Trang An is not an unfamiliar name with travel geeks – it is certainly one of the best places to visit in Northern Vietnam. Trang An boat tour will be your best shot to go sightseeing on the water. Once you fall in love with the beautiful nature here, you are unlikely to get it out of your heart.
Trang An Heritage Complex is a part of Ninh Binh province, it is about 100km away from Hanoi city center. If Halong holds an impressive and magnificent beauty, Trang An will be its best rival. Though smaller in size, you will be lost in a wonderland with the karst mountains, lush green forests, sparkling and crystal-clear river and the endless rice field running to the horizon.
In terms, Trang An Scenic Landscape Complex is a world heritage site, consisting of a large number of tourism destinations. However, the highlight of this incredible landscape that is strongly recommended to you is taking a Trang An boat tour!
Taking a boat to Trang An UNESCO heritage site
Unlike Halong Bay, there is no luxury cruise here, the narrow waterway makes going by small paddle wooden boat the best choice. You will have a chance to grow slowly through the jade-like water and serpentine streams with mountains and valley on both sides. And gradually, you will enter a cave with a whole new world lying before your eyes.
Trang An Ninh Binh Map
From Hanoi to Trang An, check out transfer options below
Trang An boat tour price
To get a boat trip in Trang An, you need to arrive at the Trang An Ecological Park. The ticket office is right at the entrance and the tickets include a boat trip.
You have to pay 200.000 VND (around 10 US$) for an adult and 100.000 VND (around 5 US$) for a child (the condition is his height must be below 1.4 meters). If you wish for a tour guide, the price is 300.000 VND ( around 15 US$) for a tour.
A note for you is each boat will have 6 pax and it only starts the journey when the boat is full, but when it’s not peak season, the tour can start even there are only two people on a boat.
If you want some privacy, of course, you can buy all of the 6 slots and have a boat for yourself. And the boat is the paddle typed and you will be accompanied by a joyful ferrywoman along the trip.
What the ticket looks like
Trang An boat tour routes
Which is Trang An boat tour best route? There are three boat trip routes available in Trang An Ecological Park. Below I write all useful information about those Trang An boat tour routes, keep reading and choose a suitable route for you.
Trang An boat tour route
The first route will take around 3.5 hours with 9 caves and 3 temples and palaces.
The second route will lead you to the famous “Kong: Skull Island” film set site, 4 caves and 2 temples and palaces. This route is quicker, only 2.5 hours are needed. The last route will take you to the film set site, 3 caves and 3 temples and palaces all in 3 hours.
The schedules for the three routes are:
Route 1: 9 caves, 3 temples
Habour – Trinh Temple – Toi Cave– Sang Cave – Nau Ruou Cave – Tran Temple – Ba Giot Cave – Seo Cave– Son Duong Cave – Khong Palace – Bao Hieu Temple– Khong Cave – Tran Cave – Quy Hau Cave – Habour.
This is the route which includes the highest number of destinations. If you want to visit as many places as possible, this may be a good choice for you, you will be impressed by the magnificent grottos, limestone karst and the ancient temple.
Magnificient grotto with jade green water in sunny day
Also, this choice will suit young travellers the most since you will spend a long time on the boat and constantly moving to new destinations. Elders and children may easily get tired in this route, so you should consider the plan if you go with family.
Route 2: 4 caves, 2 temples
Habour – Lam Cave – Vang Cave – Thanh Truot Cave – Suoi Tien Temple – Dai Cave – Vu Lam Palace – Kong film site– Habour.
The second route is more suitable if you go with your family. This route has fewer destinations, but the highlight is the aboriginal village or the “Kong: Skull Island” film set site.
Although its length is shorter than the first route, the beauty of the cave and scenery alongside the river will surely not disappoint you. And you will have the chance to be in a real-life ancient world while visiting the film set.
Everything was preserved at the best condition to bring the true feeling in the film to the visitors.
Each boat has an extra pair of paddles so you can try to roll yourself (Photo: ssegundo)
You are the fan of traveling, explore our Trang An boat tour now:
Route 3: 3 caves, 3 temples
Habour – Trinh Temple – May Cave – Suoi Tien – Đia Linh Cave – Đai Cave – Vu Lam Palace– Kong film site – Habour.
And the last option will be for a relaxing purpose. This route has the least of destination and shortest time spent, so you will have a quick view of the Trang An. However, this may be best for photographers: you have to travel less and have more time to take photos. Also, the pace of the trip is slower, so you have more time for sightseeing.
You should consider the choices and select the best option according to your liking and schedule. All the destinations are wonderful, photogenic and worth the wait. The only difference is the length of the journey.
Kong film set is a highlight for this route
You might want to visit some attractions near Trang An:
- Mua Cave – The Vietnamese “Great Wall of China”
- Bai Dinh Pagoda which holds many records of Vietnam and Asia
- Tam Coc – Bich Dong: Boat ride on Ngo Dong River
- Ninh Binh – Tam Coc boat ride
Wait, you need to know when to take an ecotourism Trang An boat tour
The best time to visit Trang An it in the early months, from January to March, when the weather is dry and cool. This is the festival season of Bai Dinh Temple, so you can combine the boat tour with visiting the temple. However, this is the peak season so the place may be crowded and you have to wait a bit until you can get on your boat.
Or if you want to enjoy the beautiful golden rice field, you should go in late May and early June, when the rice ripens. This season is a bit hotter and the sunlight may be strong, but there will be fewer tourists.
Don’t let the weather affects your trip to Trang An Ninh Binh
You don’t know how to get from Hanoi to Ninh Binh or Ninh Binh centre to Trang An? Click here to explore:  How To Travel From Hanoi to Ninh Binh
Ultimate Trang An boat trip tips make tours become more amazing
If you still wonder how to get the best out of your trip to Trang An, here are some tips that you must know:
- Always wear your life jacket
Although the boat tour is safe and you can take it off to take pictures sometimes but we highly recommend that you should wear it every time due to safety reason. The life jacket is included in Trang An boat tour ticket.
- Give boatman a little tip
As I know, each boat is permitted to carry 4-6 people, but the boatman only receives about 20% of the total ( around 200.000 VND) for nearly 3 hours. The rowing boat is also hard and tiring work, so in order to motivate Ninh Binh locals, you should give them a little tip (1-2 USD).
- Bring water and snack
But don’t throw your garbage to the water
- Don’t forget your boat’s number during the trip
Each boat journey takes from 2 to 3 hours and during the trip, you will visit some historical sites, caves and Kong film sets. After spending time going sightseeing these destinations, you have to come back to your boat and necessarily remember its number which is noted on the boat’s surface.
Or else, you are maybe left behind or have to wait for other boats.
- Try rolling a boat
Each boat has an extra pair of paddles. If you want, you can use them and help your guide. I can imagine that paddling for that many hours per day can get pretty tiring for the guides.
These are all the things you should know before going for a boat tour in Trang An. If you are still not sure how to plan an enjoyable boat trip in Trang An, feel free to contact us, the AZ Local Trip team for further information and advice!