Deep in the national park, surrounded by forest and karst peaks, this remarkable cave system extends for 31km, though most people only visit the first kilometre or so.

Once you’re inside, the sheer scale of Paradise Cave is truly breathtaking, as wooden staircases descend into a cathedral-like space replete with colossal stalagmites and glimmering stalactites of white crystal that resemble glass pillars.

Paradise Cave has only been open to the public since 2011. Commendably, development has been sensitive: there’s no litter and even the trees along the access tracks are labelled. But in the last few years, visitor numbers have soared and if you come at peak times (the early afternoon) you can expect tour guides shepherding their flocks using megaphones – spoiling the whole experience.
To really explore deep inside Paradise Cave, consider booking Phong Nha Farmstay’s 7km Trekking trip (2,650,000d, minimum two people), which penetrates deep into the cave and includes a swim through an underground river and lunch under a light shaft.