Located about 60 km from Hanoi city to the west, Ba Vi National Park, also valued as the first-class ecological zone in Vietnam with plentiful diversified tropical and subtropical species of flora and fauna, is always the place attracting many travelers coming there to enjoy cool fresh air in a mystical atmospheric backdrops of clouds, jungle and tropical forests.
The ideal destination for day out hiking near Hanoi.
With the area of 11,372 hectares in total, Ba Vi National Park in which has spectacular natural landscapes and scenery. The park is at an altitude of 100 – 1,296 meters with tropical and subtropical typical plants, which is green all year round. Therefore, Ba Vi National Park is a place that visitors would be very excited to take an exploration around to: ancient religious temples, ruins of the French colonial, summer camps or hiking through the forests, and truly escape from all bustle and crowded life in the city.
In the past the French set up this place as a resort station, so there are many remnants of the French era such as orphanages, political prison areas, summer camps … Among them, the old church more popular and now accessible for tourists. Although the interior was almost destroyed, the church frame still retains its basic shape. The walls of moss and branches have crept along, creating a mystery for the ancient church of Ba Vi National Park.
There are three prominent mountain peaks named Dinh Vua, Tan Vien, and Ngoc Hoa in which Tan Vien peak is the mostly interesting point for tourists to climb up and visit a 11th sacred century shrine (Thuong temple) stands in memory of the Mountain God on the peak. The way up to Thuong temple is quite an interesting challenge. Thuong Temple is located at the top of Ba Vi mountain with the height of 1,227 m, you have to climb about 500 steps up to the temple. For sure the spectacle above will not disappoint you. The outlook is best from April through to December when even Hanoi can be seen from the distance.
Besides, discovering the Ngoc Hoa cave under the foot of Ngoc Hoa Mountain is also a good experience. The cave is located right below a sharp cliff which is very imposing. The French prison relic nearby with area of 2500 m2 also a remarkable point for those who want to know how hard our Vietnamese soldiers had suffered under chains and cruel tortures by the French.
Good to know
The most adventurous way is to hiking through the primeval forest Ba Vi full of high ancient trees with green moss stick around their bodies, interlacing liana and fog covered the entire road despite daylight. On this route, you will have chance to visit a temple dedicated to Ho Chi Minh and Bao Thien tower which are called as two of the most hallowed regions in Ba Vi National Park.
Entrance ticket: US$3/pax
What should bring: trekking shoes.
Avoid rainy days as the road is slippery, stay away from small waterfall, muddy water or still water where there might be a lot of creepy creatures such as leeches inside. And don’t forget to put on insect repellent.
Summer and autumn – from April to November, is the best time you should travel to Ba Vi mountain. Because, the summer atmosphere in the city is very hot and stuffy, but just setting foot on Ba Vi, you will feel like stepping into a completely different world: fresh air, cool and especially very quiet. You should pay attention to avoid rainy days because ramps, slippery and very easy to fall. In the winter, it is cold and foggy, which will affect your vision. However, winter on Ba Vi also has its own beauty, just if you like to go, you can pick up your backpack and go to Ba Vi.