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Why Tam Coc - Bich Dong is special ?
Landscape of Bich Cave was dubbed “The Nam Thien II” (the second beautiful cave in Vietnam). In 1773, Mr. Nguyen Nghiem (the father of a celebrated Vietnamese poet-Nguyen Du) visited the cave. Sighting view of mountains, rivers, water, rice fields… with blue color so that he named the cave with a beautiful and poetic name “Bich Cave”. Here, visitors can visit the temple; a small boat will take visitors to explore the magical cave. Bich Cave is one of the most famous scenic spots of Ninh Binh, located in Ngu Nhac Son Mountains, belonging to Dam Khe village, Ninh Hai commune, Hoa Lu district.
Bich Dong means “Green Grotto” or “Pearl Grotto”, which reveals its magnificient natural beauties. Colors, shapes, and sounds of the shining stalactites converges in such a captivating miracle that no one could refuse to touch, knock and contemplate them in deed.
What to explore at Tam Coc - Bich Dong?
From Bich Cave, tourists can continued use boat to visit Tam Coc. Tam Coc means three grottos: Ca grotto, Hai grotto and Ba grotto. When the boat comes into three grottos, tourists will feel cool. Stalactites from the ceiling like iridescent pearls. This grotto is adorned with beautiful stalactites and stalagmites of different shapes and colours that sparkle like gemstones. Now when drifting along the gentle Ngo Dong River under the Grotto, you can feel the deeply pure atmosphere with special smell of fresh rivers water and cool air from karst mountains when reaching each of the 3 caves in turns.
Tourists visit Tam grotto by only single path on the water and take about 2 hours. The small boats will take visitors to discover Ca grotto-the biggest grotto in three grottos with 127 meters length. It is under a big mountain which across the Ngo Dong river. Tourists will feel fresh and cool air. Continuing the journey, visitors can sight Hai grotto and Ba grotto. Two grottos are shorter than Ca grotto. The adventurous tourists can continue explore Tien stream and join adventurous journey with climbing into Noi Lam Temple.
Entrance fee (Tam Grotto): 30.000vnd/people
Price of hiring boat: 80.000vnd/people
Entrance fee ( Bich Cave): 10.000 vnd/people
Foreign people: 2 people/boat
Vietnamese: 4 people/boat
Ninh Binh, Viet Nam
Tips for you
Tam Coc is considered the "Ha Long Bay on land". One can take a sampan 2 hour ride down the river through rice fields, caves and between the limestone pillars. Plenty of opportunity for pictures. In our 23 day trip in Vietnam, this was one of the top 3 things that we visited/experienced. Worth the trip even in rain (bring an umbrella and poncho).
If you visit Vietnam, do NOT miss the Tam Coc area. It's a dream of Southeastern Asia, complete with emerald green rice paddies and jagged karst limestone mountains. To ride a bike through the lanes and fields is to experience Vietnam at its most beautiful. The rivers are amazing--I recommend both the Tam Coc river trip and the Trang An river. On the Tam Coc, you travel through a narrow river valley, pushed along by women rowing with their feet. It's about one and a half hours. Make sure to stop for a drink on the terrace of Tam Coc Bungalows. Magic! The Trang An river trip is equally beautiful, but different. The river is wider, and you see several peaceful and isolated pagodas along the way. Your boat driver will stop to allow you to briefly explore the temples. It's quite a local Vietnamese scene, often combined with a visit to the spectacular Bai Dinh temple complex. I count this area In the top five travel experiences I've been lucky to have.