Begin your day trip to Halong Bay with hotel pickup in Hanoi's Old Quarter. Travel past water buffalo and farmers working in the rice fields of the Red River Delta during a 2-hour drive by coach or private vehicle — depending on option selected at booking. You'll make a brief stop at a handicrafts center before arriving at the Halong wharf around midday.
Here, board a traditional wooden junk and cruise into the World Heritage–listed bay, peppered with limestone karsts and the sheer cliffs of countless islets. Your guide will point out landmarks such as Stone Dogs Island, Duck Island, Finger Island, Incense Burner Island, and Fighting Cocks Island.
After a seafood lunch (vegetarian option is available), set out to explore the chambers of Thien Cung Cave, translated as Heavenly Palace and adorned with stalactites and stalagmites. Following a 40-minute kayak or bamboo boat ride around a fishing village, you'll head back to the wharf for the return transfer to your hotel in Hanoi.