Ban Gioc Waterfall – an off beaten track destination

Vietnam has many beautiful natural landscapes from mountain to sea, which attracts a big number of travelers visiting the last few years. For those who love green and mountain, North Vietnam is a must-visit place during your trip. Therefore, Ban Gioc waterfall should be in your wishlist for Vietnam tours if you are looking for a unique experience.


Ban Gioc waterfall
Ban Gioc waterfall is one of the best well-known in Vietnam

Ban Gioc Waterfall facts

Located in Trung Khanh District, Cao Bang province, Ban Gioc Waterfall is about 360 km from Hanoi.

With 30m height and 300m width, Ban Gioc waterfall is the widest waterfall in Vietnam. It is also the largest waterfall in Asia and the fourth largest waterfall in the world along the national border. The waterfall lies in Quay Son River which is on the international border between Vietnam and China, thus, half of the waterfall belongs to Vietnam and half belongs to China. The fall is so huge with two levels of rock setting, white mist blowing up, while riverbed is green, creating a poetry scene.


Ban Gioc Waterfall
It is also the largest waterfall in Asia and the fourth largest waterfall in the world along the national border

Things to do in Ban Gioc Waterfall

In order to visit Ban Gioc waterfall, you will need to pay a fee of 45,000 VND per person.


Bamboo raft to Ban Gioc waterfall
Get closer to Ban Gioc waterfall by bamboo raft

Hop on a bamboo raft and getting a closer look at Ban Gioc Waterfall is a fun and interesting experience. Do expect to get wet from spraying curtains of water so you need to be careful with your cameras. To experience bamboo rafting, you will need to pay an extra 50,000 VND/per person.

Our company recently visited the area last September and it was a wonderful experience for us to get on a bike trip, discovering the lush beauty of rice fields and villages. We biked along the rivers with blue water, countryside landscape dotted with limestone hills, and especially, you could not stop taking pictures of golden rice fields.

Located just about 3 kilometers from Ban Gioc Waterfall, Nguom Ngao Cave is a must-see spot during your visit to the area. The cave was discovered in 1921 by local people and opened to travelers since 1996. The length of the cave reaches to 2144m, though, only 900 m of total length was exploited. You will be totally amazed when seeing that cave as it looks like a luxury palace with beautiful stalactites and stalagmites, bright crystals. There are many big and beautiful formations which evoke your imagination.

Best time to go to Ban Gioc Waterfall

The ideal time to visit Ban Gioc Waterfall is around September to October when the rain is less, water gets cleaner and you can get closer to the waterfall. Also, September and October is rice harvest season and you can see beautiful golden rice fields in the area. From June to August, the heavy downpours feed a large amount of water to Quay Son rivers, making waterfall at its widest merge. However, you could not get closer to the fall as the area can be flooded and the water looks very muddy.


Countryside along the Quay Son River
Visiting countryside along the Quay Son River

How to get to Ban Gioc Waterfall from Hanoi

Public transport

From My Dinh Bus station in Hanoi, there is a bus departing almost every hour to Cao Bang city. If you want to save time and one night staying in Cao Bang, an overnight sleeping bus is a perfect choice. The drive normally takes for about 6 to 8 hours so you may expect it is not always comfortable to stay on such a long time on the bus.

From Cao Bang city, you can take another bus ride for 2 hours to the waterfall. Buses depart every 30 minutes from morning till afternoon. The most convenient way is to arrange a day trip with your accommodation. You can either rent a private car with a driver or some even arrange motorbike tours.

Arranging a private tour from Hanoi

If your budget allows and you want to have a free stress holiday, arrange a tour with a private tour guide and a driver is the best way. Not only you will be taken care of during the trip, but you also have more knowledge about the area through tour guide explanation. The drive from Hanoi to Cao Bang – Ban Gioc is very beautiful and if you want to stop for any pictures, the private driver would be very happy to stop at a safe point for you.

Suggested itinerary to visit Ban Gioc Waterfall

To explore Ban Gioc and the area in the best way, I would suggest at least 3 days to visit the area. The visit to Ban Gioc Waterfall would be more interesting when combining with Ba Be Lake. Here below is a suggested itinerary.


Nguom Ngao Cave
Discovering Nguom Ngao Cave
  • Day 1: Hanoi – Ba Be lake (5 hours driving from Hanoi). You can enjoy a boat trip to Ba Be Lake – the biggest freshwater lake in Vietnam.
  • Day 2: Ba Be Lake – drive to Ban Gioc waterfall (6 hours driving). You can discover the a handicraft village called Phuoc Sen village a mountainous village famous for its traditional blacksmithing to meet and interact with Nung people. Continue to drive to Ban Gioc, discovering Ban Gioc Waterfall.
  • Day 3: Exploring Nguom Ngao Cave and then drive back to Hanoi.

Also, your expenditure to Ban Gioc waterfall can be combined with Halong Bay cruise in a northeast loop. Here is our sample tour – Adventure The Northeast Vietnam 6 Days

I wish you have a beautiful trip to Ban Gioc Waterfall.


Van Do – Travel Specialist

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