Ninh Binh Travel Guide

Ninh Binh is a town approx 2.5 hours from Hanoi & is slowly becoming a great tourist destination. Sitting on nature's laps, this place should be on the list of every traveler. Ninh Binh is pleasant, calm & beautiful at the same time. I covered Ninh Binh on my recent trip to Vietnam. Not many people cover Ninh Binh, but I highly recommend doing it. Here is all the information that will help you to travel to Ninh Binh.
Mua View Point Ninh Binh

How To Reach Ninh Binh:

Hanoi is the nearest metro city. Buses & trains are available in plenty from Hanoi to reach Ninh Binh. If one doesn't want to spend days in Ninh Binh, they can even plan for a day's tour

The bus & train journey is approx 2.5 hours. I took the train from Hanoi train station to Ninh Binh. I booked on the spot & paid approx 250,000 VND (approx 700 Rs) for a sleeper birth. If the seats are available, one can book a sitting berth as well & which will cost way less than the sleeper train.

Things To Do In Ninh Binh:

Ninh Binh is the city & Tom coc is the place where one should be staying & moving around. Tom coc is some 8-9 Km from Ninh Binh train station.

1. Trang An Boat Ride: One of the most refreshing & unique experiences in Ninh Binh. Trang has a spectacular landscape of limestone karst peaks permeated with valleys, many of them partly submerged and surrounded by steep, almost vertical cliffs. The blend of towering mountains draped in the natural rain forest, with large internal basins and narrow cave passages containing quietly flowing waters, creates an extraordinarily beautiful and tranquil landscape. I took route 3 which covered 3 caves & 3 temples. The whole route is approx 3 hours. The longest cave is 1km long & the boat will also cross, king kong skull island location. This is by far the most beautiful route among the three.

2. Mua Caves: Mua caves hike is steep & tiring for some. Though, one can view the panoramic view of Tom coc from the top. The strip of river cutting across the rice fields & the massive rocks is a unique site to experience. The best time to hike the mountain is during the evening. The entry to the place is 100,000 VND (Rs 300-400).

3. Tom coc Boat Ride: Like Trang An, Tom coc boat is pretty famous among the influencers. The boat will carry you across the lush rice fields & a view in itself. Though, after doing Trang An, this might seems below the par; yet is very refreshing. Make sure you ask some locals about the fields as, at some point in time, the view is not as beautiful as usual.
Ninh Binh Boating
Cave Ninh Binh

How To Do Ninh Binh On Budget:

1. Accommodation: There are plenty of homestay options available in Ninh Binh, but I find The Banana Hostel (Ninh Binh). The hostel is located in the city center & one will get buses to various places from here only. So, it makes an ideal place to stay. The cost of one bed in a dorm is approx 2,50,000 VND (Rs 500 per day).

2. Traveling: The best way to get around the city is by renting a bike. One can get a motorbike for around 1,00,000 VND - 1,50,000 VND. All the major attractions are within a 10km radius thus it is recommended to get one.

3. Food: The food is a bit different from Hanoi, as the area is still developing. Though, one can find a good eating place within the walking distance. For Indians, there is a famous outlet going with the name of "Namaste". This place is right on the corner & is crowded with tourists.

4. Site Seeing: Tom Coc is full of nature & the boat rides i.e Trang An & Tom Coc both are worth doing. The cost varies from 2,50,000 VND to 1,00,000 VND based on the activities. Don't miss out on activities as these are rare experiences one will ever come across to.
Mua Caves Ninh Binh

Handy Resources:

Below are the few resources you should check before making an itinerary.

Agoda: Best place to book hotels of your liking. Agoda provides the best solution & great offer while booking a hotel.

Skyscanner: Skyscanner compares various sites & sort the flights based on the rates. A great way to check flight cost. Although the only drawback is that rates are flexible. Hence, the cost might change while you are making the payment.

Jetradar: Jetradar is a comparing site which is just like Skyscanner. But, is much more accurate & much more handy in use.

Booking: Best place to book hostel rooms. There are plenty of options available & with so many properties booking becomes much easier.

Couchsurfing: Best place to find free accommodation. It is as easy as filtering people & messaging. If you will get lucky you will find free accommodation in local resident house.

Travel Insurance: There are numerous options available to get one. So, you can choose anything which suits your requirement. Make sure you read the terms & conditions before buying one.