Like the North-central (or Bac Trung Bo) in general and Quang Binh Province in particular, the climate in this national park is tropical, hot, and humid. The annual mean temperature is 23 to 25°C, with a maximum of 41°C in the summer and a minimum of 6°C in the winter. Annual rainfall is 2,000 mm to 2,500 mm, and 88% of the rainfall is from July to December. With more than 160 rainy days per year, no month is without rain. Mean annual relative humidity is 84%. The typical tropical climate has helped build up a pure atmosphere of the green ecological environment, ideal for any visitor.
Formation: The Phong Nha–Ke Bang karst has evolved since the Paleozoic (some 400 million years ago) and so is the oldest major karst area in Asia. Like much of Vietnam, it has been subject to extensive tectonic changes, thus the limestones of Phong Nha are inter-bedded with a number of other rocks. There is also strong evidence that sulphurous solution and hydrothermal action have played an important role in shaping the broad-scale landscape and the caves.
Historical name: The park deprives it name from Phong Nha cave, the most beautiful of all, containing many fascinating rock formations, and Ke Bang forest. One has explained that Phong Nha means “Wind and teeth” based on Chinese transcription, which expresses the blowing wind inside the cave and teeth-like rough stalagtites. There have been several other ways of explanation, yet none is more popular than this.
People now flock to this National Park for contemplating the UNESCO-recognized world natural beauty, and also for directly witnessing the fabulous rock formations inside the caves.
A nature-gifted magnificient landscape: 7 best in one
Phong Nha-Ke Bang park takes pride in the assessment of containing “7 best things” as a result of a National Science Conference held in Quang Binh in April, 1997. They are:
1. The longest water cave
2. The highest and widest cave mouth
3. The widest and most beautiful sand & rock bank
4. The most beautiful underground lake
5. The most magnificient and miraculous stalactite
6. The nation’s longest underground river (around 13,969 m)
7. The nicest and widest dry cave
It is certain that when one goes on a bout around this beautifully miraculous zone, he may be surprised and feel that he were lost in somewhere in the Heaven where he does not want to leave at all! So now let’s take a round trip to try this fabulous feeling!
Rivers & Streams
Phong Nha is such a beautiful landscape that you may have to hold your breath on contemplating. Here are the charming Son and Chay Rivers, (the two longest underground ones in the Phong Nha-Ke Bang), gently flowing in the middle of the two sides’ reed and green bamboo rows. Most of the caves here have been shaped by those two rivers. The Son River flows into the mouth of the Phong Nha cave, which is the only point where it emerges in around 20 kilometeres. Also, there are more than ten spectacular streams, springs and waterfalls in Phong Nha-Ke Bang area, namely Gió waterfall, Madame Loan & Chài waterfall, Mọc stream erupting from a limestone mount range, and Trạ Ang stream.
The Park also contains two dozens of mighty limestone mountains with over 1,000 m in height. Some of the most noteworthy peaks are the Co Rilata Peak with the height of 1,128 m and the Co Preu Peak with a height of 1,213 m. Non-karstic topograhical area accounts for a low percentage, distributing mainly in outer circle of limestone in the north, northeast and southeast of this national park. The height of these summits varies from 500-1000 m with the deep divisions. The grandiosity and uniqueness of the limestone mountain ranges that only can be found in Phong Nha-Ke Bang is of great attraction to tourists.
It’s now time to explore the zone in its rich Flora-Fauna composition. The Ke Bang primary jungles have been home to 98 families, 256 genera and 381 species of vertebrates, many of which are listed in the Vietnam and World's Red Book. If you are bold enough, you can go further into jungles to see by yourself these lively rare animals, Gecko, Macaque, White-cheeked Crested Gibbon, Hatinh and Black Lagur, Mainland Serow, Giant Muntjac, Saola, Bear, Bull, and so forth. Watching them closely and directly is somehow thrilling but extremely interesting!
Visiting Phong Nha Cave
Penetrating to a distance of 1,500 m inside Phong Nha Cave, tourists may go from surprise to surprise! Phong Nha - Kẻ Bàng is
Honorably recognized to be the World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2003, Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park has brought in a great pride for not only the locals but also all the Vietnamese. The reason for being recognized is that it meets criteria viii “outstanding geological, geomorphical, and geographical values”. This year, Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park has submitted to UNESCO second time for recognition as a world natural heritage for biodiversity.
Besides, in the “7 New World Natural Wonders” voting, Phong Nha-Ke Bang has been one among 3 sites of Vietnam (together with Ha Long Bay and Fanxipan) to be in the candidate list. Though the final results are to be given at the end of the year, in the announcement of the New7Wonders at 6 a.m on February 22nd, 2008 (Vietnamese time), Phong Nha-Ke Bang was ranked second (to Ha Long Bay) in the list of 77 world natural wonders. Ever since the significant moment of being on this list, the National Park has attracted a much greater number of visitors from all over the world!
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