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Junks ahoy

 

Visited the Unesco World Heritage Site Ha Long Bay. On the way there unfortunately I was witness to my third car crash since I arrived in Vietnam. Between a car and a truck carrying chickens, who were the only ones seriously injured. They really should reconsider their driving laws, seems senseless the amount of crashes. Anyway, that aside we arrived in Halong Bay and were able to forget about the poor chickens. 

WOW! Was really amazed by the boat and Halong Bay itself. Actually had to pinch myself, didn't feel like I was on a scummy backpacking trip. The boat that we landed was beautiful with fancy deck chairs on the top for sunbathing, plush cabins and a nice dining area for food. For lunch they served up the most amazing spread of Seafood, a gourmets wonder. Unfortunately for me, being a veggie, wasn't exactly catered for, although I did enjoy some sticky rice with Soy Sauce. (Even the cucumbers were covered in Fish Oil!) After lunch we could retire to the deck, basking in the sunshine, sipping tiger beers, hard work I tell you! 

Was a little disappointed with the limestone caves, some people had actually graffitied it quite badly and alot of the stalactites had been pulled off. Also I didn't feel that it was tastefully conserved, they had garish colored lights everywhere, loads of bins in the tacky shape of a dolphin and a cement path that wasn't really necessary. 

After a the visit to the cave we got an opportunity to do some kayaking around the carsts which was great, was a brilliant way to have a closer look and try and find some hidden caves! Although my rowing partner was a little lazy so it ended up being a rather tiresome exercise haha! Was a little disturbed by the amount of dead fish that we saw. Possibly they had just been sucked into the Junks(our sailing boat) engine and thats how they had died, rather than an actual deeper pollution/disease problem, here's hoping anyway. 

Settled in the bay for the night enjoying another meal and with little else to do, got acquainted with my fellow shipmates and had a merry night of cards games, chit chat and boozing. The company really made the trip, there were people from Spain, Morocco, Sweden, Iceland, Holland, France, England and Ireland, as well as our friendly Vietnamese boat staff that we eventually convinced to join us for a game, although I am not sure if they understood it at all! 

The following day was a very miserable long mini bus journey home on a hot sweaty day with a killer hangover and a dodgy tum, not good when you are traveling for four hours! Eventually got back to Hanoi and had to stay in bed for some R&R, think I have a touch of food poisoning, as vomiting and runs...par for the course, was wondering when that would happen
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Source: Travel Blogs

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Xin Chao Travel Halong Bay
We are happy to send you our impressions on our excellent trip to Halong Bay with your company. The organization and monitoring of our trip was impeccable, thanks to our friendly and excellent guide Minh not forgetting the super driver Dzung.

Mardy Scott (Australia)
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