Trang An Landscape Complex covers an area of 6,172ha in districts of Hoa Lu, Gia Vien, Nho Quan, Tam Diep Town and Ninh Binh City, about 90km to the southeast of Ha Noi. The complex is surrounded by a buffer zone of 6,268ha, mostly comprising paddy rice fields and villages.
As a mixed cultural and natural property, Trang An Landscape Complex contains three protected areas, including Hoa Lu Ancient Citadel Cultural – Historical Area; Trang An – Tam Coc – Bich Dong Scenic Area and Hoa Lu Special-Use Primary Forest.
Located in the humid tropical region, Trang An Landscape Complex is a mountainous area that extends in a northwest-southeast direction. To the north and northwest of Trang An lie Bai Dinh karst hills; to the southwest and the south are Dong Tam – Son Ha and Tam Coc – Bich Dong karst ranges; to the southeast and northeast is Truong Yen karst range; to the northeast and the north is Trang An karst range.
Trang An Area was invaded and reworked by the sea many times in the recent geological past but is now emergent on land. Landform development over a period of more than five million years produced scenic landscape of extraordinary beauty – a blend of towering cliff-bounded mountains draped in natural rain forest, surrounded by huge and deeply developed internal basins whose clear and quietly flowing waters are connected through a myriad of underground streams and caverns, many of which are navigable by small sampans carrying tourists.
On 23 June 2014, in Doha (Qatar), World Heritage Committee of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) recognized officially Trang An Landscape Complex as World Cultural and Natural Heritage Site based on three criteria: culture, aestheticism and geology – geomorphology.
Main tourist sites
Hoa Lu Ancient Citadel cultural- historical Area: King Dinh Temple, King Le Temple, Co Am Pagoda, Kim Ngan Pagoda, Duyen Ninh Pagoda, Nhat Tru Pagoda, Thien Ton Grotto, etc.
Trang An Scenic Area: Trinh Temple, Tran Temple, Tu Tru Temple, Dia Linh Cave, Sinh Duoc Cave, May Cave, Nau Ruou Cave, Bai Dinh Pagoda Complex, etc.
Tam Coc – Bich Dong Scenic Area: Bich Dong Pagoda, Linh Coc Pagoda, Thai Vi Temple, Thien Huong Grotto, Tien Grotto, Thien Ha Grotto, But Cave, Mua Cave, Ca Cave, Thung Nham, Thung Nang, Co Vien Lau Ancient Village, etc.