From the very moment you arrive to Ha Noi, Vietnam, you will be overwhelmed by the numerous trip offers to Ha Long bay. The offers differ greatly in price, but from the pictures they show, you will have hard time to judge the quality. The rule here is do NOT take a one day trip! Take a 2 or 3 night trip, where you sleep on the boat, and try not to take the cheapest tour. Mid-priced tours offer okay cabins and delicious food on board. For the drinks you will have to pay a bit higher price onboard, but there are always plenty of little commerce boats around the main boat, where you can buy drinks and snacks. The tour-boats themselves are called “junks”, and from the outside they all look pretty much the same, but on the cheap ones you might have to inhale exhaust from the engine or have bad service on board. To sum up: don’t take the cheap tours!
The bay itself is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and 2 days ago it was also elected as one of the new seven natural wonders of the World (so actual our blog is:)). The islands and the little hidden bays greatly resemble to the ones you can see in Thailand and the Philippines, but here, you can also see a number of holy caves. Your imaginative tour guide will most likely tell you what kind of animals you can see, formed by the stalagmites and stalactites (most of them are actually “monkey”), but don’t worry if you don’t see the figures yourself. Try to take a tour that offers a stop at the Ti Top island. This island was named after the second cosmonaut who was entering the orbit around the Earth: Gherman Titov. (Apart from having an island named after him, there is a crater on the Moon named after him, and he holds the title “Hero of Labor of Vietnam”.) The view from the top of the island is magnificent, especially if you arrive before the flood of tourists and the surrounding islands are just about to wake up from the embrace of the morning fog.