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 and have the additional attraction of numerous white-sand beaches. Due to being a fair way from Halong City, not so many tourist boats venture here, meaning Lan Ha Bay has a more isolated appeal. Sailing and kayak trips here are best organised in Cat Ba Town. Geologically, Lan Ha is an extension of Halong Bay but sits in a different province of Vietnam. Around 200 species of fish, 500 species of mollusc, 400 species of arthropod, and numerous hard and soft coral live in the waters here, while larger marine animals in the area include seals and three species of dolphin.

Highlights of our cruise:
+ Admire the beauty of UNESCO's heritage: Lan Ha bay and Halong Bay
+ Enjoy an amazing view from the sundeck of boat to the bay
+ Overnight on a private classic junk in Lan Ha bay and Halong Bay
+ Kayaking & swimming in Lan Ha Bay
+ Visiting a local fish-farm and beautiful natural cave
+ Venture off the beaten tracks like no Other in Wonder of Nature

Day 01: Hanoi - Haiphong - Catba Cannon Fort - Lan Ha - Halong Bay (Lunch, Dinner included)
08:00 - Pick up at your hotel and take the morning drive to Cat Ba Island via Hai Phong City and Cat Hai island. The drive includes a 30-minute ferry ride before reaching Cat Ba Island. The drive takes about 3hours 30.

​​12:00 - Check inyour private Indochine Classic, enjoy welcome drink, move around to learn about the boat and check into your cabin before cruising. From the top, you will have a chance to enjoy lovely panoramas of Cat Ba Island's jungle-clad hills rolling down to colorful tangles of fishing boats in the harbor and out to the karst-punctuated sea beyond.

​​12:30 - Pull up the anchor and start your cruise. The junk firstly winds its way by a fishing village toward Lan Ha Bay. Not much different from Halong Bay, featured with hundreds of limestone islands and islets. Lan Ha is smaller but the karst formations gather close together, this makes Lan Ha Bay become the best place for kayaking and swimming activities. The beaches are tiny but there are more than in Halong Bay.

13:30 - Anchor is dropped in the middle of the bay for lunch time. If the weather is nice, your lunch will be served on the top where you are able to enjoy the scenery the best.

14:30 - After the lunch, the crews will help you on the kayaks. You will spend 1hr paddling around to explore some corners of the bay. Get closer to the feet of the islands, explore a natural lake which is surrounded by sheer rock walls which can be accessed by only one tunnel-like cave. Jump off your kayaks for a swim when you wish.

15:30 - Anchor is pulled up for the cruise toward Halong Bay. After a turn where you can view the open sea, you will reach Halong Bay. It gets a bit wider but you could not see a lot of tourist boats as you are still in a remote part of the bay. The junk is gently moving toward the night place.

17:30 - Get back on the top-deck for an interesting cooking demonstration during the sunset. The chef will show you how he makes the Vietnamese popular fried rolls. Of course, after the samples, you will have a go, then enjoy your work right after.

19:00 - Enjoy set-menu dinner and stay overnight on the junk.


Day 02: Halong bay - Lan Ha bay - Haiphong - Hanoi ( Breakfast, Lunch included)

For early risers: The summer sunrise is about 6:00 AM; Winter sunrise is about 6:30 AM (Please recheck with your captain for better information on the day). Otherwise, you can remain in your cabin untill the breakfast time.
07:15 - The engine is started for the day.

07:45 - Breakfast is served while the junk is cruising back to Lan Ha Bay

09:30 - Visit a fish-farm & learn the variety of fish grown in the farm. Try your luck with local fishing technique by the farm.

10:30 - Check out of the cabin. Start cruising back toward the wharf while an early lunch is served.

11:45 - Bid farewell to the crews and disembark. Drive back to Hanoi via Hai Phong.

16:45 - Arrive at your hotel in Hanoi. End of our service.

Tripadvisor reviews

“Best Way–BY FAR–To Visit Halong Bay!”

After considering other ways to see and experience Halong Bay, we chose Blue Swimmer for a more intimate and customized experience. And boy were we glad. Instead of the huge, steamer style boats carrying lots of people and featuring 30 minutes of kayaking, we had a grand wooden boat all to ourselves–with a great guide, Thang, a solid captain and a very good cook. We could kayak all we wanted. And instead of the more crowded Halong Bay, we focused on Bai Tu Long. From our first email, Mr Kevin was terrific to deal with. We had a kind of complicated timeline, which he worked with–even arranging transport to Haiphong from the Hanoi airport, and having someone meet us at the hydrofoil dock with prepaid tickets. Everything went smoothly from beginning to end. The kayaking was good. Everybody loved jumping off the top deck to swim. And the food was terrific–and plentiful. The boat was very spacious, with two bedrooms for the four of us, each with its own bathroom including shower. There was also a living area for eating. But we spent most of our time in the four lounges on the main deck, watching the karst islands go by, looking at the floating villages, and enjoying the changing scenery. We are experienced kayakers, so doing a fair amount of paddling was important to us. Especially on the second day, we got plenty. And the boats were in fine shape. Most important, as we cruised by the other, crowded boats, we said to ourselves over and over: ” Sure glad we chose Blue Swimmer.”

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