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Tam Coc Off Rice Season: What To Expect And Alternative Activities

Tam Coc Off Rice Season: What To Expect And Alternative Activities


Ninh Binh is known for its stunning rice paddies, but even outside the rice season, the region offers a wealth of activities and sights that make it worth visiting. Read to find what you can expect and some alternative activities to enjoy during the off-rice season in Tam Coc Ninh Binh.

Tam Coc off rice season: what to expect and alternative activities

Discover the hidden charms of Tam Coc off-office season. Explore alternative activities, stunning caves, and picturesque landscapes that make Tam Coc a must-visit destination in any season. Find out what to expect and the best things to do in Tam Coc when the rice fields are not in full bloom.

When is the Off-Rice Season in Tam Coc

Ninh Binh Rice Season

Ninh Binh has two rice seasons per year:

  • Summer rice season: This is the main rice season, and it runs from May to July. During this time, the rice paddies are at their most beautiful, and they are a popular tourist attraction.
  • Autumn rice season: This is a smaller rice season, and it runs from September to November. The rice paddies are still green during this time, but they are not as lush as they are in the summer.
  • Ninh Binh Off-Rice Season: The off-rice season in Ninh Binh is from December to April. During this time, the rice paddies are either fallow or they are planted with other crops, such as vegetables or soybeans.

Tam Coc Rice Season

Unlike many other rice-growing areas, Tam Coc in Ninh Binh generally has only one rice season annually because of the significant river level fluctuations. Heavy monsoon rains cause the Ngo Dong River to swell, flooding the rice fields and threatening the crops.

From November to April, the dry season provides the best conditions for rice farming. The lower water levels and abundant sunshine during this time allow farmers to plant, grow, and harvest their rice crops successfully. The golden rice season typically runs from May to early July, when the rice paddies turn a golden yellow colour. It’s also the high peak season in Tam Coc, many tourists come here to enjoy the rice view. 

The off-rice season in Tam Coc is from August to January. During this time, the rice paddies are no longer flooded and the crops have been harvested, so the landscape is not as lush and green as it is during the rice season.

Here is a table summarizing the best time to visit Tam Coc based on your interests:

InterestBest time to visit
See the golden rice paddiesMay to early July
Avoid crowdsAugust to January
Cooler weatherAugust to January
Hiking and bikingSeptember to November
Rock climbingOctober to April

 Ninh Binh Rice Fields: Year-round Growth & Features Revealed in 12-Month Calendar

What to Expect Off Rice Season In Tam Coc Ninh Binh 

Landscape Changes

Without the iconic green or golden rice fields, the landscape will look different, but it remains beautiful with karst mountains, rivers, and rural scenery.

Less Crowded

Fewer tourists visit during this time, so you can enjoy a more peaceful and less crowded experience.

Alternative Activities Outside the Rice Season

Boat Rides in Trang An Instead of Tam Coc

Without the lush rice fields, the scenery is still breathtaking in Tam Coc. Besides, you can consider taking a boat trip to Trang An instead of Tam Coc at this time for more stunning karst landscapes, caves, and waterways. 

Visit Mua Cave (Hang Múa)

Climb up the steps to Mua Cave for panoramic views of the surrounding countryside. The viewpoint offers a great perspective on the karst landscape. Without the rice view, Mua Cave - Hang Mua is a great place for lotus watching and interesting activities. 

Hoa Lu Ancient Capital

You ca explore the historical ruins of Hoa Lu, the ancient capital of Vietnam in the 10th and 11th centuries. The temples and ancient architecture provide insight into Vietnam’s rich history.

Bai Dinh Pagoda

This is the largest complex of Buddhist temples in Vietnam. Explore the massive pagoda, intricate statues, and beautiful gardens.

Cycling and Trekking

The countryside of Ninh Binh is perfect for cycling or trekking. Explore small villages, limestone mountains, and rural landscapes at your own pace. There are many scenic routes to choose from, and you can stop off at temples, pagodas, and villages along the way.

Go bird watching

Ninh Binh is home to a wide variety of birds, including herons, egrets, and kingfishers. There are several bird-watching spots in the area, including Van Long Wetland Nature Reserve or Thung Nham Bird Valley. 

Visiting Tam Coc during the off-rice season offers a unique and tranquil experience. While the iconic golden rice fields may not be on full display, there are still plenty of alternative activities to enjoy. From exploring the stunning caves and pagodas to taking a leisurely boat ride along the river, Tam Coc has a lot to offer regardless of the season. Don't miss out on the opportunity to hike up Mua Cave for breathtaking views or cycle through the picturesque countryside. Whether you're seeking adventure or relaxation, Tam Coc in the non-rice season provides a memorable and enriching travel experience.

Check out our great tour to explore Tam Coc - Ninh Binh: Full-Day Ninh Binh Highlights Tour from Hanoi

 You might read: 

The best Trang An Guide for 2023: A Comparison of 3 Boat Tours in Trang An Ninh Binh

All You Need to Know Before Traveling to Tam Coc: Budget Tips, Trang An vs. Tam Coc, and Key Travel Mistakes to Avoid

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