Saturday, October 07, 2006

Halong Bay - 2 times UN World Heritage

The next day, rather early morning we depart from the hotel going to the Halong Bay.

Unfortunately we only managed to get on the highway at 9am. Thus we sort of arriving there rather late. The bus (erm mini van) driver was not able to find 3 of the passanger from the other hotel.

The small bus was rather full with the two guides squatting away on the bus floor. Not particularly a comfortable ride since the whole journey there was 3 hour or more with stopping half way for weewee, and more coffee, more souvinir shopping of course.

As we came near to Halong City, Mountains like these can be seen along the way. Cement factories dotted these region too.

So I guess if you want to see the beautiful outskirt of Hanoi better do it soon before these nice scenery do away for development

Alas we finally arrived at the pier, at Halong city around noon time. Swiftly got shuffered into the boat. Some people that came together with us was meant to stay for a 3 days 2 nights / 2 days 1 night at Halong Bay, and they went on to a different boat.

It is kinda foggy today, therefore the whole trip Halong Bay kinda look mysterious. Perhaps the haze from the Sumatera has been blown to here?

Prior lunch was served on the boat, we stopped at this platform and be "encouraged" to buy seafood at a hiked price, so we can eat it with the dishes served to us for lunch later. No one really bothered.

Lunch was not too bad, as we paid like USD$15 per person including bus trip, food, and boat tour.

Then some of those travelling with us were lured to take up the small boat ride to the nearby cave, with promised that the USD$13 they pay per person will be used to help build a school for children at the other side of the cave.

Of course, more selling to them when they come back trying to get on the boat.

Only after all these $$ milking, our real boat trip started. Hahaha...

Vietnamese people really determine to squeeze all the $$ out from the tourist wherever possible. In a nice way though, not with tricks.

My mom and aunt was already busy shopping in the boat.

So, some pics for you guys!

Me and the guide of the day - Ha
We stopped at one of the islets and got out to do a stair climbing, to see the largest cave around the area.
I happened to met this Vietnamese guy on this trip who is a tourist himself. He came from Ho Chi Minh city to Hanoi for work and extended his trip by visiting Halong bay together with us. It was great talking to him as I learn a lot about life in Vietnam, which in reality is not as bad as we might think at first glance.
Anyway, evening scenery is just as beautiful around Halong Bay!
Perhaps I will come back here again sometime future!

No comments: