Ha Long BayNovember 10, 2019 in Vietnam ⋅ ☀️ 26 °C
We booked ourselves onto a tour to visit probably Vietnam's most famous destination.
We had an early start to walk into town and meet the tour guide and board the little bus for the 3/4 hour journey to Ha Long.
Arriving at the coast around lunchtime, we boarded our boat for the day and were served a seafood feast (veggie option for Vera), it was really quite good with loads of variety, and even better was that the others sharing our table didn't eat much which left more for us :)
While we'd been busy eating, the boat had left the harbour and was well on the way. We went outside on the deck and watched the famous limestone islands pass by. We were surprised to see how big the area of Ha Long Bay is, we had already been through a few miles of it and there was plenty left.
Our first stop was at Titop Island. Here we had the choice of spending half an hour on the beach or climbing the hill for a panoramic view. We decided to try the climb but, after queueing behind several thousand Chinese tourists for 10 minutes to move about 10 metres, we abandoned that idea and hung out on the beach instead.
Next up we were dropped off at a jetty to go kayaking. We paddled off through a tunnel and spent a while in a kind of closed lake within one of the bigger limestone island
Lastly we visited Surprising Cave. A big name to live up to but it actually was surprisingly surprising. The cave is huge and full of cool rock formations and would be worth a trip to see in its own right, even without being squeezed on the end of a tour of the bay.
The trip back to the harbour was maybe the most beautiful part of the tour. We watched the sun setting over the sea and the islands on one side of the boat and the moon rising on the other side. While the area can feel like a production line of tourism at some times, the place really is amazing and we felt very lucky to see it for ourselves.Read more