Legend has it that the dragon that rose from the Red River, creating civilisation at Hanoi plunged into the sea at Halong, creating the estimated 1,900 towering limestone islands of Halong Bay. Declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1994, Halong Bay's karst islands rise up out of emerald waters covered in vegetation. Only a few are habitable; many have been sculpted into strange shapes by the wind and weather. Whilst here discover hidden beaches, caves, and lagoons.
Magnificent Halong Bay lies 160km to the east of Hanoi. Most of the islands are clothed in thick green vegetation and ring with the sound of bird song in the early morning. Secluded sandy coves are everywhere and in the summer months the warm waters of the bay are ideal for swimming. The best way to appreciate the delights of Halong Bay is to cruise among the islands on a wooden junk. Fresh seafood can be bought from the local fishermen directly from their rowing boats and cooked up for a delicious lunch.
A natural wonder of the world and one of Vietnam’s five UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Over three thousand jagged limestone islands emerge from the emerald green waters of Halong Bay. While some islands are no more than large rocks others are much more substantial and contain huge cathedral-like caves of stalactites and stalagmites.
There are two distinct seasons: hot, humid with much raining in summer and cold, dry in winter. The average temperature ranges from 150 – 250C with annual average rainfall of 2,000 – 2,200mm/year. Halong Bay has a typical tidal time (tidal amplitude ranges from 3.5 – 4.0m. The degree of salt in the sea water ranges from 31 – 34.5% in the dry season and decreases in the rainy season.