Halong Bay in your eyes: fabulous things to explore in aerial city

dev 11/06/2022

Located in the northeastern seacoast, Halong Bay is a breathtaking landscape of jagged limestone cliffs, rocky outcrops and more than 1,900 clustered islands rising up from the emerald green water. As a result, this place is designated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO and named as one of the seven wonders of the world. 

In addition to natural beauty, this place is rich in culture and unique culinary. If you are looking for a handpicked selection of activities, must-try food, top attractions or best time of year to visit Halong Bay in Vietnam, here’s what you must write down. 


1. Best things to keep in mind before traveling to Halong Bay 

As its name suggests, Halong means descending dragon. Legend has it that people suffered from the invasion of other countries so they prayed for help. The dragons were sent down to protect them and spit the jewel turning into the great walls and islands to prevent the enemy which explained the beauty of the bay. 

There are three international airports near Halong including Van Don, Cat Bi and Noi Bai. After landing, you can take an airport bus or taxi to Ha Long city within 45 minutes. The accommodation and meal price are quite reasonable in comparison with other buzzing cities like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh. 



The biggest charm of Halong Bay may be the scenery.  Nevertheless, it is much more than that with an astonishing collection of wide tropical biodiversity, picturesque beaches, mysterious caves, fishing villages and untouched islands. In particular, it has a long history through different cultures including Soi Nhu, Cai Beo and Halong dating back to 18,000 years.

Besides, Halong Bay is famous for its festivals and events throughout the year. Taking place in summer, Halong Carnival is the biggest annual festival with the highlight of a joyful parade in the coastal street. This is also the best time of year to visit Halong Bay in Vietnam. Moreover, you can pay a visit here in other festival seasons such as Quan Lan Festival, Cua Ong Festival, Yen Tu Festival, etc.  



2. Top attractions in Halong Bay

Not only does Halong offer a selection of nature discovery activities but it also brings you a culture and culinary trip. Whether you stay here for a day or a week, here’s a bucket list of top attractions to do when paying a visit to Halong Bay.  

Cruise the bay 

When you embark on Halong, the cluster of cruise ships sailing around the bay is the trademark of this place. Nothing beats spending time soaking up along the bay, watching the sunset or serene morning surrounded by the magnificent scenery on the deck. The typical itinerary will include Kissing cocks, Lan Ha bay, Bai Tu Long Bay, Cat Ba, etc.   

@Walk my world


Seasonal fishing

If you are looking for a rarer experience in Halong Bay, fishing at night is a perfect fit. Typically, you will join the fishermen to go offshore and do squid fishing which local people have done for generations. After that, you can enjoy the meal served with squid freshly caught yourself. 

Explore the caves

Among the most stunning natural landmarks in Halong Bay, you must give it a try to discover the cluster of caves and grottos sitting on many islands and islets. Sung Sot, Thien Cung and Dau Go are the most popular geological wonders that you must take a look inside on foot. 



Visit the floating villages 

Halong Bay is a home of the fishing community living here for centuries which is a unique trait of local cultural heritage. You can find more than  600 people living in floating wooden houses across the bay. Take a boat tour around this village to experience the beauty in daily life of fishermen. 

Don’t miss the outdoor activities

You can not miss the chance to explore the gorgeous beauty of Halong Bay by paddling out in a kayak, rock climbing or clambering into the caves and jungles. Typically, travelers will find it interesting to step into the popular spots including Sung Sot cave, Thien Cung cave, Butterfly island or Lan Ha Bay. 



3. What to eat 

Situated in the northeastern part of the country, Halong Bay offers a reflective cuisine which is influenced by Vietnam, China and Laos. Here’s what you must try. 

Squid sausage 

Squid sausage (or Cha muc) is one of the most iconic dishes in Halong Bay which is crunchy and rich in flavor. The main ingredients include fried squid, minced meat, mushroom, shrimp, fried onion and fish paste. They will mix everything together, roll into thin rice paper and toss into a deep fryer. You can try squid sausage in Halong market. 

Seasonal seafood

Halong Bay’s cuisine is a harmonization of different cultures with a bit more spice and more of focus on seafood. Therefore, seasonal seafood is a must when traveling here. Snails, lobster, oyster, succulent monkfish and plump shrimps are highly recommended. Whether on the luxury cruise or in the food stall, you are bound to find freshly caught seafood with lemon, salt, pepper or tropical dressing. 


Tien Yen ca say

Offering a unique flavor that you can just find in northeastern Vietnam, ca say is a hybrid between duck and muscovy. Typically boiled, grilled or slow roasted, it is served with traditional fish sauce mixed with herbs including lemongrass, ginger and sassafras grown in Tien Yen. 

Bun tom tit

Shrimp noodle (written as bún tôm tít in Vietnamese) is a highly recommended dish for travelers in Halong. Including noodle and freshly cooked shrimp, this dish is typically served with broth and herbs. 


Paying a visit to Halong Bay will bring you a lot of interesting experiences that you hardly find anywhere else. There is no denying its astonishing natural beauty partnered with rich cultural heritage so you do not have to ask what is the best time of year to visit Halong Bay in Vietnam. Because you definitely fall for this place whenever you travel here on any occasion of the year. 

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