Is December a good time to visit Ninh Binh?

Ninh Binh is known as the Halong Bay in land of Vietnam and becomes one of the most commonly visited destinations in North Vietnam, besides Halong Bay, Hanoi, and Sapa. However, if you come to Vietnam in December, you may wonder is December a good time to visit Ninh Binh? The answer will be provided in this post by our travel experts.

Weather in Ninh Binh in December?

December is the coldest month in Vietnam in general and in Ninh Binh specifically. The average temperature falls to 18 Celsius degree in the daytime and under 11 Celsius degree at night. Since Ninh Binh has many mountains, it may feel colder in compared to the capital city - Hanoi. A good news is that there are not many rains during this month making it easier for travelers to visit Ninh Binh.

When coming to Ninh Binh in December, you should wear warm clothes, especially when you get on the boat in Trang An since you may feel freezing when passing through the caves.

What to do in Ninh Binh in December?

Now, let’s discover what you can do in Ninh Binh in December.

Visit Bai Dinh Pagoda

Bai Dinh Pagoda is located near Hoa Lu, belonging to the Trang An Sceneric Landscape Complex. It is one of the biggest Buddhist pagoda in Vietnam as well as in Southeast Asia which consists of more than 500 Buddha statues, especially the 10-meter-height bronze Buddha statue. Coming here, not only you can see the spiritual life of the local people, but also can enjoy such a majestic view to the surrounding mountains. 

A good news is that you don’t have to pay anything for entrance fee. However, the way to walk to the pagoda is quite far, if you want, there is a tourist cars available for you which costs only around 100,000vnd/ person/way.

Explore Trang An grottoes

Trang An is one of the most beautiful natural places to visit in Ninh Binh which has a system of limestone which have existed for about 250 million years. Over the time, caves and valleys were created by nature. Thanks to its craggy geography, Trang An was chosen as North gate to protect the ancient capital of Hoa Lu by Dinh Tien Hoang Emperor in the 10th century. The best experience to have in Trang An is to take a boat trip through all the caves, paddy rice fields and limestone which bring you the feeling of peacefulness and relaxation. The price is 200,000vnd/person for a 3 or 4-hour ride, in which you will get a seat in boat with a capacity of 4-5 people and visit about 6-9 caves. As the water level is quite deep, it’s advisable to wear the safety jacket and be careful when on the boat.

As in December, visiting Trang An would be a little bit cold due to the water, especially when passing the caves, thus, prepare some warm outfit for it.

Admire Tam Coc

Tam Coc located in Ninh Hai Commune, Hoa Lu District, Ninh Binh Province. Its name means “three grottoes” which consists of grotto 1, grotto 2, and grotto 3. It is one of the commonly visited destinations in Ninh Binh which attracts a lot of tourists thanks to its poetic paddy rice field along Ngo Dong River. To visit Tam Coc, you can take a boat trip which lasts about 3 hours. You have to go to Tam Coc ferry to buy tickets which cost 120,000vnd/person for the entrance ticket and 150,000vnd/boat of 4 Vietnamese or 2 foreigners for the boat trip.

Read more: Tam Coc or Trang An?

Visit Hoa Lu

Unlike the other sites in Ninh Binh which offers beautiful nature, Hoa Lu has more of the historical values with long-standing history about foundation of Dai Co Viet – the ancient name of Vietnam. This is the capital of Vietnam during 3 dynasties, namely Ding, Le and Ly. Until 1010, when King Ly Thai To decided to move the capital to Thang Long (called Hanoi nowadays), it became the ancient capital. Coming here, you will get to know more the Vietnam’s history, see the old Vietnamese architecture and sculpture. When visiting Hoa Lu, you can visit 2 nearby temples: King Dinh temple and King Le temple which worship King Dinh Tien Hoang and King Le Dai Hanh, respectively. 

Discover Cuc Phuong National Park

Cuc Phuong is the first national park of Viet Nam which is considered as the lively museum of wild life and precious species. Thanks to its natural beauty, the park attracts hundreds of thousand visitors every year to see the natural eco-system, enjoy the beautiful scenery, or research about rare species. 

Come to Cuc Phuong National Park, you can do some activities such as camping overnight, watching wild animals at night, kayaking, cycling, visiting Cuc Phuong Museum.

What to eat in Ninh Binh In December?

Goat Meat

Goat meat is the most famous local signature in Ninh Binh which is very tender, not much fat and flavorful. When coming to Ninh Binh, you can easily find many restaurants serving goat meat, one of the most delious dish is sliced goat meat with lemon, lemongrass, sesame seed and some seasonings


Rice Crust

This is a snack that every Vietnam people would buy back as a gift for their family and friends. Rice Crust is the deep-fried cooked rice topped with jerky pork. To buy it, you can go to any local snack stalls nearby famous places of interests with the price of roughly 20,000-30,000vnd/package.

Eel glass noodle

Eel glass noodle in Ninh Binh is very special in compared with other provinces in Vietnam because the noodle broth is made of eel’s bones which make the dish so flavorful and rich. If you come to Ninh Binh, don’t forget to taste this exotic dish.

Is December a good time to visit Ninh Binh?

The answer is yes. 

When you take a trip to Ninh Binh, it requires a lot of outdoor activities. In the summer, it may not be very pleasant as you can become sweaty very quickly, but it’s much better when it’s December. Therefore, we believe that December is a good time to visit Ninh Binh.

How to go from Halong Bay to Ninh Binh?

There are several ways to transport from Halong Bay to Ninh Binh. In this article, we recommend 2 options for you:

By local bus: this is one of the cheapest options as it’s normally for the local. In addition, it operates every day and the whole journey takes around 4,5 hours. To get the ticket, you can go directly to the ticket counter at the Bai Chay bus station, and buy the earliest bus. The ticket costs approximately 180,000vnd/person/way. 

By Limonsine Dcar: this option is normally for tourists. If you come in the weekend or national holidays, we strongly recommend you to take a Limonsine bus as the local bus would normally be full during those days. The price is, of course, higher which is around 400,000vnd/person/ way. The good points are that there are only maximum 9 people on the bus and it takes only 3,5 hours to reach Ninh Binh.

How to get to Ninh Binh from Hanoi?

From Ninh Binh to Hanoi, the easiest way is to go by tourist bus which will pick you up at your hotel (in Hanoi Old Quarter) and drop you off at the tourist attractions such as Tam Coc. This option costs you around 200,000vnd/person/way.

On the other hand, you can choose to go by train which is little bit cheaper (around 100,000vnd/way depending on the time and date) and takes around 2,5 hours. However, when arriving Ninh Binh Station, you have to find a local bus or a taxi to transport to your hotel. So overall, there is not much price difference between the 2 options.

Read more: How many days to spend in Ninh Binh?

To take it easier to travel, see some of our tour to Ninh Binh from Hanoi:

Hoa Lu - Trang An full day tour from Hanoi

Hoa Lu -Tam Coc day trip

Bai Dinh -Trang An day tour

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