Although listed as Day 2 this is really the day we start the excursion. Most of today will be hiking through the jungle and getting to know my 7 other companions and our guides. Let the roughing it begin!
Day 2 – July 26th
[A great start to the tour, with a visit to a minority village, a beautiful river valley, and Hang En, an awesome cave]
8.00 Breakfast with guide. Quick visit to the market if you need to buy anything. Check out and leave main luggage at the hotel.
9.00 Leave valuables at Oxalis office, collect any equipment. Drive to start of trek
10.30 Start the trek with the porter team.
The trek is about 1 hour downhill through the forest, quite steep at times. Then half an hour along a mall stream to the minority village. Lunch beside the main river. You will be in the sun all afternoon with very little shade. About 2 hours trekking down the river, crossing and re-crossing. You will have wet feet all afternoon. In summer the water is usually only knee deep, but goretex boots will fill and hold water, so are not recommended. Reach the entrance to Hang En, home to thousands of swifts and put on lamp and helmet. About 20-30 minutes to camp. A short boulder/rock section to pass to the camp. Anyone who is unable to complete this day comfortably will have to return to Phong Nha.
Reach camp around 3pm. Large pools for washing/swimming. Composting toilets.
Have dinner and camp inside Hang En. Watch out for flying foxes. This is a spectacular campsite in the cave with numerous photographic opportunities.