Top Things to do in Cao Bang

Top Things to do in Cao Bang

Cao Bang is an enticing destination for adventurers in northern Vietnam. This mountainous provinces is much known as the home of the most beautiful waterfall in Vietnam. However, it has more than that to offer.
From hill tribe trek to historical sites, from timeless town to unique markets, these top things to do in Cao Bang show you more than its surface.
cao bang waterfall
Photo: Andrea Pepoli

Ban Gioc Waterfall ( Must-do )

Ranked as the World’s fourth largest fall, Ban Gioc is a must-visit when doing waterfall hopping in Vietnam. With its waters gushing at the height of 30 meters, this natural wonder is girded by a photogenic setting that encompasses limestone karsts, greenery and turquoise waters. The best practice to enjoy the best of Ban Gioc is to take a bamboo raft along the waters of Quay Son River - also the border of Vietnam and China !

cao bang sceneryPhoto: Romain -

Trekking That Khe ( Expert Pick )

That Khe has nothing but stunning mountains and pristine nature. It is home to various ethnic minority who will surely welcome you to their villages with smiles. Hence, the trekking adventure to That Khe and its surroundings guarantee some of the best experiences in Vietnam.

Recommended Tours : Vietnam Trekking Tours

See the Lo Lo people in Bao Lac District ( Expert Pick )

Bao Lac is a hot spot for thrill seekers who want to explore the least visited parts of Vietnam. Since the show Unknown Encounter show in France happened, this district start gaining the spotlight in the trekking map of the country. The main reasons why you should plan a trip to Bao Lac are to meet the friendly Lo Lo people and photograph their rice terraces.

Related Tour: Cao Bang Trekking Tour

Visit Quang Uyen Market

Quang Uyen market delivers many photogenic chances, especially to capture the portraits of mountains people. Here, you will discover unique mountain goods, delicious local foods. There are also colorful hill tribes from all the adjandent villages to gather in the morning.

Phat Tich Truc Lam Ban Gioc Pagoda

Phat Tich Truc Lam Ban Gioc Pagoda is a stunning location to delve into a part of Vietnam’s rich history. This monument was the first to be built in the northern part of the country. Adding to historical buffs, the pagoda treats visitors with sweeping views of the spectacular Ban Gioc Waterfall and other regional picturesque landscapes.

nguom ngao cave

Nguom Ngao Cave

Discovered by the locals in 1921, Nguom Ngao Cave is amongst the top draws for trippers to Cao Bang. It is located in Trung Khanh district, about 2 hours from Cao Bang city. The cave’s system of stalagmites and stalactites creates a magnificent scene that lures thousands of cavers per year.
This spot has three entrance points, but if you are after a mix of caving and culture, Ban Thuon gate (it’s adjacent to the Thuon village of the Tay People) is the best to use.

Thang Hen Lake

When it comes to Vietnam’s natural allures, the Thang Hen Lake is inclusive. Located in Tra Linh district, this lake is about 100-300 meters by width. The main highlight for travelers is the front cave that adds to other sceneries around and the offered breathtaking boat cruise.

lenin stream

Pac Bo Relic

Amongst the top things to do in Cao Bang, Pac Bo relic is worthy for those who are curious about Vietnamse history.
Once the base for Ho Chi Minh presidence during the revolution of northern Vietnam, Pac Bo boasts magnificient nature. Some of the must-sees are Coc Po cave, Le Nin Stream, 108 Border marker, Khuoi Nam Shed, house of Ly Quoc Sung and Cac Mac Mountain.

Phuc Sen Forge Village

Cao Bang has a lot to pack into the visitor’s day trip, but don’t miss the Phuc Sen Forge Village. Not culture, history or Wildlife, this locale is mainly known for forging, a traditional work of the Nung people. Here you will see the process of manufacturing tools like knife, hoes, sickle and scissors locally out of steel.

Phia Oac - Phia Den

Phia Oac - Phia Den National Park is another major draw for a trip to Cao Bang province.
It has plenty to attract any adventurous tripper such as Phia Oac (1931 meters), the highest peak in northeastern Vietnam, stretching forests and more. A remarkable hike up to Phia Oac’ summit rewards panoramic views of towering hills, luxuriant greenery and picture-perfect valleys.

Practical Information

The following information will help you plan better your travel to Cao Bang province.

How to get to Cao Bang

The best way to reach Cao Bang mountainous area is to take the bus from Hanoi. 
There are many buses per day and the journey takes about 8 hours. It is advisable to take the overnight bus so you can save the night and enjoy your sightseeing days in Cao Bang.
Bus station in Hanoi : My Dinh Bus Station
Address : 20 Phạm Hùng, Mỹ Đình, Nam Từ Liêm, Hà Nội
For those who expect a comfort transfer, a private car is recommended. It is even better if you take a North East Vietnam Adventure Tour which combines Cao Bang, Bac Kan, Ha Giang and Lang Son Provinces. 

Getting Around in Cao Bang

Motorcycle or Scooter are the best method to navigate in the area of Cao Bang. It is cost-effective. Other advantage of this mood of transportation is you can stop anywhere en route for photos or visit villages. 
Car Rental with driver is available but should be arranged in advance. Do not expect a driver who can speak English or foreign language though it is possible sometimes.

Travel Permits

Since Cao Bang shares a long Border Line with Guangxi Province, China, you are requested to have special travel permit for certain visits. This permit can only be issued by an authorized local travel agency. Threfore, if you plan to do some adventure like trekking or biking, make sure you get the permit. 


Except for famous travel sites like Cao Bang City, Ban Gioc Waterfall, you will not find many world class accommodation like quality hotels or resort. This is also the reason why Cao Bang is more interesting for adventure minded travelers that those who want to immerse into the comfortable facilities.
For those who do trekking, please expect basic condition of homestay with blanket, mattress and ordinary toilet. Your experience is rewareded by the local hospitality instead !

Tours to Cao Bang

Most of Cao Bang Tour Packages are private. Here are some of our best offers for a trip to Cao Bang

Ban Gioc Waterfall Tour
This tour focuses on the highlights of Cao Bang landscape and the national heritage of Ban Gioc Waterfall. It lasts for 5 days with several village visit, witnessing traditional workshops and 



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Insider Travel Tips 

 Vietnam is diverse. For first time visit, the Best of Vietnam is luring enough with not only beautiful cultural exploration but also unique touches to local life. 
Dzung Nguyen - Vietnam Travel Expert

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