Day 5 - Halong Bay

Halong Bay Travel Blog

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Early morning start for me so that I could relieve my guilt at all my continuous food consumption - I decided to make a visit to the gym.  Have to say, working out with the wide blue ocean in front of you to provide a scenic backdrop with the beautiful limestone formations of Halong Bay, was certainly something else.

We scoffed down our breakfast in anticipation of a long day - we arrived at Halong Bay at 9am and we were leaving at 4pm.  We had booked a tour for us to join a 4 hour traditional boat cruise in Halong Bay (which included lunch) so that we could view the world heritage listed limestone formations and to visit the cave formations.  It was a very warm day and the sun was quite unforgiving - but it was by the same token so pleasant to be out in the sun looking at natural wonders of the world.

  The cruise was so relaxing and I spent a lot of it outside on what looked like a traditional chinese junk boat.  We passed by many interestingly formed limestone rocks which many many years ago must have been one massive limestone rock.  Eventually we made it to the port and we did a hike up a mountain to view the limestone caves - very Indiana Jones!  Great views of the bay and the beautiful water from the top of the mountain and caves.  We also stopped on our way back to the cruise ship at a traditional fish market where the fish were literally kept in separate netted areas.  You could order your lunch fresh where the staff would fish out the requested meal from right underneath your feet. 

After spending this time away from the cruise ship, yet still cruising (albeit on a different type of vessel), we returned back to the Superstar Virgo in the mid afternoon to plan a relaxing remainder of the afternoon.

  This included a visit to the beauty salon to try out a very pampering massage.  What a great way to spend an afternoon........the next most difficult decision was to figure out where to have dinner that evening - we were attempting to eat at each restaurant on the ship so that we are able to experience all the cuisines on offer.

Tonight happened to be the evening of the Captain's Dinner and Cocktail Party.  This was noted on the daily itinerary with the reference that the dress code for the Cocktail Party was black tie.  As none of my family had bought along our sunday best as it were, we turned up for a sticky beak at the cocktail party which was held in the lobby of the ship, and were quite surprised to see so many passengers decked out in ball gowns, fancy frocks and penguin suits.  Lucky we weren't intending on having dinner with the Captain - I fear we would have been extremely underdressed.  The Captain introduced his crew and staff and whilst it was quite interesting it was also very Love Boat as he introduced the Cruise Director responsible for making sure that everyone was having fun on board.

 

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Fish cages
Fish cages
Halong Bay