Ninh Binh is one of the most beautiful sites in Vietnam. If you are short of time, I would recommend at least a day trip but if are flexible 1 week+ could be easily spent here. Ninh Binh = Halong Bay look alike, except it is on land attracts thousands of tourists every year. There are loads to explore – rivers, mountains, caves and national parks, but there are also pagodas, churches, and towns too.

Below is my recommended way to spend 1 day in Ninh Binh. Take your time to take it all in and get lost in the beauty of it all.

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Morning climb to Hang Mua Caves

Because why keep the best for last when you can do them first right?! Yes, so after breakfast head over to Hang Mua Caves. Ticket cost 200000 VND per person (October 2018) and you are ready to start your day with some adventure!

Did you know Hang means cave, and Mua means Dancing? Another name of The Little Great Wall of Vietnam! Legend has it that King Tran moved the capital to Hoa Lu and established Thai Vi Temple and often visited the cave on foot of the mountain to enjoy the dancing shows performed by beautiful female dancers. Thus this cave was named Mua Cave. It is one of the rare spots to see in Ninh Binh.

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The cave is okay not amazing, but the panoramic views from the peak above are what everyone wants to see. The mountain behind is called Ngoa Long Mountain and climbing 500 stairs will reward you with the stunning view of Tam Coc area, majestic mountain scenery, dreamlike rice fields, little boats on the silent river as well as the mysterious towers on the mountain peaks.

Don’t make the same mistake as me though, hope you will remember to carry a bottle of water. Challenge yourself to climb to the top for the spectacular view. The mountaintop has a statue of Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva looking down to the ancient land.

If you didn’t notice on your arrival, this place has a large artificial lake, waterfalls, swings and the surrounding sides are covered with green trees creating an extremely airy vibe.

Best time to climb up Hang Mua peak is in the early morning or late afternoon as it’s still not too hot and views are incredible during the sunsets.

Lunch

Break the day with some lunch in the many restaurants you see in town. Pho, Com rang or any other local dishes. I recommend Minh Toan Restaurant Father Cooking decent sandwiches, lunch, smoothies and strong coffees!

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An afternoon river cruise in Tam Coc

Tam Coc is a famous area in Ninh Binh everyone raves about. Tam Coc means “Three caves” but not only caves, but the Karst formations are also equally fascinating.

The best way to admire those mysterious caves, dramatic Karst landscape and the steep-sided cliffs that are a distinctive part of the region is on a local boat or a bicycle. You can hire a bicycle from shops in town. Local rowers are easily available for hire to take you to some of the most attractive areas along the river. It costs 200,000 Vietnamese Dong ($8.82) for a three-hour boat ride which includes 12 caves and three other stops on the way These caves were made due to the transformation of geology, seawater and rainwater naturally! You will possibly find interesting to see how local rowers row the boat with their legs! What a sight!

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Boating through those caves, and Karst landscape you will understand why people describe Tam Coc as a land version of Halong Bay. They are truly spectacular! The 3 main caves I mentioned earlier are Hang Ca cave, Hang Hai cave and Hang Ba cave, which you will be able to explore as well as Bich Dong pagoda further down the river.

Devouring some more local cuisine at one of many restaurants in town before heading back sums up a perfect day trip in Ninh Binh.

Also, I hope you watched my Ninh Binh stories. If you missed it or want to rewatch the whole thing, click here ->  check out the “Vietnam” stories on Instagram.

What I used to take these photos

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how-to-spend-1-day-in-ninh-binh

 

Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark II Digital Camera

This has been my favourite Camera so far. I love how my pictures come out crisp and colourful. It also has a screen which is useful when vblogging. You can check out what I meant on my Instagram which is here.

Accessories For Canon GX7 Mark ||

Check it out here

GoPro HERO4 Silver

This is the good old Go pro that I take with me everywhere. I recommend it because it is small, lightweight and waterproof. I have had made many memories with this trusted item and looking forward to more.

Accessories For Go Pro Hero 4

Check it out here

SanDisk 64 GB Memory Cards

I have been using SanDisk since my first camera which was back in 2009. They build quality memory cards. I recommend getting at least two, just in case something happens to one of them.

All-in-One Memory Card Reader

Do you think it’s a hassle of plugging your camera into your computer? This memory card reader will fit cards of all sizes and make an easy transfer to your computer. The reader supports all popular SD memory card formats, including SD™/SDHC™/SDXC™ memory cards, UHS-I SDHC/SDXC memory cards, and microSDHC™/microSDXC™ memory cards. It is also compatible with the latest UDMA 7-enabled CompactFlash cards.

Save this to Pinterest.

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Let me know in comments- 

  • What did you think of this day trip to Ninh Binh, Vietnam?
  • Which activity would you like to do and explore?
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How to spend 1 day in Ninh Binh?
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21 thoughts on “How to spend 1 day in Ninh Binh?

  • November 29, 2018 at 4:02 am
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    what an adventure, southeast asia is always rich in greenery and scenic views! your photos make me want to start travelling again soon!

    Reply
  • November 29, 2018 at 7:06 am
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    Such a beautiful place. Seems like a great place to get some needed zen

    Reply
  • November 29, 2018 at 9:34 am
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    Hi,
    Your photos are stunning! 🙂 I love the way you captured the rich natural/environmental tour of the area! 🙂
    Well done!
    Best,
    Christina

    Reply
  • November 29, 2018 at 9:38 am
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    I would like to visit this marvellous place one day. It looks so exotic. Thé pictures are really good!
    Best wishes!

    Reply
  • November 29, 2018 at 9:51 am
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    WOW! Such an incredible view of the 500 stairs! That’s something that I could see myself really enjoying!

    -Madi xo

    Reply
  • November 29, 2018 at 5:16 pm
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    Oh, Anna! This is amazing! What a beautiful place! The caves must be such an interesting experience. Love your photos 🙂

    Reply
  • November 30, 2018 at 12:19 am
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    This looks like such a cool place to explore! I love your photos. That landscape is incredible.

    Reply
  • November 30, 2018 at 3:09 am
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    What an incredible site! How did I never here of Ninh Binh before? Your photos are beautiful!

    Reply
  • November 30, 2018 at 4:43 am
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    LOVE! This place is now on my bucket list! Beautiful photos xx

    Reply
  • November 30, 2018 at 6:12 am
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    Wow this looks like the most amazing place to get to go and explore! I would love to do the river cruise that looks like it would take you to some really interesting places.

    Reply
  • December 1, 2018 at 12:54 am
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    Oh my! How gorgeous and relaxing your trip looks. This is definitely a must visit place, South Asia is always so much greener and fresher. Amazing!

    Reply
  • December 1, 2018 at 1:38 am
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    Really cool post.. you have some epic pictures too!

    Reply
  • December 1, 2018 at 2:10 am
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    I’ve hamear that Vietnam is a beautiful place. “Ninh Binh is one of the most beautiful sites in Vietnam.“. Makes me want to visit.

    Reply
  • December 1, 2018 at 4:24 am
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    Incredibly beautiful location I’d love to visit one day. I’ love the picture of you and the dragon. So fun!

    Reply
  • December 1, 2018 at 7:54 am
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    Wow! That view is spectacular. I’ve never thought of visiting Vietnam, but your pictures are amazing–especially the first two. Maybe I’ll add it to my visit list.

    Reply
  • December 15, 2018 at 5:29 pm
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    Dear, Author thanks for this relevant information I really like your ideas

    Reply

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