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Lan Ha Bay – Explore the untouched sister of Halong Bay

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Have you ever heard of Lan Ha Bay – a new attractive destination to explore the breathtaking limestone landscape in Vietnam. Located quite near Halong Bay, Lan Ha is less touristy and promises to be more well-known among those who prefer somewhere more untouched. Ready to explore the charming bay with us?

      1. Lan Ha Bay at glance:

A sister of well-known Ha Long Bay, is amazingly pristine, peaceful among the most beautiful bay in the world. Located at the south west of Ha Long Bay, Lan Ha Bay means The Orchid Bay, compared with the beauty of Orchid Flower. The beauty of Lan Ha is unique with blue sea, clean water, imposing islands and islets. There are over 400 islands and islets and most of them have been given names by the imaginative locals, such as the Sandal Islet, the Bat Islet, the Candle Islet, etc. With 139 wild sandy beaches with crystal clear water, the stunning bay can delight any swimming lovers.

lan ha bay
Lan Ha Bay – Photo from Arcady Cruise

      2. Where is Lan Ha Bay?

Lan Ha Bay is located off the beautiful coastal city of Hai Phong and is about 30 km from the city center. The bay is on the east of Cai Ba Island and plays the role as the bridge between Cat Ba Island and the World Heritage Site of Halong Bay. From the pier of Cat Ba Island, it takes about 30 minutes by train to there. Lan Ha Bay looks like a lovely silk strip which is woven by clear blue sea to the bottom and green vegetation. It covers an area of over 7,000 ha with more than 5,400 ha is under the management of UNESCO-recognized biosphere reserve – Cat Ba National Park.

sunset on lan ha bay
Sunset on Lan Ha Bay – Photo from Arcady Cruise

      3. What makes Lan Ha Bay special?

Lan Ha doesn’t have a large number of karst islands as that in Halong Bay. The newcomer, however, has the highlight of having 139 small and pure sandy beaches surrounding. With the sand banks between two blocks of mountains, the gentle slopes of sand along with clear blue sea to the bottom like the “blue straits” will be safe beaches and extremely ideal for the passionate travelers. When visiting the bay, you can immerse yourselves into the clear blue water, lie and sunbathe on the stunning beaches like Ang Vem, Monkey Beach (Cat Dua Beach), Van Boi Beach or visit some amazing places on the bay. Let’s explore one by one with us:

 

      3.1. Bright and Dark Cave:

bright and dark cave
Bright and Dark Cave – Photo from Internet

This is a 70m long cave through the mountains but is located on the water. In order to visit the cave, visitors often have to row or kayak. When passing through the cave, visitors will feel like they are getting lost in paradise, because of a vast stream of water surrounded by majestic high limestone mountains. Sitting on a boat drifting along the water, breathing fresh air and blue water, admiring the beautiful scenery and feeling the peace between the sea of clouds and mountains will definitely be a moment that you are still looking for in the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

 

      3.2. Nam Cat Island:

Nam Cat Island - Lan Ha Bay
Nam Cat Island – Photo from Vietnammoi

 

The island attracts visitors with its rustic and pristine charms of green forests and enchanting beaches. From Ben Beo, it takes about 15 minutes to reach Nam Cat Island. Visitors to Lan Ha Bay can admire the peaceful feeling and pristine looks of the island. Human intervention here on the island is severely restricted to preserve the natural values. With 3 large wooden stilt houses and 6 bamboo houses, we can experience the feeling of living in harmony with the nature. Besides, you can join some other watersports activities like kayaking, scuba diving, fishing or campfires.

 

      3.3. Monkey Island (Cat Dua Island):

Monkey Island
Monkey Island – Photo from baomoi

 

Also from Ben Beo, you can take a 10 minute boat to Monkey Island. Monkey Island was called Cat Dua Island in the past because there were many wild pineapples on the island with their good look but cannot eaten. Cat Dua Island now has changed its name to Monkey Island. The reason is that there are more than 20 monkeys brought here by the rangers of Cat Ba National Park here. They then often go to the beach to play with tourists, eat food of visitors such as bananas, apples, tangerines, candies. Some funny monkeys can play, climb to impress those who have come to the island and gradually the island has been renamed Monkey Island.

 

      3.4. Van Boi Beach:

Van Boi Beach
Van Boi Beach – Photo from baolau

 

This is a destination chosen by tourists to kayak and swim because it is located in the calm part of the bay with green water and beautiful landscapes.

 

      3.5. Rua Island (Turtle Island):

Located opposite Van Boi Beach, Rua Island or Turtle Island is small and looks like the turtle swimming on the water surface. The island is considered a masterpiece in the “forgotten paradise”.

 

      3.6. Hon Chuong Island:

Hon Chuong also has some other names: But Pen, Candle, Corn Banana. Is a small island on the way from Cat Ba to Cua Van fishing village.

cat ba island - lan ha bay
Cat Ba Island – Photo from Vietnamplus

     3.7. Floating villages:

Besides the scenic bay view, the enticing local life here also attracts a lot of visitors to come and discover the bay. On the way to visit Lan Ha, don’t forget to explore the some Lan Ha Bay floating villages like Cai Beo and Viet Hai.

cai beo floating village on lan ha bay
Cai Beo Floating Village on Lan Ha Bay – Photo from Getty image

4. What is the best time to visit Lan Ha Bay?

The visitors can travel to Lan Ha at any time during the year thanks to the cool and fresh climate here. Each season brings us different feelings and experiences. If you love swimming in the breathtaking bay, travelling to Lan Ha Bay in summer is such a great option. But don’t worry if you plan to visit the bay in winter. The cool atmosphere on the bay can bring us comfortable feeling and experience.

The incredible bay is waiting for you to discover. Join us in a Journey to the Wonderland with Lan Ha Bay 1 day tour. And don’t hesitate to contact us if you need any further information:

arcady cruise - lan ha bay
Arcady Cruise on Lan Ha Bay – Photo from Arcady Cruise