The events of this post happened way back in 2017 when we were on our trip of a lifetime, I am not currently travelling and do not advise travelling at the moment. I am just taking the time to go back and write some of these blogs as a way to keep myself entertained during the current lock-down.
Given our tour had to be swapped around for bad weather we were incredibly lucky that when we did get to Ha Long Bay we had absolutely beautiful weather for it. Especially since I have seen countless photos and vlogs of the area shrouded in mist before and since.
There was a little cloud cover as we firsts set of as you can see, but the sun soon burned that off and we were left with glorious sunshine.
We had the amazing opportunity to spend the night on a boat out in Ha Long Bay. We arrived late morning and were ferried out to our accommodation as it was docked further out in the harbour.
On arrival we were welcomed on board with a wonderful seafood lunch before setting off into the bay. As we let our food go down we lounged around on the deck just absorbing the beauty surrounding us as we sailed further into the bay.
We then actually had a small rain shower just before we set off on our next adventure, exploring the bay by kayaks and clambering through caves.
I had been looking forward to the kayaking part of this tour for a long time, as out of the “Hike, Bike and Kayak” the tour was named the last is by far my favourite activity.
We got a different perspective of the bay so close to the water, although we didn’t get too many pictures as we were busy paddling and also surrounded by other bright orange kayaks. But we soon reached our first stop anyway and got out to explore the caves.
By this point we had been to our fair share of caves in South East Asia but they never fail to amaze with the scale and wild beauty. As you can see this was no exception, except that is was itself exceptional. We made our way back to the kayaks though and on to our next destination.
The next cave was deeper and darker and took a longer time to explore, but I was a little more concerned with not falling in bat poo to take many photos I am afraid.
Eventually the cave lead to a beautiful lagoon with azure water and a dramatic backdrop.
We then paddled back to the boat, which I was a bit disappointed about as we were more time exploring the caves than in the kayaks and the whole thing seemed to be over in a flash. I guess they do say time flies when you are having fun.
After a short rest we made our way to Titov Island which is probably one of the most touristic and busy places we visited on the entire tour of Vietnam. Apparently the island is named after a cosmonaut who visited there with President Ho Chi Minh in the sixties, there was a statue of him.
We battled our way through the crowds to the top of the island to get a photo of the breathtaking view. The stairs up there were pretty breathtaking in themselves.
We then made our way back down to the beach where I spent the whole time swimming, both to cool down and it is my preferred form of exercise. I’d had more than enough of cycling by this point. The water was a bit oily as you can imagine from the number of boats but there was much less litter in the sea than other countries we had visited up to this point.
We made our way back to the ship and set off back to sea, where we had our dinner, which was just as good as the lunch we had earlier that day.
We spent the evening on the deck with a few drinks and the looming karst around us and the stars above. We woke the next morning to say farewell to the bay before heading back to shore and Hanoi.