You want to visit the so-called “inland Halong Bay” besides your overnight cruise over the genuine spot? But you’re afraid it is too classic and fear being stucked in a mass-tourism spiral? Don’t look any further, we’ve got something here. Treat yourself with an original program full of activities and less-travelled spots. Stay far away from the tourism clichés, enjoy the charm of those sites on a real intimate journey.
- Spend one overnight on a small fishing boat and kayak to hidden lagoons of Halong
- Take a sampan ride around the karts formations of the less known Trang An nature reserve
- Cycle nice rural paths and roads around Tam Coc
Day 1. Hanoi – Haiphong – Cat Ba
Meals: Lunch, dinner | Accommodation : Fishing boat
We leave Hanoi pretty early to be at the coast on time and catch our speedboat to Cat Ba Island. We board a private fishing boat refitted to host guests and hit the sea. Make yourself comfortable and enjoy the show. We evolve in one of the less travelled areas of Halong, across wide floating villages with the giant limestone rock formations standing all around. We can take the kayaks to the water, there is no better mean to socialize up with the “floating locals” and to explore the hidden lagoons.
The program is totally flexible and will follow your preferences. Meals are served onboard. The boat is equipped with 2 cabins for overnight. Each cabin can accommodate up to 5 guests.
Day 2. Cat Ba – Haiphong – Tam Coc
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner | Accommodation : Family guesthouse
In the morning we can either take some more time for cruising and kayaking; or get back earlier to the pier and explore Cat Ba Island for a while. We could propose you for example to visit the seafood market and to climb up the Canon Fort for a great view over the bay. We then transfer to an ancient house set in a beautiful lush garden for a home prepared meal. You may even have a chance to participate in the preparation if we arrive at the house early enough.
In the afternoon, we take a speedboat back to Haiphong and then drive to Tam Coc. We stay overnight away from the tourism chaos in a small family guesthouse.
Day 3. Tam Coc – Trang An – Hanoi
Meals: Breakfast, lunch | Accommodation : N/A
We have a full day dedicated to the regions of Tam Coc and Trang An. The program is pretty flexible and the guide can easily adapt and re-arrange according to your preferences. What we suggest initially goes like that.
We start after breakfast with a gentle bike ride on the bypaths of Tam Coc and its surroundings. Many stops along the way to check out a market, a temple or simply a daily life scene.
We pass by Hang Mua, 400 stairs to a breathtaking panoramic view of Tam Coc mountainous circus. Photographers, raise your hand!
The way finally leads us to Trang An nature reserve, where we start a scenic sampan trip through waterways in beautiful decors made of rice fields and limestone rocks.
After lunch in a local restaurant, we propose you to either combine some more leisure cycling with the visit of the temples of Hoa Lu ancient capital; or to dedicate more time to one of those activities.
We drive back to Hanoi in the afternoon to arrive about 5pm.