6 Peaks in Vietnam for Trekking and Climbing
Vietnam is not just about historic sites, temples, and delicious street food. It’s also a perfect destination for nature lovers who love mountain climbing and trekking. In fact, the northern regions of Vietnam have plenty of hills and mountain ranges that are awaiting exploration.
If mountain climbing and trekking are your brand of adventure, here’s a quick list of peaks in Vietnam for you to marvel at and conquer.
The Marble Mountains are actually five limestone-and-marble hills, found outside the city proper of Danang. Each of the five hills are named after the five elements: Hoa (fire), Kim (metal), Moc (wood), Tho (earth), and Thuy (water), with the Thuy peak being the most popular. The Marble Mountains are perfect for beginners because they aren’t very high; moreover, there are a set of steps on the mountainside to make the journey easier. Just remember to be careful and wear appropriate shoes since the stairs are made of marble and can be quite slippery. Once you’ve made it to the top, you can catch beautiful views of the Danang countryside. There are also temples, sculptures, and caves to explore in the mountains. If you’ve checked in to a Danang hotel (find one by searching khách sạn Đà Nẵng), the Marble Mountains are more or less 8 kilometers away. You can either rent a car or bike or simply take the bus to get there.
Son Tra Mountain is another mountain in Danang District. American soldiers who fought in the Vietnam War gave the nickname Monkey Mountain to this peak because of the various species of monkeys that live here. Some of them are long-tailed macaques and pygmy slow lorises. Climbing to the very top of Monkey Mountain will take about 4 hours, which you can do the old-fashioned way of hiking or by driving a motorcycle up the path. A word of warning, though. The mountain path is quite steep, so you should definitely choose one with a powerful engine. At the foot of the mountain are more lush, green forests to explore, along with sparkling beaches that are perfect for an after-climb swim.
Ta Cu Mountain
Ta Cu Mountain in Binh Thuan Province is surrounded by a protected rainforest. The highest peak is called Bang Lang, which you can reach either by hiking or by riding a cable car. If you’re up for a moderately challenging climb, you’ll be taking a steep stairway and a winding footpath to arrive at the Linh Son Truong Tho Pagoda. This temple was built in 1879, with a 49-meter statue of a reclining Budha. This statue is the biggest of its kind in Vietnam and was built in 1962. There are also a group of three smaller statues near the reclining Buddha, called “Three Buddha Postures.” Climbing to the top of Ta Cu Mountain also affords you a view of dragon fruit farms and rice paddies, which are quite spectacular especially during the harvest season.
Black Virgin Mountain
Mount Nui Ba Den (translated literally as Mrs. Black Mountain) is also called the “Black Virgin Mountain” is the highest peak in Southern Vietnam. Its summit is only 996 meters above sea level, which you can reach on foot in about 1 to 2 hours. It’s a pretty easy climb, so beginners won’t have any problems traversing the mountain trail (although you may also ride a gondola to the top.). Black Virgin Mountain looks like a hat or a upside-down bowl from a distance, and is actually an extinct volcano. When you reach the peak, you can visit temples and statues, like the Linh Son Thien Thach and mountain’s own reclining Buddha statue. Most tourists also visit other landmarks, like the Cu Chi Tunnels, when they climb Black Virgin Mountain.
Nui Chua National Park
Located in Ninh Hai District, Ninh Thuan Province, Nui Chua National Park is surrounded by forests that are marked for strict protection and rehabilitation efforts. Part of the park is Nui Chua Mountain, with a 1,039-meter journey to the summit. Ecotourists love to climb Nui Chua Mountain, since there are plenty of views along the way. These include the terraced fields built by the Raglai people, as well as the O Liem Stream where one can set up camp. There are also mountain goats here that often come out for food or to laze under the trees for a cool break. Below the mountain and around the park, you can explore the jungles or enjoy the sun, sand, and sea at Vinh Hy Bay.
At 3,147 meters, Mount Fansipan or Hua Si Pan is the highest peak in Vietnam. It is also the highest mountain in the Indochinese Peninsula, which has earned the mountain its nickname “the Roof of Indochina.” Hiking Mount Fansipan will take anywhere from 2 to 4 days, although there’s now a cable car that can take you to the top as fast as 20 minutes. Still, it’s a good idea to hike up the mountain path (the Tram Ton Trail is the safest and easiest). Your efforts will be rewarded with a gorgeous view of the Hoang Lien Mountain Ranges and the Sapa Valley. On the return journey, you can trek back down or you can also experience the cable car ride. This will give you magnificent vistas of the Muong Hoa Valley as you descend.
These are just six of the many mountains in Vietnam that you can climb on your next outdoor adventure. Pack your gear and prepare for breathtaking experience!