yeah, i’ve done that.
The Halong Bay is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and has approximately 2.000 islands, most of them uninhabited. Er….that about the cool facts.
The vietnamese name for it is Vịnh Hạ Long …and i’m stumbling directly into the more mystic part of this post. Vịnh Hạ Long means bay of the descending dragon. A family of dragons sent by Ngoc Hoang (King of Heaven in Oriental culture) to help defend the country while Vietnamese were fighting against the invadors from the north. The mother dragon and her children spat jewels and jade, which turned into islands and islets and created a firm wall intercepting the invaders. Later, attracted by the peaceful scenery, the dragon family decided to stay here; and the name “Hạ Long” was born.
I arrived there after taking the nighttrain from Lao Cai to Hanoi (8h) and a bus ride (4h) from Hanoi to the Bay. Pretty exhausted i checked in one of these tourist cruise ships. The first view was a bit grey. Literally. And figuratively. It is indeed an impressing land-/seascape. But i found out that it’s getting pretty boring after awhile. Maybe i’m a little lowbrow according to impressive nature. Or i was still overhelmed with all my experiences i got in the highlands, but i found that one island looked like the other…and seeing that all day tired me a bit.
But i don’t regret it. It was a very relaxing trip. With good seafood and a limited freedom of movement. Have i mentioned the good seafood? Oh yeah….and a nice seascape