More Details About The Ngo Dong River In Ninh Binh For First-Time Travelers

The Ngo Dong river is an absolutely fabulous river that leads you through the contiguous ridge of karst mountains and the amazingly incredible Tam Coc (Three Grottoes) in Ninh Binh. Admiring the poetic river and surrounding natural landscape in the harvest season on a boat tour is a worthy experience that you should try once in your lifetime. 

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ngo dong river
Source: @meogia

The winding Ngo Dong river surrounded by immense paddy fields is like the masterpiece of Mother Nature that is bestowed on the province of Ninh Binh province. A boat trip along the river, taking you to the three limestone caves will give you a wonderful experience to admire the enchanting scenery that promises to blow your mind. 

I - Where is Ngo Dong river Vietnam?

ngo dong river vietnam

Source: @meogia

The river of Ngo Dong belongs to Ninh Hai commune, Hoa Lu district, Ninh Binh province, about 7km from Ninh Binh city center and 100km from Hanoi city center. Ngo Dong is one of the most poetic and famous rivers in Vietnam. The gentle river softly winds at the foot of the majestic limestone mountains, running through fertile, vast paddy fields which are also considered the “banks” of the river. This is the most special and unique feature of the river that can not be found elsewhere. 

The paddy fields on both sides of Ngo Dong river boast their unique beauty in different seasons: the entire paddy fields are covered in the bright green color of the young fresh green rice plants while the whole area seems to be dyed in bright and deep yellow of the ripe rice plants in the harvest season. Getting on a boat ride along the charming river gives you an amazingly wonderful and exhilarating experience when it takes you through the grandiose mountains, the gently slow-moving river, and stunning rice fields.  

II - Boat trip on the Ngo Dong river

1 - When is the most suitable time for a Ngo Dong river tour? 

ngo dong river tour

Source: @meogia

The best time to take a boat riding tour along the river of Ngo Dong is in the harvest season lasting from May to June. You have an opportunity to “stand in awe” when being surrounded by the charm of limitless golden rice fields, cloaked by a contiguous ridge of majestic mountains. In a Ngo Dong river tour, you have a sense of serenity when being immersed in the absolutely tranquil atmosphere, breathing in and out the typical fragrance of ripe rice plants. The picturesque natural scenery allures plenty of visitors and leaves an indelible mark on their memories.

Note: As May and June are the two hottest months in Ninh Binh province in a year with the temperature of 36 - 38°C and the long shining hours, it is advisable for you to wear a hat and sunscreen to protect your skin. 

>>> You may need: An overview of the weather in Ninh Binh all-year-round

2 - Where to buy a ticket for a boat tour on Ngo Dong river?

The river of Ngo Dong is the only one way to take you to discover a scenic spot - Tam Coc (Three Grottoes), dubbed as Halong Bay on land. The ticket is sold in Dinh Cac boat wharf at the price of 250,000 VND/ticket ($10.77). The duration for a boat tour is around 2 hours. Each simple wooden boat without a roof can carry around 3-4 people. The special feature is that most of the time the boatmen here flexibly use their feet to row a boat instead of their arms, which makes many foreigners sitting in the boat wow.   

3 - Highlights of a Ngo Dong river tour

On the boat riding tour along the river of Ngo Dong, you have a chance to pay a visit to The Three Grottoes, consisting of Ca cave (Hang Ca), Hai cave (Hang Hai), and Ba cave (Hai Ba). Ca cave is the largest one, 127m long and its mouth is about 20m wide. It features numerous stalactites in various shapes and sizes. Moving around 1km more from Ca cave, you get to Hai cave, which is 60m long with unique, eye-catching stalactites. Situated next to Hai cave on the Ngo Dong river, Ba cave is around 50m long with a very low ceiling that resembles a sophisticated, stone arch. Visitors coming into these caves can first feel the coolness of the air and observe the crystal-like water drops from the stalactites hanging from the ceiling of the caves.

After passing The Three Grottoes, you stop in an area to take a rest. There is a large space for small boats moore, which is commonly called the floating market where there are many boats carrying flowers, souvenirs, and local specialties of Ninh Binh province. These boats on the Ngo Dong river are not allowed to carry guests to obey the strict rules of the local authority. You can easily find plenty of boats filled up with lotus buds, bananas, well-peeled pineapples, candies, and various types of drinks and snacks,... 

People here do not use motorboats, but rustic, small, wooden boats so as to avoid causing noise and river pollution. In addition, the experience of sitting on a boat slowly winding through the river is more special and brings about more impressive moments that you may feel like you are gradually getting lost in an incredible fairyland. 

III - More beautiful pictures of the Ngo Dong river Vietnam

floating market in ngo dong river

The floating market on the river - Source:

ngo dong river in ninh binh

The surface of the river on a sunny day - Source: @meogia

vietnam ngo dong river

Ngo Dong through Tam Coc - Source: @meogia

The magical Ngo Dong river in Ninh Binh province would be a promising place for those who would love to indulge in the peace and serenity that can hardly be found in the hustle and bustle of daily life. For further information about traveling in Vietnam in general and in Ninh Binh province in particular, let’s follow us, and be ready for the extremely fantastic virtual tours!


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