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Lying south and east of Cat Ba Town, the 300-or-so karst islands and limestone outcrops of Lan Ha are just as beautiful as those of Halong Bay but feel more isolated and untouched, and have the additional attraction of numerous white-sand beaches. Sailing and kayak trips here are easily organised in Cat Ba Town.
Geologically, Lan Ha is an extension of Halong Bay but sits in a different province. Around 200 species of fish, 500 species of mollusc, 400 species of arthropod (prawns, crabs) and numerous hard and soft corals live in the waters here, while larger marine animals in the area include seals and three species of dolphin.

Best time to visit

The weather in Lan Ha Bay is similar to northern Vietnam’s weather in general and the Halong Bay’s weather in particular. The summertime in Lan Ha Bay is wetter and warmer, with the highest chance of heavy rain and storms from June – August. The winter is much cooler and drier from December to February when it’s too cold to swim or take a boat.

Overall, the best time to visit Lan Ha Bay is in the autumn (September – November). This is a perfect time for both swimming, kayaking and hiking, cycling activities.

Check the below table for the general idea of Lan Ha Bay weather throughout the year.

Month Avg. High (°C) Avg. Mean (°C) Avg. Low (°C)
Jan 18.8 15.7 13.3
Feb 20.8 17.8 15.6
Mar 22.4 19.9 17.8
Apr 26.7 23.4 21.1
May 30.6 26.9 24.1
Jun 32.4 28.8 25.9
Jul 31.9 28.6 25.8
Aug 31.4 28 25.3
Sep 30.7 27.1 24.3
Oct 29.3 25.3 22.3
Nov 26.1 22.1 19.1
Dec 21.7 18 15.2

Lan Ha Bay’s current weather and 7-day forecast


Cat Ba Island 

The largest island in the Cat Ba Archipelago, Cat Ba Island is one of the main features of Lan Ha Bay. It is a tourist hub for the Halong Bay area as many tourists who choose not to opt for a cruise use Cat Ba as their base to explore this bay area, and can also have a great time exploring Cat Ba’s jungle and caves and enjoying its beautiful sunsets.

Monkey Island 

Cat Dua Island, more famously known as Monkey Island, is famous for two things, firstly for its monkeys and secondly for its wonderful view of the bay. Monkey Island features on many cruise itineraries and can also be accessed by tour from Cat Ba Island. The peak of the island offers some of the best views of Lan Ha Bay and is reached by a short trek from the beach.

Cannon Fort 

Overlooking Lan Ha Bay like a watchful parent, the Cannon Fort is the perfect place to get a stunning panoramic view of the bay. The Cannon Fort sits on top of a 177-meter-high hilltop and is open to the public from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. everyday. There is an entrance fee of around $2.00 USD for adults.

Luon Cave 

One of Lan Ha Bay’s famous caves, Luon Cave can be found on Bo Hon Island. It has much to offer with its charming natural scenery and exploring it is one of Lan Ha’s greatest experiences. Exploration is done by kayak or a small boat and tourists can choose to kayak alone or to take a tour in a local boat. Inside Luon Cave the air is cool, the water calm and the atmosphere peaceful. Monkeys can often be seen running around the cave.

With a cool and fresh climate, Lan Ha Bay is ready to welcome tourists at any time of the year to enjoy comfortably outdoors activities like swimming, kayaking, boating… So here are the best things to do in Lan Ha Bay.

Swim in the sea

You definitely shouldn’t miss the chance to go swimming in Lan Ha beaches. Sinking into the calm water and catching the magnificent beach sight will relieve your worry after a long day of sightseeing. Many cruise ships offer rafts and boats with stairs and rescue crews to guests while swimming around the boat.

Explore beautiful caves

There’re plenty of beautiful caves for you to explore, but the most stunning grottos are Bright and Dark Cave, right on the border of Lan Ha Bay and Halong Bay. It’s possible to access through sea caves in the tall limestone cliffs. Hence, you’ll visit by kayak or by local bamboo boat.

Go kayaking

Most of Lan Ha Bay cruise itineraries include kayaking in some popular areas like Ba Trai Dao Island and Ba Ham Lake. Due to the sheltered nature and beautiful scenery, you can get more privacy while exploring these places. Take your time to feel the clear water as well as marvel at coral reefs and seaweed below the paddle.

Visit floating fishing villages

Depending on each cruise itinerary, you’ll visit Van Boi or Ben Beo (Cai Beo) fishing village nestled in the small islands of Lan Ha Bay. You’ll see how the locals live by fish farming, how they repair boats, how they catch seafood, and how their daily life goes on day by day.

Cycle in Viet Hai village

You will cycle to Viet Hai village, along the road talking you through a tunnel cave, the old tree covered the roots, the rice paddies, and the mountains. The village is located in Cat Ba National Park, surrounded by pristine limestone mountains. You can learn about the traditional process of making rice wine and even try some from the latest batch.

Trek in Cat Ba National Park

The national park of Cat Ba Island covers more than 40 square miles, which is home to many endangered primates, including the gold-headed langur. There’s a variety of trekking routes but the most likely activity included in your cruise itinerary is a visit to Trung Trang Cave.

Spend one or two nights on the luxury cruise in Lan Ha Bay

Many cruise lines offer Lan Ha Bay itinerary with splendid experience. A range of activities await you to join: relax on the sundeck, admire the awe-inspiring views of the Bay, have luxury meals and exciting party on board, participate in cooking class, do Tai Chi session on the sundeck, and other more. It’s worth spending at least one night on the cruise and being awoken among the sea.

Vu Binh Stilthouse

As one of the beautiful and cheap motels and hotels in Lan Ha Bay that you should choose. Although it is just a simple looking stilt house, the quality is not inferior to high-end hotels. Besides, Vu Binh Stilthouse with a convenient location, located near Lan Ha Bay, helps you to move conveniently.

Address: Nha San Vu Binh Cat Ba, Lan Ha Bay.

Corner CatBa

Also a cheap hotel located in Lan Ha Bay with free breakfast. Although it is just a homestay, the facilities are quite good, the basic equipment is still adequate and convenient to help meet all the needs of customers. Especially, the homestay also has a beautiful sea view, located in a quiet location

Address: Alley 352, Ha Sen Street, Cat Ba Town

If considering yourself a foodie, a gastronomy connoisseur, or a gourmand, then travel and know what to eat in Lan Ha Bay, Hai Phong Province, Vietnam. Neighboring the famous Halong Bay, Lan Ha Bay is known for its pristine beauty of Nature, interestingly-shaped islands and islets, spectacular beaches, and delicious seafood. The seafood here is fresher than any fresh seafood, flavored with a variety of delicate herbs. Make sure you do not miss out on any of the following Vietnamese seafood specialties.

#1: Grilled lobsters (Tom Hum Dut Lo Sot Trung)

Lobsters in Lan Ha Bay are great ingredients to cook with wine that result in the delectable seafood dishes. Besides, the locals have a special way to process lobsters, which is by grilling them with egg sauce. As long as you think that traveling is not only about setting food in a destination that you have not visited yet, but it is also about eating the local food and say how delicious it is, just try the local lobsters. The local ways of cooking and spicing might make your culinary experience differently special.

#2: Oven-roasted crabs with salt (Cua Rang Muoi)

This crab food is not only unique in Lan Ha Bay but also very juicy and savory that might make you miss the taste. In particular, the oven-roasted crabs with salt are the most favorite version that foodies enjoy both the crab pieces and the flavor. Seasoned with salt and mixed well, the taste of this seafood can please every palate, and you might want to ask more. The hot crabs, the golden-brown garlic, the salt, etc., contribute to the success of these specialties that can make foodies mouth-watering at first sight. So, make sure you eat crabs in Lan Ha Bay and see if you can tell any differences. How is it different from Ca Mau crabs? Only you can say. Oven-roasted crabs are served in luxury Lan Ha Bay cruise trips such as Heritage Cruise or Ylang Cruise.

#3: The steamed geoducks (Tu Hai Hap)

Geoduck (its scientific name is Lutraria rhynchaena) is favorite seafood in the Bay, which is most preferred to be steamed to keep the juicy taste. Often, people steam it with citronella for the good fragrance and healthy effects. Other seasonings can be chili and pineapple that increase the smell and the taste. Especially during the winter, eating a hot pot of geoduck can warm your body and mind. For all good reasons, remember to order a pot of the steamed geoduck when you’re traveling Lan Ha Bay. The geoduck in this area is said to juicier than elsewhere; therefore, check it out and discover the real taste. Besides, the grilled geoduck is another version that first convinces guests of the aroma, and then the taste makes them fall in love.

#4: Green mussel grilled with spring onions (Vem Nuong Mo Hanh)

“Vem”, the scientific name is Perna viridis, is a kind of green mussel that is ideal for being grilled together with spring onions and peanut. The fresh mussels once grilled can attract your senses even from afar. And, when you come closer to the eateries, the color completion can urge you to eat, and then the taste wins all.

Top 4 dishes of seafood are what to eat in Lan Ha Bay, you can order these at restaurants in Cat Ba Island such as Thai Bao Restaurant, Vietnamese’s Soul Food, and Anh Nguyet Restaurant. And of course, there stands out other great seafood, from squid to fish, which is cooked and seasoned by the local cuisine. And if you choose to cruise there, the menus aboard are the great scores to compliment. Meanwhile, some Lan Ha Bay luxury cruises even offer cooking classes or cooking demonstrations that you can see how they cook, mix, and spice ingredients. All in all, the pristine Lan Ha has never disappointed guests on what it can offer and please their stomachs, eyes, or any other senses.

By car from Hanoi to Hai Phong via Got pier

Lan Ha Bay has a distance of 134 km from Hanoi. It’s easy and convenient to drive from Hanoi to Hai Phong, and this land transport will take around 3-4 hours due to traffic. Most travelers choose to use the tourist bus from Hanoi to Cat Ba that departs every day. The pick-up time from Hanoi includes 8:00 AM / 11:00 AM / 14:00 AM. You can also ask for the hotel pick-up services in Hanoi Old Quarters. The cost is USD14/person/one way. A good recommendation for you is Good Morning Cat Ba bus.

Another option of land transport is the public bus which often takes around 4.5 hours, and you can consider the companies like Cat Ba Express, Hoang Long, or Inter Bus Lines. The bus ticket prices already cover the speedboat to Cat Ba Island. What’s more, the fastest way of land transport draws your attention to the private van which takes only 2 hours. This is an expensive yet perfect option for a big group or family with kids. Upon your arrival at Got pier, continue the route with speedboat to Cai Vieng Port, and bus to Cat Ba town, and then a boat to Lan Ha.

The route:

  • Hanoi – Hai Phong (Got pier) by land transport (~ 2-4 hours)
  • Got pier – Cai Vieng Port of Cat Ba Island by speedboat (~ 10 minutes)
  • Cai Vieng Port – Cat Ba town by bus (~ 40 minutes)
  • Cat Ba town – Lan Ha Bay by boat

Nowadays the most comfortable way to discover Lan Ha Bay is the tour package combining transport and cruise. You will have transfer by van from Hanoi to Got pier (2 hours by highway) and then board on the Lan Ha Bay Cruise 2 days 1 night or 3 days 2 nights Trips.

By Airplane from Saigon to Hai Phong Airport

You can take a flight from Saigon to Cat Bi Airport (Hai Phong) with the preferred airlines. Then, upon your arrival at Cat Bi Airport, take a taxi or motorbike taxi to Binh harbor for 35 minutes.

The route:

  • Saigon – Cat Bi Airport by air (~ 2 hours)
  • Cat Bi Airport – Binh harbor by land (~ 35 minutes)
  • Binh harbor – Cai Vieng Port of Cat Ba Island by speedboat (~ 10 minutes)
  • Cai Vieng Port – Cat Ba town by bus (~ 40 minutes)
  • Cat Ba town – Lan Ha Bay by boat

Contact us for the latest flight schedule and price. Or you can check via some online platform such as or

Here you can find some tips to book the cheapest flight

From Ha Long City to Cat Ba Island by Ferry

You can travel from Halong City to Cat Ba Island by first heading to Tuan Chau – Cat Ba Ferry Terminal and buy your ticket. Check out the timetable on the spot, which might be updated as time passes. You might also need to take a look at the return routes. The number of ferry departures depends on the seasons. From October to mid-April, the Tuan Chau – Cat Ba ferry departs at 7:30 AM, 11:30 AM, and 15:00 AM. From 16 April to the end of September, the ferry departure times increase to five, namely at 7:30 AM, 9:00 AM, 11:30 AM, 13:30 AM, and 15:00 AM.

Embarking the ferry, you will soon marvel at the enchanting views from the ferry as it weaves its route through the limestone towers. The voyage through Halong Bay will last around 1 hour and is very relaxing and scenic. Then, the ferry will dock at the north end of Cat Ba Island in Gia Luan ferry terminal, from which you can take a local bus to the town.

The other options are taxi and minivan which cost you more. Then, from Cat Ba, continue your ways to Lan Ha Bay by boat.

The route:

  • Tuan Chau – Cat Ba by ferry (~ 1 hours)
  • Gia Luan ferry terminal of Cat Ba Island – Cat Ba town by bus
  • Cat Ba town – Lan Ha Bay by boat

From Cat Ba Town to Lan Ha Bay

From the center of Cat Ba Town, move to Beo pier (Ben Beo) to buy the ticket, and then embark the boat to the place you want. The boat trip from Beo pier to Lan Ha Bay often takes around 6 minutes. If you just go for a tour around this peaceful Bay, it’s possible to hire a motorized boat of the local for the convenient sightseeing tour. If you go with a group or family, be active to hire a vessel for the group right in the pier.

The placid Bay of Lan Ha with nearly 400 islands creates the giant pictures of the fairy scenery. Being different from Halong Bay, all islands of Lan Ha are covered by trees and vegetation even though some have quite small sizes. When you finally get to Lan Ha Bay, make sure you explore the notable “Hang Luon” – a water cave that is famous for interesting shape, harmonious scenery, and calm water inside the cave. Next, continue the boat ride to the untouched Nam Cat Island, which is just 15 minutes from Beo pier, toward Lan Ha Bay. Other remarkable names include Monkey Island (Dao Cat Dua), Van Boi beach, Turtle Islet, and Bell Islet.

So how to get to Lan Ha Bay, there are 2 ways. The first “Luxury” option is going to Got Pier to board on overnight cruises to Lan Ha Bay. The 2nd “Budget” option is to geting to Cat Ba Island and then Cat Ba town center from which you find ways to Beo pier to buy the boat ticket. What’s more, if you ask where to sleep at low cost and by the pristine Bay, here are two good recommendations: Vu Binh Stilthouse and Little Cat Ba. As Lan Ha Bay is close to Cat Ba Island where owns many better accommodations, people might consider sleeping on the island too. Let Lan Ha Bay become your next beautiful hideaway!


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Taking a cruise on the fascinating Mekong River offers a unique and memorable travel experience. The Mekong River, one of the longest rivers in Asia, flows through several countries, including China, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam. Each destination along the river offers its own distinct cultural, historical, and natural attractions. In this article, we will go over what you can expect when cruising the Mekong River. 


Before being awarded a one-star rating by Michelin Guide for the first time, four Vietnamese restaurants - one in HCMC and three in Hanoi - were honored by international media and received applause from foreign diners.


"Should I visit Thailand or Vietnam?" is some of the most frequently asked questions that we have from our travelers

Well, Vietnam and Thailand are the most popular holiday destinations in Southeast Asia. They are similar in climate and food, though obviously different in culture, lifestyle and travel experience.

Below we list 13 major differences between the two countries, to give you a quick overview and help you decide which to visit first. These are based on our own travel experiences, investigations, and partnerships with local operators.


How long to spend in Vietnam may seem like a ridiculous question to address, but if you have plenty of time and aren’t sure how much to dedicate, this blog will definitely help you out.

You can find here and there that you should spend 10 days, 2 weeks, 20 days, or 1 month to best explore Vietnam. So what is the best Vietnam tour duration for you?

Well, as long as you like! From 10 days to a month, there are various ways you can travel across Vietnam and uncover its secrets. Advising an ideal trip length for Vietnam is a bit of a complex challenge, as it depends on several factors such as the places you wish to visit, the activities you plan to join, or if you want to combine Vietnam with its neighbor countries. 

Stay tuned! We are going to sort all these things out including the step-by-step guide to create the best itinerary in Vietnam.


Vietnam would scrap the Covid-19 testing requirement for all arrivals starting Sunday, May 15th 2022, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh has directed.

In a document issued Friday, the Prime Minister requested the Ministry of Health to closely follow the coronavirus situation and provide proper guidance. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs should direct Vietnamese authorities outside the country to inform people who wish to enter Vietnam to follow appropriate disease prevention measures, he said.

The latest decision has been made as the number of Covid-19 infections and deaths drops both in Vietnam and around the world. Several countries have been taking steps to relax coronavirus restrictions, including scrapping testing before entry.

Current policies issued by the health ministry require entrants to have negative results from PCR tests done within the previous 72 hours, or a negative result from a rapid test done within the last 24 hours.

Those who don’t have a negative test result must refrain from making contact with others during the first 24 hours after entry. They will be able to move freely once they test negative after arrival.

Children under two don’t need to be tested.

Vietnam stopped requiring medical declarations from those arriving from abroad starting April 27, and for domestic travel starting April 30.


The “Colorful Hanoi” hot air balloon festival is one of the attractive activities within the framework of the program “Hanoi tourism welcomes 2022” taking place from March 25-27, 2022.

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Friendly and food-obsessed, hedonistic and historic, cultured and curious, Thailand tempts visitors with a smile as golden as the country's glittering temples and tropical beaches.
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There's a magic about this charming yet confounding kingdom that casts a spell on visitors. In Cambodia, ancient and modern worlds collide to create an authentic adventure.
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It's a new era for this extraordinary and complex land, where the landscape is scattered with gilded pagodas and the traditional ways of Asia endure.
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Vivid nature, voluptuous landscapes and a vibrant culture collide with a painful past and optimistic future to make Laos an enigmatic experience for the adventurous.
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