Hang Ba Area Hidden Place Of Some Unique Caves

Located in the core zone of Phong Nha - Ke Bang National Park in Quang Binh province, Vietnam, next to Km 23 of Victory Road 20, Hang Ba area is a strictly protected area within the park's three main zones. This is a pristine forest with ancient trees and a habitat for many rare animal species.

The caves in this area include many large caves among caves in Quang Binh, with diverse calcite formations, unique underground passages, discovered and mapped by the British Vietnamese Cave Exploration Team in 1992 and 1994. Circle Cave was also discovered and surveyed in 2021.

Opened for adventurous tourism in 2022, Oxalis is the sole operator licensed to organize tours to Hang Ba area with a maximum of 6 guests from January to August each year. The "Hang Ba Deep Jungle Expedition" is one of the world's most unique eco-tours as the wild animals' living environment is respected to the maximum, with staff specially trained to work with minimal impact on the environment. When running a cave exploration tour to Hang Ba area no unnecessary noise or activities occur and the presence of Oxalis teams also limits illegal hunting or logging activities here.

Discovery, survey and origin of the name Hang Ba

From 1990, Howard Limbert and The British Vietnam Caving Expedition Team have explored, discovered, and mapped over 400 caves in Vietnam. In the 1992 expedition, they discovered the Hang Vom Cave System in the Phong Nha - Ke Bang National Park area, currently with around 70 caves surveyed and a total length of over 48 km. Many notable caves are in the system, including the 6 caves used in the Hang Ba Deep Jungle Expedition: Hang Ba, Hang Dai Cao, Hang Me Cung (Maze Cave), Hang Vinh Tron, Light Cave, and Hang Vinh Dai. The cave system is one of the most beautiful cave systems that experts have had the opportunity to explore in any of their cave exploration and expeditions.

In 1992, the team discovered Hang Vom, which was considered the second longest cave in Vietnam. At that time, reaching Hang Vom required a boat trip on the river and a 4-5 hour walk through the jungle, taking a total of one day from Phong Nha. Exploring Hang Vom, with its beautiful underground river in the cave, was a demanding task for the expedition. Hang Vom top entrance is also known as Hang Vinh Dai, but at the time of exploration no one else had visited this cave. Guests will enjoy the last night’s camp of the Hang Ba Deep Jungle Expedition tour inside Vinh Dai entrance.

In 1994, Deb Limbert and Howard Limbert undertook a journey from Phong Nha to explore the caves in the upper region from Hang Vinh Dai. The exploration team backtracked along the river from Vinh Dai and went through Light Cave - the second camping site on the deep forest exploration tour of Hang Ba. After Light Cave, the exploration team continued swimming through a green emerald lake and the sight of the next cave entrances left the cave experts in awe because the cave had three entrances. Hence, they named the cave Hang Ba (Ba in Vietnamese means three).

The team continued swimming and crossing through Hang Ba then started trekking up to the next valley. After hearing a loud rumbling in the forest created by some kind of animal, (it was known that there may be tigers living in the area), the team decided to return and camp overnight in Hang Vom before gradually returning back to Phong Nha.

Also in 1994, local guides led the expert’s team to Hang Dai Cao via the Victory Road 20. At that time, the experts had to walk a day along Road 20 from km 6 to reach Dai Cao to explore and camp inside the cave whilst carrying loads of caving equipment. At the entrance and the exit of Dai Cao, the experts found some footprints of a large cat, and due to the size of these footprints, the team suspected that it could be footprints of a tiger. In addition, the experts also found many tiger tracks in the high mountain valley towards Maze Cave. Maze Cave was also explored and surveyed in 1994.

In 1997, experts returned and used Dai Cao Cave as a central base to further explore further, where they discovered Pitch Cave, then Tiger Cave, Over Cave, and Pygmy Cave.

In 2021: When the idea of doing a wildlife and nature-focused along with a natural conservation tour to these wonderful caves came up, the experts returned to the area. On this inspection trip, the experts and team members discovered a large dry cave called Circle Cave with a length of 900m. The experts believe that Hang Ba Area area will provide one of the most amazing cave tours among the wonderful adventures of Oxalis Adventure.

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Caves in the area of Hang Ba

Hang Ba area, Vietnam includes caves such as: Dai Cao Cave, Maze Cave, Hang Ba Cave, Vinh Dai Cave, Light Cave, and Circle Cave are among the top caves in Vietnam, with different structures and formations compared to the limestone caves in Tu Lan and Hang Tien regions.

Dai Cao Cave

Dai Cao Cave is over 1.6 km long with three entrances. The main entrance has a stream that flows out and is the entrance closest to the campsite. Climbing over the rocks inside the entrance leads to a flat path into the cave. The terrain inside the cave is relatively easy to navigate. There are some impressive swim-through sections leading to stunning second and third entrances, where experts have also found evidence of wildlife such as deer, wild boar, and Serow.

Maze Cave

This is a complex and unique cave unlike many other caves that experts have explored in Quang Binh. It could be one of the best caves to explore in the Hang Ba area. A stream flows from the entrance and down the valley on the west of Dai Cao Cave. Visitors will need to swim about 150m to reach the main entrance of Maze Cave. It has many passages formed underwater (phreatic passages), which is why the cave has a maze-like structure, and the passages are very circular. There are not many stalactites and stalagmites, but the cave has some beautiful round water filled pools on the cave floor and circular passages that are great for taking impressive photos. The cave has many side passages that reconnect to the main passage. The total length of the cave is nearly 4km and is very complicated. There are many ways to enter the cave, but the easiest way to move in and out is through the main entrance.

Hang Ba Cave

Many people miss reading the name of this cave to hang Va cave. From the Dai Cao camping area, head down the side of the valley and through the forest for about 2 km to reach the entrance of Hang Ba. Cross over the jumble of rocks to reach the entrance. The cave is basically a single passage with a stream inside, but you can move along at different levels. The cave has three main large entrances and has a total length of over 1km with a high ceiling and wide cave floor.

Circle Cave

Located 140m north of Vinh Tron campsite, it was discovered during a survey trip and has a total length of 895m and a width of up to 90 meters. It is a home to some rare species of animals. Near the cave entrance, there is also a small area of phytokarst a type of cave formation that you could also see in Son Doong Cave.

Light Cave

From Vinh Tron, follow the small stream and climb over the rocks to enter Light Cave. Although it is short and does not contain spectacular cave formations, it has diverse and interesting terrain. Rocky at both entrances with a sandy beach in the middle.

Vinh Dai Cave

Swimming about 200m from the entrance of Light Cave will lead to the entrance of Vinh Dai Cave. The initial part has a lot of rocks, followed by an easy and flat path to the campsite. The campsite is located on a large sandy platform above the main passage. The inside of the cave can be explored for about 500m with the main stream from Ruc Ca Roong entering on the right. Since the cave has some underground lakes and waterfalls it is not recommended to cross this point for safety reasons.

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The location of the Hang Ba area

Hang Ba Cave area, Vietnam is located in the core area of Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park in Tan Trach Village, Bo Trach District, Quang Binh Province. It is about 15 km from the border of Laos, on the Victory Road 20. The Hang Ba Cave area is part of the strictly protected area within the 3 main zones of Phong Nha - Ke Bang National Park.

To explore the Hang Ba area, it is best to go through Oxalis Adventure, the only company that operates tours to this area. The itinerary includes activities such as 20 km of trekking, 3km mountain climbing and cave exploration and exploring underground rivers. The trek takes 4 days and 3 nights, with up to 95% of the journey being a trek through the pristine forest, under the canopy of ancient trees that are thousands of years old.

Tourism activities

The development of eco-tourism in Vietnam in general and in the Hang Ba area in particular is one of the ways to contribute to the preservation of the Hang Ba ecosystem. This will increase the awareness of local residents in protecting the caves ecosystem. At the same time, by creating jobs for residents, it will help reduce and limit the number of people entering the area to engage in illegal activities.

Fully meeting safety factors, strictly complying with conservation activities and ensuring sustainable tourism activities with the participation of the community, Oxalis Adventure Company was approved and authorized by the Provincial People's Committee. Quang Binh and Phong Nha - Ke Bang National Park Management Board, to be the only company to operate adventure tourism, cave exploration and ecotourism activities in the Hang Ba Area. The Hang Ba Deep Jungle Expedition tour is a new product designed by Oxalis to provide unique experiences and promises to bring you the best adventure tourism in Vietnam.

The tour operates from January to August every year (closed from September to December). The tour price includes VAT, public liability insurance, and a portion of the tour costs will be contributed towards the restoration of the Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park's forests, conservation and protection of its wildlife and biodiversity conservation.

You can book Hang Ba area cave tours online via Oxalis website our consultant will assist you.

To ensure that the tour follows the principles of international conservation standards and Vietnamese legal regulations, Oxalis Adventure invited Mr. Christian Manhart - the representative of UNESCO to Vietnam, Mr. Jake Brunner - the representative of IUCN - International Union for Conservation of Nature, and a representative of Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park Management Board to experience and evaluate this tour before official operation.

Additionally, taking part into this discovery tour to Hang Ba cave area guest will have the opportunities to be a part of some one of a kind experiences such as: enjoying the natural morning concert, and the most beautiful campsites to embrace nature, furthermore, visitors are guided to explore six beautiful caves hidden in a very remote area of Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park. This trip will allow guests to explore both dry passages and underground river caves, a trip for a real caver. Most importantly, this is a new approach to wildlife conservation tourism of Oxalis Adventure tours, Hang Ba Deep Jungle Expedition is a step further in wildlife conservation tourism.

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Hang Ba area cave geology and geomorphology

The Hang Ba area is located in the strictly protected zone of Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park and is near the Vietnamese-Lao border. Most of the limestone in the area is connected to Hin Namno National Park of Laos, forming a large Karst topography. The major caves in the area are relatively young (about 2 to 2.5 million years old).

The area has many streams that flow into the limestone mountains, but the caves in the area connect to the main river, the Ca Roong River, which emerges from Hang Vom after flowing underground from Ruc Caroong and flows into the Chay River, Son River, and the ocean.

Due to its unique geological conditions, the area has an ancient limestone and sandstone composition making the cave formations and structures in the area diverse and different. Most of the caves are large, with linear single passages, except for Maze Cave.

The ecosystem of Hang Ba area

This is an area with pristine forests with diverse flora and fauna, and it is a habitat for many ancient species of trees such as the Archaeplastida, Iron-wood, striped ebony, white fillings. There is a new species of Hopea vietnamensis that has recently been discovered. The lush forest canopy is the home of hundreds of species of animals and birds, including some notable species with distinctive calls such as with very specific songs such as Laughingthrush, Hwamei, White-rumped Shama, and Coal Shama.The area is especially suitable for some species of animals such as chamois, primates (monkeys, langurs, gibbons, loris), civets, cats, otters...

The geographical location and the tropical monsoon climate of this area provide extremely favorable conditions for the diverse establishment of both plant and rare animal species. Learn more about The ecosystem of Hang Ba area at here.

The Hang Ba - Phong Nha area has four seasons in a year (spring, summer, autumn and winter). Due to weather conditions and ensuring the safety of visitors, especially during the rainy season, the Hang Ba Deep Jungle Expedition tour only operates from January to mid-August each year. From February to March, the weather is occasionally cold with a general cold air mass over the region, but there are also sunny warm days. April and May are warm months, not too hot, which is the time when guests will witness many species of jungle flowers in bloom. From June to August are the hot summer months, but most of the time guests move inside the caves or forests, with temperatures from 22 to 25 degrees or forests, so the heat is not excessive. During the summer, tourists can swim comfortably inside the caves. This is a camping tour inside the caves, so guests do not have to worry about rain or sun during overnight camping.

Inoder to have the best cave tour in Hang Ba area, customers can also check the weather in Phong Nha through the Accuweather website.

The Oxalis Experience.

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Whether you prefer long treks, camping in a cave, sleeping under the stars in the jungle, swimming underground in river caves, explore the huge dry caves or just taking an exploratory day trip, Oxalis Adventure Tours can provide the right amount of adventure just for you.

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