In what has to be one of the worst environmental decisions ever perpetrated upon our Planet, the amazing wet caves and lakes nestled within the limestone pinnacles of Ninh Binh are being sacrificed to the Gods of mass tourism. Brought to the world in the move “Indochine”, jaws dropped in movie theaters the world over as Catherine Deneuve escaped the wrath of French colonial soldiers by passing through this stunning habitat. The movie actually protected the area for years, but with celluloid memories lost, developers are moving in. Given the government’s dismal environmental record in Halong Bay, Ninh Binh doesn’t stand a chance.
With a strictly money decision that must make Lao Tzu and Confucius convulse in their graves, a massive infrastructure project is violating Ninh Binh by drilling a tunnel large enough to accommodate four lanes of East Asian group tour buses through a limestone mountain. These crowds will access S.E.Asia’s largest concrete pagoda, built on a mountain lake land fill large enough to accommodate not only the Pagoda, but the tour bus parking lot.
Pagodas are great in the proper setting, but this development is akin to building a coal-burning power plant before Yosemite’s Half Dome. It proves that humans are nothing but overgrown monkeys, lacking the judgment to be responsible stewards of Planet Earth.
Until the uncaring hordes move in, you have the opportunity to see this incredible setting by passing through 12 stalactite-filled fresh-water caves in our custom designed quiet and clean caving kayaks. Ninh Binh should remain pristine and low volume, and you have only two more years to see it before mass tourism destroys yet another planetary treasure.