Cat Ba island for seniors

This is everything you need to know for traveling to Cat Ba Island for seniors. This ultimate travel guide for seniors in Cat Ba is written by a local guide who has been working in the tourist industry in Cat Ba for years.

This post includes things to do in Cat Ba Island for seniors, recommended places to stay, best places to eat. 

Cat Ba is known as a lesser-known travel destination than Halong. Lan Ha bay has a similar landscape to Halong bay but is less touristy. 

What makes Cat Ba special is a green island with lots of greenery of trees in the jungle, Cat Ba langur and amazing towering limestone mountains of Lan Ha Bay.

Cat Ba : The Basics

In this section, I will write about general information about Cat Ba island including how, when,where, why

Where is Cat Ba Island?

Cat Ba island, belongs to Hai Phong, with three and a half hours (drive + ferry crossing + drive) from Hanoi in the Northeast of Vietnam, 45 minutes on a ferry from Halong bay

How to get to Cat Ba island from Hanoi?

Cat Ba Island, embarking on a journey of three and a half hours away from Hanoi. Traverse the Expressway 5B, connecting Hai Phong and Hanoi, and follow the scenic Tan Vu – Lach Huyen road to reach Got Pier. A 2-hour drive leads you to Dong Bai ferry (New ferry to replace Got Pier which opens from 1st of March), half an hour ferry crossing to Cat Ba Island. Following the ferry crossing, a 40-minute drive takes you to the heart of the island, the town of Cat Ba. If you miss the ferry, you will be waiting for the next ferry which is every half an hour. 

Hanoi anoi to Cat Ba Island by Shuttle Bus: Opt for a tourist-friendly shuttle bus from Hanoi to Cat Ba, with rates of around $15 USD per person. Cat Ba Express stands out among the transport companies.
Hanoi to Cat Ba Island by Private Car: For comfort seekers, a private car is a convenient option. Consider an SUV for extra comfort and space, priced at around $130 USD per trip.

Read more : Cat Ba ferry schedule

How long should a senior stay in Cat Ba Island?

At least 3 days. This is a formula that I learned from one of my senior American clients. Staying in each location 3 days, you will get at least 1 day with good weather to take a tour. They said that it works most of the time. 


Yes, day trip to Cat  Ba island from Hanoi is possible. Don’t get me wrong, I am talking about Lan Ha bay day trip from Hanoi . Honestly, it takes over 3 hours to get from Hanoi to Cat Ba island, So I do not recommend doing a day trip from Hanoi. 

You had better spend the night in Cat Ba, then next day , take a day cruise to Lan Ha bay or spend 1 night on a cruise in Lan Ha bay. 

Why Lan Ha bay is an ideal destination for seniors

  • Similar landscape with a limestone island but is way less touristy than Halong Bay
  • Lots of things to do : Boat cruise, land activities, sightseeing, food tours etc 
  • There are lots of hotel choices for all kinds of budgets with affordable rate in the heart of Cat Ba island.
  • Connect with nature in Cat Ba National Park 

Top accommodation for seniors in Cat Ba 

To my opinion, you don’t need to take fancy hotels or resorts like 5 stars accommodation in Cat Ba . Save your money and stay in a standard hotel in Cat Ba which is comfortable enough so that you can save money for booking guided tour, and activities and enjoy signature dishes in Cat Ba. 

Here is the top accommodation that I recommend

  • Quiri hotel 
  • Cat Ba Eco hotel
  • The moon boutique
  • Cat Ba Paradise sky bar and pool

The price ranges from 50 USD to 100 USD  per room per night. 

If you want to stay in a luxury accommodation, then there are 3 hotels and resorts below

  • Flamigo Cat Ba 
  • Hôtel Perle d’Orient Cat Ba – MGallery 
  • Wyndham Grand Flamingo Cat Ba

The price start from 110 USD per room per night. 

Top things to do for seniors in Cat Ba 

Taking a leisurely Lan Ha bay day cruise

Most of the Lan Ha bay day cruise that based on water activities like kayaking, swimming. If you just want to take a cruise for a couples of hours for sightseeing, and getting off the beaten track, then a private tour is a good option for you.

Contact Hanoi Eco Tour, we do offer private boat tours that take you to where most of the cruises not going. You will enjoy the stunning beauty of Lan Ha bay will a few boats around you. 

We also suggest seniors- a friendly Lan Ha bay boat tour 

Eat like a local is a Cat Ba food tour 

Cat Ba food tour

Indulging in the yummy flavors of Cat Ba is a culinary journey like no other. While there’s only one Cat Ba food tour available, it promises an authentic experience, allowing you to savor the best local dishes in Cat Ba. Dive into the culinary tapestry of Cat Ba with seafood delights, relish the exquisite freshwater crab meat soup with brown noodles, savor the Hai Phong bread stick, and conclude your gastronomic adventure with a local dessert of sweetened soup. This food tour is a perfect addition to the list of must-do activities for couples on Cat Ba Island.

Taking a cooking class in Cat Ba

For those with a passion for fresh and locally sourced ingredients, a Cat Ba seafood cooking class is an absolute delight. This unique culinary experience goes beyond the ordinary, teaching you the art of crafting seafood dishes using ingredients indigenous to the region.

The experience begins with a convenient pick-up from your hotel, followed by a seamless transfer to the cooking class location. Here, you’ll delve into the secrets of Cat Ba’s culinary traditions, gaining insights into the preparation of seafood dishes that boast a distinct local flair. It’s an opportunity to refine your cooking skills and create flavors that capture the essence of Cat Ba’s rich culinary heritage.

Taking a buggy car ride in Viet Hai village

Viet Hai village is a hidden gem, which is one one-hour boat ride from Cat Ba island. Viet Hai is home to 300 local residents who live in a quiet, beautiful valley. 

Viet Hai is just 1 hour boat ride from Cat Ba island. You can also include a visit to Viet Hai in a Lan ha bay day tour from Cat Ba. 

Read more : Viet Hai village travel guide

Joining a sightseeing tour in Cat Ba

  • There is lots of nice tourist spots in Cat Ba 
  • Exploring a local village in Cat Ba which is the only place that grow rice in Cat Ba
  • Visiting hospital cave
  • Discovering hidden beautiful valley like Ao Coi Valley, Blue butterfly valley 

Cat Ba itinerary for seniors

Cat Ba itinerary

Day 1 : Travel from Hanoi to Cat Ba island (three hours to three and a half hour) – Sightseeing tour

9am : Taking a private car from Hanoi to Cat Ba. Check in the hotel. Walk around the town, check out Cat Ba local market, see the Canon fort. 

Day 2 : Lan Ha bay day boat tour 

Day 3 : Cat Ba sightseeing tour

See hidden valleys, swim on the beach. 

Tips for travelling Cat Ba island for seniors

  • Trung Trang cave with low ceiling and lots of steps to walk so it may not an ideal place for seniors
  • Try to avoid national holidays like May Day, Independence Day
  • Stay in an affordable hotel to save the costs and invest them in guided tours
  • Take a private boat tour cruise to stay away from the big crowd.
  • Take ferry crossing to Halong so you can see both Halong bay and Lan Ha bay

Over to you

I hope this Cat Ba Island for seniors helps you some ways to plan your wonderful trips to Cat Ba island. 


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