Lan Ha Bay - Viet Nam
Lan Ha Bay – Viet Nam

Even after deciding to go on a Lan Ha Bay Cruise for your vacation, it will be still challenging and time-consuming to select the suitable cruise due to the sheer number of options available. This post will offer some brief guidance to know how to choose the best Lan Ha Bay Cruise and  make the process of choosing an appropriate one easier.

Why should you choose a Lan Ha Bay Cruise?

As a smaller bay south of Halong Bay, Lan Ha Bay is more remote and secluded, which makes it a more tranquil and uncrowded getaway. The best time to visit Halong Bay is in autumn (from September to November).

Although Lan Ha Bay offers unparalleled views and experiences, there is virtually any travel advice available for this newly-exploited tourist destination. Knowing this, we put up a team of local experts who are willing to share their useful travel experience.

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The best time for a Lan Ha Bay Cruise

Lan Ha Bay Weather
  • March through June (late spring to midsummer) is the ideal season to explore Lan Ha Bay. The sun will be shining brightly during this time, favoring many water activities here.
  • In general, the months of October through December are cloudy and chilly; while it can be rainy and foggy in January and February. There aren’t many water sports accessible at this time and sightseeing activity is also significantly affected.
  • You might feel uncomfortable visiting the bay in the sweltering months of July through September. If you are determined to travel during these months, make sure to include the essentials for sun and heat protection.

How to explore Lan Ha Bay? How to choose the best Lan Ha Bay Cruise?

Cruises give your vacations freedom, excitement, and a truly unique experience. Let’s find out how to choose the Lan Ha Bay Cruise below to have the most suited itinerary for you and your family.

Lan Ha Bay in the summer

Kayaking in Lan Ha Bay

  • There are 139 beautiful beaches in the area, which are ideal for kayaking and swimming year-round. Van Boi Beach will never disappoint tourists as it can bring you private, relaxing, and joyful moments in the midst of stunning scenery.
  • You will find kayaking in Lan Ha Bay one of the best ways to get a truly feeling and look of this natural sites. In addition, swimming at some private beaches that extend between majestic mountains is also a terrific activity.
  • This is a paradise with dozens of sandy beaches and countless islets that are inaccessible by large boats. Therefore, if you wish to go kayaking in pristine and tranquil waters, this will be a great option.
Kayaking in Lan Ha bay

Fishing with the locals

  • Don’t miss going fishing with the locals if you want to learn about their way of life. As you participate in fishing activities with the locals, you will get the opportunity to try out fishing equipment and engage yourself in real fishing life. The chance to do something like that only comes along once in a lifetime.

Explore Caves

  • Lan Ha Bay is well-known not just for its limestone mountains, but also for its caves. Many beautiful rock formations, as well as stalagmites and stalactites can be found here. Among the bay’s caves, Dark Cave, Bright Cave, and Trung Trang Cave are the most magnificent ones.

Exploring Luon Cave

  • The first impression of the cave is the sheer cliff and the calm, clear water that is reflecting throughout the year. You can enjoy the beautiful, tranquil surroundings as well as see the cave’s distinctive shape as you explore this famous attraction.
  • The best thing to do is kayak through the unique cave entrance to a sizable mountain, and you will have the chance to capture many amazing photos.
Luon Cave in Summer


  • Depending on the tour itinerary, the cruise will often stop at one of the limestone islands to allow tourists to swim in the crystal blue water. Swimming from the cruise to the island, exploring the cave, then back to the cruise is an exciting experience.

Sunbathing on the beach

  • When visiting the bay’s stunning beaches, it is difficult to resist immersing yourself in the clear sea, lying on the white sand, under the green coconut trees, and enjoying the cool breeze.
Sunbathing on the beach in Lan Ha Bay

Trekking and Cycling at Viet Hai Village

  • Trekking and cycling are the greatest ways to explore old houses, photograph the forest, or observe the activities of people and buffalos working in the green fields. The Vietnamese countryside scenery here is so charming and lovely that you will undoubtedly feel peaceful and enjoyable.

Enjoying seafood dishes

  • It will be a pity if you don’t take some time to taste the renowned fresh seafood which are served on board and prepared by the talented and expert chefs. This will undoubtedly bring you with a truly unforgettable experience.

Watching the sunset

  • Wait until the sun sets over the undulating limestone mountains on the bay to take in the most poetic beauty on the journey when visiting Cai Beo Fishing Village, Turtle Islet, and Three Peaches Island.
Sunset in Lan Ha Bay

Visiting Viet Hai fishing village

  • Many tourists find the images of the friendly fishermen and families who preserve the fishing tradition in Lan Ha Bay to be very appealing. Viet Hai is an old community isolated from the outside world, with roughly 80 households that still remain traditional self-sufficient living through farming, fishing, etc.
Floating Village

Exploring Cai Beo floating village

  • Visit Cai Beo Floating Village, which is close to Beo Wharf, for more cultural exposure and opportunities to engage with the people. This is the oldest and most beautiful floating village in Lan Ha Bay, with roughly 300 floating homes that mostly rely on fishing and aquaculture. To visit the over-water attractions, tourists can access by small boat or kayak.

Exploring Nam Cat Island

  • Nam Cat Island in Lan Ha Bay attracts many tourists by its pristine and alluring natural scenery. Because the island is close to the sea and covered with lush trees, it makes a fantastic destination. It also offers excellent places for guests to unwind and rest amidst the breathtaking scenery.
Nam Cat Island

Exploring Monkey Island

  • This unspoiled island is also home to more than 20 wild monkeys. Monkeys are often seen visiting beaches to interact with visitors and eat given food like bananas, apples, oranges, and sweets. Many tourists left the island with an intriguing impression of the hanging monkeys playing on the tree, and through time, this location has come to be known as “Monkey Island”.

Time duration of a Lan Ha Bay Cruise

How many days will you spend traveling to Lan Ha Bay?

  • You have the option of taking a Lan Ha Bay day cruise, an overnight trip lasting one or two nights, or renting a boat to tour the bay. So, before booking a cruise, you should consider how long you wish to stay. Thanks to the Hanoi-HaiPhong expressway, it takes only around 2.5 hours to get from Hanoi Old Quarter to Got Pier, making it the perfect distance for a day trip.
  • However, let’s take an overnight cruise, if you want to fully explore the stunning pristine bay. A typical 2-day, 1-night trip includes top attractions like Three Peaches Beach and Dark & Bright Cave, while a 3-day, 2-night cruise adds more activities like seeing Viet Hai Village and Van Boi Beach. Each cruise will undoubtedly have a slightly different itinerary. As a result, be careful to read the itinerary with the given time cruise duration.

Budget for a Lan Ha Bay Cruise

How much should you spend on a cruise to Lan Ha Bay?

  • Identifying your budget will help you decide the style of cruise you want among luxury, budget, or family-friendly. Luxury cruises with ratings ranging from 3 to 5 stars have varying costs and levels of excellence.
  • A 2-day budget cruise should cost between 127 and 150 dollars per passenger, whereas luxury cruises are more expensive but well worth the extra money. Therefore, in order to choose the best itinerary, you need to be aware of how much you are ready to spend on the trip.

Additional Services

  • Normally, a Halong Bay cruise package includes everything like food, activities, etc., but there are some extra services, such beverages and wine on the deck and spa services, that you must pay extra for. Transport from Hanoi may not be included by all operators, so be careful to double-check. If transportation is not included, you may consider using a shuttle bus, a private vehicle, a seaplane, or even a helicopter. Additionally, there are some tour packages that offer a night at a hotel in Hanoi or Ha Long.

Selecting your cruise boat type

  • Selecting the type of boat that is best for you is the next step. Currently, there are primarily two types of boats accessible for Ha Long Bay cruises: steel boats and wooden boats, both of which can be decorated in modern or traditional ways.
  • Most newly constructed ships are composed of steel and feature a contemporary Western design, providing the impression of floating hotels with up-to-date furnishings. In order for you to make your decision easily, we will list below a number of boat types that can be appropriate for each of your cruise demands.

Considering cabin and cruise amenities

  • The comfort of the cabin and the amenities on board should be taken into consideration while selecting a Lan Ha Bay trip. With location, size, and comfort in mind, pick your cabin wisely. Keep in mind that the higher up the cabin is placed, the better it is. In addition, it is strongly advised to have a private balcony if you want to be able to unwind and take in the best view. If you’re traveling for a special occasion like a honeymoon, you can consider Honeymoon Cruises or Private Cruises, and ask your travel agent about the couple settings available in your cabin.
  • If you are traveling with children, seek for cruise boats for family or small groups so that adjacent or connected cabins, as well as kid-friendly amenities are available. Then, consider your demands for shared amenities, such as a seasonal pool, Jacuzzi, or even a mini golf course, and ask the operator or agent for further information.

Here are some of the best cruise boats with different styles:

Some Cruises for budget travelers

Travelers on a tight budget should consider a 3-star wooden boat that offers standard facilities and great deals for saving money. This kind of boat is especially suitable for families with kids/teens and young couples.


Q: From which port does the cruise to Lan Ha Bay depart?

A: Most Lan Ha Bay cruises depart from Tuan Chau International Marina in Quang Ninh province. It usually takes 2

2.5 hours to arrive at the cruise marina thanks to the Hanoi-Hai Phong expressway.

Q: When is the best time to visit Lan Ha Bay?

A: The summer months of June, July, and August are the best times to visit Lan Ha Bay because of the sunny weather and ideal water temperature for beach activities like swimming and kayaking. Autumn months from October to December are also a great time to explore the bay because it is milder and has less storms.

Q: Should I choose a 2-day or 3-day Lan Ha Bay cruise?

A: It depends on your travel plans but the 2-day cruise is the most popular option that includes adequate onboard activities and excursions to must-see locations like the Three Peaches beach and the Dark & Bright caves.

Q: Which cruises offer kayaking in Lan Ha Bay?

A: Kayaking is an indispensible activity to explore Lan Ha Bay, so most cruises include kayaking in their itinerary.

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