The Complete Ba Be National Park Travel Guide

Tucked away in the mountains of Northern Vietnam, Ba Be National Park is a pristine nature escape that offers trekking, boating, and swimming opportunities galore. As someone who has visited Ba Be numerous times over the past 5 years, I’m excited to provide my complete travel guide for how to plan the ultimate Ba Be adventure.

About Ba Be National Park

Established in 1992, Ba Be National Park spans nearly 100 square kilometers around the stunning Ba Be Lakes and forests. The park is home to over 550 plant species, 318 animal species, and diverse ethnic minority groups like the Tay, Dao, and H’mong.

Highlights of Ba Be National Park include shimmering lakes, winding caves, verdant jungles, and cascading waterfalls. The towering limestone mountains that encircle Ba Be Lake provide dramatic scenery. An Ma Temple on the shores of the lake is also a popular visit.

When to Visit Ba Be

The best time to visit Ba Be is during the dry season from October to April when you’ll have pleasant weather and great visibility. September and May can work too, just be prepared for occasional rain.

I’d avoid Ba Be in the summer rainy season between June and August when heavy downpours can hamper activities. The winter months of December-February can get quite chilly in Ba Be’s mountains, so bring warm layers.

How to Get to Ba Be

Ba Be National Park is located in Bac Kan Province. The nearest city is Cho Ra, which sits on the shores of Ba Be Lake. Here are some options for getting to Ba Be:

From Hanoi: Take a 5-6 hour bus or car to Cho Ra. Buses depart from Hanoi’s My Dinh station.
From Ha Long:Take a 4 hour bus or car ride to Cho Ra. This is a very scenic drive.
Train: Take the train from Hanoi to Na Phac, then transfer to a bus or car to Cho Ra. The whole journey takes around 6-7 hours.

Where to Stay in Ba Be

There are a handful of hotels in Cho Ra near the lake, such as Thuong Ngan, Hoang Ngoc Resort, and Pac Ngoi. Advance booking is recommended.

For a more local experience, consider a homestay in one of the minority villages around Ba Be Lake, like Pac Ngoi. This allows you to experience Tay culture and cuisine.

Top Things to Do in Ba Be National Park

Here are my must-do activities in Ba Be National Park:

  • Boat Tour of Ba Be Lake – Cruise through caves and past islands to see the lakes and villages. Stop at Dau Dang waterfall and An Ma temple.
  • Trekking – Hike through the national park to waterfalls, villages, and lookout points. Consider hiring a local guide.
  • Kayaking – Paddle through the calm turquoise waters admiring the mountains. Kayak to caves and beaches.
  • Swimming – Swim in the refreshing clear waters of Ba Be Lake. There are several nice beaches.
  • Puong Cave – Visit this massive cave filled with stalactites and stalagmites. A scenic day trip from Ba Be.
  • I hope this guide provides a great overview for planning your trip to the spectacular Ba Be National Park! Let me know if you have any other questions.

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