Must Do Activities In Ninh Binh

Dec 13, 2023 - 134 Views

Ninh Binh is a playground for adventurers, and an oasis for nature lovers. Vietnam’s first capital was established here, and today the area is a protected UNESCO World Heritage Site, full of mossy pagodas, striking limestone karsts, and surreal landscapes. Ready for an adventure? Here are ten must-do activities when in Ninh Binh.

1. Wander the Bai Dinh Pagoda

Bai Dinh Pagoda is an enormous complex and the largest Buddhist temple in Southeast Asia. This singular attraction is a noted pilgrimage stop for Vietnamese Buddhists, and full to overflowing during Buddhist holidays. You’ll need lots of time to see the whole site. Expect to be awed by thousands of Buddha statues, elaborately carved bells and a 13-story watchtower, offering sweeping views of the countryside.

Ninh Binh Footprint Travel

Bai Dinh Pagoda

2. Cruise on a paddleboat tour in Trang An or Tam Coc

Some of Ninh Binh’s best scenery can only be accessed by boat. A paddleboat tour in Trang An or Tam Coc is an essential Ninh Binh experience. Your own boatman or woman will paddle you along the gentle current, in the shadow of enormous, jungle-covered karsts. The boats stop at temples and glide underneath grottoes along the way.

Ninh Binh Footprint Travel

Trang An Boat Tour

TIP: Make sure to pack a snack and bring some water on your boat tour — each one lasts two to three hours.

3. Stroll Through Hoa Lu Ancient Village

If walls could talk you’d want to know what Hoa Lu’s brick- and vine-covered structures would say. Located just 20 minutes by car from the Trang An area, this is the site of Vietnam’s very first capital city. Hoa Lu reached its peak in the 10th and 11th centuries, when the surrounding karst landscape offered natural protection from invaders. Today you can stroll through two atmospheric structures that survive from the old citadel. The compound’s leaning archways, layered banyan trees, and rolling brick courtyards will transport you back in time

Ninh Binh Footprint Travel

Hoa Lu Ancient Capital

4. Conquer the top of Hang Mua

Mua viewpoint is located at the top of a steep mountain, but the views are worth the 200,000 VND ticket, and the 500 steps up. From the top, you’ll be rewarded with a 360-degree view of Tam Coc valley. The viewpoint is sometimes covered in mist but wait for it to clear, and you’ll marvel at the patchwork quilt of green rice fields below and snaking rivers weaving in, out, and around the ancient karsts.

Ninh Binh Footprint Travel

Mua Cave View Point

5. Visit Bich Dong Pagoda – The Oldest Pagoda In Ninh Binh

Located at the foot of a large mountain, Bich Dong Pagoda’s ornate gate is one of the most iconic sights in Ninh Binh. A stone bridge spans a large lotus pond, which explodes with bright pink blossoms in the summer. Just beyond the gate is a tranquil courtyard and a traditional Buddhist temple. Follow the stairs up and around the mountain for stunning views, then look for two other temples embedded in the mountain, dating back to the 18th century.

Ninh Binh Footprint Travel

Bich Dong Pagoda

TIP: As with many Buddhist sites, Bich Dong Pagoda has a dress code that requires visitors to cover up their shoulders and knees. You’ll want comfortable hiking shoes for the trek up.

6. Hiking In Cuc Phuong National Park 

Only an hour away from Ninh Binh City, Cuc Phuong is one of the oldest national parks in Vietnam. A ticket to enter the park is just 60,000 VND. Inside you’ll have several stops to choose from, including rehabilitation centres for reptiles and primates, and trails inside the national park to visit a clutch of ancient trees, some more than 1,000 years old. Set aside half a day for a rejuvenating hike through the forest, then reward yourself with a local lunch inside the park.

Ninh Binh Footprint Travel

Ninh Binh Footprint Travel

 

 

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