Would highly recommend this trip to anybody staying in Hanoi and wanting to squeeze in Halong Bay for the day. Don't let the 3 hour coach trip put you off - the time goes by very quickly in the air conditioned van and the beautiful Vietnam scenery passing by the window.
The boat trip itself was perfect with a great lunch and plenty of photo opportunities of the bay as well as the visit to the spectacular cave!
Many thanks to our fantastic tour guide Ching who was friendly, enthusiastic, provided us with a lot of interesting information along the way and all in all looked after us well. The small tour group size ours was a group of 6 also made it even more special.
Excellent tour, really could have done the 2 day as it is a long day to see Halong in one day. Despite this the tour guide was excellent and knowledgeable. Would recommend highly.
Another great day out with Viator - very informative guide - thank you
Tour started by picking us up at our hotel in the Old Quarter. Air Conditioned Van was comfortable and sat 12 people, but there were only 7 of us on this tour. The drive to Halong wasn't too long, I suggest bringing some headphones for the drive. You make one stop along the way to use the facilities or purchase food/souvenirs. Once arriving our Guide, San, took us to our boat for the day. It was a very large boat, and was extra roomy with our small group. Lower deck inside was set up as a dining area with bench seating facing the dining tables. There is also a restroom on the boat which is great. The top deck is quite bare, but perfect for picture taking. There are a few places to sit upstairs. We boated to our first stop where we went inside a cave. The 'hike' up, wasn't more than just a few flights of stairs. Inside the cave was beautiful, although a few other groups made the space loud at times. We then went back to boat, to cruise along the bay while having lunch. The seafood lunch was incredible! Shrimp, rice, vegetables, whole grilled fish, squid, etc. My wife and I chose to quickly eat lunch so that we could be on the top deck of the boat while cruising, since seeing the Bay was higher priority than lunch. Beverages on the boat are excluded, but we still chose to buy a few beers to drink on the top deck. We cruised the bay for probably 2-3 hours, and our driver took us to several areas where there were no other boats around which was wonderful. The photos just don't do this area justice, it's quite spectacular. After we finished cruising, we made our way back to the dock, and loaded back into the van. Again, one stop on the way back to use the facilities. We arrived back at our hotel in Hanoi before 7pm, giving us plenty of time that night back in the city. I would recommend this trip to anyone looking to do a day trip to Halong Bay.
Absolutely stunning scenery and a great guide. I was the only omen on the tour so I received VIP treatment! Boat ride is amazing with plenty of good photo opportunities. Be prepared for a long drive from Hanoi, more than 3 hours each way but it is worth it!
Great trip with Lee. Only had 5 in our group and we thoroughly enjoyed the excursion. Lunch was excellent, boat ride was great. Beautiful bay and shouldn't be missed.
Dien, our tour guide, picked us up from our hotel at 630am. We were the first of the 10 people in our tour group to be picked up and Dien kept us engaged with some interesting information about Vietnam for about the first half of the 3 hour ride. There isnt a whole lot during the ride in terms of sight-seeing but we got go see some smaller towns, factories, and rice planting along the way. About halfway through the trip we stopped for about 15 minutes for a restroom break. Of course we got the opportunity to purchase some items at the location. There are some pricey art items there from the hundreds to thousands of USD, but if you look around towards the back there are some more reasonably priced items.
On arrival at Halong Bay we had a wonderful lunch and got to try out a variety of Vietnamese dishes. It was late January, a bit chilly with no sunshine, and I needed a light jacket. We were still able to experience the beauty of Halong bay and everyone was awed. The overcast conditions gave it a very majestic feel. We also stopped off at the limestone cave, which I thoroughly enjoyed. After about 3.5 to 4 hours it was time for the return trip.
I feel like the 1 day trip was sufficient and that I had not necessarily missed out on anything. The downside is it is a lot of time spent traveling in a bus. However, I would do this tour again. Thanks to Dien for helping to make this a wonderful trip!
An excellent tour. My guide was informative and the lunch onboard the boat was superb! I highly recommend this tour.
Great guide very knowledgeable. The trip itself was terrific. Great sites and cruise lots to see.
Really enjoyed our time on this tour, and the drive there wasn't nearly as bad as I expected.
Ramesh K Singapore
That's what we would call an out of this world natural wonder. Our guide was absolutely brilliant. He paced his presentation throughout the long to and fro journey with an excellent command of the English language. We strongly recommend taking the tour.
Halong Bay is a beautiful natural beauty. Everybody needs to see it once in his/her life.
Our tour guide and driver Sorry! Forgot their names were GREAT!!! I would recommend this tour to everyone.
Halong Bay is beautiful- can't really take a bad photo there :
We didn't have a long time in Hanoi area so going to Halong Bay via bus and returning that same day was perfect! It's fun to see the landscape shift from the city to rural to coast. Our tour guide San was GREAT! Very friendly, knowledgeable, conversant and easy to be around. The boat tour and lunch great food, great scenery. It's a fun stop at the big cave on one of the islands- like some kooky Disney film meets early Star Trek. A bit crowded with boats and people but all part of the experience.
What a fabulous place to visit my tour guide Cuong Tran Dry was awesome. Very knowledgeable. The cruise was lovely and the lunch scumptious. A must do thing for everyone
Excellent tour and tour guide. Thoroughly recommend. It might be easier to have a central pickup and dropoff point to save time for those who get the first and last pickup and drop-off as in our case. This added over an hour and a half to what is already a long trip.
So worth the day trip if you don't have a lot of time. The drive its self is worth it just to experience and observe the countryside, then arriving at Halong Bay is so beautiful. Excellent
Tour itself was great - great tour leader, safe driver, large sized boat to ourselves, beautiful tour of Halong bay. Had lunch on the boat while cruising past the islands which was amazing.
Just note that the drive to Halong Bay is long. Be prepared for a lot of sitting and waiting - bring a book, pillow, and snacks.
Marvellous day only wish I'd done the overnight trip.. The food was amazing the the boat was excellent my husband and I had the boat to ourselves.. Was just over to quickly..
This was great day long tour. You really see and learn a lot without having to spend days in Halong. I really enjoyed the boat ride and the seeing the cave.
My friends and I were the only ones on the trip and we had a good time with our guide San. The visibility was not the best but nonetheless Halong Bay still looks very beautiful.
What an amazing trip. It ending up being a private tour and it didn't rain. Everything was top notch and superb the boat ride, exploring the cave, food, and transportation from Hanoi to Ha Long Bay. The landscape is truly spectacular and stunning. This is a trip not to be missed. I think my guide was either Thanh or Hoang Le ... sorry. Either way, the guide on this trip was accommodating, knowledgeable, professional and super friendly. Had a wonderful time.