Ba Vi National Park offers escape from hustle of Hanoi
King Peak, the highest peak in Ba Vi National Park (Source: VOV)
Ba Vi National Park is the nearest "green world" to the capital
city of Hanoi, where nature-lovers can find an ideal escape from the
hustle and bustle of city life in all four seasons.
In spring, the forest is highlighted with striking colours of wild
peach blossoms and apricot flowers, while in summer the dense forest is
dryer and brighter with light sunshine beaming down through thick layers
of leaves. Autumn covers most of the trees with yellow coats and winter
seems to bring a fresh cool air to the space.
in the middle of the northern plain, Ba Vi (Three Peaks) is
mentioned in the ancient legend of the Mountain God Tan Vien, and is
said to be his final resting place.
The highest peak,
known as King Peak, is 1,296m, followed by Tan Vien Peak
(Mountain God) at 1,227m and Ngoc Hoa Peak at 1,131m. There is a
temple dedicated to President Ho Chi Minh on King Peak and another
to worship the Mountain God on Tan Vien Peak.
At the entrance to the park is Tien Sa Tourism Site, where a 20ha lake is surrounded by a 120ha forest.
The site is divided into several themed zones to suit various ages,
including a water park of 3,000sq.m with three swimming pools and nine
slides and a games area of 2,500sq.m.
Young people can enjoy boating or play tennis, football, volleyball and badminton.
Following the sloping zigzagging 12km road from the park gate,
visitors will have a chance to see the rich local flora and fauna. The
park is home to more than 1,200 kinds of plants, 21 of which are
mentioned in Vietnam's Red Book of rare and threatened species.
There are also 63 species of animals.
vestiges of the French occupation have recently been opened to the
public at 1,000m above sea level thanks to the upgraded road leading to
According to a French document dating back
to the 1930s, the French planned to build three resorts at heights of
400, 600 and 1,000m above sea level, and were particularly keen on
developing the highest one. Between 1932 and 1944, they built various
facilities like a hostel, playground, church, orphanage and military
basement which can still be seen today.
A jail was
also built in the 1930s capable of holding up to 200 prisoners, and some
of the implements used to torture the prisoners are now on display.
A new trekking route has been opened leading up to some of the parks
oldest trees, mostly Bach Xanh (calocedrus macrolepis). Hundreds of them
flourish at an altitude of 1,000m, and the tree offers fine wood with a
gentle fragrance which is easily processed into furniture and houses.
At the end of the road, climbing over 1,000 steps leading to the
temples on King Peak or Tan Vien Peak is another
From King Peak, the
scenery looks like a huge painting with giant "strokes" of green grass
fields, yellow rice crops and the Da River zigzagging through the