The boat ride to the pagoda, if you do not come at festival time, is relaxing. We came just at the end, and didn't have a problem with a crush of people. I could not imagine going here at festival time!
It is a bit of a culture shock coming here. This was the first time seeing dog ready to eat, and several animals kept in tiny, tiny cages for sale.
Also the sellers here of everything imaginable, that has nothing to do with worship, is at times overwhelming. (toys, toy guns, food, herbs, candy, clothes...you name it and you can find it here!)
We opted for taking the cable car up and down. Having had 2 major operations lately climbing the stairs for 4 kms was not an option. Plus I think having sellers all 4 kms would be wearing.
The cave of Fragrant Traces was interesting once getting there. it really is huge! I think that I enjoyed the Heaven Kitchen pagoda more. You see this after lunch and it is in the same area (after coming back down the cable car)
We had local lunch and it was good.
Be prepared to have your picture taken lots, but we enjoyed it.
The surrounding area is just beautiful also. The cable car gives you a good view of the area and was a good idea for a different view of the area.
Certainly a place to go and see the culture of Vn.
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