Situated near the southern margin of the Red River Delta, the Trang An Landscape Complex is a spectacular landscape of limestone karst peaks permeated with valleys, many of them partly submerged and surrounded by steep, almost vertical cliffs. Exploration of caves at different altitudes has revealed archaeological traces of human activity over a continuous period of more than 30,000 years. Being endowed with a beautiful landscape, Trang An Scenic Landscape Complex in Ninh Binh Province in Northern Viet Nam is called as an “Ha Long Bay on land” with numerous caves, mountains, valley, trees and historic relic.
Trang An is a prominent place in Southeast Asia and the world which contains abundant archaeological evidences preserved almost intactly, mostly shells, animal bones, pottery, stone tools, kitchen floor and human remains. This is an extremely valuable documentary treasure demonstrating the way that prehistoric human interacted with natural landscape and adapted to major changes of environment over more than 30,000 years, at least since the late Ice Age. During this time, they endured some of the most turbulent climatic and geographical changes in the Earth's history. Besides, cultural and historical relics such as pagodas, temples, palaces in Trang An also contribute to consolidating many archaeological documents.
Geological values of Trang An Landscape Complex
Trang An displays the end stages of karst tower landscape evolution in a humid tropical environment. The product of deep dissection of an uplifted limestone massif over a period of millions years is a remarkable array of classical karst landforms, including cones and towers, depressions (cockpits), valleys (poljes), rockfall collapse structures and deposits, subterranean caverns and rivers, caves and speleothems. A network of cross-cutting parallel faults divides the area into cells and promotes the development of enclosed depressions. An altitudinal series of erosional notches in rock walls with associated caves, wave-cut platforms, beach deposits and marine shells is evidence of former stands of sea level.
This is an extremely popular tourist destination and attracts many visitors every year. With an area of about 2168ha, Trang An Ecological Park contains special features in geological structure with caves, small streams and mysterious temples.
Visiting Trang An ecological area, you will experience the feeling of sitting on the boat and floating on the blue water, passing through 12 caves (Morning cave, Dark cave, Dia Linh cave, Wine cave, ...)and 3 spiritual points (Trinh Temple, Tran Temple and Phu Khong Temple). If you wish, you can continue your journey with the road trip by climbing more than 600 steps to reach the Tran Temple. These are buildings that were built long ago and have special values of history as well as spiritual values. With special architectural and poetic scenery, Trang An Ecotourism Complex is the most worthwhile visiting place in- Trang An.
Bai Dinh Pagoda is a large pagoda complex known for its Asian and Vietnamese records. It has the largest gilded bronze Buddha statue in Asia. It has the longest La Han corridor in Asia. This is the largest pagoda and possesses the most records in Vietnam. The area of Bai Dinh Pagoda is 539 hectares, including 27 hectares of Bai Dinh ancient pagoda, 80 hectares of new Bai Dinh pagoda, areas such as cultural park and Buddhist academy, reception area and scenery park.
Bai Dinh pagoda consists of an ancient pagoda and a new pagoda built in 2003. The pagoda is located on the slope, between the vast valleys and the moutains, in the western gateway to the ancient capital of Hoa Lu. The new Bai DinhPagoda was honored by the press as the Southeast Asia's largest pagoda.
To conquer the cave, you have to climb 500 steps. However, when coming here, you will be panoramic breathtaking view of Tam Coc - Bich Dong . Dragon statue stretching on the mountain is also one of the points that make the Cave attract tourists.
Am Tien pagoda located in the ancient relic of Hoa Lu, where King Dinh Tien Hoang used to raise tigers, building execution grounds, and the temple which Empress Duong Van Nga led a religious life. Am Tien is surrounded by mountains, creating a separate world. The scenery here is majestic, but poetic, mysterious as still save the remnants of the old excution grounds.
Most of the Am Tien cave area is a submerged valley, surrounded by rocky cliffs. Legend has it that King Ding was raising tigers here, and then prisoners was sentenced to death. the prisoners who escape will be free from sin.
Trang An was recognised by the Vietnamese Government as a special national site in May 2012, and its dossier was submitted to UNESCO in September of that year.
The latest inscription raises the number of UNESCO World Heritage sites in Vietnam to eight, the other seven being Ha Long Bay, Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, the Hue Monuments Complex, the Old Town of Hoi An, My Son Sanctuary, the Thang Long Imperial Citadel and the Ho Dynasty Citadel. The Trang An Landscape Complex is the only mixed heritage in Vietnam and Southeast Asia, and one of the the few among 35 UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
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