We've just come back to Hanoi after a three day trip in Halong Bay. Although it's moving into the cooler season here we ended up really lucky with stunning sunshine the whole trip.
The first day we transferred down to the harbour in the early afternoon and cruised out to the overnight docking spot whilst eating the first of a series of mahoosive delicious buffet lunches. We were part of a small group, where 3 of us were staying the two nights and another 5 just overnight.
In the afternoon we visited the 'most amazing cave', allowing Tash to spent the best part of an hour playing with her camera, occasionally exclaiming at the random new colour setting she'd found. Unlike last time I visited the cave was pretty empty which meant a much more relaxed trip and more time at the stunning viewpoint at the end. Our guide was very adamant that we learn 'Vietnamese culture' whilst in the bay and spent 20 minutes talking about dragons before pointing out a penis shaped rock.....
For some reason our boat didn't have a smaller boat to take us into the attractions so as everyone else was getting picked up by little motor boats our main boat was picking us up and dropping us off at each attraction.
After the caves we kayaked around the bay for the sunset, which we totally missed as we kept finding another island blocking the view. Still, great fun. On returning to the boat our totally unreasonable tour guide wouldn't let us do any night time swimming! So we just had to settle down for a few beers and wait for the next sitting of the amazing buffet!
Day two was spent on a second boat whilst the first traveled back to harbour and dropped off everyone staying just one night. The little boat took us further into the bay for cave kayaking and SWIMMING!! Including finally being allowed to jump off the top deck!
Today we were able to get up at the leisurely hour of 8am for breakfast, and then cruised back to harbour for midday. It was the most relaxing and stunning trip so far and something we're so happy to have done :)
Coming back and checking into our guest house we thought tonight would be the night to open the nice French wine I brought in the airport at Vientiane. A trip to the 'supermarket' later we had 'cheese', ritz, chocolate and crisps (everything a hormonal tasha requires) and drank out of classy cups on our 'balcony'. Now it's 10 30, there is no food left and I have a missus who is complaining of eating a weeks calories in 30 minutes. Trip complete!