Cat Ba, Vietnam’s most divers destination, offers some great trails. Every trail is better if it rewards you with a stunning view. That’s why you shouldn’t miss the trail to Ngu Lam Peak in Cat Ba National Park. It’s not the toughest hike, but you do need some endurance to conquer a series of steps to the summit. In December, this climb was very doable. However we can imagine in summer months a lot of water is necessary to stay hydrated.

How to get to Cat Ba National Park?

In Cat Ba Town you can hire a scooter for just 3 USD a day. This is a great way to discover the island and plan a trip to the National Park. Finding the way is easy, as there is only one main road that crosses the island. Follow that road and enjoy the scenery until you reach Cat Ba National Park on your right.

There is a parking lot in front of the park. Parking fee is 5,000 VND, while entrance fee is 40,000 VND per person. Keep in mind that the park closes at 5 pm. In total, about 2.5 hours should be sufficient to complete the loop trail to the top and back, with enough time to enjoy the views.

For those who like to rely on their GPS, here are the coordinates:

Breedtegraad: 20° 47′ 37.8″ N (20.793839)
Lengtegraad: 106° 59′ 23.6″ E (106.989894)
Hike to Ngu Lam Peak

From the entrance of the park, a flat concrete path leads you toward the jungle. When you pass the bar, at the end of the path, a sign board shows you the route you have to follow. It guides you directly to some rock stairs. This is where the real work begins. The trail is quite short but steep. Thanks to the steps and ladders, it doesn’t get very technical. Only just before reaching the summit, there is a short steep rocky section.

Note that the wooden viewpoint structure is not the best part of this trail. Behind this, you’ll find a small path amidst the bushes that leads you to a second and even more stunning viewpoint. Through that extra short walk, you’ll surpass not only the wooden structure but the entire island’s tree line. A bird’s-eye view over the green waves of the Cat Ba jungle is waiting for you!

Extra tip

Combine this trip with a visit to Hospital Cave. This fascinating cave is located on the same road, approximately halfway between Cat Ba Town and Cat Ba National Park. And why not drive all the way to the northern end of the island and climb to a secret and very rewarding viewpoint? But shhht, don’t tell anyone!