Meet a driver at your hotel in Hanoi’s Hoan Kiem District, then board an air-conditioned coach for the 101-mile (162-km) trip to Halong Bay Harbor. Upon arrival at the port, board a sailing cruise boat, where the crew will greet you with a welcome drink and a Vietnamese-style seafood lunch.
Find a comfortable place on deck as the crew raises the sails and steers out of Halong Bay Harbor, setting a course towards some of the bay’s 1,500 monolithic islands. Some of the Halong Bay islands are hollowed out by years of erosion, and you’ll stop to explore one of the biggest caves in the bay, Thien Cung Cave.
Keep sailing through a series of caves and grottos before returning to Halong Bay Harbor, keeping your camera ready to capture the dramatic scenery. When the cruise ends, board the bus for the return trip to Hanoi, with drop-off at your hotel by roughly 8pm.