|The entrance of Chà Lòi cave is narrow but inside the cave is vast and cool. — Photo nhandan.vn|
Quảng Bình Province, the kingdom of caves, is famed for caves like Sơn Đòong, Phong Nha, Én and Tú Làn. However, there is a new magnificent and mysterious cave that opened for visitors recently, called Chà Lòi cave.
Located southwest of Đồng Hới City, Chà Lòi is one of the cave systems located in Ngân Thủy Commune, Lệ Thủy District, Quảng Bình Province.
The cave is known by many locals as General Cave, as in 1970 - 1971, the then commander in chief of the Việt Nam People's Army, General Võ Nguyên Giáp, used the cave as a base.
|Chà Lòi cave has been opened for visitors recently. — Photo congthuong.vn|
To explore the cave, we prepared essential equipment and prepared for spectacular views of the pristine system of stalagmites and stalactites inside the cave.
To get to the cave, we had to trek about 800m along the trail through the gardens and houses of the Bru Vân Kiều ethnic minority people.
At the end of the trail, a small entrance of only about 4sq.m appeared in front of us. Stepping inside, a new world beckoned.
|Although it doesn’t rain, the water inside the cave still flows. — Photo nhandan.vn|
We were surprised by the vast space of the cave which is very large, airy, with high ceilings, with clusters of stalactites of all shapes and sizes hanging down.
The cave has a three-storey structure with an average height of 60m, a width of 30-100m and the highest part is up to 90m. The cave has small lakes where many animals live such as crabs and spiders.
The stalactites inside the cave contain a lot of silicic, so when we looked at them, we saw a golden iridescent colour. The stalactites here are very diverse with tubular, custard-apple, and cloud shapes. When a light shines on them, they seem to be energised by an energy source that emits extremely mysterious lights.
Inside the cave, there is a statue of a general formed entirely from nature. The face of the statue faces inward and at first glance, we thought that people had built it to commemorate a national hero.
|Inside Chà Lòi cave, there is a statue of a general formed entirely from nature. — Photo quangbinhtravel.vn|
During the resistance war against the US, Chà Lòi cave was a haven for many soldiers. They came here for meetings or to relax after a long tiring journey. No matter how intense the war was, in the cave, the soldiers still held art performances, played the guitar, and sang.
After looking at the sparkling stalactites and passing many difficult roads, we arrived at the heart-shaped tunnel to admire the uniqueness of nature. Viewed from a distance, it looks like a wonderful gift for lovers. When the stalactites glow, the whole tunnel suddenly shimmers strangely.
The second floor is more rugged and the rocks are tightly packed together to create a solid rampart of the cave.
|Visitors pose at the love tunnel, shaped like hearts . — Photo focusasiatravel.vn|
After finishing a 5km journey in Chà Lòi cave, we reached Còi Đá Village, which is in a large valley surrounded by mountains, rivers and streams.
The scenery here is extremely peaceful and is a great stop to end an interesting journey.
We decided to camp here and had the chance to enjoy the delicious food of Bru Vân Kiều people here while discovering their unique cultural features.
When night fell, the valley shimmered from the light of the small huts. The campfire flared up, we made new friends and the world seemed to be at peace.
|Camping at Còi Đá Village, which is a large valley surrounded by mountains, rivers and streams. — Photo quangbinh.gov.vn|
The journey to explore Chà Lòi cave brought us many different emotions, from excited expectation, joy, admiration, and finally, indescribable joy.
No matter how challenging the journey was, we were still very happy and look forward to coming back. VNS