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You are here:      Home News Latest News Vietnam Travel News 2011 The Beauty of Halong Bay-a UNESCO heritage site of Vietnam
The Beauty of Halong Bay-a UNESCO heritage site of Vietnam

In 1994, Ha Long Bay was recognized as a UNESCO World Natural Heritage site. It has jumped to second place among the 28 finalists of an online voting for the world’s new seven.


Just a four-hour drive east of the capital city of Hanoi, Halong Bay draws tourists into a magical setting of 3,000 limestone islands, formed from sea deposits millions of years ago, jutting out of emerald waters. However, legend tells how a dragon’s flailing tail carved out these magnificent islets.

Ha Long Bay is the jewel in Vietnam’s tourism crown, a stunning geological formation that captivates even the most travel weary and jaded of visitors.  Most people usually take Halong Bay cruises around the bay. You can choose one or two night trips to enjoy the mesmerizing scenery and discover wonderful coves and islets or simply enjoy the views from the top deck of your boat.

You stay overnight on a junk, or large wooden boat, which appeared to glide along the bay as you relax on board while viewing awesome grottoes and caves. As you tour through one cave, you are amazed by the massive stalactites carved by the water over millions of years and the spaciousness of the tunnels, which made this cave appear more like a fantasy underworld—a la “Raiders of the Lost Ark.”

During the next morning’s breakfast, you savor the fresh, sweet taste of pineapple and papaya on the palate, which was enough to energize me for the return trip back to Hanoi. All is so peaceful and calm amid Mother Nature’s creative sculptures and landscape.

To discover another side of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, this would be a great opportunity to fly over the bay and enjoy a bird’s eye view of the limestone karst islets which, according to legend are the shards of diamond and jade, that were spat out by a family of dragons sent from heaven to help protect Vietnam from foreign invaders.

It’s a little clichéd to say “this was unforgettable”!


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