Ba Be conjures up images of lush forests, shimmering lakes full of fish, mysterious caves and cloud-capped limestone mountains which stand like guardians to this hidden natural kingdom. This trip takes you deep into Ba Be National Park. You will experience local hospitality from an ethnic minority family, take a tranquil river trip, explore caves and see the landscape change from rice cultivation to forest to towering mountains.
Day 1 : Hanoi – Thai Nguyen – Ba Be Lake (L,D)
You will be collected from your hotel at 07.30 hrs and on the way, stop in Thai Nguyen to visit the fascinating Museum of the Culture of the Ethnic Minorities of Vietnam, followed by lunch in a street restaurant. We then leave the main road to take a smaller one snaking through the mountains and tea plantations to arrive at the Tay village of Bo Lu. The Tay people make their living by fishing and rice and corn cultivation and they are renowned for their picturesque stilt houses. In Bo Lu you will enjoy the hospitality of Mr Loc and his amazingly friendly family, in one such traditional house. You will completely unwind from the hassle of Ha Noi as you take a 3 hour boat trip, gently chugging around the lake. If you need to cool off, do as the local kids do and just jump in the river for a swim.
Return to a superb dinner of local specialities cooked by Mrs Lien.
Day 2: Ba Be – Hua Ma Cave – Ha Noi (B,L,D)
After breakfast at the Homestay, we will go on foot to experience the Ba Be forest at close quarters. You will trek by the slow flowing river, gaze in awe at the dramatic mountains and valleys and natural caves and may enjoy a little bird and butterfly spotting. The national park is home to countless numbers of flora and fauna.
On the way, we will pay a visit to Hua Ma cave, only recently accessible, as few locals would enter due to ancient beliefs. The cave has thousands of stalactites and stalagmites and is still very atmospheric. You can rest your legs on the drive back to Ha Noi, stopping for lunch at a local restaurant on the way. We should arrive in Ha Noi at about 17.30 hrs and you will be ped off at your hotel