Tam Coc from Hanoi with a Baby Simple Family Travel Guide

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Tam Coc Travel Vlog, Ninh Binh, Vietnam

Tam Coc is one of those underrated tourist destinations that are becoming increasingly popular in Vietnam.

Our family discovered this part of the Trang An UNESCO world heritage site by accident. We thought we booked a one-way shuttle transfer from Hanoi to Trang An – where we originally wanted to base ourselves as a Halong Bay alternative.

It turned out we were on a tour bus running a day trip to Ninh Binh from Hanoi with 3 different routes. One of which, was Hanoi to Tam Coc with visits to Hoa Lu ancient capital and Bich Dong Pagoda.

At the end of our Trang An Grottoes Boat Tour, before getting to Tam Coc, we asked our tour guide whether we could stay on the bus and check out Tam Coc as well. He kindly let us ride along with the group and dropped us off at Van Lam Pier, Tam Coc.

In this post, we will share our family experience and recommendations from our short 2 days trip to Tam Coc from Hanoi with my 15-month-old baby.

Tam Coc with a baby Ninh Binh from Hanoi Vietnam Travel Vlog Featured

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Trang An River Grottoes Boat Tour, Ninh Binh

How to get to Tam Coc from Hanoi?

Tam Coc is about 100km from Hanoi and a 2 hours drive. You can take a local bus or train to Ninh Binh province, and then a taxi to your destination in Tam Coc. You can find the best price here on the biggest trusted budget travel service in Asia – 12Go.Asia.

However, our recommendation is to visit a travel agent in Hanoi, book a shuttle transfer and enjoy the journey as a day trip. You may even get to stop by major attractions such as Bai Dinh Pagoda.

Tam-Coc-Van-Lam-Pier
Tam Coc, Vietnam

© Photos by Kida

Quite honestly, you probably only get to save a few US$ by travelling on public transports. It may not be worth all the hassle, especially if you’re travelling with young kids.

Without extensive research on travel agencies in Vietnam, we booked our transfer with Luxury Travel Agency Vietnam, which was right across the road from the hotel we were staying at – Artisan Hotel Hanoi.

When is the best time to go to Tam Coc?

Our unplanned trip to Tam Coc happened in late June, and to our disappointment, the harvest season for rice fields was over. So our recommended time to visit Tam Coc is between mid-April to early June. This is also the best time to watch lotus flowers flourish.

However, Ninh Binh is also beautiful in Spring, so if visiting rice paddy fields are not on your must-do list, the most comfortable season to go is in the first half of the year. It’s shoulder season for tourism, meaning there will be fewer tourists at top attractions, and travelling is more affordable.

Tam-Coc-Van-Lam-Pier-Boats-Vietnam-Family-Travel
Tam Coc, Vietnam

© Photos by Kida

Top Attractions in Tam Coc

Tam Coc is such a cozy place, and it has that homely vibe compared to all the other major tourist destinations in North Vietnam. Below is a list of the highlights and top tours.

Ninh-Binh-Tam-Coc-Trang-An-Bai-Dinh-Temple-Tour
Bai Dinh Temple

© Photos by Kida

  • Bich Dong Pagoda
  • Bai Dinh Temple
  • Thai Vi Temple
  • Hoa Lu Ancient Capital of Vietnam
  • Mua Cave
  • Tam Coc Boat Tour
  • Trang An River Grottoes Boat Tour
  • Thung Nham Bird Garden
  • Cuc Phuong National Park

Top Things To Do in Tam Coc with Kids

As for our family, we chose to rest up, recharge, relax and soak up the countryside landscape of Tam Coc during our short stay here.

  • Binge on freshly squeezed tropical juice for $1
  • Try mountain goat meat
  • Walk around Van Lam Pier as it lights up in the evenings
  • Have a chat with friendly locals
  • Grab a chair and enjoy live karaoke by the water
Trang-An-Ninh-Binh-River-Grottoes-Boat-Tour-Vietnam
Trang An River Grottoes Boat Tour

© Photos by Kida

Where to stay in Tam Coc?

Tam Coc attracts a lot of young people and backpackers. You can find many hostels located near the bars and restaurants. So if you’re travelling solo, there are plenty of choices when it comes to staying at a vibrant hostel with a tour desk.

However, our family had grown out of hostels, and we much preferred a quieter accommodation with our own privacy. So we chose to stay with Lys Homestay. We had a rather comfortable stay despite the 2-star rating. There were a lot of stairs and the room was simple, but it had everything we needed for a good rest. The best of all was its location within walking distance to Van Lam Pier and the restaurants. We would definitely come back again.

© Photos by Kida

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In the meantime…

Have you been to Tam Coc and Trang An? What are your favourite things to do in Ninh Binh?

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