Hang Chi Đảy

Chi Day Caves

Useful Information

Location: Dan Village, Yen Son Commune, Yen Chau District, Son La province.
(21.050689, 104.204645)
Open: no restrictions.
Fee: free.
Classification: SpeleologyKarst Cave
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Dimension: A=1,000 m asl.
Guided tours: self guided
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Address: Chi Day Caves, Dan village, Yen Son commune, Yen Chau district, Son La province.
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
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2007 opened to the public.
2008 designated a Provincial Natural Monument.


The Hang Chi Đảy (Hang Chi Day, Chi Day Caves) are a complex of five separate caves close to the small village Dan. Three are open to visitors since 2007, the two remaining caves will be open to tourists soon. Vietnam is at the moment in a sort of gold rush for tourist Dollars (or probably Euros). The caves were developed in a sort of semi-legal way and the site has yet to be officially recognised as a destination for tourists. As a matter of fact it is not officially opened to the public, but nevertheless hundreds of people are coming to the site daily. The first visitors obviously told all their friends about the beauty and so the word spread.

The caves have been developed very carefully (at least for Vietnamese conditions) by only making several simple steps and handrails to help visitors reach and visit the caves.

The caves are named Chi Day, which means possibly in the local Thai language, which is explained as a rather quirky pun. It is said to be a result of the resistant war against the French. Vietnamese soldiers built a base deep in the cave, so they would be safe which would possibly help to win the war.

The highest of the caves, Elephant Cave, lies 300 m up the hill, a strenuous climb on a narrow path. Because of the Vietnamese climate visitors are drenched in sweat after making the climb up. We recommend bringing a light jacket as the cool temperatures inside the cave after sweating so much may cause a cold.

Elephant Cave is named after an impressive formations, a series of thousands of white stalactites in the form of a giant elephant. Legend has it that the giant elephant once devastated the village. Then God caught and punished it by putting it on a chain in the cave. A root of a tree winding around its nose symbolizes this chain.

The cave has four large chambers connected by narrow passages, just big enough for one person at a time.