When mentioning Moc Chau – Son La, travelers will be able to forget about the scenery of the bat cave, known as Son Moc Huong cave.
Bat Cave also known as Son Moc Huong Cave, is a cave in the limestone mountains in the northeast of Moc Chau town, Son La province. Local people have known the cave long ago, and there are many legends about caves, as well as used as a shelter from the anti-French resistance. However, for the archaeologists, the cave is considered to be discovered in 1952.
Son Moc Huong is located in the northeast of Moc Chau district, covering an area of 6.915 square meters. From Hanoi, tourists follow the highway 6, then climb 240 steps to reach this famous cave. In the past, the Thai called the cave Sa Lai cave (Water cave) because in the cave is a flow of underground water all year round which is never dry. This cool water supply for the life and irrigation of local people in Moc Chau town. Formerly, this cave is home to many kinds of bat, so people called this place the bat cave. After this, people call this cave by the very beautiful name is mộc Son Moc Huong.
Moc Chau Bat Cave is also associated with two famous legends:
Legend has it that for a long time, there is a holy dragon flying to the East Sea. Flying through this land, the dragon see the majestic mountains, rich land, cool climate and peaceful sky, the dragon wants to live here and then down to live in this place. Today the mountain ranges winding the mysterious colors: white in the morning, blue in the afternoon, bright pink in the afternoon, purple at sunset, it is the dragon body.
When the dragon died, the dragon thanked the land that had nourished him and released seven pearls to repay the land. Nowadays, the even small mountains below the valley today is the “7 pearls” which are also the doors of the Son Moc Huong Cave.
In Moc Chau Bat Cave there is a large lake about 200 square meters, in the middle of the lake is a turtle stone, next to is the shape of a pair of stalactites couple. Legend has it that the prince, King Thuy Ke son, fell in love with a human princess, so he often rode his father’s turtle to meet the princess.
Knowing that, King Thuy Te ordered the withdrawal of water, but the Prince decided to stay in the world with his lover, and they turned into stone, proving immortal love. The king’s turtle also turned into a rock in the middle of the lake continue guarding them. The immortal love of the young couple made King Thuy Te moving, he created a small lake, terraces, and animals to create a new life for the prince and princess.
In September 1992 the Son La Provincial Museum in collaboration with the Vietnam Archaeological Institute conducted an archaeological visit. The visit was made on a fairly flat area near the cave entrance with an area of 1 square meter. There is a 0.5-meter thick cultural layer. Items collected include strips, tongs, stones, pottery pieces, the results of the exhibits showed that at this Son Moc Huong cave, there were ancient Vietnamese people having lived from 3000 to 3500 years ago.
When entering the Son Moc Huong cave, visitors will be surprised by the shimmering, fanciful of the stalactites with different sizes from small to large. In the middle of the cave, there is a lake, the water flowing all year round, never dry. Near the cave, there is a way to go to the roof, on the roof are plum gardens, apricot garden, beautiful stone blocks.
Many emulsions from the dome to the floor look no different than the ancient trees bush roots drop to the ground. On the walls, there are many stalactites created many different shapes such as elephant, lion, civet, lunar, etc.
This place seems to be an invaluable gift that nature offers to the human. Sophisticated, lively stalactites on the cave wall are just like the carvings of the brilliant artists. The stalactites here are made of the natural picture and are named as beautiful names such as rice trê, princess room, fairy, and many more.
With its great beauty, on 24 January 1998, the Moc Son Huong has been recognized as a national landscape.