We have a few tips that you should give it a try when travelling Halong Bay. These tips include best time and best way to travel Halong Bay to some culture dos and don'ts.
Hoi An Lantern Festival
Co Loa Festival
Huong Pagoda Festival
Yen Tu Festival
Full moon of the 1st month
Elephant Race Festival
Cold Food Festival
Buon Ma Thuot Coffee Festival
Hung Kings Commemorations
Khau Vai 'Love' Market
Danang International Fireworks Festival
International Labor Day
Tet Doan Ngo
International Children’s Day
Vietnamese Family Day
Do Son Buffalo Fighting Festival
Vietnamese Women’s Day
Ooc Om Bok Festival
Through thousands of year, Vietnamese culture has developed and Vietnamese people are appreciative of their indigenous culture.
So consider of some dos and don't to make your trip a culturally and socially enriching experience
- Hold your bag in front of you, especially when you are on a motorbike or taxi to avoid bag snatching
- Keep your valuables (cash, credit card, passport..) in a safe place
- Learn how to use chopstick. Most of Vietnamse food (noodles, rice...) is hard to eat with pork.
- Avoid public displays of affection with your partner
- Bring a map with you. The roads and streets can be confusing for a newcomers.
- Wear shorts, dresses or skirts or top with low-neck line when you visit temples, pagodas.
- Sit with the soles of your feet pointing to others. It is considered as extremely rude.
- Touch someone's head.
- Take pictures of military installations or any military-related sites.
Halong Bay locates in Quang Ninh province which is about 165 km east from Hanoi Capital. Most of the travelers arrive at Hanoi and spend a day here. The next day they will go to Halong Bay from Hanoi. This is the most common and perhaps the best plan so that you can explore both Hanoi and Halong Bay.
There are several ways that you can travel to Halong Bay from Hanoi. Keep reading to find the one that suits your budget and timeline the best.
- Coach: This is the cheapest vehicle to go to Halong Bay. You can catch any coach at any coach station which arrives at Bai Chay coach station. It will take about 4 to 4.5 hours and cost you about 100,000Vnd.
Most of the coach is 45-seat and featured with air-conditioning.
- Shuttle bus: When you book cruise, you can ask the agent or cruise company for a shuttle bus service. The cost will vary among different company and different types of bus. In general, it is easy and convenient because you don’t have worry about pick-up and drop-off point. The bus will pick you at your hotel on request and take you to the cruise center of the cruise ship you have booked. On average, it takes about 3.5 hours to get to Halong bay.
- Private transfer: While traveling by shuttle bus you need to share the car with server other guests, a private transfer will be customized to your schedule and serve only you. However, it will cost more than both 2 previous ways. If you have an early flight or need to leave the cruise earlier, a private transfer can be very efficient.
- Seaplane: This is the fastest way to travel from Halong and also the most expensive way. Travel by seaplane you will get an amazing view of Halong from above which a normal transfer or cruise cannot provide. To book seaplane, you can contact directly with the company that operates the seaplane. Some cruise operators do offer a package with seaplane transfer and cruise. The Au Co Luxury Cruise is one of the cruises that provide this package. You can find more information here.
From Hai Phong:
With new international airport opening, it saves you much time. Instead of 4 hours transfer from Hanoi like before, now you can flight straight to Hai Phong (a neighbor province) and get to Halong from here.
- Bus from Cat Bi international airport: the airport is about 70km away from Tuan Chau Marina. It takes around 2hours by car. You can easily catch a bus or taxi from the airport.
- Water way: You can catch speed boat from Hai Phong to Bai Chay or Hon Gaiharbour. This way can be less convenient compared to the roadway for a foreigner, but easy and inexpensive if you go from Cat Ba.
The best time to visit Halong Bay is in Spring (January to April) and Fall (September and October). Weather at this time is plesant with moderate temperature and lighter rainfall.
During summer (June to August), Halong landscape with karst towers and emerald water appear to be most beautiful under sunshine but this is also monsoon season so there are some unexpected situation of cruise cancelation.