Halong Bay: How To Make The Most Of Your Time
Surrounded by thousands of limestone mountains, Halong creates a charming beauty for the bay and makes it unbelievably unique. Coming to Halong Bay, you will be entering a world of water wonders.
Exciting Water Sports
Immense water surface in Halong is home to a number of water sports such as rafting, kayaking and swimming. Tourists who love adventures can try water motor driving or parachute-pulled canoeing offered on Bai Chay or Tuan Chau beach. While high speed of the water motors brings about thrilling moments, a parachute-pulled canoe tour gives tourists a bird-eye view to spectacular scene of the bay below.
Photo : bestpricetravel.com
For those wishing to spend more time on sightseeing and discovering the bay by themselves, kayaking is surely the perfect choice. The most impressive moment is when the kayak began moving into the cave. The further one goes inside, the darker and cooler it is. The cave is filled with falling stalactites, and sometimes, one has to crouch down in the boat to avoid hitting his head on them.
Spacious underwater world in Halong with diversified marine creatures is a paradise for snorkeling and scuba diving. The period from April to December, when the temperature of water ranges from 26-29 degree Celsius, is the best time for these kinds of sport. Just put on scuba glasses, diving fins, scuba cylinder, and then jump into the water, a wonderful ocean world would instantly be opening in front of tourists’ eyes. Thousands of splendid corals such as sun mushroom, leather or stag-horn and colorful fishes such as sergeant major or Clark’s anemone would definitely amaze anyone.In addition, internationally- licensed and friendly scuba divers and assistants promise safe dive and unforgettable experience to tourists.
Photo : lanhabaycruise.com
Soft sandy beaches fringed with coconut palms are not only ideal places for sunbathing or relaxation but also for energetic sport activities like beach volleyball orfootball. Besides matches played for fun and good health, occasional international competition such as Asian Women’s Beach Volleyball Championships draws attention of many locals and travelers.
Overnight On Luxurious Junks
Budget tourists often choose sight-seeing tours on medium-sized boats which take them to some prominent grottos in the bay such as Thien Cung, Dau Go, Sung Sot for four hours. Much different from that common service, Halong Cruise tours offer tourists the taste of luxury and exceptional experience.
A Halong Cruise tour often takes 3 days – 2 nights or 2days- 1 night with price ranging from $120 to $280/pax, depending on accommodation types, luxury level of the junk, and the length of travel time.
Photo by @Heritage Cruise
Luxurious junk is movable accommodation, a perfect combination of upscale hotel and convenient transportation. Guests can enjoy marvelous beauty of the world heritage site any time they want while lying on the bed, enjoying coffee on the boat terrace, having lunch in dining room or sunbathing on the top deck.
Besides taking tourists to the highlights of Halong Bay, the tour offers them interesting sports and entertainment activities such as scuba diving, kayaking or Vietnamese cooking class.Particularly, tourists who love to wake up early to appreciate the bay’s beauty in the dawn can also join morning Taichi class on the deck.
Floating Fishing Villages
Famous for unique scenery with thousands of limestone islands floating on the water, Halong attracts tourist by its cultural value as well. In recent years, visiting floating fishing villages in Halong such as Vong Vieng or Cua Van, have been more popular.
The locals here live on floating houses and mainly earn a living by fishing and marine aquaculture. They go fishing in the morning, selling their catches to bigger boats, which later sell the catches to the mainland. On the way of sigh-seeing around Halong Bay, travelers can see some floating markets of the local people selling goods for daily use such as vegetable, fruits, rice and fishes.
Photo : halongcruisecenter.com
Tourists can get an insight into the locals’ life by visiting fish cultivation area. It would be much more interesting if one can have ahome-stay and try daily work of fisherman like rowing boat, casting and hauling the fish net, sitting on coracle and listening to folk songs at night. Besides, there are plenty of souvenirs made from shells and pearls by the locals available for choices. Despite language barrier, friendly and cheerful locals would surely make guests feel comfortable like staying at home.
The climate of Ha Long is mainly tropical monsoon with a hot - humid summer in between April and October and a cold – dry winter in the other months.
One of the New Seven Wonders of the World, Halong Bay is probably the first destination to come in mind for many tourists when they plan for a vacation in Vietnam. Situated just 165 km or 4 hours of driving from Hanoi, Halong Bay possesses a unique seascape with thousands of limestone karsts, islets and islands rising from sparkling blue waters.
The name may sound confusing, and the picture may look similar: Halong Bay and Lan Ha Bay may expose you to totally different travel experiences. Learn which one to visit if you do not have enough time for both.