Fodor's Expert Review Marble Mountains
Tourists come to these five mountains to see ancient pagodas, Buddhist sanctuaries, sacred caves, spectacular views of the eastern beaches, and villages where artisans carve marble sculptures. Each of the primarily limestone formations are named after the five elements—kim (metal), moc (wood), hoa (fire), thuy (water), and tho (earth). At Thuy Son Mountain, you can explore several 17th-century pagodas and caves by climbing 156 steps from the base—or take a glass elevator that eliminates a third of the steps in the initial climb, transporting you straight to the foot of Linh Ong Pagoda. Bring plenty of water and take your time, as the steps can be slippery after it rains. It is common to be hassled by locals in Non Nuoc Village who live solely on the production of their stone statues, jewelry, and artwork. Entrance to the Marble Mountains costs 40,000d plus the optional 30,000d elevator ride.