Beautiful Phong Nha

It’s difficult trying to find time to write blog posts and edit photographs when I’m having far too much fun! There’s too much to see, loads to do and great people to hang out with.

Here’s some photos from my few days in Phong Nha – a small town near the beautiful Phong Nha-Kẻ Bàng National Park, 220km North of Huế. I realise my ‘photo of the day’ has gone out of the window a little, there’s simply far too many photos that I want to share with you guys.

After arriving in Phong Nha at 4am in the morning, and sleeping a few hours on some sofas in the hostel, I set off on a tour of the National Park. This consisted of a visit to two caves – Paradise and Dark. At Dark Cave you zip line across the gloriously blue river, swim into a cave and wallow in a huge mud bath – it was messy but so much fun. Here’s a photo of the view of the river, with it’s many activities that you can participate in, including zip wires, kayaking and huge inflatables. It was a fantastic day – exploring the many wonders the park has to offer, and with lovely people.

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The next day I hired a scooter and biked the roads around the park with a group of people I met at the Easy Tiger Hostel. Maddy and I absolutely loved this hostel, we made some great friends – laughed, played cards and drank lots of beer with them around the two fires they have constantly going in the courtyard. If you head to Phong Nha, you simply HAVE to stay here. The bus also stops right outside – that’s a bonus when arriving at 4am! Here’s a couple of photos from my day of riding.

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Once I’d completed the National Park circuit – it was such good fun biking up and down the thin winding roads – I headed towards some small villages surrounding the park; through rice paddies, past local homes and waved at many children who were all screaming ‘hello!’. These people are incredibly poor, it was eye-opening to ride on the small dirt tracks and to experience everything up-close. Phong Nha has only been receiving tourists for the past 4 years or so, so seeing a ginger is a somewhat new experience for them, I didn’t mind the starring – and more than often we exchanged a smile. I stopped by some rice paddies for a while and bumped into a sweet little boy. He kept asking me to take pictures of his crab, and also many people as they cycled past after a long day working the fields. I got some incredible photos thanks to this little boy. Here’s a few:

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Finally, here’s a couple of photos that I can’t resist including in this post. Rice fields were everywhere in Phong Nha, dotted with people working hard for hours on end, and mostly wearing the traditional Vietnamese hats.

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Phong Nha is absolutely worth a stop if you’re travelling between Hanoi and Huế. The scenery is breathtaking, the hostel is excellent and the people I met – awesome.

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