Thursday, August 04, 2005

Luray Caverns - Vietnam Office

Our one stop on the Halong Bay boat trip was the illuminated cavern of Hang Thien Cung, also known as the Celestial Palace. The cavern is on the first large island right across from the tour boat harbor. The particular cavern had remained undiscovered until about 1994.

After walking up a short hill on one of the islands, we entered this grand very tall cavern. The limestone stalagtites and stalagmites are lit with a variety of bright colored lights to emphasize the features. Our guide kept apologizing for the garishness of the lighting effectw within the cavern, saying that the many Chinese tourists that visit like that style. I didn't particularly see the problem since it reminded me of some of the tackier tourist caverns in the Shenendoah Valley area. Vietnam was just late getting to the Gaudily cavern tourist attraction party.

The exit of the cave was about 50 feet up the side of the island and it was a steep winding billy-goat walk back to the boat

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