Halong Bay

Having just seen a TV show that had scenes from Halong bay I regret that I did not know about it before now. We are on the Feb 19 trip, but only arrive on the 18th, apparently not enough time to do the Bay tour justice.


  • Right that, you need at least 2 days to travel in Halong if you want to travel around Halong by cruise tour.
  • It's a very long excursion, but it can be done in one day. Halong Bay is magical. If you're not coming back to Vietnam, and you can work it out, you might want to consider it. It's worth the effort.

    Several years ago I was on a Vietnam / Cambodia tour that ended in Hanoi. I had a very late evening flight home so I took an excursion to Halong Bay with 6 other people that had been on my tour. This excursion wasn't part of the main trip, but our tour operator arranged it for us. We left Hanoi around 8am, arrived before noon, boarded a cruise boat (which we had to ourselves) and sailed around Halong Bay for approximately 4 hours. Lunch was included. On the transfer back we were provided dinner at a restaurant in Hanoi and arrived back at the airport around 9pm, in plenty of time for my flight.

  • Calaf-
    Would very much appreciate contact info. Your excursion fits the time window we have. Did hotel concierge book Halong Bay trip?
  • FairWinds1-
    The trip was a riverboat cruise up the Mekong. One of our tour directors (Viking River Cruises) made the reservation for us. The only information I have is the name that came through on the credit card charge ($150): Indochina Service Vietnam HCMC.
    Having traveled with Tauck multiple times now, I would think they may be able to make the same type of arrangement if you contact them.
    Happy travels.
  • Halong is known as the beautiful place in Vietnam with a lot of beautiful landscape but if you want to soak up natural beauty, you need at least 2 days to visit. From Hanoi to Halong Bay, you'll spend about 4hrs to transfer and 1 night in Halong Bay Cruise. Therefore, if you have only 1 day to travel, you should not book cruise tour to travel. You can refer at Vietnam Tour Booking
  • Like Calaf, I did a one day tour of Halong Bay. This was just prior to a Tauck tour; I had the hotel concierge arrange this before I arrived in Hanoi. It is a long day; you leave around 7:30 - 8:00 and drive about 3 1/2 hours, then have a cruise for four or so hours including lunch (I had the whole boat to myself), then do the drive in reverse. I think we got back to the hotel around 7:30 - 8:00 so you would have to miss or be late for the first night reception if your tour starts with dinner the day after you arrive. It is not as relaxing as an overnight cruise, of course, but I am so glad I saw much of the Bay rather than nothing.
  • This is a note to all of those future travelers who have not yet made concrete plans for this trip. I cannot say enough about including a trip to Halong Bay for its beauty and unique topography. With that said, I would highly encourage everyone to do a two-night cruise! This truly gives one the opportunity to explore this UNESCO site much more. On the first day we visited a floating village, but on the second day (while those on a one-night returned to the shore), we off-loaded to a day-boat and went deeper into the bay to Cat Ba Park. It was even more beautiful than you can imagine. We then biked to a small fishing village and got the opportunity to kayak (and, perhaps swim if the weather had been a bit more co-operative). All of those activities were optional, so don't miss it if you don't like to bike. The scenery there is stunning. We were on the Jasmine (junk) of the Ginger cruise line and were very pleased with our experience. Actually, we had a bit of a snafu with our arrival and the representative worked with us to ensure we got on this trip. She went above and beyond and we were so impressed with their service! Wonderful experience on this boat with dark wood, gauzy curtains, lounges, etc....expected to see Lauren Bacall and Humphrey Bogart round the corner at any moment!!
  • Halong Bay is a worthwhile destination in Vietnam. If having an accasion to visit Vietnam, you shouldn't miss this one. Besides sightseeing breathtaking beaches and landscape in Halong on a cruise, you can be involved in interesting activities. To enjoy and explore all the interesting things here, you need to stay overnight.
  • Thanks to Calaf, Angela, smarks, Joyce, et al for rapid responses and helpful info
    At this point I will try Sofitel concierge and any other option you suggest. This is a one time trip for us and want to make certain that we "see it all" while having the opportunity
  • Ha Long bay is the place that you can visit all season in year.
  • Dear Fellow travelers,
    We are on the 2/6/17 trip and arriving in Hanoi the morning of the 4th. We booked the Halong Bay tour for the 5th with the hotel concierge at the Sofitel. They're asking for payment in advance. We'd love to hear from anyone else on this tour. We're taking the one day tour.
    Also, does anyone have any suggestions for a particular electric converter kit?

    Barbara & Stanley

  • I booked a 2-day Signature cruise tour https://www.bestpricevn.com/Tour_Signature-Cruise-2-days.html from the local agency for Halongbay trip in this July. So nervous becoz this is the first time visiting Southeast Asia. This Bestprice travel company supported us fastly n enthusiastically. Highly recommend for you guys if indeed need an advice from a local agency for your itinerary in Indochina trip.
  • We are on the March tour and booked The Halong Bay cruise/Tour with http://heritage-line.com/cruise/violet/
  • I wish Tauck could find more leniency with its “Gift of Time”. I had hoped to fly into Hanoi, use gift of time upon arrival & then check out the following morning for an overnight Halong Cruise, arriving back in Hanoi in time for “welcome reception dinner”, but Tauck said no, that “Gift of Time” had to be consecutive to the tour start date. It would have added more time to the trip & excursion than I had to offer, so I had to let Halong Bay go. Instead, we will begin our adventure in Ninh Van Bay, near Nha Trang.
  • We are taking the Vietnam Cambodia and Laos tour which includes Halong Bay!
  • I’ve heard wonderful things about Laos, making which tour to choose difficult. But we haven’t seen Thailand, so it won out. The amazing experience we had on the Li River in China, with its similar topography will need to suffice. I’ll look forward to your reflections on Laos ????????
  • British wrote:
    We are taking the Vietnam Cambodia and Laos tour which includes Halong Bay!
    British. We just booked this for Jan 13, 2019. Already starting to book up. When are you heading that way? Cheers.
  • 6 weeks time Ed. Passports are at Visa Central right now.
  • British wrote:
    6 weeks time Ed. Passports are at Visa Central right now.
    Great. We'll be checking in with you after your adventure for any tidbits we need to know about. One of these years we may get on the same trip with you. Cheers.
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