"Hoa Lu & Tam Coc" Ninh Binh by dinhyen

Ninh Binh Travel Guide: 50 reviews and 224 photos

There are 3 locations in this southern edge of the Red River delta that tourists would most likely visit. Hoa Lu is the ancient capital of Vietnam, preceding Thang Long (present-day Hanoi), dating to the 10th century. Here you can find temples and shrines dedicated to the Dinh and Le kings. Hoa Lu's mountainous terrain offered it excellent defensive capability against an invaders. However, it also limited commercial development, a primary factor leading to the relocation of the capital to Thang Long. Legends has it that the king Dinh Tien Hoang, as a boy, would organize mock battles with other kids, fighting with bamboo sticks.

Tam Coc a little further on is remarkable for its astonishing limestone formations. The terrain resembles Ha Long Bay so much that Tam Coc has been nicknamed "Ha Long on land".

Bich Dong is a nearby cave. I haven't visited Bich Dong, but have heard that it's remote and rather unremarkable.

Gate to the shrine to the 10th-century Dinh dynasty.

Tiny boat plying the waters of Tam Coc

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Breathtaking scenery; historical shrines and monuments
  • Cons:Pesky local vendors
  • Last visit to Ninh Binh: Jun 2002
  • Intro Updated May 7, 2003
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Reviews (2)

Comments (7)

  • triplehelix's Profile Photo
    Aug 13, 2008 at 12:06 PM

    i've run into annoying touts myself in other countries. some were easy to deal with, others were real pushy and i had to get medieval :x. im heading to vietnam shortly myself.

  • richiecdisc's Profile Photo
    Mar 3, 2005 at 7:54 AM

    We missed this due to bad weather the time of year we were there but you opening show makes me want to go back.

  • galy's Profile Photo
    May 13, 2003 at 4:05 AM

    Seems like a great place, won't miss it next time in Vietnam

  • Paula1971's Profile Photo
    Apr 25, 2003 at 7:39 PM

    I bow down to the master...

  • herzog63's Profile Photo
    Apr 25, 2003 at 11:29 AM

    I've run into some of the pesky vendors in my travels. As everyone else has said...Fantastic opening Picture!!

  • ayesh's Profile Photo
    Apr 24, 2003 at 12:47 AM

    Yen, I really have to absolutely agree with Syllybabe... that first picture is worth a front cover publication.

  • syllybabe's Profile Photo
    Apr 17, 2003 at 3:26 AM

    That first pic is AMAZING!!!!!!!! Wooooowww!!! Yen, am I seeing things or does that mountain look purple? Maybe my monitor isn't calibrated properly but if it is purple...another WOW!

dinhyen

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