Halong Bay in the Gulf of Tonkins is a dazzling world. The name’s literal translation is the Bay of Descending Dragons, which perfectly encompasses the mysterious and mythical nature of its waters. Designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site, you can witness the dense cluster of over 3,000 limestone islands as they rise spectacularly from the ocean. Several of the islands have grottos and caves, which boast spectacular stalactites and stalagmites and lead to secret freshwater lakes. Some islands, often named due to the interpretation of their unusual shapes, support floating villages that house local fishermen. With calm, crystal clear waters, coral reefs and white sandy beaches, you will understand why this is considered a most magnificent natural splendor. The ideal way to explore this magical destination? Aboard a traditional junk!

Highlights

  • UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Limestone Formations
  • Kayak Paddling

 Places to stay

Hotel-Vietnam-HalongBay-JasmineCruise-3

Halong Bay Jasmine Cruise

Hotel Style: Cruise

Launched in late 2007, the Halong Jasmine has all the hallmarks of a traditional 1930s Indochine-styled junk - rich wooden décor, delicate ornamentation and space.  See Hotel

Enchanting Travels - Vietnam Tours - Halong Bay Hotels - Violet Cruise Halong Bay - exterior

Halong Violet Cruise

Hotel Style: Cruise

The youngest of the Heritage Line's family of boutique cruise ships, is the playfully frivolous 'Halong Violet'.  See Hotel

Enchanting Travels - Vietnam Tours - Halong Bay Hotels - Novotel Halong Bay - exterior

Novotel Halong Bay

Hotel Style: International

Set on the coastline of Bai Chay Beach overlooking the panoramic bay, the Novotel Ha Long Bay provides a glimpse into contemporary Vietnam.  See Hotel

enchanting-travels-vietnam-tours-halong-bay-cruise-princess-junk

Princess Junk

Hotel Style: Cruise

The Princess Junk is the first small, deluxe one-cabin junk in Halong Bay, designed in the style of a traditional sailing boat with handcrafted teak and oak.  See Hotel

 Things to do

Half Day Halong Bay Cruise

Experience one of Vietnam’s top attractions with a scenic half day cruise to the World Heritage listed Halong Bay. Located in the Gulf of Tonkin you will find some 3,000 islands and islets forming a spectacular seascape of limestone pillars. On arrival at the pier, board our boat for a spectacular cruise around these islets, where pinnacles rise out of the clear emerald waters. Observe this geographic spectacle with its bizarre rock sculptures jutting dramatically from the sea and myriad grottos that have created a seemingly enchanted and timeless world. Feast on a seafood lunch aboard the junk before returning to the wharf.

Included activities at Princess Junk

Take a 1N cruise on the Princess Junk to Hanoi-Halong Bay-Thien Canh Son Cave-Vung Vieng-Hanoi. Arrive by car at Hon Gai Intl Harbor; board the junk; check-in, meet your crew, have a cruise safety briefing. Enjoy a seafood lunch; cruise to the magnificent Bai Tu Long Bay via Halong Bay. Drop anchor; swim/explore Thien Canh Son Cave; cruise to Hon Co Island; relax/swim/kayak; visit a local village. Overnight aboard; enjoy sunset cocktails, seafood dinner. Next day, visit Vieng fishing village in a rustic row-boat; pass a floating school and fish farms. Cruise to Halong City; check out; drive back to Hanoi.

Included activities at Halong Violet Cruise

Take a 1N cruise on the Halong Violet Junk to Hanoi-Halong Bay-Hanoi. Drive to Halong Bay pier/Bai Che; board the Halong Violet, check in, meet your crew, have a cruise safety briefing. Sail via the scenic Bai Tu Long Bay to Halong Bay; drop anchor near a secluded beach; trek briefly to a nearby summit for scenic bay views; swim on the beach / sun bathe on the deck; visit a 3 generation-old fishing village; meet fishermen. In the evening, try kayaking / bamboo row-boating to a water tunnel with coral reefs in a lagoon. Drinks, dinner at the Violet restaurant; ovenight on board. Enjoy Tai Chi on deck at sunrise; visit the beautiful limestone grottos. Cruise back to Bai Chay/Halong pier via superb bay views; drive back to Hanoi.

Included activities at Halong Valentine Cruise

On a 1N Halong Valentine cruise, visit Hanoi-Halong Bay-Hanoi. Board the junk at Halong Bay pier/Bai Che; check in, meet your crew, have a cruise safety briefing. Sail via the lovely Bai Tu Long Bay to Halong Bay; enjoy on-board massages; arrive at Luon Cave to explore. Board small bamboo boats rowed by locals or kayak past Dau Nguoi, Head Island, Con Rùa, Turtle Island, Cong Troi, Heaven’s Gate Island enroute to the cave. Back aboard, sail to Titop Island, swim/relax; climb steps to the islands scenic mountain top. Sail to Luon Bo; dinner aboard; enjoy films, board games, cards, even night squid fishing! Overnight aboard. Do Tai Chi at sunrise; reach Surprise Cave and a small fishing village; transfer by tender; climb 100 steps to explore the cave; descend 100 steps back. Arrive at Bai Chay pier; drive to Hanoi.

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