Read what other Viator.com travelers think about the Halong Bay Overnight Junk Boat Cruise. What they loved, what they liked and what they think could be improved, it's all here to help you make the most of your next trip.
United States of America
The one night trip on bay is well worth doing. The views are incredible. My only complaint is the staff not very attentive to guest. We had to keep walking down stairs to another deck for drinks. When you got there staff on phone. Mist of trip staff and captain on phone!!!
The crew on board were fantastic.
tour guide Chien was really good, communicated well.
The food was amazing to say the least, presented beautifully.
The room on board the boat was so comfortable.
It was a wonderful experience. Thankyou
I can recommend this tour. Ha Long Bay is worth seeing! We had only 3 of us on a boat that sleeps 24. The staff were very attentive. The activities were good and allowed sufficient free time. The food was very good with the Chef catering to individual requests. The accommodation was excellent. The air conditioning on the boat worked well - which was needed as it was extremely hot and humid. My only suggestion would be that some commentary in the bus trip from Hanoi to Ha Long would have been good. This could be provided by CD if an English speaking driver is not available.
Tour was good, the boat had been recently refitted and cabin was great and the food was of consistently good quality but they need to let participants know that non-fish options can be requested (didn't apply for us, we love fish! but one other hardly ate) Probably the main downside on this tour was outside the control of the operator - the area of Halong Bay where we had to anchor overnight was a tip! Or at least, the sea was being used as a rubbish tip, it really was such a pity. The same applied to the area we did the little paddle around which just took an edge off. We felt that one night was enough to give us a feel for the area. Will say that, as we expected for this time of year, there was very low visibility on the first afternoon, though no rain. The next morning the mist was at the 'romantic' level so that was just fine. But, as I said, we were aware of this possibility/probability but this was the only time we could come. I would have no problem recommending this tour.
It was a great trip. Really enjoyed the bay, the boat and the crew, the kayaking, the food and the Tai Chi. $ hour drive each way was less fun.
Beautiful scenery, quiet bays, kyaking, great food, what more could you ask for? This was agreat tour, should have gone for the two night cruise.
Beautiful amenities on boat, cabin was very comfortable with comfortable beds. Only downfall was food not the best but overall a very nice getaway with amazing scenery . Would recommend to anyone.
Great our. Guide was lovely and so were the other people on the boat. We were given a room with a balcony which was so lovely. It was quite rushed and when we wanted to swim we were not allowed so as long as you can just go with the flow then this tou was great!
Absolutely a fantastic boat. Delicious lunches and dinners. Extensive seafood spread. Very clean amenities and overall was a great treat.
Ha long Bay is amazing and cannot be put into words. It's a must see! Very eager staff, very friendly. You go kayaking, it leaves you speechless. I would have enjoyed more time doing that. Exploring the caves and getting to swim at the man made beach was a nice boat ride away. Climbed up a windy rock staircase to see an overhead view of the bay. Great views. The waters were calm while on the boat. I enjoyed chatting with one of the women you will see selling items on small row boats while in the bay. Booked through Lonely Planet. We were on the boat only 1 night and would have defiantly booked for 2 nights had of we known how much we were enjoying ourselves. Two thumbs up.
A pleasant and relaxing tour (once you get there) of a unique part of the world. Great to meet and mix with people from all over the world and share the activities involved. This environment needs to be strongly protected.
It was a very nice weekend, the food was great, rooms were nice staff were great, was a little disappointed that they wanted to charge me $40 to drop us at the airport instead of our hotel. And would have liked it to be longer and do some more activities the second day. But still a very good tour
Everything was great, the rooms, the food, the guide, the views, we are really happy with this trip and would definite recommend to others. Only negative i can come up with was that drinks was a bit expensive and on the way there and back in the car the stops was too long but everything else, great!
We've done a lot of tours with Viator in Australia, Greece.....and other countries and we never had any trouble at all. This time, the trip to Halong Bay was amazing! The pick-up was on time and the crew was waiting for us at the port according to the schedule. Crew service was very good, they were attentive and willing to help us at any moment. Food was delicious!! The limestone cave was very interesting but we thought our boat guide was going to stay with us during the visit and he didn't, so we were not able to ask any questions and help ourselves at the cave. The summit we visited next day was interesting too and we had a beautiful view of the bay. I think we should be allowed to guided-tours to lagoons and other interesting places in the kayaks because we didn't know the place and we try to be as close as we could to the boat . Tour Guides should also give tourists a short introduction about Halong Bay before we start the tour (animals, number of islands, plants.........). Eventhough the cabin was clean, I found two cockroaches!!!!! Overall, we had a great time, experiencing the beauty and the peace of this "wonder of the world". We recommend a two-day tour.
It was a really good trip, the weather was quite cold and overcast but still well worth it. The boat was quite empty and more of an "adult" trip, I think there are other boat trips that are for a younger partying types - I think these are also cheaper.
A beautiful place, I wish I had the time to stay two nights instead of one.
We had a great tour host and even better food! Halong Bay was beautiful. It's a shame it was overcast and there was lots of rubbish!
We had great service, excellent views, and superb food in an amazing area of the world. I wasn't aware of the level of fitness required, but I still had a most enjoyable time. I highly recommend it!
Had a great time. Pity the weather was so foggy, wrong time of year. Was looking forward to sunrise and sunset, but saw neither. If I go to Vietnam again would definitely do trip again. The crew were friendly and helpful. Couldn't get hold of the tour company to confirm booking, the phone just kept ringing till rung out, so was worried about the pick up.
The shower in the bathroom was just a shower head coming out of the wall, the shelves we had put our clothes on were dirty and there was a lack of coffee in the morning when we woke up, but other than that it was great.
Just one of those easy cruises worth doing for the views. All inclusive but the beverages. Not even water other than the two small bottles was included and exspensive.
The food and service on board was terrific. The boat is old but I understand they are retiring it and the new one will be in service soon. I am not convinced that the overnight is better than a morning tour, I did both. On the morning tour we saw the same cave, there was more activity in the bay and we stopped to visit the fishing village. On the overnight they cruised by the fishing village without stopping and the two additional activities were not interesting to me. Kayaking in a polluted waterway, climbing up an island in the rain when there would be no view. Unless you are confident you will have a sunny day, I think the morning tour is a better value. Be prepared that it looks prettier in pictures because the pollution isn't on display in the shots. The transportation from Hanoi to Ha Long Bay and back was in a good minivan but there was no guide and the driver didn't speak English, so there was much confusion about what was going on. Also, they piled in their staff who were going to check out the new junk and that made it crowded. This staff spoke English and was minimally helpful in explaining what was going on to us.
4 hours in an unsafe mini van to get there from Hanoi (broken seat back rest and no seat belt) with a driver whose manner of driving I would consider unsafe. I was quite frightened. We were herded around like cattle, not told what was going on. A lot of waiting at the dock (over an hour). "Guide" with very minimal English. Communication was extremely difficult, frustrating and time consuming. No information given to us at all as to where we were, where we were going or what we were looking at. We got yelled at if we took to long to do something. We were never given time to get our things together (eg water bottles, jackets and medications) before being forced off the main junk and onto another boat to go caving. Guide refused to let us fish or kayak even though our itineraries said that those things were part of the cruise. Eventually relented about the kayaking, if we paid US$30 extra! We didn't. Drinks on board very over priced (US$30 for bottles of wine). Nothing to eat for a vegetarian. VERY disappointed and would not recommend at all.
We've done several Buffalo Tours and this was not one of their best. The driver didnt communicate with us the entire 3 hour trip except to tell us we had 20 minutes at the halfway stop. Upon arrival at Halong we were met by our guide who escorted us onto Buffalo's 'Jewel of The Bay'. We gathered in the dining area to be given our cabin key. We were told to meet back in the dining room for lunch. We advised that we didnt eat seafood but this information hadnt been passed on. We were told the chef would try to cater to us as the food was pre-purchased. After lunch we were taken on a hike to the caves, then went kayaking through a cave which was great. After a swim, we were left alone until dinner. The chef did a great job of trying to cook non-seafood dishes. However, the food was barely restaurant quality. Drinks on board were expensive in comparison to cost of alcohol in Vietnam. Staff record drinks on a chit system, we suggest you keep an eye on this as we discovered additional entries made which we hadnt consumed. The quide didnt speak English well and didn't offer much information regarding Halong Bay. After dinner again we were left alone. No entertainment, music or information was provided. No ambiance. The cabin was uncomfortable. Our aircon needed to be fixed. People in other cabins complained their aircon cut out during the night and they got a shock when they turned on their lights. The 2nd day we had a storm so we couldnt go on a hike or to the beach. Instead of a "wet weather plan" the trip was just cut short and were returned to the dock. For the price of this tour we were very disappointed.
It was an interesting experience. My wife and I were concerned with the pollution in the bay. The Jewel of the Bay Junk was very good and the food fantastic. We were lucky to meet some lovely people on the Junk as well. The walks that were conducted were good. The drive to the bay could have lent itself to a few explanations of the sites on the way, instead of nothing, which was not the case when my wife did the Malacca straights with Viator. Also, getting onto the junk is organized chaos. On the bus ride back, we were cramped into the back of a mini bus and sat on top of the wheels, which was painful. I am glad we have made the effort to see Halong Bay, however the other experiences that await exploring in Vietnam are equally good and considerably less in price.