I was also promised with myself that I would come back to Ninh Binh soon, to visit Cuc Phuong as the previous engagement to survey the thrilling butterflies’ wings here…
From the end of April to the end of May, as usual the butterflies’ wings were thrilled all over Cuc Phuong that attracted a lot of visitors to come for contemplating.
I was also promised with myself that I would come back to Ninh Binh soon, to visit Cuc Phuong National Park day trip as the previous engagement to survey the thrilling butterflies’ wings here…
I live in Hanoi, so the schedule was to travel in the course of the day. After a while with no clear plan to consider pluses and minuses, my sister and I decided to be there by motorbike. And afterward, this decision became the sound one because of the convenience for our initiative to get around in common the places and saved considerable money. However, this was also the venture choice for the ones who are rarely driving motorbike for a long distance, it would be very tired. With the foreigners without any knowledge of Vietnam traffic, this will be a big challenge.
We chose the Honda to mobile and save fuel. The Cuc Phuong National Forest, Ninh Binh province is 120 km separated from Hanoi, and the time for moving is no more no less than 3 hours.
The 2 ladies that rarely stick to the long distant driving, moved without any knowledge to drive from the center of Hanoi to the highway 1A to Ninh Binh so we have learnt a lesson here.
Currently the Ninh Binh – Hanoi highway is available: Phap Van – Cau Gie but just for cars. And Google in basis is always set priority for this option to guide you! But in Vietnam, almost vehicles were motorbike and had its own characteristic without an option on Google Maps. Because of the Google Maps dependent, we made a bad choice.
I went to this highway so many time in reality, but most of the time I was on the bus, was guided by another friends or follow someone else so I have made a mistake. We followed Google until we are in front of the top of the highway, we felt something wrong, we were confused to ask the xe-om driver that stopped on the roadside. There was an Air Blade driver that didn’t look familiar to a xe-om driver, he passed by us and told us to follow him. In fact, I was very vigilant, I was paying attention and always to be cautious about the worst situation when I felt something abnormal.
After 6-7 minutes driving to follow him so he leaded us to the small pathway and said following this way about 500 m more to see the highway 1A, and then turn left and drive along. After that, he insisted 10 USD for his guide. The guide form was not something weird, however with the short stretch of road for that pricey is an unreasonable demand so we tried to bargain. He was arguing so we were in fear. After a while, he was ok with only 5 USD. Hence, this was the STUPID fee for this journey of us. We, at a few moments got 2 lessons learnt, if we kept depending on other people for everything without self-handling, we were still gotten nothing at final!
The backpacker foreigners, if there was any path that was divided into the unintelligible lanes, you are able to ask the “guide” xe-om driver but remember to deal the price at the beginning!
Fortunately, the weather was so beautiful and cool so it didn’t let us quickly go down of the energy.
To the Ninh Binh area, we turned on the GPS to go to Cuc Phuong National Park. The road was so beautiful and was rebuilt to be invested for the tourism. On the way we will pass by Bai Dinh pagoda – the biggest pagoda of the Southeast Asia, the way to the Thien Ha cavern. To visit this place during this time you will be able to see the luxurious field was lush with ripening rice on the sides of road.
Nearby the forest, the butterflies’ wings were moving up and down on the road. Just a little but it was enough to be a signal for a lot of wonderful things ahead.
The ticket to entrance into Cuc Phuong was 3 USD for adult, pupil and student with the ID card just for 1 USD only, you had better to carry your ID card!
You will drive your motorbike into the forest, and initiative to stop when found out something interesting to take photos or contemplating.
The sight on the other sides of the road appeared as the cool picture because of the abundant flora system. The deeper we are, the more butterflies’ wings appears. They were flying in a flock, sometimes they alight on the sand, the wet mud trace to rest.
The butterfly here was also “daring”, it knows that it was famous and be loved so it kept flying unbiased in common the visitors, alight on the shoulder, hat or hair of the passengers, this was very cute.
To take photos, you will have to walk stealthily and shot in hustle to raise the hope to snatch as many as you could to save the moments!
We left in weekday so the forest was desolated, you were able to indulge in pleasure to play with the butterflies without queueing. However, whenever the vehicle passed by, the forest was shaken violently, the butterflies turned upside down. Each time as this, we had to be patient to wait for the coming back butterflies to continue recording and shooting.
In front of the Dong Nguoi Xua there was a compartment area where the most butterflies kept alighting, there was also the place where the visitors kept gathering the most!
This area – also the ideal place for you to pitch camp overnight. The Cua Dong Nguoi Xua was located on the halfway down of the mountain as the dragon’s opening mouth at the Southwest direction to pick up the sunshine and the wind, that is the reason why its foundation keeps drying. The cavern was excavated in 1966, there were 3 graves that buried prehistoric man was found here. Inside the cavern also contained the relics such as stone axe, stone pestle. In the winter, the atmosphere was strangely fresh and cool as you are sitting in the air conditioner.
The pathway to get into the cavern was built like a beautiful and poetic bridge, the 2 sides are the thousands year of century-old trees, is the ideal place to check-in for the youth.
To go through the jungle, you had better not to horn to upset the butterflies. There are a lot of slope down path were able to let the vehicles run their own course to follow in the kool way!
From the elders to the youth, they are all excited to the butterflies here, everyone is taking photo confidently and out on airs and graces. I heard from the security that from the end of April before the holiday, the butterflies make the white sky, at that moment everyone is Ham Huong!
I was waited with impatience for the trick to seduce the butterflies is to prepare some shrimp paste or soft drink to drop into the place to let them pay attention on it!
We played with the butterflies in 2 hours and then continue our journey.
On the way to go back to Hanoi, passed by Dong Van, Ha Nam you will have a chance to try the grilled duck here, very tasty and cheap!