Trang An or Tam Coc boat tour, which one is better? This is a frequent question to all the travelers coming to Ninh Binh. It is hard to clearly answer this question because Trang An and Tam Coc both have their own unique beauties.
Rather than trying to find out where is the better place, let’s find out Trang An or Tam Coc Vietnam is more suitable to your liking. Or else, why don’t you do a trip that includes both places?
Trang An and Tam Coc are both located in Ninh Binh Province, in the Northern part of Vietnam. They are always the hightlights of every Ninh Binh day trip from Hanoi.
Trang An, also known as Trang An Grottoes, is famous for its boat tour and pristine beauty. Although the narrow waterway in Trang An only permits small paddle wooden boats through, you will be guaranteed a great trip through the valley, the mountain, and caves along the water. After all, Trang An beauty on the water is partly what makes it a UNESCO Heritage.
Meanwhile, Tam Coc tells a different story. Still the wooden boat, but now the boat is powered by the strength of boatmen’s feet. By that, you will scroll down the charming Ngo Dong river with surreal karst beauty and poetic panoramic view of lush green Vietnamese land.
And now, let’s go with us to the Ecotourism Trang An boat tour first. In Trang An, we will have a certain number of Trang An boat ride, more exactly, you will have three choices to choose from.
The first route includes 13 destinations in three and a half hours. The destinations are 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 boat ride has the most sightseeing destinations among those three, so it is suitable for young and energetic travelers who want to make the most out of the trips.
The second route will take around 2.5 hours and lead you through the Hollywood film set of “Kong: Skull Island”, 4 caves and 2 temples and palaces. You will be going to Habour – Lam Cave – Vang Cave – Thanh Truot Cave – Suoi Tien Temple – Dai Cave – Vu Lam Palace – Kong film site– Habour respectively.
This is suitable for the family group since it is much shorter, the elders and children will not be tired from long trips on the water surface. However, this route is no less exciting than other boat rides in Trang An.
>>> The second route is the most common among all. Explore mysterious spots in Hoa Lu – Trang An – Mua Cave tour
The last route of Trang An boat ride will only cost you 3 hours with the view of the film set site, 3 caves, and 3 temples and palaces. The complete boat ride will be Habour – Trinh Temple – May Cave – Suoi Tien – Đia Linh Cave – Đai Cave – Vu Lam Palace– Kong film site – Habour.
The last route is for anyone seeking a relaxing trip. The ride takes you to fewer destinations, hence you will have a slower trip but more time to admire the beauty here and take a lot of photos. In conclusion, the third boat ride is recommended for photographers for this reason.
But, when is the best time to have a Trang An boat tour? The answer varies, too. It will be best if you visit Trang An from January to March, due to the cool and dry weather. This is also the time for Bai Dinh Temple festival, so people usually take a Trang An Bai Dinh tour in one trip.
However, if you don’t like the feeling of being in a large crowd of people, you can choose to do a boat ride in Trang An in late June or July, when the lotus blossoms. But, the weather will be hotter, so don’t forget to prepare yourself first.
Now we will come for the price. Each boat capacity is 6 pax with 200.000 VND ( 10 US$) for an adult and 100.000 VND ( 5 US$) for a kid. You can also rent a tour guide with 300.000 VND ( 15 US$) for a ride. Stay update with price here!
Please remember that the boat only leaves when it is full so you may have to wait for a bit. Or, you can just pay more to cover the whole boat cost and have the boat for yourself. Oh, and another interesting thing to mind: all your companion will be ferrywomen!
Coming to the Tam Coc boat tour, a must in every Tam Coc tour, you won’t have options to choose from, rather there is only one tour. Although it seems like a disadvantage, somehow it turns out to be a good thing: you won’t have to think of what route you will do.
Tam Coc boat ride will introduce you to the romantic Ngo Dong River with the banks filled with limestone mountains and lush green rice paddy field. Along the ride, the magnificent Mua Cave appears just to charm your heart way. You can also take a Tam Coc Mua Cave tour. From the top of Mua Cave, you will see the whole magnificent of Tam Coc as well as Ninh Binh!
There are three caves altogether in Tam Coc boat tour. The caves are named respectively Ca Cave (The First Cave), Hai Cave (The Second Cave) and Ba Cave (The Third Cave). The size of them may be different, but they all guarantee a mysterious feeling and impressive hidden world inside them.
Inside each cave, there is a hidden world waiting for you. Thousand-year-old colorful stalactites from the top of the cave feel just like thousand of crystal falling stars on your head. The boat will row slowly through the cave, making you feel like you are not even in the real world anymore.
Outside the cave, your boat will ride through a mini floating market. The local people sell drinks and snacks, you can buy some but remember to ask the price first!
Unlike Trang An, Tam Coc doesn’t have all-women boat sailors. Rather, all the boatmen here sail with their feet. This unique technique is claimed to help reduce the stress on the back and arm of the ferryman, also prevent major injuries.
The best time to do a Tam Coc boat tour is from the end of May to July. This is also known as the harvest season when the ripe rice paddy fields turn golden and the weather is comparative good for outdoor activities.
>>> Take a Hoa Lu Tam Coc day trip during this time to witness the gorgeous scenery!
Of course, you will have to pay some expense. You will have to pay for 2 tickets: sightseeing ticket and boat ride ticket. The admission fee to sightseeing Tam Coc is 120.000 VND (6 US$) for adult and 60.000 VND ( 3 US$) for a child. The Tam Coc boat trip fee will be 150.000 VND ( 7 US$)/boat sharing with your partners. The boat capacity is really a drawback: they usually just allow two people on a boat.
The answer of “Trang An or Tam Coc boat ride?” is, no one is more superior to the other. Each place has its own advantage and drawback, so you just try to consider which is more to your liking.
Some people say that Tam Coc is better and more natural, while Trang An are too constructed and somehow turned artificial. However, it also means that Trang An boat tour can be well-organized and diverse that Tam Coc boat ride in tourism sense.
>>> And you know, Ninh Binh has more boat trip to offer than just Trang An or Tam Coc. Check out Ninh Binh boat tour!
Taking a Trang An or Tam Coc boat tour, you should follow these tips from our local experts
Which is better Trang An or Tam Coc, it really depends on your preference. Therefore, you should just choose whatever you like more following these features above. After all, traveling is to find the new adventure, right?
If you still wonder and want to ask further questions, feel free to contact us. Original Ninh Binh Tours local experts always here to help!
The Original Ninh Binh Tours was created to be the first Ninh Binh travel company in Vietnam offering unique original trips, eagerly taken up by the locals and introduced to the inner life of this place. If you want to have a uniquely original experience during your time in Ninh Binh, it is our pleasure to accompany!