Covering an area of nearly 3,000ha, about 90km south of Hanoi, the wetland of Van Long is the largest nature reserve in the northern plain. There you may be attracted by daily activities of the rural people, images of rural girls rowing simple bamboo boats with poles, and ox carts carrying visitors around…
08:30am Leave Hanoi for Van Long natural reserve. Upon arrival, we will have a sampan boat trip to discover the amazing scenery of this natural reserve.
With an area of 3,500ha, Van Long is the largest wetland natural reserve in Red River Delta and is considered as “Waveless bay” with tranquil water surface like a giant mirror reflecting spectacular natural sceneries. Here, the boats will take visitors around the lagoon to contemplate limestone mountains named according their shapes as Meo Cao (Cat), Mam Xoi (Glutinous Rice Tray), Hom Sach (Book Trunk), Da Ban (Rook Table), Nghien (Slab), Co Tien (Fairy)… There are 32 beautiful and specific caves inside these limestone mountains, such as Bong, Rua, Chanh, Doi…, of which Ca Cave in Hoang Quyen Mountain Range is the most impressive. The cave is 250m long, 8m high, 10m wide with half floating structure and has many stalactites of various forms.
Going deeper into the lagoon, the riotousness of modern life is gradually replaced by the sounds of oar, fishes, amphibians, hubbub grass in the wind. Under clear water, mosses and algae winding intermittently according to waves make a charming and lively natural picture.
Continue onto Ninh Binh town with stop for lunch at a local restaurant
Drive to Phat Diem. The Phat Diem Stone Cathedral is an extremely artistic, cultural and religious work of Luu Phuong commune, Kim Son district. The site is not only a harmonious combination between the architecture of Asian pagodas and European church but also shows skillful techniques of Vietnamese artisans since the 19th century (1875-1899). The Phát Diệm Cathedral is located in Kim Sơn District of Ninh Bình Province of Vietnam. The architecture of Phát Diệm church, built in stone in 1892 is a blend of Vietnamese and European architectural styles called the “eclectic architectural style”. The Cathedral was bombed on 1972 when its west wall, the convents and two of the schools were damaged; after restoration there are no tell-tale marks of this bombing. Although a church, it was built with pagoda type roofs in traditional Vietnamese temple architecture.
Van Long is home to 39 species of mammals, 72 species of birds, 32 species of reptiles and amphibians, 44 species of fishes, 39 aquatic species and 79 species of insects, many of which are listed in Viet Nam Red Book such as cobra, chamois, iguana…
You can also visit the Kim Son local market which is well known for mats hand making
Drive back to Hanoi and arrive in Hanoi at 17:30 pm. End of services.
- All transportation and transfers in private vehicle
- English/French speaking guide
- All admission fees and permits
- Reasonable supply of drinking water during the trek.
- Personal expenses
- Tips and Gratuities
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