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Best things to do in Halong Bay

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Where in the world: Asia  /  Vietnam  /  Quang Ninh Province  /  Halong Bay

Top 15 things to do in Halong Bay

1. Hạ Long Bay

Cruise among the conical peaks and karst pillars of Hạ Long Bay, a World Heritage Site-honored scenic seascape of various limestone landforms modeled into natural arches and towers by coastal erosion. This site features nearly 1,600 mostly uninhabited islands and islets. Legend has it that this is the place from which a mountain dragon plunged into the sea, crushing the land with his powerful tale and leaving behind a scatter of islets. Go kayaking, explore caves, visit a fishing village, or spend the night in an island bungalow. The extreme popularity of the bay among locals and tourists alike has taken a toll on the natural environment-- sometimes the water is so polluted that it is not suitable for swimming or snorkeling.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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2. Kayaking & Canoeing

Suggested duration: 8 hours
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3. Bai Tu Long Bay

Travel off the beaten path for quiet beaches and dramatic karst mountains at Bai Tu Long Bay. This attraction is similar to Halong Bay, but is much less crowded because it is less well-known among tourists. Many of its beaches are empty, which make this site an ideal spot for a day trip. Though it doesn't have as many grottos as other nearby beaches, it is rich in biodiversity, limestone cliffs, and a vibrant coastal ecosystem.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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4. Sung Sot Cave

Climb 680 steps through lush vegetation into a large grotto at Sung Sot Cave, a part of Ha Long Bay World Heritage Site. Filled with unusual rock formations highlighted by colored lights, the cave features naturally carved limestone in intricately ornate shapes covering its long walls. Stalactites and stalagmites under spotlights create a dramatic effect for spectators in this popular tourist spot. You can see limestone in the shape of a Buddha or a tortoise, with the most famous formation in the shape of a phallic rock under pink spotlights, believed to contribute to fertility.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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5. Nature & Wildlife Tours

Suggested duration: 8 hours
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6. Ti Top Island

The beaches and other natural landscapes of Ti Top Island make it widely considered one of the most beautiful attractions in the region. President Ho Chi Minh named this island after Russian astronaut German Titop during his first visit in 1962. The white sands and clear waters of the island's beaches make it popular among locals and tourists, especially in the summer months. Here, you can sunbathe, kayak, skydive, relax at a restaurant or bar, or stay at one of the site's many hotels.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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7. Boat Tours & Water Sports

Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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8. Speed Boats Tours

Suggested duration: 8 hours
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9. Dong Thien Cung

One of the main sites in the network of caves surrounding Ha Long Bay, Dong Thien Cung sits shrouded in local myths of dragons and lovers. During this first stop on many of the bay’s cave tours, you'll encounter a complex, naturally formed interior of stalactites, stalagmites, and cathedral-like dome ceilings spread over roughly 10,000 sq m (10,7639 sq ft). Said to have hosted the seven-day wedding festivities of the dragon king and cloud princess, many of the eerily lit rock formations are attributed to guests of the mythical party turning into stone. Ask your guide to point out the numerous characters while carefully walking to the center of the cave.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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10. Dau Go Cave

Tour Dau Go Cave, also known as Wooden Stakes Cave, the largest grotto in the bay. This cave was created approximately 2 million years ago, during the Pleistocene Epoch, and contains a dome that is 25 m (82 ft) high. According to legend, this cave was used to hold wooden stakes during the battle against Mongolians in the 1200s. When you enter the cave, watch for the various stalactite and stalagmite formations throughout.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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11. Le Parfum Spa, Tuan Chau Island

Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
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12. Castaway Island

Party your days and nights away with a visit to Castaway Island, a tropical paradise with calm waters and breathtaking natural wonders. Party-goers will revel at the non-stop partying, drinking games, and sunshine, while adventure seekers indulge in tubing, wakeboarding, and rock climbing.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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13. Cua Van Floating Village

Experience a different way of life as you row through Cua Van Floating Village, surrounded by mountains and home to about 700 people living in floating homes. The area is also home to a diverse marine and coastal ecosystem. Money gained from tours and fees helps support the traditional culture and lifestyle of this region.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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14. Stand-Up Paddleboarding

Suggested duration: 8 hours
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