EXPLORE LAN HA BAY
With so few cruise ships and the Gulf of Tonkin’s largest island, Lan Ha Bay is ripe for adventure. Around half of Cat Ba Island is covered by the national park, a jungled expanse offering spectacular viewpoints, while secluded beaches and charming villages lay nestled in the other half. Also at sea you’ll find caves that welcome exploration – by foot and by kayak – and uninhabited islands save for the resident monkeys and eagles.
Dark and Bright Cave
So-called for the contrasting levels of light that they permit into the grottos (these caves are also called Day and Night Cave), the Dark and Bright Caves rest on the water.
This makes them only accessible by one- or two-person kayak that you can captain yourself, or a traditional bamboo rowboat with a local at the helm.
These caves only see a fraction of the visitors of the more popular alternatives in Halong Bay, making for a more a more wild and unexplored experience.SEE MORE
Tung Thu Beach
A fair distance from Cat Ba Town and with little development, this secluded beach is one of the quietest on Cat Ba Island.
The beach is framed by two large and jungled peninsulas that jut dramatically out to sea, which provide a cinematic setting but also keep the waters calm and safe for swimming.
Lunch is served right on the beach so you can take in the views while tucking into the local specialty: seafood.SEE MORE
Viet Hai Fishing Village
Viet Hai lays nestled on the eastern side of Cat Ba and is inaccessible by road from the rest of the island.
The 300-person village was founded before the designation of Cat Ba National Park, and thus parts of the village still remain within the park, which makes for a uniquely beautiful setting.
Due to its remote location, Viet Hai has retained a traditional atmosphere and way of life with minimal interference from the modern world.SEE MORE
Van Boi Island
Van Boi Island is the stuff that dreams are made of: A tiny drop in the ocean with various craggy outcrops and hidden beaches down below and tufts of straggly green jungle up top.
This is the perfect castaway island on which to sit back and relax with a different perspective of Lan Ha Bay.
Take a swim in the calm waters followed by a Vietnamese coffee or local beer on the sand.SEE MORE
Trung Trang Cave
Trung Trang Cave is one of the best dry caves in the Gulf of Tonkin, with limited and sensitive lighting designed to enhance rather than detract from the natural characteristics of the cave.
Locals remark on the cave’s spectacular stalactites, which have earned the natural wonder the name “golden treasure” or “princess’s treasure”.
Exploring the cave is safe and easy by foot without any additional caving equipment.SEE MORE
Cat Ba National Park
At over 150 square kilometers, Cat Ba National Park constitutes about half the island, and is brimming with flora and fauna.
The sharp limestone mountains are reminiscent of Lan Ha Bay’s islands but completely carpeted with lush green jungle – perfect to hunt out vistas and photo opportunities.
Strap on your walking shoes and ascend to Ngu Lam Peak, offering panoramic views of the surrounding mountains, before a descent to the calm and quiet Hoi Lake.SEE MORE
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