Halong Bay is a perfect model of karst formations with tens to hundreds of limestone caves and grottos. Plentiful as the number might be, only a few caves are accessible by tourists. Thien Cung Cave, also called Heavenly Palace, is a haunted Halong Bay destination thanks to its magnificent natural settings.

About Thien Cung Cave

Thien Cung Cave is located to the north of Dau Go Island, which is around 4 km from the tourist wharf. The cave is 10,000 m2 wide and nestled at an altitude of 25 meters.

After millions of years of natural processes, Thien Cung Cave is left with incredible settings of stalagmites and stalactites of different shapes and sizes. As the entrance to the cave is narrow and covered under the thick green foliage, the cave was unknown to the world until 1993, when the fishermen came here to hide from a storm and accidentally discovered this cave. The cave was named “Thien Cung” (Heavenly Palace) because the stalactites inside shapes like the mythological creatures (dragon, phoenix, etc.) in oriental cultures and the pillars in the royal palace. Paying a visit to Thien Cung Cave, you will definitely be left in awe by the grand nature here.

Legend of Thien Cung Cave

The cave is tied to the legend about a Dragon King, who decided to settle down here after having supported the nation in defeating against the foreign invaders. When the region experienced a severe drought, the locals come to ask for his help. “May” – the daughter of the couples who entreated the Dragon King’s help and his son – the Dragon Prince fell in love with each other and went into marriage.

They celebrated their wedding here within 7 days with the attendance of gods, genies, fairies, and dragons (the stalactites and stalagmites that fill the cavernous halls shape like them). Also, somewhere in the cave, you can hear the drum-like sound in the celebration, which is indeed the natural wind blowing through the holes in the grottos. In the back of the cave are 3 small natural ponds, where May used to bath their 100 children. Looking even more beautiful with colorful lighting systems, Thien Cung Cave deserves to be one of the highlights of Halong Bay that any travelers should not ignore.

How to get there?

Being one of the most popular tourist attractions in Halong Bay, Thien Cung Cave can be reached by different ways. The cave is included in the itinerary of almost Halong Bay cruises, from the daytrip which is only 4-6 hours long to the overnight cruises that would last about 2 – 3 days.

Following the path to the entrance of the cave, you will come across the rugged cliffs with two sides covered with lush vegetation. The gate to the cave is quite narrow but the space inside will make you stand in awe as it is too marvelous to be true.

A visit to Thien Cung Cave will make travelers feel like they are watching a movie of Marvel Studio with the majestic formations that you never think to be able to exist on Earth. Without any doubt, the cave is a must-stop Halong Bay destination that travelers should never ignore.