What to do in Halong City 2020 – Travel guide for Halong shore excursion

This Halong city travel guide will show you everything you need for a perfect trip in Halong city. We focus on showing what to do in Halong city and travel guide for Halong Shore excursion travellers 2020

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Target audience for this article

Backpackers who are staying in a hostel in Hanoi Bay

Shore excursion traveler who don’t go on a guided tour

Travelers who are able to stay overnight on a Halong Bay cruise because of bad weather condition

Travelers have already check out the hotel room and free until the pick up to Hai Phong airport

Businessman has finished their work in Halong city but want to see highlights of the city

Suggested itinerary for Halong city tour – What to do

Bai Tho mountain peak

Bai Tho mountain peak

Morning : Check out Halong market with tons of fresh seafood, fruits, vegetables and shop some souvenirs. The one near Long Tien pagoda, where you can also check out after the market. This is a must for those who like to see local living in Halong city. Have lunch in Hoai Thu restaurant for authentic local food in bai Chay area.

In the afternoon, check out Quang Ninh museum and Bai Tho moutain to see overview of Halong City . If you want to go for shopping, see Vincom Halong

Optional : If you like something cool and fun, then take a queen cable car to see panoramic view of Halong Bay area.

Note : Bai Tho peak is now closed for construction. It is properly open this year. We will update lastest news. 

Things to do near Halong city for a day trip

Take 4 or 6 hours cruise on Halong Bay

Fighting cock islet – The most famous islets in Halong Bay

Cruising on a traditional junk. A must for visitors to Halong Bay. Please note that the trip to the cave is very busy because there are thousand of tourists going on a cruise tour. If you want to avoid big crowd then this tour isn’t for you nor taking a cruise tour on Bai Tu Long bay

4 hours trip itinerary includes a visit to Thien Cung (Heavenly palace cave) and bamboo boat ride in Ba Hang floating village (Optional)

6 hours boat ride includes a visit to Surprising cave and Titov island for swimming or bamboo boat ride in Luon cave for 30 minutes

Is that worth for taking Halong Bay day trip? 

For those who have limited time, it is worth doing to see its highlights but to be honest, overnight cruise is always better

Yen Duc village tour

Within 1.5 hour drive from Halong : Check out Canh Huong pagoda, bike ride around the village, lunch with authentic local food and see water puppet show

Yen Tu mountain complex

Lost in Yen Tu Mountain complex with amazing beauty

with stunning view and learn about history of Vietnamese Buddhism. This is hidden gem of Halong area. 

Hai Phong city tour from Halong 

Hai Phong Opera house – Important landmarks of the city

Du Hang pagoda, Hai Phong Opera house, flower market, zero pillar where Vietnamese has transferred weapons from the North to the South for supporting VC (Viet Cong) during Vietnam War

Bai Tu Long cruise day trip 

Bai Tu Long cruise – an ideal place for off the beaten track

This is an off the tourist trail cruise in untouched area of remote Bai Tu Long for its hidden gems. There are several companies offer this trip. If you are not a big fan of mass tourism or touristy area, then it is a perfect choice. 

Dragon park and Queen cable car 

Queen cable car in Halong

This day trip is perfect for family with kids or group travel who like to have fun and see great view from above. With 30 attractions to satisfy adventure travelers. 

Tips : Please note that the cable car only runs at 2.00pm during the week days. You may have to wait from 15 to 20 minutes for a ride. Remember to take front seat for best panoramic view of the bay. 

Advices, tips and guides for shore excursion travellers in Halong 

Guided tour or travel on your own?

Due to limited time of shore excursions trip, you’d better arrange at least private transfer service or book a guided tour. The tour guide will arrange all itinerary which help you see highlights of the trip at its best and return to the cruise on time. 

 If you are traveling in a group from 10 above, the tour rate is really good. 

Some travelers want to save money and travel on your own, they found a hard time taking a taxi, show them where to go, call a taxi again and wait for another one. When they show up at the spots, it was closed or not available. 

Why is a shore excursion trip is higher than a regular tour

With the following reasons why the guided tour is more expensive than a regular one

+ Passengers need to pay for port fee around $15 to $20 per person.

+ Most of tour guide and transfer are from Hanoi. The company need to arrange accommodation for tour guide and driver. On the other hand, the tour guide require higher guide fee than a regular tour because most of them finish their job from 5.00pm to 7.00pm and with 3.5 hours transfer back to Hanoi. It is a hard working day with 12 hours on tour so they deserve to get higher salary.

+ Boat cruise for shore excursion are private so that it is a bit extra than seat in coach tour

+ If you miss the cruise ship some cases, let’s book the flights from Halong to next cruise destination in Vietnam, Danang is the most common for second stop. There are two close airports for taking flights are Van Don airport (60 kilometers from Halong) or Cat Bi airport in Hai Phong (50 kilometers from Halong) 

Frequently asked question for Halong 

Which cruise is best for Halong Bay?

Depends on your budget, activities and duration of stay to choose the best suitable one. There are tons of choices. Please see this article for further information 

How to choose a right cruise for your Halong Bay Tour 

How much is Halong Bay cruise?

Standard cruise ranges from $110 to $130 

Deluxe cruise ranges from $180 to $240https://hanoiecotour.com/bai-tu-long-tours/

Luxury cruise ranges from $270 to $350 

All rate above is per person for 2 days 1 night trip

How long should I stay in Halong Bay? 

2 days 1 night for short stay 

3 days 2 nights for relaxing trip

Where do Halong Bay cruises leave from?

There are two ports is Tuan Chau Marina offers Halong Bay tour and Vinashin in Halong city, offer tours to Bai Tu Long bay

Scuba diving in Halong Bay

No, you are not allowed to do scuba diving because it is an UNESCO site. Phu Quoc island, Cham island near Hoi An, Nha Trang seems to be these best spots for scuba diving

Hiking up Bai Tho mountain

According to government law, you are not allowed to climb because there used to have an accident there. But there is an hidden trail from a local family to reach its top where you need to climb on rocks and follow the trails too.

Halong Bay Cruise to quieter areas?

There is no quieter areas in Halong since it has become a mass tourism destination. Lan Ha Bay and Bai Tu Long bay is less touristy 

Which transfer services from Halong city to Cai Bi airport in Hai Phong?

Using grab or taxi for a ride from Halong to Hai Phong which costs around $32 includes toll fee or ask the hotel where you are staying to arrange it for you.

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We hope this article about what to do in Halong city for Halong Shore excursion travellers helps you some way to plan a trip in Halong city and its surrounding

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