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10 Best Things to Do While in Halong Bay

Famous for its limestone karsts and over two thousand islands and islets that adorn the green waters, Halong Bay is the perfect place for all types of travelers, from young people seeking a weekend escape from busy cities to families looking for an exciting cruise with engaging activities or couples on their honeymoons. In this post, we will share some experience suggestions to fully enjoy your exploration of Halong Bay.

1. Halong Cruise around the Bay

Taking a cruise trip is one of the top-rated things to do in Halong Bay. The vessels will take visitors through numerous islands spread out over the bay, offering a glimpse of the spectacular UNESCO World Heritage Site with thousands of varying-sized and shaped limestone formations. Though travelers can embark on a day cruise tour to visit the most popular sights, it is highly advised to go on an overnight cruise (2 days, 1 night, or 3 days, 2 nights) to witness a totally different landscape at night and explore further to the secluded corners.

Recommended Halong Bay Cruises: Ambassador Cruise, Orchid Classic Cruise, Paradise Elegance Cruise, and Essence Grand Cruise.

2. Enjoy kayaking

One of the most tranquil ways to explore Halong Bay is kayaking. This nature-loving activity is a must-do in the heritage bay because it allows you to access areas that cruise ships cannot reach. There are special caves like Luon Cave or Dark & Bright Cave that you can paddle through to enter a completely hidden part of the bay. Almost all cruise lines offer this experience as part of their itinerary, whether it’s a day trip or a multi-day excursion.

Other places to go kayaking in the bay are Pearl Farm Exhibition Center and Museum, Trinh Nu Cave, Ba Trai Dao Beach, Ao Ech area

3. Relax on a rowboat ride

Rowboats are a common means of transportation for the inhabitants of Halong Bay. Travelers who like to enjoy a more intimate and relaxing local experience in this region can consider hopping aboard one of these boats to get a better look at the locals and their culture. Families with kids or elders can experience this practice when visiting Luon Cave, Dark & Bright Cave, and floating fishing villages.

4. Savor fresh seafood

There’s no doubt that Halong is famous for seafood. Stop by a floating market or seafood restaurant, or get onboard a cruise where you can savor the fresh catch of the day and enjoy an immersive dining experience. Some other dishes you must try in Halong are “cha muc” or squid patties, fried snails, and seafood noodles.

5. Explore some caves

Made of limestone rocks, the islands of Halong Bay boast plenty of cavities and caves scattered throughout the area. Tourists can now visit some, such as Sung Sot (Surprise) Cave, the largest and most beautiful with colorful lights, Trinh Nu (Virgin) Cave, Thien Cung (Heavenly Palace) Cave, Thien Canh Son Cave, and Dau Go Cave. Most cruise itineraries always include an opportunity for cave exploration.

6. Go fishing

Fishing is one of the best activities to do in Halong Bay. Travelers can visit any of the several fishing villages and meet local fishermen to learn how to enjoy this experience, such as Cua Van, Cong Dam, or Ba Hang. If you travel on an overnight Halong Bay cruise, you can try squid fishing when the night falls. And if you’re lucky enough, you can sample the freshest squid dish with your friends.

7. Laze on beaches

White sandy beaches are the hallmarks of Halong Bay. Sugar-white sands and turquoise waters define the beaches in the Bay region, where you can enjoy many activities like swimming, kayaking, or lazing on and basking in the sun. For those seeking off-the-beaten-path exploration, spend time visiting Ba Trai Dao Beach or Tra Bau area.

To visit the pristine beaches in Halong Bay, you need to travel on a cruise. If it’s not your thing, you can stay on Cat Ba Island and relax on many beautiful beaches there.

8. Try Rock Climbing

Rock climbing is a must in Halong Bay for travelers who love thrilling adventures. With its typical geographical features of limestone karsts, this UNESCO-listed natural site offers perfect conditions for mountain climbing on the sea. Thrill seekers can use kayaks to get to the challenging yet fascinating climbing spots.

9. Have fun at Sun World Halong Park

Sun World Halong is a mega-recreational park that is ideal for families traveling with kids and adrenaline junkies. Divided into two parts: the Mystic Mountain Complex and the Coastal Amusement Complex, including the Typhoon Water Park, the destination offers a wide range of activities such as a cable car, a ferris wheel, thrilling roller coasters, water slides, and indoor game zones.

10. Visit Quang Ninh Museum

Given that coal is the characteristic mineral found in Quang Ninh Province, the Quang Ninh Museum was inspired and designed as a symbol of Halong City's most beautiful coastal drive. This museum is a mix of museum, library, and exhibition space, featuring an eclectic collection of artefacts about the artistic, historical, and cultural elements of the area.

There are a lot more activities to enjoy while you’re in Halong Bay. If you need help choosing a cruise that includes your preferred activity, feel free to contact our Halong Bay Cruise consultants at any time.

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