Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Ha Long Bay

It took me and Andy a long time to decide on which cruise to do through Ha Long bay.  We eventually chose the "Monkey Island" Tour, for 3 days.

We left the hostel (leaving our big packs there), early in the morning, and headed out on a bus.  We were slightly dismayed to see that there wasn't many young people on our cruise which was a shame.  The bus took quite awhile to reach the harbor.  Once we got there we saw our ship which was really nice, we got into our cabin which was lovely!  Much nicer than a lot of the hostels we had stayed at.

We were so lucky as even though the weather had been getting worse as winter was on the way, we had a beautiful warm sunny day. We started traversing the ocean.  We started to see Ha Long bay in the distance, and it looked like a wall of rocks.  As we sailed through a crevice we then saw the beauty of Ha long bay.  The odd shapes of the rock formations, the miniature islands.   We drifted through, until we got to the Dragon caves.

It sounds a lot more impressive than it actually was.  Ha long bay is actually made of limestone and has a quite a few of these impressive limestone caves.   This one however they had turned into Disneyland.  It was full of lurid bright coloured lights.  There was one limestone formation that was suppose to be the "dragon" with they projected red lights on for the "Eyes".  All I can say is it looked nothing like a dragon.  We were all herded back onto the boat, and we sailed to our next destination.

The next destination was a floating village where we got to Kayak around in the water.  We got to Kayak through a islet with a arch in it.  It took me and Andy a few goes to get through as everyone was trying to do it so there became a traffic jam of kayaks trying to get through.

We got back onto the boat and the sun started setting, as we relaxed on the top deck.

The next day we sailed to Cat ba island, we then took a bus to the middle of the island.  We were then met by a guide and started a trek up the hill in the middle of the island.  It was really good fun, but quite dangerous by the end, as there were so many different groups doing the walk, and the end part you basically had to rock climb to the top.  The view was amazing though once you got to the top.

There was actually an incredibly rusty viewing tower at the top which you could climb up to get an even better view, but our guide advised not to go up as people had died from falling from it!!! Me and Andy decided not to climb!

We then headed back to the boat and we were delivered to Monkey island, which was a beautiful little island with golden beaches and pretty beach huts to stay in.  Me and Andy did some more Kayak in once we got there, we actually kayaked up to a fisherman and said hi, which he found hilarious.  We then saw flying fish which was incredible.  They were small fish and if you were noisy they would jump altogether in a silver arch!

The food on monkey island was some of the best Ive ever had.  They also had this cute cross eyed cat that came up and begged for food, he was really cute.  They were also having an anniversary, so we had some free shots.  In the night time we drank with some of our new friends, Jessica, and some Irish boys.

The next day was just a lazy day sailing back to the main land, then driving back to Hanoi!  A incredible experience!

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