diverse with the north bordered by Hoang Long River, the east by the Chanh River, the south by the He river and the west by Ben Dang river. Some of the rivers unite in the center of the heritage site, becoming a convenient traveling path for tourists.
Tribal Village in Kong: Skull Island Movie
As said before, Trang An has become a movie set for the Hollywood movie Kong: Skull Island. The film set is still preserved and now opened for everyone to visit. The movie set is set up like a tribal village that consists of about 40 huts made of bamboo which are built alternately on both sides, and in the middle is the stone road. Another special thing is that many locals dress up like the aborigines in the movie, from faces to dresses, and sit in huts that make visitors feel like they are living in the movie.
Kong film set – a famous attraction in Ninh Binh
Trinh Temple, the one-thousand-year scared temple in Trang An
Trinh Temple is the place to honor two meritorious officials in Dinh dynasty: Ta Thanh Tru and Huu Thanh Tru. These people are two generals in charge of managing the gold warehouse of the King. According to the legend, when King Dinh Tien Hoang goes to the West, they take King Dinh Toan in here to escape the chase of Le Hoan. When the mother of King Duong Van Nga descends the throne for General Le Hoan, they make a disagreement and commit suicide in this area. To express respects for two generals, the people build a temple located behind the mountainsides to honor them.
This is the place dedicated to Quy Minh God, the god protecting the frontier passage in the southern Hoa Lu Ancient Capital. The festival of Tran Temple Ninh Binh occurs on March 18th annually along with ancient Hoa Lu capital festival and Bai Dinh pagoda festival, considered big festivals in Ninh Binh. If you have a chance to visit Trang An at that time, you can immerse yourself into the festive atmosphere of this sacred temple.
Dragon carved on stone at Tran temple
Khong Palace is situated in the small land strip on the back of Khong cave, with rocky mountains on the right and extensive valleys in the front. This destination is where to honor seven loyal mandarins in the Dinh dynasty, related to the legend when King Dinh Tien Hoang goes to the West. The people build a temple and plant a diospyros decandra in the front of the palace’s gate to memorize these loyal mandarins. The charm of Khong Palace makes tourists overwhelmed and respectful.
Khong Palace situated in the small land strip on the back of Khong cave
Trang An Caves
- Dia Linh Cave
The first destination in the journey from the ship port is Dia Linh cave. This cave has a length of 260 meters with a variety of mysterious stalactites. Coming here, tourists seem to get lost in a treasure of mysterious and unique stalactites. You can freely enjoy the charming and impressive water-color painting when standing in the front of the cave’s gate. There is nothing more amazing than capturing beautiful selfie pictures, right?
- Nau Ruou Cave
Nau Ruou Cave has the underground with its depth of more than 10 meters. The legend shows that the ancient ancestors enter this cave to collect water for making wine for the King. You can look at yourself through the mysterious reflection in the clean and beautiful water. It is regarded as one of the most beautiful Trang An grottoes.
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- Ba Giot Cave
Ba Giot Cave has a variety of colorful stalactites. Unlike other caves, the stalactites in Ba Giot cave is not dry but wet and continuing to transform into strange and unique shapes. Sinh cave, Si cave and Ba Giot cave are closely related to a legend of a sad love story. A long time ago, there is a boy that loves a princess head over heels. When he brings betrothal gifts to Sinh cave to propose marriage to this princess, she is paid tribute for a neighboring country. Then he comes to Ba Giot to take a shower, drowning himself in Si cave with his profound love. It is a common belief that if one comes across Ba Giot cave and catches three water drops from the stalactites in his palm, he will be lucky in his life and happy in his love forever.
An experience by “thehungrywanderlustcouple”
4. What To Eat in Trang An grottoes?
When traveling Trang An, you can’t miss delicious dishes of Ninh Binh province. You can enjoy the crispy flavor of fat and yellow burned rice or the buttery taste of fried glutinous rice, the sour flavor of vinegar combining with the peppery of ginger, garlic, pepper and chili, which harmoniously create “goi nhech”. Or the taste of unique guava leaves contributes to the beautiful outlook of best Ninh Binh fermented pork roll (nem chua).
Besides, you can seek an opportunity to enjoy many Ninh Binh specialties such as Hoa Lu goat meat, boiled snails, shrimps dried with lolot leaves, Tong Truong Anabas sour soup, To Nhu meat-pie noodles, Nho Quan ant egg sticky rice, Gia Vien tiny shrimp sauce, Nho Quan wine and floating rice cake. These are some of Ninh Binh cuisine that you should try immediately when setting your foot on Trang An.
5. Some Tips When Visiting Trang An Grottoes Vietnam
- If you visit Trang An in summer, you should prepare a hat and sun-block cream. Otherwise, if you come here in the rainy season, bring a raincoat to avoid the weather’s effects on your visit.
- The water in Trang An is relatively deep and the transportation is mainly boat so remember to wear life jackets which provided with your boating ticket (of course you can take it off for taking pictures). Besides, don’t forget to prepare water for your journey!
- Before buying something, you had better ask carefully about the price to avoid scams.
- When visiting Trang An, if you want to stop somewhere to take photos, you can ask for the boatman.
- All information for Ninh Binh, Vietnam