Day 31 - Travelling from Hanoi to Halong Bay

Halong Bay Travel Blog

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Our bus arriving to take us to Halong Bay .. a 3 1/2 hour bus journey

After a 6.30 start we got on the bus for Halong Bay. It was a tourist bus that takes people from Hanoi to Halong Bay for a day trip around the islands and it was the cheapest way to get there. The driving outside the cities in Vietnam is just as bad as in the cities but instead of beeping at just motorcyclists, here they were beeping at buses, lorries, cars, and anything else that happened to be along the road. People overtaking on the inside, outside and even footpaths and also managing to squeeze 3 lanes of cars into 2 marked lanes

The scenery along the road was lovely though. We crossed several rivers where you could see large barges chugging along merrirly going about their daily routine.

Halong Bay from the promenade!
We passed hundreds of rice fields that were being ploughed by the local farmers with their oxen, a first for me, because you don't see any farmers ploughing by hand anymore. There were some richer farmers that had little tractor units but not as many as oxen.

As we got closer to Halong Bay we started to come across several mountains that protruded straight out of the ground, These were the same as the mountains that made up the 3000 islands of Halong Bay, just without the surrounding water!

We arrived at the tourist wharf in Halong Bay, bang on time where we got a taxi to take us to our hotel, the Hoang Lan Hotel. The hotel was quite nice, it had a mini bar, fan, cable tv and hot shower and was only $10 per night. The only worrying factor was that we saw very few people after leaving the tourist wharf.

We settled into our hotel, and went for a walk around the area to find something to eat. There were hotels and restaurants everywhere, all seafood type ones, but there were no people in any of them, the place looked derelect. We finally chose one and had the easiest choice of all, fried rice. The food was quite good, but it was a pity there weren't more people there to enjoy it with us.

After dinner we headed back to the hotel to just chill out for the evening, hoping that tomorrow would bring more life to the area. This didn't look like much of an exciting place to spend Christmas, but we'll give it the benefit of the doubt - for now!

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Our bus arriving to take us to Hal…
Our bus arriving to take us to Ha…
Halong Bay from the promenade!
Halong Bay from the promenade!
Some of the ships moored in Halong…
Some of the ships moored in Halon…
Halong City stretching across into…
Halong City stretching across int…
Halong Bay