Oh My God I have just had the best 3 days of my trip so far!!
Was staying on a junk in Halong Bay! Well I say a junk I was actually on 3 in total each one better than the last!
Started off on Thursday leaving rainy Hanoi behind on the 3 hour drive to Halong City where we boarded our junk.
We first stopped the the closets Harbour before moving on to where our junk was and whilst at that harbour I again saw 2 couples I had travelled on the bus from Laos with! It really is a small world!!
I was a bit apprehensive at first as it appeared the full boat was all couples and me! But thankfully the boy and girl next door were travelling together but just friends so spent my time with Maggie and James! We had lunch which was about 4 course of a variety of seafood am not a huge fan of seafood usually but this was delicious was stuffed crab, squid, shrimp and other varieties of white fish all cooked differently! After lunch we then head to the Amazing Caves in Halong Bay they truly were amazing! not even sure the pictures do them justice! Was all limestone that had been discovered and then opened to tourists! After visiting here we all boarded the boat again and was bikini time as we landed at a small beach for some swimming and relaxing! The water was soooo nice not too cold just a nice temperature for swimming! After our hour relaxing and taking pictures (apologies for the amount in this album haha) was time to go and get ready for dinner. Again the food was delicious and interesting to eat, when presented with a whole crab I was very confused thankfully Maggie knew what she was doing so I copied here haha was a lot of hassle though for all the meat you got in the end! After dinner was karaoke time (Asians love there karaoke) the group wasn't a fan so was mainly the staff singing before heading to bed early!
Thankfully did go to bed early as wake up call was at 6:45!!! I didn't mind waking up though when you saw the view outside!! Breakfast thankfully wasn't seafood but a western continental breakfast! It was then on to our kayaks! I was on a kayak with Beu our tour guide he was really nice and full of interesting facts as we passed around the different islets and into a large lake where we saw some monkeys feeding! Before paddling back to the boat. Once at the boat it was more swimming time but only one way to get into water was from jumping from deck of the ship! Was great fun to do!!! We all had such a good laugh and all the men were then trying to out do each other by who could jump from highest deck!
We then checked out as most were only staying one night in Halong Bay so I had my first lunch of the day before heading from Heaven's Cave and then onto the Wooden Stakes Cave before boarding the White Dolphin!
Had the White Dolphin all to myself was amazing!! Was almost like a boat from James Bond with the scenery all around and having lunch (again) made just for me!! I loved it!!
After lazing around there for a few hours and seeing one of the largest floating villages which also has a school!!! I boarded the White Dolphin II. The largest boat I have been on! it was stunning!!! When I boarded everyone was at the beach so I again had sun deck to myself!! When rest of passengers came on I discovered I was sharing with Carmel (who I stayed with in the Drift and travelling further with). Everyone on this boat were sooooo friendly and we all really mixed buying beers off the supply boats and for later on as it was Bryannies birthday! So we all had dinner before gathering on the sun deck and drinking the rest of the night surrounded by the stars and lights from the other boats! Was great night!!
This morning was 7am wake up call again like the other day and this time I was kayaking with Paul (would you believe it he was from Glasgow!! haha). neither of us had a clue what we were doing so was a really good laugh think we ended up with more water on us than what was in the Bay haha. We were then told to pack and check out to me and Paul that was like take an hour and sunbathe upstairs haha it was only 9am and we weren't leaving boat until Noon so we had plenty of time! Really glad that we did as we would just have been sitting around rest of morning anyway! After check out had lunch (although at 11am am sure that is still breakfast haha) again it was delcious before we all boarded our van back to the madness that is Hanoi!
What an amazing three days! Its hard to explain it all in a blog but I would recommend Halong Bay to every single person as something that you must see!!
Carmel gets back tomorrow then we will decide where we are heading jsut now it is Hue on Sunday night but that could all change haha.