Ha Long Bay Tours


 

Perhaps one of the most iconic features of Vietnam, Ha Long Bay is a breathtaking location like no other. With as many a 2,000 limestone islands and rocks, covered with wildlife and filled with caves and grottoes, its UNESCO world heritage status is well deserved.

A place that must be seen to be seen to be believed, Halong Bay has risen to become one of Vietnam's most popular tourist destinations, and is likely to be voted #1 in the New 7 Wonders Of the World.

Most visitors get a bus to Halong from Hanoi, before embarking on a boat trip of 2-3 days, where they can sleep on a junk boat, swim in the waters and go kayaking or canoeing. The quality of tour does vary (you do get what you pay for!) but even the bargain trips aren't bad, as you can quite happily spend your day looking at the beautiful scenery and ignoring the less beautiful boat you're sat on.


Don't be put off when you first arrive in Halong by the sheer number of tourists - most of the tours set off at the same time and it will appear very crowded, but soon after leaving the docks the boats split up and head off in different directions - it may not seem it at first but it soon becomes a very peaceful journey as its not hard for the boats to hide behind one of the thousands of islands.

One interesting feature of Halong bay is the floating villages you will see nestling in the sheltered bays between the stones. These ingenious construction allow landless people to farm fish - each house will be built on planks bordering nets where they raise fish, crabs and shrimp in the sea water below.

Cruises and Tours of Halong Bay

For most people, taking an organised cruise from Hanoi to Halong Bay is a better option than staying in Halong City, where entertainment is sparse.

Ha Long Bay is located in the northeastern part of Vietnam and constitutes part of the western bank of Bac Bo Gulf, including the sea area of Ha Long City and Cam Pha Town and part of Vân Don island district. It abuts Cat Ba Island in the southwest. Toward the west is the shore with a 120 km-long coastline. It is located within 106o58’-107o22’ east longitude and within 20o45’- 20o50’ north latitude. The site is 1553 sq. km with 1969 islands of various sizes, of which 989 have been named.

The islands in Ha Long Bay are mainly limestone and schist islands most lying in the two main areas: the southeastern part of Bái Tử Long Bay and southwestern part of Hạ Long Bay. These islands represent the most ancient images of a geographical site having a tectonic age of from 250 million to 280 million years. They are the result of many times of rising and lowering processes of the continent to form a karst. The process of nearly full erosion and weathering of the karst created the unique Hạ Long Bay in the world. In a not very large area, thousands of islands with different forms look like glittering emeralds attached to the blue scarf of a virgin. The area where many stone islands concentrate has spectacular scenes and world-famous caves and is the center of Ha Long Bay Natural Heritage, including HaLong Bay and a part of Bái Tu Long Bay.

The area is recognized as the World Natural Heritage that is the area of 434 sq. km with 775 islands. It looks like a giant triangle with Ðầu Gỗ Island (in the west), Ba Hầm Lake (in the south) and Cống Tây Island (in the east) as its three angle points. The nearby area is the buffer area and areas classified as national beauty spots in 1962 by the Ministry of Culture and Information.

Viewed from above, Hạ Long Bay looks like an extremely vivid huge drawing. This is a wonderful and skilful masterpiece of the Creation and of nature that turns thousands of dumb soulless stone islands into fantastic sculptural and artistic works of various graceful shapes, both familiar and strange to human beings. Thousands of islands emerging uneven in the fanciful waves look strong and magnificent but also mild and vivid. Amidst these islands we feel as if we were astray in a petrified legendary world. There are many names given to islands according to their shapes and forms. This one looks like somebody heading toward the shore: Hòn Ðầu Người (Human Head Island); that one looks like a dragon hovering above the sea surface: Hòn Rông (Dragon Island); another looks like an old man sitting fishing: Hòn Lã Vọng; some look like big sails struggling amidst the wind to set off for the sea: Hòn Cánh Buồm (Sail Island); then two islands look like a pair of chicken lovingly playing with each other above the sea: Hòn Trống Mái (Male and Female Chicken Island); and amid the vast sea stands an island like a big incense burner like a ritual offering to Heaven: Hòn Lư Hương (Incense Burner Island). All are so real that people are taken aback by them. Those stone islands have experienced unpredictable changes over time and they take different shapes from different angles of view. Here, we come to realize that they are not dumb inanimate things but are vivid and soulful.

Inside the stone islands are various breath-taking caves, such as Thiên Cung, Ðầu Gỗ, Sửng Sốt, Trinh Nữ, Tam Cung and others. These are really magnificent palaces of the Creation on earth. Long ago, Hạ Long Bay has been called by the great national poet Nguyễn Trãi:“a wonder of the earth erected towards the high sky”. Many men of letters from all over the world have been taken aback at the grandiose scenery of Hạ Long. They seem to get puzzled and incompetent as their treasure of vocabulary is not rich enough to depict the splendor of this place.

Hạ Long Bay is also attached to glorious pages of Vietnamese history, with famous sites such as Vân Ðồn, a bustling trade port in the 12th century, charming Bài Thơ Mountain, and not very far away from here is the Bạch Đằng River which witnessed two famous naval battles of the Viêt’s ancestors against invaders. Also, Hạ Long is one of the cradles of human kind with the glorious Hạ Long culture in the late Neolithic age, discovered at such archeological sites as Ðộng Mang, Xích Thổ, Soi Nhụ and Thoi Giếng.

Hạ Long is also home to great biodiversity with typical eco-systems like mangrove forest, coral and tropical forest. It is also home to thousands of plants and animals of numerous species, for example shrimp, fish and squid. Some species are particularly rare and can be found no where else.

With such special values, at the 18th Session of UNESCO’s Council of World Heritage held on 17 December 1994 in Thailand, Hạ Long Bay was officially placed on the list of the World Natural Heritage. In 2000, UNESCO recognized it as the World Heritage for the second time for its geographical and geomorphologic values. This confirms the global premier value of Hạ Long Bay.

 

HA LONG 1 DAY TRIP

Magnificent Ha Long Bay, with its 3000 - plus islands rising from the clear, emerald waters of the TokinGulf and covering an area of 1500 Sq km, is one of the nature marvels of Vietnam. Adjacent to the rocky lime stone islets, there are numerous sandy dune, hidden stalagmite caves that

HA LONG 2 DAYS TRIP

Halong Bay is located in the Northeast of Vietnam, belonging to QuangNinhProvince. It is in the coastal area stretching from 1060 56’ to 1070 37’ east longitude and 200 43’ to 210 09’ north latitude. To the west and northwest, HalongBay stretches  from

HA LONG 3 DAYS TRIP

This tour is designed for those who like to discover Halong bay by kayaking. On the first day, you will do kayakking in Halong bay. The second day, you are free to do kayaking at Monkey Island and especially the 3rd day  the boat take you to the Lan ...


HA LONG - CAT BA 2 DAYS

With 2 days/ 1 night, you will have time for cruising on Halong bay or admire the sunset & sun rise. Sleeping in hotel in Cat Ba island where you will have a nice evening walking along the beach, swimming or take the picture of the rising sun in the early

HA LONG - CAT BA 3 DAYS

Cruise on the bay, visit Sung Sot cave, one of the most spacious and beautiful cave of Halong bay. Do kayaking through Luon cave then swim in the bay. 6:30 PM: Have dinner and stay overnight on deluxe