Hanoi to Phong Nha

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How to get from Hanoi to Phong Nha

Phong Nha, located in central Vietnam, is a haven for outdoor lovers and adventure seekers. It is home to Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, an unspoiled bit of paradise and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Phong Nha’s main tourist draw is Hang Son Doong, the largest cave in the world. But beyond this colossal wonder is an extensive cave system, lush hiking trails, karst mountains, amazing wildlife, and numerous historic sites waiting to be explored.

3 ways to get from Hanoi to Phong Nha

Transport modeDurationCostsAvailability
Bus9 hours281,000 VND ($11)Check bus tickets
Train12 hours920,000 VND ($37)Check train tickets
Flight3 hours775,000 VND ($31)Check flights

There are 3 ways to travel the 500 km distance from Hanoi to Phong Nha: a 9-hour bus, a 12-hour train, or a 3-hour flight. Fares range from 281,000 VND ($11) to 920,000 VND ($37).

The bus is the cheapest way to get from Hanoi to Phong Nha with fares from 281,000 VND ($11). It is also the only direct option that picks you up from Hanoi city centre and drops you off at the main street in Phong Nha. Travel time by bus is around 9 hours.

Phong Nha doesn’t have its own railway station. When travelling by train from Hanoi to Phong Nha, you’ll have to get off at Dong Hoi Station. From here, you’ll need to transfer to a bus or taxi to complete your journey. Combined train fares start from 920,000 VND ($37).

The same goes for flying. The closest airport to Phong Nha is Dong Hoi Airport, while Hanoi’s airport is also 1 hour away from the city centre. With all the transfers you’ll have to make, we don’t think that flying from Hanoi to Phong Nha offers any advantage. It might be more convenient to take a direct bus.

TIP: If you decide to travel by plane, please consider including a carbon compensation fee to reduce your impact on the environment.

Itinerary from Hanoi to Phong Nha

Hanoi to Phong Nha travelroute

Hanoi to Phong Nha by Bus

Duration: 9 hours
Cost: 281,000 VND ($11)
Duration: 9 hours
Cost: 281,000 VND ($11)

There are three companies operating sleeper buses from Hanoi to Phong Nha. These are Camel Travel, Full Moon Party, and Queen Cafe.

Bus fares from Hanoi to Phong Nha start from 281,000 VND ($11) and travel time is 9-11 hours.

Departure and arrival station

Most buses depart from their own company headquarters located in Hanoi city centre, just a few minutes walk from Hoan Kiem Lake. Only Camel Travel departs a bit outside of the centre, some 3 km south of the Old Quarter.

They park at various hotels along the main street in Phong Nha.

Do check the bus departure and arrival points before booking your ride. Make sure that the pick-up and drop-off points are not too far from your hotels!

Bus schedules from Hanoi to Phong Nha

BusScheduleCosts
Camel Travel19:00-04:30285,000 VND ($11)
Check Bus Tickets
Full Moon Party18:00-05:00281,000 VND ($11)
Check Bus Tickets
Queen Café18:00-03:00462,000 VND ($18.50)
Check Bus Tickets

Hung Thanh is another direct bus operator for this route. However, we don’t recommend travelling with them because they get bad reviews. These include overloading, rude staff, and dirty buses. If you still want to travel with Hung Thanh, you can book a ticket through Phong Nha Locals.

TIP: Let your accommodation know when you expect to arrive and which bus company you booked with. Buses arrive very early in Phong Nha. But when luck is on your side, you can check in early and enjoy your room straight away!

Hanoi to Phong Nha by Train

Duration: 12 hours
Cost: 920,000 VND ($37)
Duration: 12 hours
Cost: 920,000 VND ($37)

When you travel by train from Hanoi to Phong Nha, you have to book a train to Dong Hoi Station (not Dong Ha!).

From Dong Hoi, you can transfer to a bus or taxi to get to Phong Nha.

Step 1: Hanoi to Dong Hoi by Train

Duration: 10.5 hours
Cost: 870,000 VND ($35)
Duration: 10.5 hours
Cost: 870,000 VND ($35)

The train journey from Hanoi to Phong Nha via Dong Hoi takes around 10.5 hours.

Although there are 5 trains operating this route daily, we recommend taking one of the overnight trains so that you won’t lose a lot of daytime travelling. You can see our recommended train schedules in the table below.

Also, as this is a very long journey, it’s best to book a bunk in a 4-berth sleeper for the most comfort. Ticket prices start from 870,000 VND ($35).

You can also get a bunk in a 6-berth cabin, which is cheaper, but it might be too cramped. Choosing a train seat doesn’t make much sense either. If you want to save money, you are better off taking a sleeper bus.

Trains depart from Hanoi Railway Station, which you can find some 2 km southwest of the Old Quarter. You are to get off the train at Dong Hoi Railway Station, located 40 km south southeast of Phong Nha.

Train Schedule From Hanoi to Dong Hoi (Sleeper berth)

TrainScheduleSleeper berth
SE319:25-05:45904,000 VND ($36)
Check Train Tickets
QB119:55-06:22870,000 VND ($35)
Check Train Tickets
SE122:15-07:59895,000 VND ($36)
Check Train Tickets

Book your tickets online via Baolau to avoid any hassle or delay at the train station!

Step 2: Dong Hoi to Phong Nha by Bus/Taxi

Duration: 1-1.5 hours
Cost: 50,000 VND ($2)
Duration: 1-1.5 hours
Cost: 50,000 VND ($2)

From Dong Hoi Railway Station, you can then take either a 1.5-hour bus or a 1-hour taxi to Phong Nha.

A bus ride only costs 50,000 VND ($2). However, the nearest bus stop to the train station is located about 1 km away.

You can find this bus stop across the Central Bus Station. Just look for the blue signboard that says Bus 4. You can get here via a 15-minute walk or a short taxi ride from the train station.

The more convenient option, albeit a bit expensive, would be to take a taxi. Fares start from 400,000 VND ($16) when taking a taxi from Dong Hoi Railway Station to Phong Nha.

Visit our page on how to get from Dong Hoi to Phong Nha for more information.

Hanoi to Phong Nha by Flight

Duration: 3 hours
Cost: 775,000 VND ($31)
Duration: 3 hours
Cost: 775,000 VND ($31)

Want to fly from Hanoi to Phong Nha? You have to book a flight from Hanoi Airport to Dong Hoi Airport and then take a bus or taxi from there to Phong Nha.

The flight itself only takes 1 hour. But keep in mind that you have to travel 1 hour from Hanoi centre to the airport and another hour from Dong Hoi Airport to Phong Nha.

Including 2 hours of waiting time at the airport, 30 minutes to collect your luggage and some time to find a bus, it will cost you about 5-6 hours to travel by plane from Hanoi to Phong Nha. For this reason, we recommend travelling on the night train or sleeper bus instead.

Step 1: City Centre to Hanoi Airport by Shuttle Bus/Taxi

Duration: 1 hour
Cost: 45,000 VND ($1.80)
Duration: 1 hour
Cost: 45,000 VND ($1.80)

From Hanoi city centre, you’ll have to travel some 30 km north to get to Hanoi Airport. You have several transport options, but we recommend taking Express Bus 86 if you’re on a budget.

Bus 86 departs from Hanoi Railway Station and picks up passengers from several bus stops near the Old Quarter. You can get a ticket for 45,000 VND ($1.80). Travel time is less than an hour.

For more convenience, you can also take a taxi. It’s best to book a ride via Grab for cheaper rates and better cars. Grab/taxi fares from Hanoi city centre to Hanoi Airport start from 230,000 VND ($9).

For more info on shuttle bus routes and other transport options, check out our page on Hanoi Airport.

Step 2: Hanoi Airport to Dong Hoi Airport by Flight

Duration: 1 hour
Cost: 680,000 VND ($27)
Duration: 1 hour
Cost: 680,000 VND ($27)

Vietnam Airlines and Bamboo Airways operate 3 to 4 direct flights daily from Hanoi to Phong Nha via Dong Hoi. The flight time is around 1 hour.

Airfares range from 680,000 VND ($27) to 790,000 VND ($31.50).

Note that it is always best to book flights early to get lower rates. Flight prices can go over 1,000,000 VND ($40) when you book close to the travel date or during the busy season.

Check Flights on Skyscanner

Step 3: Dong Hoi Airport to Phong Nha by Taxi

Duration: 1 hour
Cost: 50,000 VND ($2)
Duration: 1 hour
Cost: 50,000 VND ($2)

From Dong Hoi Airport, Phong Nha is still 40 km away. You can get to your hotel by taking either a bus or a taxi.

Bus 4 operates daily from 06:00 to 17:00. You can hail a bus from the main road just outside Dong Hoi Airport. A bus ticket costs 50,000 VND ($2). Do note that buses have an hourly interval and don’t have a definite schedule.

Taxis are also available at the airport for 400,000 VND ($16) to 500,000 VND ($20). However, drivers often try to charge more, sometimes even higher than your airfare from Hanoi!

If you’re planning to take a private transfer from Dong Hoi Airport to Phong Nha, we recommend booking your ride online via BookAway. Their prices are fixed at 576,000 VND ($23) for a 3-seater car.

Book a Private Transfer with BookAway

See our page for Dong Hoi to Phong Nha for more info.

Our favourite places to stay in Phong Nha

Thao Nguyen Homestay

Thanks to the great hospitality of the family, this homestay will feel like your home. After a day of trekking you can take a dive in the pool or sit back and relax with a Netflix movie. The homestay is located right in front of the bus stop in the center of Phong Nha. Rooms with mountain views already start from $21,- including an outstanding breakfast!

Bonus: Free cancellation policy till the last day!

Read More

 

Phong Nha Rustic Home

Want a more unique experience? The interior of Phong Nha Rustic Home creates a real rustic feel which makes you feel one with nature. It's located outside the city center, but you can use their free-bicycle rental to explore the National Parks or get to the center. Rooms start from $24.

Read More

 

More routes to Phong Nha

CatBa to Phong Nha

Dong Hoi to Phong Nha

Hoi An to Phong Nha

Hue to Phong Nha

Ninh Binh to Phong Nha

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Halong Bay to Hanoi

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