Son Doong Cave Expedition

  7 Days  |  Son Doong Tours

Dong Hoi - Phong Nha - Hang En - Son Doong - Hang En - Phong Nha

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ITINERARY HIGHLIGHTS

  • Explore the most beautiful cave in Vietnam with different terrains, flora and fauna, and so much more await visitor
  • Capture the finest beauty of cavern in the world, featuring magnificent 100m wall of stalagmite, enormous Green Gours and ancient fossil passage
  • Exceed the limit of yourself as you will travel through the jungle of Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, the biggest cave in the world, steep hills and valleys
  • Learn about the ethnic group living in this region to learn about their life and customs

Minimum age

Language

Pickup time

Duration

Culture shock

Physicality

Son Doong is famous as the biggest cave in the world, but this natural wonder is worthy to be considered “King of Vietnam Underground World”. If you have the courage, the strength, and the passion the experience this ultimate adventure tour, do not hesitate and make the upcoming 7 days of your life the most memorable.

Day01

Dong Hoi – Safety Briefing – Local hotel in Phong Nha

You will have to attend the Safety Briefing so remember to arrive in Dong Hoi at 2:00 pm in the afternoon. Then, meet a member of our team and transferred to the meeting location which is either Oxalis Home Hotel or Ho Khanh’s Homestay located near Phong Nha – Ke Bang National Park. Rest or explore around the village of Phong Nha but note that you will have breakfast and lunch on your own on that day. Please check your possessions before the briefing.

Around 5:30 pm to 6:00 pm, we will group up in the hotel restaurant before we transfer you to Oxalis Headquarters. There, our technical advisor and guide team will show you the safety briefing, equipment check and Release Form which you will have to sign.  Anyone who not present at the meeting will be drop out of the group and will not receive any refund.

Afterward, we will take your belongings and put them into individuality labeled plastic bags, and transport them to porter teams for the following day. You will only receive your belongings each evening in campsite so take equipment such as camera, tripod and keep them in your different backpack. When everything is done, relax and dine with your group at around 7:30 pm at Oxalis headquarters, then transferred back to hotel to rest for the night.

Day02

Phong Nha – Ban Doong Village – Hang En Cave

Your first day of exploration begins at 8:00 am to wake up and have breakfast. Before we set off at 9:00 am on Road 20 of Ho Chi Minh Highway, feel free to leave any extra luggage or valuables which you do not want to take along. 

After 45 minute drive, start at the trailhead and hike through the dense forest and along a small stream. Then, you will reach Ban Doong, one of the homes for an ethnic group of Vietnam in the region. Take your time to visit and discover the life of the village in the middle of the wilderness. Afterward, you can enjoy lunch next to a peaceful small river.

In the afternoon, you will begin a pretty harsh journey which you will trek 2 hours along the river without much shade from the sun. Also, your feet will be wet for the rest of the day so please check the footwear recommendation as they will constantly in the water. 

Afterward, Hang En (Swift Cave) will appear and you can see a huge number of these birds living around. Take your headlight and it is time to explore your first cave. On your way to the campsite, you will encounter many stalactite formations and fascinate fossils. After 30 minutes, you arrive at the camp by 3:00 pm and refresh yourself in the underground river. The ideal location of the campsite will surely entertain you with beautiful sceneries.

Please note that if you are unable to complete any stage on the first day, the guide team will decide whether or not you will have to return to Phong Nha and not allow continue. There will be no refund unfortunately.

Day03

Hang En Cave – Son Doong Entrance – Hand of Dog – SD Camp 1

This is the first day which you explore the great Son Doong Cave filled with difficult terrains so make sure to fill up with our delicious breakfast. Our trek starts at 9:00 am through the rest of the cave until you reach the exit which was filmed in the Hollywood film “Pan”. After that, try your best through the river valley and your boots will definitely be wet, then after 1 hour, you will continue to climb a steep hill. After such hard trip, you can rest on the top of the hill, relax and enjoy the magnificent view and your lunch. 

Before reaching the mouth of Son Doong, listen to the safety briefing and prepare your harness and rope. You will climb down to finally enter the different world underground. Here, you will do a lot of climbing in the cave with the assistance of our guides until we reach two river crossings inside the cave. This is the last washing place in the day so you should consider doing it here. 

Then, we will continue to our first campsite via the large passage of the cave. Be cautious since there will be numerous drops on the path and boulders which you have to climb over. However, after the hardship, you will see one of the hidden gems of the cave, Hand of Dog (a massive thousand year stalactite) brighten by the light of the sky. Finally, you have reached the first campsite inside Son Doong Cave at around 3 – 4 pm. Now is the time when you can have a total relaxation, feast on a wonderful dinner and rest for the night.

Please note that there are no washing facilities at camp on this day.

Day04

SD Camp 1 – Watch out for Dinosaurs - Great Wall of Vietnam – SD Camp 2

Have your breakfast in the morning and we will begin our adventure on yet another challenging path. First, there will be some rocky climbs, some steep places and then finally after about 1 and a half hour reaches a section called “Watch Out for Dinosaurs” by Cave expert and explorer Howard Limbert. The section opens the way to a jungle seem to be a location in the famous film “Jurassic World”. Feel free to capture the remarkable scene of this place. Have a short rest before you cross another impressive location called “Green Gours”. This spot is an excellent photography opportunity that you must not miss. Then, rest and lunch before the magnificent scene of the first doline.

After regaining some of your energy, we will take you through the massive unique formations of stalactite and stalagmite, a pool of cave pearls around the cave on the way through the second doline and the main jungle. Reach the main jungle and discover the only jungle within the cave in Vietnam. It will absolutely amaze visitors. After 45 minute venture through the jungle, we will trek the steep and slippery path to reveal our second campsite in Son Doong at around 2 – 3 pm. 

Then, you will be taken to the next wonder in the cave which is often being referred as the Great Wall of Viet Nam. This is an 80m high calcite barrier found in the first expedition of Son Doong by experts. On the way, you will venture through a dry passage where there are huge stalagmites and a great view of the second doline. Pay attention to your surroundings and you can find some creatures living including white spiders, fish, and woodlouse in Son Doong Cave.

There are two options for you to choose at this point. Either paddle on a beautiful underground lake or take the challenge and squelch few hundred meters through the mud pit. Please note that you can also choose to abandon this location since there will be no way for you to wash the mud beside wet wipes or something similar. 

Your day will finish at the camp when you return at around 6:00 pm. Enjoy your hearty dinner with the team and activities with the group before taking a good sleep.

Please note that dry boots are recommended here since there will be no water crossings besides mud pit. However, there will be no washing location on this day of the trip as well.

Day05

SD Camp 2 – Fossil Passage – Nat Geo View Point – Hang En Cave

As usual, we will have breakfast before beginning our fifth day of adventure. Pack your belongings and return to the first doline via a different way than in our previous day. You will have to rope and other equipment to cross this narrow oxbow passage above the underground river.

Then, when you reach the first campsite, you can rest for a while there. Afterward, we will continue our trip by climbing down on the ancient fossil passage. Remember to hold your camera to capture coral fossils dated back to the age of dinosaurs. After such exploration, we will descend back to the main path, cross the river and climb up to the entrance with proper equipment. Then, you can enjoy your lunch with the team and do the washing in the nearby pool if you interested. 

At around 2 pm, you will say goodbye to the largest cave in the world through the entrance and have a short break with snacks if you wish. Venture to river valley where you can wash and then back to the entrance of Hang En. Finally, you can relax and enjoy your evening at the underground campsite with dinner prepared and stories to share.

Day06

Hang En Cave – Ban Doong Village – Phong Nha

Your cave exploration is over, but the adventure still continues. After having breakfast, time to trek back to Road 20 and follow the river to reach Ban Doong Village. Regain your energy with snacks and fruit before the last part of our adventure on the mountain. Enjoy your final challenge by climbing to the top of the hill and remember that cold drinks await you at the end. 

After that, it is time to unwind and transferred back to Chay Lap Farmstay to refresh in the pool. Relax as you will have plenty of time to think about your great adventure and feast on delicious lunch with your group on the last night.

Please note that we recommend you to contact us in advance about your departure time so we can transfer you back to airport or train station. If you wish to extend your trip, please contact us to stay on extra nights at Chay Lap Farmstay.

Day07

Departure day

You will be served with another nice breakfast before we transfer you according to your departure time. However, the check out time of Chay Lap Farmstay will be 12 pm so if you want to spend an extra night, please contact us. It is our pleasure to help and we wish you enjoy your upcoming trip.

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