Thien Cung and Dau Go Grottoes situated on Dau Go Island (Wooden Stakes Island)

Dau Go Grottoes

Situated along the Ha Long Bay the islet popularly known as the Wooden Stakes Island, houses some of the most awe inspiring natural wonders of the whole area. Albeit the coves and caverns of Dau Go Island are hidden from the outer world’s eye, they are a treat for the eye when you go down into the grottos.

Ha Long Bay is famous for its notorious trademark attractions like the floating fishing village, the abundance of lakes on each of the small islands and of course the two infamous grottos known as the Thien Cung Grotto ad the Dau Go Grotto.

Would you pass up a chance to visit a cave whose entrance looks like a blue jelly fish? I would not. When you travel the Dau Go Cave situated on Driftwood Island, the first thing that impresses you beyond expectations is how ethereal its opening is. But that is just the beginning, once inside you are welcomed by hundreds of stalactites falling down from above that makes the place look like it is a waterfall.

Imaginations run wild, so the more imaginative you are the more fun you will have inside the grotto owing to the fact that there are countless natural rock formation that have been identified to resemble countless different objects on countless occasions. One day you might see an elephant on a rock and the next day you might think it is a house –the place is super fun like that.

Three different chambers of the grotto take you to three different levels of excitement, inquisitiveness and in some cases; fear. The path from the first chamber –a lit up golden enclosure, to the second chamber is rather mysterious looking and narrow –makes you wonder what lies ahead, though of course,  it is nothing but enthralling beauty. The third chamber is again a comparatively open space with a well at the end of it which is surrounded by the most surreal and graphically articulate piece of natural artwork; images that look just like horses, elephants as well as men with spears and swords make you imagine all of them actually being petrified here thousands of years ago.

Heavenly Cave as it is popularly known among the locals, the Thien Cung Grotto is on the top of a long list of caves and cavernous grottos that are proudly attributed to the Ha Long Bay. Apart from the aesthetic and geological value of the 2 million to 10 thousand years old caves; there is an incontrovertible value attached to them owing to the interest of tourists. Just starting your voyage to the Thien Cung Grotto will clear your doubts about how valuable the place is, for the path is quite perilous yet filled with tourists who take it upon themselves to trudge on through the wooden walkways and steep steps that are covered on both sides by thick dark forest.

Once inside, the incredulity of the natural structures inside makes you doubt the fact that they were not made by human beings. The initial feeling you get from the place is that of an articulate museum that holds statues and other valuables of fine-arts for the walls are filled with quite graphic accounts of stories and myths that are attributed towards Ha Long Bay’s most beautiful cave. The management of the grotto does not shy away from the decorations to! And the splendid lighting system adds such a colorful effect to the whole cave that the final product starts resembling something like a Vegas casino that has been themed with antique and priceless statues. Yet, everything solid inside the cave is natural i.e. not manmade.

From the walls of the grotto, you get to see the picturesque tale of the dragon prince who inhabited the cave during his reign and the story of the princess who agreed to marry him to save her people. The myth is celebrated as one of the most important stories attached to the Thien Cung Grotto and you even see a stalactite that looks just like the dragon. On the insides of the cave you can literally see elephants, lions, genies, stars, dragons and even snakes –all of whom have apparently been fossilized since the wedding of the aforementioned dragon with the princess.

Such articulate details and that too coming from the best artist in the world i.e. nature, who would want to miss out on an opportunity to check them out up close and personal!

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