In the 1940’s, 50’s and 60’s Viet Nam resistance fighters built these underground tunnels to wage guerilla war first against the French and later American military forces. It’s estimated there were more than 250 km of passages, some of which were directly underneath American bases.
Whole populations of Viet Cong fighters and supporters lived–and died–in these tunnels. There were numerous living facilities underground (which sometimes were three or four levels deep) including living quarters, hospitals, weapons manufacturing areas, social rooms, kitchens and command centers.
Entrances to these tunnels were camouflaged and protected by trap doors, booby traps (with lethal bamboo spears) or invisible ports.
As a result, in the American War (1965-75), this area was extremely heavily bombed and defoliated and tens of thousands of civilians and combatants (on both sides) were killed.
Today the tunnels are a tourist attraction for foreign and native visitors; guided tours are conducted so no one gets lost in the labyrinth of passageways.
Read the stories about gay Vietnam