The crown jewels of Vietnam, and for the right reasons, Ha Long Bay and Cat Ba Island are incredible places to visit. The ferry ride into the region gives you a glimpse of just how amazing and imposing these towering limestone islands are.
I stayed on Cat Ba Island in hopes for less tourists, but arriving on a Monday afternoon, I was shocked to see how crowded the resort beach town was. I can’t even imagine how crazy Ha Long Bay would’ve been!
While I didn’t find the resort town to be anything special, the day tour I took around Ha Long Bay was well worth it. It starts with a tour around the bay, letting you soak in the seascape spectacle. The best part was that we got to kayak around the islands. Up close next to it, you really see how magnificent they are.
We also visited a small beach and Monkey Island on the tour.
A drive around Cat Ba Island itself is also a wonderful experience. With barely any traffic (aside from tour buses to and from the ferry ports) it’s the perfect relaxing activity for the afternoon. It’s also only an hour to drive from one point of the island to the other.