Sung Sot Grotto
Situated in the center of the UNESCO-declared World Heritage area, theSửng Sôt or Surprise Grotto is on Bồ Hòn Island, and is one of thefinest and widest grottoes of Hạ Long Bay.
Ascending to the grotto, the way is covered by trees and foliage, and consists of great paved stone blocks.
Inside, it is partitioned into twochambers; the first one being similar to a wide theatre hall. Manystalactites hang from the high ceiling, with numerous possible forms andshapes.
A narrow passage leads to the secondrooms, where a flow of light meets visitors. The chamber is so immenseit could contain thousands of people at one time.
At the deepest point of the grotto, a“royal garden” appears with a clear pond and a seemingly fascinatinglandscape of mountains. Many birds and plants (Benjamin figs, cads andcentenary banyan trees) live here. On nice days groups of monkeys mightarrive in search of fruit.
It is situated in the central tourismcenter of the bay, as well as Ti Tốp Beach, Bô Nâu Grotto, Mê CungGrotto and Luồn Grotto. French named it “garotte eds surprises” (grottoof surprise) From the wharf, you climb 50 steep stone stairs to themouth of the grotto, which lies 25 m above the sea level. Going downsome 10 stone stairs, you reach the mouth of a grotto. The grotto coverssome 10,000 m2. Inside the grotto there have thousands of stalactitesand stalagmites along the 500-meter paved passage. Light posts line thepassage and serve as signposts and ornaments. The lighting system withelegant styles adds more charm to the beauty of the grotto.
Up in the 30-meter roof of the grotto,one can figure out small, soft and even concave spots, which look likepatterns in the ceiling of a theater. A huge piece of stone stands up tothe ceiling by the grotto’s mouth. This evidences one of the typicalkarts-style grottoes with high scientific values.
At the side of the entrance, the rockseems to form the shape of a horse with a long sword. Legend has it,that after having defeated the Ân aggressors, Thánh Gióng (the SaintGióng) helped the population to chase away evil spirits and demons.After this feat, Saint Gióng flew to heaven, leaving a stone horse andsword to continue to keep the demons away.