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Massive cave seen as new tourist lure

Massive cave seen as new tourist lure

]]>Central Viet Nam has abundant tourism potential that has yet to be fully developed. One example is a limestone cave in Quang Binh Province big enough to fit 1000 people at a time. Trung Hieu reports Ho Khanh, 41, a construction worker in Quang Binh Province, says he will never forget the feeling of being the first man to step into the newly discovered Thien Duong (Paradise) Cave, which is slated to become a major tourist attraction in Central Viet Nam. “During a trip to jungle, a sudden heavy rain forced me to find shelter, which is when I saw the cave. I was afraid there might be animals living inside that would attack me. But curiosity overtook my fear, and I began to step farther inside,” he says. The cave, located in the province’s Phong Nha-Ke Bang area, was discovered by Khanh and then explored by members of the British Cave Research Association (BCRA) in 2005. BCRA lists it among the top caves in the world because there are so many unanswered questions surrounding it: Have humans ever lived there? What is its origin? The explorers say that Thien Duong Cave is much more beautiful, wild and mystical than the nearby Phong Nha Cave, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The cave is hidden within a dense, primitive jungle that shelters visitors from sunlight on their way to its opening. Along the path, visitors may see troops of monkeys, flying squirrels, wild goats and deer. Provincial authorities announced the cave will officially open to tourists at the end of this month. Truong Thinh Corp will offer a package that includes lodging at Sun Spa Resort and visits to Paradise Cave and Hang Tam Co (Cave of Eight Heroines). Located 60km north-west of Dong Hoi, Paradise Cave is 31km long

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