This is the first time a tour operator received approval by Quang Binh provincial authorities to exclusively provide tours to Son Doong, the world’s biggest cave, in ten years.
|Son Doong in Quang Binh province is the world’s largest cave. Photo: CNN|
Travel company Oxalis Adventure will be the sole operator of tours to the world’s biggest cave in the period 2020-2030, especially with its prime package “Conquer Son Doong – the world’s biggest cave”. So far, the company’s license has been approved on a yearly basis.
Also in the Son Doong cave surroundings, the company was certified to offer a tour package to the En Cave named “Discovering natural Rao Thuong Spring – Hang En cave”.
The tourism activities in Son Doong must ensure the economic effectiveness, absolute safety for visitors as well as help promote the province tourism, said an official from Quang Binh province.
A representative of Oxalis Adventure said the long-term license provides enough time for it to plan its tour sales as well as seek more opportunities to promote the packages in the future.
The tour will provide jobs for around 500 Oxalis employees and 125 locals, who will serve as porters with average salary ranging from VND6-9 million (US$259-389) monthly, helping them to earn stable income without recoursing to deforestation for livelihood as before.
Son Doong was found in 1991 and became internationally known as the biggest cave in the world in 2009. By August 2013, the cave started to receive tourists but in limited numbers. So far, 3,400 visitors have had the chance to explore the site, contributing to the state budget VND86 billion (US$3.7 million).
The 4-day-tour to Son Doong costs around US$3,000.
Quang Binh is home to nearly 400 caves of different sizes. Of the amount, around 40 caves have become tourist destinations. Some of them allow the limited number of visitors yearly including Son Doong and En caves, among others.