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“Hang Son Doong”
Review of Oxalis Adventures

Oxalis Adventures
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Oxalis Adventure Tours is organizing trekking tours below:- Trekking to Hang En (Swalow cave) the same system with Hang Son Doong (Son Doong cave) the world's biggest cave.- Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park Tour- Trekking to Tu Lan cave system, Hang Ken cave, Hung Ton cave system- Kayaking tour to 1500m inside Phong Nha Cave- And other special adventure tours. Oxalis is socialized in caving adventure, trekking, and jungle camping, Oxalis is working with Howard Limbert - the BCRA expedition team leader who found Son Doong cave to do caving education, training and cave exploration. Quang Binh is the best place for caving in Vietnam and in the region, best Vietnam Caves, and World largest cave Hang Son Doong
Useful Information: Food available for purchase, Bathroom facilities, Lockers / storage, Activities for older children
Reviewed September 8, 2014

First, Oxalis is a top-notched tour company with awesome staff. I had the pleasure of connecting with Luke Ford, Jamie Lynn McNulty, Howard, Deb, Thanh, Uyp, and so many more individuals who I forgot your names (I apologize!) but, will never forget our interactions (except I will forget my arm wrestling loss to Quang). Everyone was kind, completely attentive to our safety and needs, and had a friendly and welcoming disposition.

I will warn people, however. The 6 day trek to Hang Son Doong caverns is fairly difficult for a person like me. I surf almost everyday and if I am not, I swim, run, hike, or do yoga. I am fairly active but, am certainly not a full-time caver/spelunker. I chuckle at the selections below (Does this attraction have the following?). Oxalis provided the food so I didn't have to purchase anything. There are bathroom facilities (very breezy facilities, actually), stairs/sort-of-an-elevator, not so much wheelchair access in the cave, you carry your locker/storage on your back, and you should probably leave the stroller at the hotel. Bathing is sparse. Smelling your fellow trekkers is a guarantee. And you will encounter the occasional spider or critter. But, it is all a part of nature and the experience that the world's largest cave will give you; and it is an AMAZING ONE! It would be difficult to find a similar trek in the United States because I can see the liabilities involved. But again, Oxalis was very cognizant of our safety.

The food provided was excellent. They made sure we had the appropriate gear and was quick to provide alternatives in case we weren't prepared. I rented the "jungle shoes" and I was glad that I did. They fit well (think high top converse with grip), dried quickly, and had adequate "feeling", hopping from rock to rock. Deb, Thanh, and Howard shared their knowledge and explained things such as the history of discovery, formations, geology, landscape, classic stories from previous adventures, current and political events affected Oxalis and the cave, and kept us all learning and entertained. And, ice-cold beer at the very end of the hike? Nice touch!

!!! There is a current initiative to install a cable car to one of the do-lines and provide a walkway. This would eliminate the tour through the cave and significantly reduce an explorer's experience. Although a small part of me would love to brag about time I trekked THROUGH the world's largest cave, rather than cable carring it to one of the do-lines =), I hope the Vietnamese Government and the powers that be have good sense to allow Oxalis to provide the minimal-footprint tour to Hang Son Doong and cancel the cable car project. Vietnam has an opportunity to educate and share with the world, how to preserve natural resources. It will have to start with decreasing pollution and disposing of garbage properly but, it could be done.

I hate the spoil the after party but, let's just say that Oxalis really took care of us at the final dinner at the hotel. That day happened to be my and a fellow traveler's birthday and they provided a birthday cake. I asked about the bakery and discovered that there were no ovens in Phong Nha (where the National Park and Son Doong is). They brought in the cake from a neighboring town. OXALIS WENT BEYOND MY EXPECTATION FROM START TO FINISH! I wish continued success to the company, Oxalis, and all the best to the staff! If you are ever in Hawaii, you have a friend!

7  Thank Mattyofthe808
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed September 8, 2014

Went with the Son Doong Tour with Oxalis. High class service. Pickup from the airport to the hotel. Friendly chat with tour guides and full preparation speech from the organizers.

We went with Deb and Wato, highly experience and knowledgeable cavers. Song Doong... words cannot explain the sheer beauty and time spent there. As a serious photographer, I'll most likely hit one or two scenes that will give me the money shot. In this tour, almost every turn of the corner produced breathtaking shots.

Deb's kindness and Wato's drill sergeant demeanor (don't worry, he's actually a teddy bear) were the perfect complement for us. Special thanks to Bamboo (our Vietnamese Tour Guide) and the countless porters who carried many things to and from the cave. They are the backbone of the tour.

You have to be in decent shape to do the tour, so don't expect a walk in the park. That said, I'm a bit hefty but I survived the tour fine. But as a baseline, if you can't reasonable walk and/or run a trail of 8 miles, expect a bit of a struggle. Day 1 is the big test. If you can't do it, they will turn you back. And considering the high demand and short list of people coming to the tour, please know yourself and your limits, because that's just one spot you're taking away from someone else.

And the dinners are awesome! It's not just great cave food, it's great food period. Train chefs, folks. You'll love it.

I don't have enough adjectives to describe this adventure, because it's more than an adventure or experience. It's a life memory. You can never have enough of those.

3  Thank Jingoye
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 5, 2014

For the adventurous, this tour is awesome. You need a reasonable degree of fitness and an ability to hike in the heat and swim with nothing but a flashlight in a cave. You get to swim and walk through caves, including swimming through a cave to your campsite where porters have your tent erected and dinner cooking. The guide was really knowledgeable about the area and the local people from the village, who act as porters on the trip. Highly recommended. Much of the money goes back into the local community who get flooded every year.

2  Thank Aisling F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 27, 2014

Absolutely amazing!!! Had a great time swimming, walking etc. The caves are stunning, our guide was amazing and the food brilliant. The whole experience was worth it and also the highlight of our trip, If you are not sure if you should stop in Phong Nha do not hesitate and go on a cave tour!!! do not wanna give too much away about what happens but is one of the most amazing places in Vietnam

1  Thank DeliriumTremens
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed August 25, 2014 via mobile

We did the two day Hang En trip with a group of 12 tourists, 2 guides and 8 porters carrying supplies (which you hardly see during the trek because they're so fast). From beginning til end it was fantastic. Hang En is just huge and impressive. We didn't see any other tourists besides our group and a group coming back from Song Doong. Trekking through the secluded national park is amazing and climbing, exploring and swimming in the cave even more. The guides were super knowledgable, helpful and funny. The porters also deserve lots of credit, for making camp, cooking great food and carrying it all on their backs. When we discovered a mishap with our overnight train tickets the night after the trek (which I booked through another agent), Oxalis even refunded the private car we booked with them to get to Dong Hoi. Thanks everyone from Oxalis for the great experience! Don't miss out on this amazing piece of nature.

Thank Imke H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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