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Discover Halong Bay - World Heritage of Vietnam

If Hanoi is the grand old dame of Vietnam and Ho Chi Minh City is the brash young floozy, then Halong Bay, Hue and Hoi An are the alluring mistresses you encounter along the way.

How to find safe travel in Halong Bay

Having read the news about tourist boat sunk in Halong Bay, Vietnam some days ago, ACTIVETRAVEL ASIA would like to give out some advices about how to travel safely and enjoyably in Halong Bay.

Cruising Ha Long Bay, Vietnam

Ha Long Bay looked picturesque and was sunny and warm. Indochina sails, Ha Long bay , Vietnam We got up early today as we need to catch the bus for our trip to Ha Long Bay, about 3 hours west of Hanoi.

Kayaking and Cycling in a World Heritage Bay

Halong Bay is one of the most spectacular, and therefore heavily 'touristed' attractions in Vietnam. Kayak on Ha Long bay, Vietnam .

A Look into Beautiful Halong Bay, Vietnam

Halong Bay has been declared a UNESCO World heritage site and it really deserves the designation. It is one of the most exciting unusual places I have been to in my life.


Vietnam wants waterway tourism safety

The number of life jackets on tourist boats accommodating guests overnight must be twice the number of passengers on board, according to the draft of a circular to be issued by the Ministry of Transport.

The forthcoming regulation will require all passengers on board to be equipped with sufficient life jackets in the bedrooms, while the remainder must be available in dining, bar and working decks.

When coming out the rule will apply to all overnight tourist boats, and floating restaurants and hotels.

Under the draft, overnight tourist boats in lakes, rivers and coastal waters must be equipped with at least eight life-saving buoys, with each side of the boat having four.

Life saving equipment must be easily seen on board the boat and must have detailed instructions on them. If lifesaving jackets cannot be placed near passengers due to the vessel’s specifications, ship owners must increase the number of life saving appliances.

To ensure safety, exit doors must be always unlocked and available to passengers at all time and exit directions must be highlighted for them to recognize in case of emergency.

Owners must equip their ships and floating facilities with loudspeakers to announce emergency situations to each cabin. Announcements and directions must be in both Vietnamese and English.

Source: Vietnam tourism

Supported by Indochina Sails - The most luxury and safest cruises in Halong Bay
Hanoi Office
Add: 27 – A6 – Dam Trau Quarter – Hai Ba Trung District – Hanoi – Vietnam
Tel: +84 – 4- 39842362
Fax: +84 – 4 – 39844150
Email: info@indochinasails.com


Kayaking in Halong Bay – Things to know

Halong Bay attracts thousands of passengers every month. Nearly five hundred cruises run every day and hundreds of passengers stay on board every night. Halong Bay is famous for its natural beauty and thousands of limestone islands and islets.

When you are on board, you admire the majestic beauty of the Bay but when you GET closer to the limestone islands, discover the beauty yourself, you admire its nature. But… how to get closer? The best way is joining kayaking activity.

Kayak in Halong Bay?

This is a small, relatively narrow, human-powered boat primarily designed to be manually propelled by means of a double blade paddle.

How to use a kayak?

Kayaking is generally assumed to be very safe in these calm waters of Halong Bay but there is still some areas and warning that you should avoid and listen to the tour guide. Kayaking is not difficult; however, to enjoy it completely, you need some tip:

 Preparation do not skip this stage
  • Suitable clothes: T-shirt and short, swimming suit in the summer; warm clothes in the winter; wet shoes, hat, sunglasses
  • Necessary things: Water, sun cream, dry bag, camera, insect repellent
  • Life vests

Medical box and food (for the long duration)

  • Follow your tour guide: it is very important
  • Listen to the route, time and rules
  • Learn how to use the kayak even it is not your first time kayaking, wear the life vest and use the dry bag
  • Strictly follow the leader (tour guide) about the moving rules
  • Check with your tour guide the weather, tide and wind strength to have the best and safest route.
  • Keep a suitable distance with the others, not too far, keep in sight with the others
  • Keep away from the places which have strong flow, against the wind; take advantage of the wind strength and flow.

What about the children?
  •  Follow the tour guide and their parents
  • Sit still in the kayak, do not move in front of or behind
  • Wear the life vest
  • Wear the hat and sun cream

Handle unexpected situations:
  •  Adjust the speed of the whole group if any of the member is out of sight
  • In case the kayak capsizes, passengers need to swim a bit, and then take the water out of the kayak with the help of the tour guide. He will catch thekayak; take the water out by putting your kayak on his in the T- shape. After that, he will put the kayak back into the water; keep it still so that passengers can be on the kayak again.
  • If there is an expected storm, find the safest place in the sheltered areas, beaches… to avoid the storm. In case passengers are in the middle of the sea and cannot find a safe place, passengers need to be gathered to make a raft
  • If you are not sure about the route you are going, you should keep in touch with the others and paddle around the mountain, you will not be lost. Passengers should know for sure the route, search on the map.
  • It is better if passengers have mobile phone, radio or any means of communication (often for professional kayakers)

Supported by Indochina Sails - The most luxury and safest cruises in Halong Bay
Hanoi Office
Add: 27 – A6 – Dam Trau Quarter – Hai Ba Trung District – Hanoi – Vietnam
Tel: +84 – 4- 39842362
Fax: +84 – 4 – 39844150
Email: info@indochinasails.com


Halong Bay_Unbelieve!

Coppy right PJandMike

Well yes I am back - I know you have all missed me whilst I have been scanning off on Halong Bay. So here goes, we get picked up on time by the cruise company and start picking up the other passengers. This is where the fun began as we had one gentleman who was Australian (name of Nigel), he had a very loud voice and very funny. 

 It’s very interesting that the passengers on board were multi cultural i.e. a couple from the gold coast in Australia, a couple from Spain, a couple from Singapore, a couple from France, 2 couples from Turkey and a lady from Korea - told you we were multi-cultural. 

The cruise did not look exactly like the pictures from outside but we found out that the Vietnamese government has instructed all the big cruise boats on Halong Bay must be painted white. Anyway, after this was our only disappointment on the trip as our cabin was at the front and had a balcony with sun beds - how lucky are we or what! 

So after dropping our bags off we take a boat ride on a smaller boat to see the floating village of Vung Vieng and then onto a pontoon where they show you how they Implant oysters to achieve pearls - that amazed me as I never knew they did this I always thought you were lucky if you had an oyster with a pearl in - how I thought they would have enough pearls to make necklaces, earrings etc I don't know. 

So after the little excursion we go back to the cruise ship and have a sunset party of sangria which really helped the Spanish couple to integrate. 

Then we had a cooking class and yes you guessed it we made spring rolls - I should be an expert at these as remember I made them in Cambodia. As you are all well aware by now of my competitive nature I was really up for this cooking class and not only wanted to make the best but also the fastest. 

After dinner there was squid fishing but as we were told that it is not squid season I could not see the point in standing at the back of the boat with fishing net and no chance of catching a squid. 

So next morning, We went to a little bay and jump kayak. We are taken by our guide Duan (English name Tim) in our kayaks to a little cave which the water is filling up and it is pitch black. I start to panic as we are in a double kayak Mike is shouting at me to go left - remember I don't know my right from left and in a panic situation I can tell you I really do not know it and so I go right and we are stuck under the top of the cave. We have a torch but as I said I was panicking and could not turn this on - so Mike is shouting at me turn the torch on I am shouting back I cannot turn the thing on! What a palaver! All I could think of is we are stuck and the water is coming into the cave so Mike agreed to turn around. So after the cave we kayak around the bay through some really nice BIG natural stone arches. 

We then return to the boat for lunch. After lunch we are taken to a secluded beach with only a few people on and you can only get to by boat. This was where the fun started - there was a group of Vietnamese men who kept on covering themselves in sand and hollering - it was like none of them had seen sand before. Then they get in the sea and take their trunks off - they were really enjoying themselves - it was great to watch. 

So up early this morning and after breakfast we go to visit the Amazing Cave - yes that is what it is called. After this we are taken back to shore and here we are back in Hanoi at the same hotel - which is good as we left our big bags here, we are sad to leave Owen and Vicki the couple we spent yesterday with as they were great company but we will be keeping in touch with them.

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