This is Vietnam’s second nicest grotto, after the Huong Tich Grotto in Ha Tay province”, Kinh Le Canh Hung said. Another name of Tam Coc- Bich Dong “A terrestrial Ha Long Bay” is also called. Today, lots of tourists in Vietnam travel have been being attracted to this place because of its marvelous landscapes and considerate services.
In 1773, Mr. Nguyen Nghiem (the father of the great writer Nguyen Du) visited this cave. After viewing the whole scenery of the mountains, waterways, fields, and sky covered in green mist, he gave the cave a very beautiful and romantic name, Bich Dong (which literally means "Green Pearl Grotto"). Bich Grotto is said to be the second most beautiful cave in Vietnam, after Huong Tich grotto in Ha Tay province (currently part of Hanoi). The Bich Dong Pagoda was built near the cave in the Le Dynasty.
Built on Ngu Nhac Son Mountain, in Dam Khe Village, Ninh Hai Commune, Hoa Lu District, Ninh Binh Province, Bich Dong Pagoda is divided into three levels: Ha Pagoda (lower pagoda), Trung Pagoda (middle pagoda), and Thuong Pagoda (upper pagoda). On the mountain peak stands the statue of a scholar Mandarin looking at the horizon in hope of viewing the spectacular landscapes of Hoa Lu.
Tourists in Vietnam travel have the most magnificent view of Bich Dong from the upper pagoda, which is romantically charming in terms of architecture and history. The location for this pagoda was chosen in 1428 after two monks were charmed by the view of the river and the mountains. Later, King Le Canh Hung who said that Bich Dong Pagoda was the second nicest pagoda in Vietnam, after the Huong Pagoda (also called Perfume Pagoda) in Ha Tay Province wrote a poem in honour of the beautiful pagoda and landscape.
If one who has ever visited Binh Dong Pagoda cannot ignore Tam Coc Grotto, about 3km from Van Lam Wharf. It is located approximately 2km from the pagoda.
To reach the Tam Coc Grotto consisting of the Hang Ca, Hang Hai and Hang Ba grottoes, tourists in Vietnam tourism need to take a boat from Van Lam Wharf. These caves are adorned with beautiful stalactites and stalagmites of different shapes and colours that sparkle like gemstones.Back