Vinh Moc tunnels used during the Vietnam War in the DMZ zone of Central Vietnam. Information, opening hourse, ticket price, entrance fee of Vinh Moc tunnels (Dong Ha) and Vietnam DMZ

Vinh Moc Tunnels and the remains of the DMZ

The Vinh Moc tunnels are tunnels used by North Vietnam army to fight against the Americans during the Vietnam war and used by the civilian population to protect themselves from the American bombing. These tunnels cover several kilometers on the north shore of the Ben Hai River, in Vinh Moc village near the village of Donh has (Quang Tri province) in the center of Vietnam.




History Vinh Moc tunnels and DMZ


The DMZ (Demilitarized zone acronym) is an established dividing line to separate North Vietnam and South Vietnam after the Indochina war. The DMZ zone of Vietnam ranged from the border with Laos to the Sea (the parallel 17). Much of this DMZ dividing line crossed the River Ben Hai.

Americans, who lived in Southern Vietnam, wanted to force to Vinh Moc peasants to abandon their land, so as to avoid to help Northern Communist forces established on the nearby island with Co (at 28 kilometers from the coast). The people, who had no other place where refuge, refused to leave their lands and the village where he had spent most of his life.

The zone of Vinh Moc was bombed duramente, says that an average of 7 tons of bombs per each inhabitant fell. To flee the bombings and due to the favourable geology of terrain, it was decided to begin excavating a complex of tunnels under the village of Vinh Moc in 1965, thus copying performance and result of the Cu Chi tunnels located on the outskirts of the former Saigon, now Ho Chi Minh City.


Information about the tunnels of Vinh Moc


The complex of Vinh Moc tunnels were built on the shore North of the Ben Hai River. The construction sites it took 13 months (1965 and 1966), or what is the same, 18,000 work days of all persons of the village, which were used for its construction only instruments of tillage and with which moved a total of 6,000 m3 of Earth.

It is estimated that 300 people (about 60 families) lived permanently in tunnels during the years 1966 to 1972, 17 children were born in the interior of the Vinh Moc tunnels.

The tunnels extend 2.8 km-long, divided in 3 levels underground 12 meters, 18 meters and 22 meters respectively.
The top level was suitable for the life of the families, that leader in small dwellings dug into the limestone rock of 4 meters wide, 0.8 meters in height and 1.8 meters wide.
The second level was used to store the weapons and supplies, in addition to maintaining strategic meetings.
The last and deepest level, was used to seek refuge from the bombing, since American bombs were designed to penetrate 10 meters under the ground.

Map of Vinh Moc tunnels in Dong Ha
Schematic map of Vinh Moc tunnels in Dong Ha


Vinh Moc tunnels have a total of 13 Gates: 7 of those doors give sea and other 6 grounding, although rarely families leaving abroad unless they were necessary food and there was no danger. Maritime outputs were used to transport weaponry and supplies to resistance in the island with Co, located at 28 kilometers from the Vinh Moc tunnels.

With the passage of time the tunnel complex was growing in size and complexity, reaching constructed wells, kitchens, barns, maternity wards and hospitals.

Museum Vinh Moc tunnels
Museum Vinh Moc tunnels



Trip to the DMZ of Vietnam


The central area of Hue has several points which played an important role in the history of the Vietnam war and which constitute a part of tourist visits to the DMZ zone of Vietnam. Sightseeing by the Vietnamese DMZ zone along the so-called Highway 1 and Highway 9, visiting his village Dong has, military bases Doc Mieu and Khe Sanh, the Hien Luong Bridge over Ben Hai River, the road of Ho Chi Minh City by the passage of clouds, cemetery Truong Son, Con Co islandstack rocks rockpile and the tunnels and Museum of Vinh Moc.


The tunnels and the Museum of Vinh Moc


Without a doubt the highlight of the visit touring the DMZ area of Vietnam are the Vinh Moc tunnels. These tunnels were opened to tourism in the year 1995 and 3 underground levels you can visit. Open on schedule from 7: 00 to 16: 30, the entry costs 20,000 VND (less than 1€) but does not include Guide, making it advisable to look well at the maps of the underground galleries in addition to carry flashlights.

Vinh Moc tunnels are less claustrophobic to the tunnels of Cu Chi, since the climate of the area is not so damp and corridors are higher (0.9 meters wide and 1.8 meters high), allowing to walk in a manner almost straight the greater part of the journey. The main corridor is 780 meters long and has been reinforced with wood.

Inside the tunnel of the Vietnam War in Vinh Moc
Inside the tunnel of the Vietnam War in Vinh Moc


Entrance to the tunnels of Vinh Moc
Entrance to the tunnels of Vinh Moc


Access to the tunnels of Vinh Moc
Access to the tunnels of Vinh Moc


In the outside area of the Vinh Moc tunnels were dug 8 kilometers of trenches, which are still visible today. These trenches took 3 years to build.

Ditch the DMZ - Vinh Moc Tunnels
Trincheros Vinh Moc in the DMZ


Vinh Moc The museum presents various photographs showing how tough life in the tunnels, along with weapons and bombs dropped on the area. Probably the most interesting of Vinh Moc museum are photos showing how the tunnels were constructed.

Vinh Moc Pumps displayed
Vinh Moc Pumps displayed


Life inside the tunnels of Vinh Moc
Life inside the tunnels of Vinh Moc



Travel to Vinh Moc tunnels


To scroll up to the complex of Vinh Moc tunnels can go by train (station trains Sa Lung 20 kilometers of tunnels). From Hue train takes 1 hour and 30 minutes, and the price of the ticket is 1€ (with opening hours from 6: 00). You can also go to the Vinh Moc tunnels in car / motorbike from Dong has (30 km, taking about 40 minutes). Another alternative are tourist tours that run through much of the DMZ for half a day, are hired in Hue and their prices range between 10 € the cheapest and 80 € the most expensive.



Map of the DMZ in Hue
Map of the DMZ in Hue (click to enlarge)



Hien Luong Bridge and Ben Hai river


The Ben Hai River was the border dividing between North Vietnam and South Vietnam during the years 1954 to 1975. To cross from one side to another is necessary to traverse the Hien Luong Bridge, bridge known as the bridge of suffering, suffering represented by the sculpture of a woman waiting for her husband who crossed to the other side of the bridge and never returned (this sculpture found in the southern part of the bridge).

Originally the Hien Luong Bridge measured 2 meters width and 162 metres long (year 1928), destroyed on several occasions by the French and the Americans, now there are 2 jumpers on the Ben Hai River: a modern bridge used for the transportation of vehicles and a restored bridge following the criteria of construction and structure of the originating in 1952 bridge.

Bridge over the Ben Hai river
Bridge over the Ben Hai river


Frontera North Vietnam and South Vietnam
Frontera North Vietnam and South Vietnam


As a curiosity today you can still see a few huge megaphones of nearly 2 meters in diameter, with which the Americans and the Government of Vietnam in the South were dedicated to transmit political propaganda.

This media war is the highlight, but we also have around the border police building, the museum of the 17th parallel, a few bunkers and impressive flag in the north.

Border between North and South Vietnam
Border between North and South Vietnam


Flag on the bridge over the Ben Hai river
Flag on the bridge over the Ben Hai river


Monument in the Ben Hai river in the Vietnam War
Monument in the Ben Hai river in the Vietnam War



Truong Son Cemetery


It's a national cemetery with 10,300 graves belonging to soldiers and Vietnamese population who had died in the offensive of the Ho Chi Minh route, route that went through the passage of clouds from the North of Vietnam in the South direction.

According to Vietnamese tradition a body should be buried so that the soul rests in peace. The forces of North Vietnam did not have sufficient resources as to transport the corpses of fighters to their home towns, which the dead were buried in the same place in which perished and on some occasions, even were buried. After the end of the war, all possible bodies were recovered and were finally buried in the cemetery Truong Son (estimated 300,000 bodies could not be recovered).

Cemetery DMZ
Truong Son Cemetery of the DMZ


The Truong Son cemetery is divided into 5 zones, areas where people were buried according to their province of origin. Most of the headstones and graves are just a stone inscription. In the cemetery there are statues to remember the fallen and a small garden.

Visit interesting but you have to remember that it is a sacred place and today, many families come to pay their respects to their loved ones who died in the Vietnam War.

The Truong Son cemetery is located 9 kilometres west of the Hien Luong Bridge (right margin of the 15 Highway), occupies an area of 106 acres and was inaugurated on April 10, 1977. As a curiosity we say the cemetery stands on the area that served as a base of operations for the division 559.



Military bases Doc Mieu, Khe Sanh and rock pile rockpile


In the vicinity of Vinh Moc and also by province of Dong Ha there are remains of several military bases, which today is jungle and war machine abandoned, e.g. military bases With Thien, Doc Mieu, Khe Sanh and camp Carroll. Military base in better condition and with greater tourist attraction is the base of Khe Sanh, where helicopters and tanks are exposed.

DMZ Military Base in Vietnam
DMZ Military Base in Vietnam


Khe Sanh military base
Khe Sanh military base


A curious part of the remains of the DMZ and the history of the war in Vietnam is a Crag called the pile of rocks (rockpile in English). With a height of 230 meters the Americans there fairway up heavy artillery and it was even used as a heliport.

American helicopter on rockpile in the DMZ of Vietnam
American helicopter on rockpile in the DMZ of Vietnam


Related Vinh Moc tunnels Dong Ha