Ba Be Lake travel guide - Rusty Compass

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Ba Be Lake travel guide

Ba Be Lake Introduction

| 04 Mar 2013
Last updated 04 Mar 2013

Ba Be Lake, 250 kms north of Hanoi, is Vietnam's largest naturally occurring lake (the largest was created by a hydroelectric dam, also in the north of the country). It sits, enclosed by densely forested limestone karst mountains in the middle of Ba Be National Park. The area is inhabited by Tay, Dao and Hmong ethnic minorities.

Ba Be Lake is 7kms in length and more than a kilometre across at its widest. It's at the confluence of three rivers - which is how it draws its name. It feels more like a wide river than a lake on account of its shape.

While Ba Be's beauty won't disappoint, for most travellers, its distance from Hanoi makes it a more logical part of a wider journey through the north rather than a single destination. New and improved roads have improved access to Ba Be in recent years.

Ba Be can be combined with road travel to Cao Bang and Ha Giang provinces, both bordering China to the north. The area is another gem of Vietnam's north worth a day or two of exploration.

Mark Bowyer
Mark Bowyer is the founder and publisher of Rusty Compass.
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