Halong Bay is one of the world's most astonishing geological wonderlands featuring nearly 3,000 karst limestone peaks jutting up from the serene, placid waters. In this sublime setting, the calmed waters are perfectly suited for easy kayaking, providing close up views and access to the towering formations, caves, empty beach coves, and floating villages. The UNESCO World Heritage Site is dotted with large caves that once served as hidden bunkers for pirates, revolutionaries, and bandits that we will may explore on foot and kayak, or simply laze on deck watching the mesmerizing scenery drift by from the comfortable deckmother ship.
If you want an idea of how beautiful Halong Bay is, watch the French film Indochine. Now imagine cruising or kayaking these same placid, emerald waters through caves into hidden lakes and white-sand beach coves, your small kayak gliding beneath towering limestone peaks.
There is no other place like this in the world, a cruising experience on par with the Blue Voyage along Turkey's coast. Indeed, the romantic setting of rugged island peaks and bays dotted with sailing junks has inspired a whole genre of Vietnamese painting.
With over 2,000 karst peaks tame the South China Sea, settling it into a glassy smooth surface — perfect for beginning kayakers, swimming, and of course those who are sensitive to motion.
During your Halong Bay cruise we dine and overnight on a clean, comfortable replica of a traditional wooden cruiser, the finest boat on Halong Bay — the Huong Hai. Private cabins have lavatories and twin beds. Spacious areas above deck and inside provide solitude when needed.
Our Halong Bay tours feature fresh meals prepared by your onboard chef — catch of the day, seafood specialties, and Vietnamese favorites, such as banh xeo and pho. For breakfast, hearty plate-size omelettes, piping hot soups, baguettes, jam, butter, and "depth charge" coffee. We may arrange for private dining on a deserted beach cove,
Stylish and spacious cabins feature private lavatories and showers, air conditioning, comfortable beds, and attractive woodwork throughout. Outstanding service is always a highlight of these charters. We lease boats only of the highest quality, please view our current Halong Bay charters.
Cooking with your chef, learning the art of fruit and vegetable carving, rock climbing, kayaking, caving, island hiking, beach BBQ dining, visiting floating villages, exploring deserted beach coves, fishing, swimming and snorkeling round out the many fun and unique activities on the bay.
Halong Bay is the geographic highlight of Southeast Asia, inspiration for generations of artists and a focus of our annual photography tour.
Our most popular trips are family trips on the bay. Our staff is famously fun with children of all ages and for the perfect honeymoon, a private cruise on the bay is an unforgettable experience of a lifetime.
Our specialty: our most popular trips are family and honeymoon trips on the bay. Our staff is famously fun with children of all ages and for the perfect honeymoon, a private cruise on the bay is an unforgettable experience of a lifetime.
Our private cruises of two to four days in length are of the highest quality yet as affordable as many package tours. Our three-day tour is the perfect compliment to a visit to North Vietnam — a short three-hour drive from Hanoi. Meals and long-distance transport are on our "mother ships" — spacious wooden cruisers equipped with comfortable suites, deck and dining rooms. Meals designed by culinary specialist, Diep To, are abundant and delicious highlighting local seafood cooked up fresh. Vegetarians and special diets can be accommodated.
Day 1: Hanoi to Halong Bay via private car. Board your private junk, enjoying lunch as we motor out onto the bay, pausing to sightsee in Hang Dau Go (Hiding the Timber Cave), the largest grotto in the Halong area. In the afternoon, we'll escape the flotilla of other tourist boats, escaping into our own private part of the bay for kayaking and a beautiful sunset over Halong. After, a delicious seafood dinner, followed by drinks under the stars.
Day 2: Full-day on the bay, exploring grottoes, coves, inland lagoons, floating villages, and beach coves by kayak or local sampan. Enjoy a fishing lesson with locals (above). Seafood lunch, dinner and overnight onboard.
Day 3: Morning kayaking on the bay followed by farewell lunch with crew before return to Hanoi by private car.
Kayaking is optional, but enables up close access, through karst into hidden lagoons where no boat can go. We use imported one and two-seat models are perfect for beginners and for more experienced kayakers.
It is possible to visit Halong Bay year-round. Halong weather is typical for tropical coastal climate, with two primary seasons: April to September, when weather is typically hot and humid, and from October through March when drier and cooler.
- The average temperature of Halong Bay is 75 degrees Fahrenheit (23.7 degree Celsius).
- Winter months (from Mid-October through February) features the best weather overall on Halong Bay.
- During summer months (May to September), tropical storms may alter the itineraries depending on conditions.
- Due to hundreds of islands acting as a barrier in the area, Halong is not much affected by heavy storms and features calm, placid waters.
"We were pleased that Indochina Travel was small enough to provide the things larger companies cannot, yet with all the benefits of using a larger one. In Saigon, we were honored to visit our guide's family. The BEST parts of our trip were the PEOPLE we met, especially the real, local people, not just the famous ones (though they were fascinating as well). Cuong made this possible throughout our time with him."
—Ric Haas, Menlo Park
"Chris and I had a wonderful journey. Thanks to you, everything was flawless. All of the guides were superb (especially Thiha in Burma). The accommodations were top-rate in most cases, the special activities and personal service much appreciated!"
—Ann & Chris McMurray, Alexandria, VA
"Overall, we had an excellent trip! Don and I both loved Bhutan and Myanmar. Both countries are beautiful, each in their own way. Our main comment would be to say how wonderful our guides were. As we've discussed in the past, it's really the difference between a good trip and great one. It was really nice to have the same guide for the entire itinerary, you really get to establish a rapport and they get to know us. We thought both guides were very professional, knowledgeable and personable, and we learned a lot from both."
—Irene Ing and Don Ershig, Rancho Palos Verdes, CA
Boating - "Thank you for an amazing adventure, we were delighted at every turn and the activities and people we met were thoroughly fascinating. We really the appreciated the authentic experiences we shared. Our girls are still talking about the trip, please give Linh and Duc our best!"
—The Anderson Family
Halong Bay Kayaking - "This was our fourth trip with you guys and it couldn't have possibly been any better. Your crew is outstanding in every way-well prepared, attentive, and professional. Again, you planned some very special things for us which we really enjoyed. Thank you for another amazing experience."