Southeast Asia 2023 – Vietnam: Ninh Binh

Coming down from the high mountains on the Hà Giang Loop, I spent a few days in the bustling capital city of Hanoi before continuing south to the quieter city of Ninh Bình. I visited the UNESCO World Heritage Sites at Tràng An and Tam Coc to see more karst limestone mountains and caves that can only be reached by guided rowboats. They are very popular with tourists, so it felt crowded initially, but once the boats spread out on the river and we entered the caves, we on our boat felt quite alone. The quietness of nature around us was much appreciated.

Tràng An Grottoes Tour

Tam Coc

Vietnam was very hot at this time of year, but the buffalo found a way to cope.

My ankle had improved enough to get out on some trails, including a day trip to nearby Cúc Phương National Park, Vietnam’s first national park. Our small guided group hiked to the “Thousand Year Old Tree,” the “Prehistoric Man Cave,” and, most impressively, the “Endangered Primate Rescue Center.”

Author: Chris

Until 2019, I served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Namibia focused on Community Economic Development. Before that, I was a high-tech executive, small business owner, consultant and business broker.

6 thoughts on “Southeast Asia 2023 – Vietnam: Ninh Binh”

  1. You must not be claustrophobic, Chris!
    Some of those cave ceilings look pretty low-
    I like the fact that the little tour boats were not mechanized. The guides must be strong to row people around all day!
    Thanks for broadening our horizons once more-

    1. Hi, Mark! The guides are strong, indeed, and very skillful and friendly. As big a crowd of tourists as it draws, I thought each guide must complete 2-3 tours each day. I was very surprised to learn that it is such a popular job, that my guide was lucky to get just 2-3 trips per week through the rotation system.

  2. Dear Chris,
    so many beautiful fotos and captured nature scenes.
    Me lakesides, countryside an mountains are so impressive.
    I have the impression that some of the videos gave the deepest insight into country you ever gave

    Interesting yet a bit of a saddening update of these pretty primates.
    I liked the one with the Bermuda shorts most, after the Queen of primates.
    Humongous size of a praying mantis.

    Again a pleasure to read

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