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Monday, June 14, 2021
Authors Posts by Binh Nguyen

Binh Nguyen

Seaplane Service in Asia

Seaplanes are becoming more and more popular throughout Asia. In countries often surrounded by water on at least one side, amphibious aircrafts are a no-brainer for everything ranging from emergency situations to tourism. The idea of creating vessels that could both float and fly is something that goes back as far as the late 1800s. Pioneers such as Alphonse Pénaud of France and Wilhelm Kress of Austria first created patents and seaplanes at the beginning of the aerial revolution. While their use became more popular during war times, they have since waned in popularity due to expense and practicability. That has, however, not stopped seaplanes from becoming an amazing way to experience the world from above. Asian countries from China to India to Vietnam have latched onto this beautiful way of traveling through the Asian landscape by lots of well-known seaplane services.

Aside from finding investors for seaplane purchase and maintenance, there are many factors to consider when attempting to open up a seaplane company. First of all, the weather has a huge impact on both seaplane function and landing capabilities. Areas that are prone to in climate weather have to be careful where to set up shop. It is also much as important to have appropriately trained pilots and staff. However, when done correctly it can lead to a huge boost in tourism and financial gain. As the following countries are figuring out, seaplane service can be a wonderful way to show off the treasure trove of touristic sites available in Asia.


Setouchi Seaplanes: Japan


seaplane service in Asia
Top 10 most well-known seaplane service in Asia 2017

Setouchi Seaplanes opened very recently, in August 2016. They are the first seaplane company operating in Japan in over fifty years. Their main type of plane is the Kodiak 100 amphibious aircraft, which is a small 10-seat plane including the pilot. They offer scheduled sightseeing flights from the Bella Vista Marina in Onomichi Floating Port, as well as chartered flight options. Their average rates include 40-minute flights at $295 for weekdays and $340 for weekends. Onomichi is a city in the Hiroshima Prefecture area of Japan right on the coast of the Inland Sea.

Aviation Industry Corporation of China: China


South China has been in the news recently for unveiling what is supposed to be “the world’s largest seaplane” to date. The AVIC AG600 Water Dragon can carry up to 50 passengers and has a  maximum range of 4,500 km. While it does not have the largest wingspan in history (that honors go to the Spruce Goose which made only one flight in the 1940s), it is certainly larger than any other seaplane currently on the market. Rates and schedules are not yet available and will depend on companies that purchase them. The Aviation Industry Corporation of China is a state-owned company focusing on all areas of aviation from research to defense, flight testing to construction.

Hai Au Aviation: Vietnam


seaplane service in Asia
Top 10 most well-known seaplane service in Asia 2017 – Hai Au Aviation

Hai Au Aviation is the single premier seaplane company in Vietnam. They utilize  Cessna Grand Caravan 208B – EX, a 12-seat seaplane, for their fleet. Hai Au Aviation offers a wide variety of seaplane options in and around Halong Bay, Vietnam. They have daily scheduled flights from Hanoi to Halong Bay, as well as short sightseeing excursions. They also have several package deals, combining seaplane service with cruises or hotel options in Halong Bay, in addition to a variety of charter services. Hai Au Aviation ranks as one of the best values for a sea place experience, offering 45-minute transfers for as low as $175. If you add a 15-minute scenic tour the price goes up to only $270 in summer and $385 in winter. Hai Au Aviation was created in 2011 and is part of the Thien Minh Group.



 well-known seaplane service in Asia 2017
Top 10 most well-known seaplane service in Asia 2017

Maritime Energy Heli Air Services Pvt. Ltd. (MEHAIR) launched its seaplane service in India in 2011. It operates out of Andaman & Nicobar islands and intends to launch similar operations in Maharashtra ex-Juhu Airport, Mumbai, and Goa. MEHAIR uses two seaplane designs as part of their fleet: the Cessna 206 and Cessna 208 Amphibian aircraft. The Cessna 208 has a maximum capacity of 9 passengers while the Cessna 206 is a much smaller model with a maximum capacity of 4 passengers. Destinations outside of Andaman & Nicobar islands include Girgaum-Chowpatty, Gangapur Dam and Aamby Valley amongst others. Both scheduled and nonscheduled tours are available. Flight prices vary and are available upon request.

Seabird Seaplane: India


seaplane service in Asia, Seabird Seaplane: India
Top 10 most well-known seaplane service in Asia 2017

Seabird Seaplane began in November 2012 and is based in Kochi, India. The company owns two Quest Kodiak 100 amphibious aircrafts which can hold a maximum of 8 passengers each. Seabird Seaplane likes to combine the functionality of seaplane transportation with a leisurely trip through the skies of India. In addition to transport to and from Kochi, destinations include Bangalore, Kavaratti Island, and Minicoy as well as many others. You must use the contact form on their website to inquire about rates and fees.

Air Juan: Philippines


seaplane service in asia
Top 10 most well-known seaplane service in Asia 2017

Air Juan is a Filipino company started in 2012. Their corporate office is located in Bonifacio Global City but they also operate out of Manila, Palawan and Cebu. They have been growing quickly for the past few years and utilize several different aircraft. Their seaplane model is the Cessna Grand Caravan EX Amphibian, which has a 10-passenger capacity including pilot. You can book all manner of flights and destinations around the Philippines, from Puerto Princesa to Cuyo Island to Busuanga. Rates vary from place to place, but daily flights are available from Manila Bay to Boracay Island averaging approximately $245.

Seaplane Adventures: Philippines


Adventure Seaplane in Philipines
Top 10 most well-known seaplane service in Asia 2017

Another seaplane company in the Philippines is Seaplane Adventures. Seaplane Adventures boasts its status as the first commercial seaplane service in the Philippines. The company operates out of Manila and uses 10-seater Amphibious Cessna 208 Caravans. Their services included regularly scheduled flights, charter options, aerial photography excursions and scenic tours. Furthermore, they even assist with medical evacuation and humanitarian relief. Various destinations include Boracay, Zambales, and Coron. Rates and schedules available upon request.

Bali Seaplanes: Bali


Bali is another hot destination for seaplane use. The company Bali Seaplanes was founded only recently in 2016. They started with just one Cessna Caravan 208 and have grown quickly. Bali Seaplanes offer tours, scenic flights and charter options. The Menjangan and the Gili Islands are just a few of the spots they tour too. Scenic flights are approximate $270 and tours average $580.

Blue Water Seaplanes: Bali


 well-known seaplane service in Asia 2017
Top 10 most well-known seaplane service in Asia 2017

Blue Water Seaplanes also caters to the Bali and Lombok regions with similar services to Bali Seaplanes. They too offer seaplane services by way of the Cessna Caravan 208 and have a range of options from regularly scheduled flights to chartered flights to scenic tours. Their routes generally travel between Bali and the Gili Islands and cut travel time to less than half compared to traditional speed boats. However, you must contact Blue Water seaplanes for rates and schedules.

Cinnamon Air: Sri Lanka


Cinnamon Air flies out of Sri Lanka and is managed by Saffron Aviation (Pvt) Ltd. Cinnamon Air’s main hub is Bandaranaike International Airport (Colombo International Airport). Their fleet includes Cessna 208 Amphibian Caravans and the Cessna 208B Grand Caravan aircrafts, both seating approximately 8 passengers respectively. Cinnamon Air offers a range of destinations and experiences. You can choose between scheduled routes or luxury charter services, in addition to various trekking, water sport or safari excursions. Destinations range from Kandy to Dickwella, Colombo City to Castlereagh. A 20-minute scenic tour will cost you around $125.

In conclusion, any trip through Asia will involve extensive transportation. Since the seaplane industry continues to soar, it is worthwhile considering a seaplane as part of your transfer or tour options. It will eliminate unnecessary time spent on slow transportation options while allowing you a bird’s eye view of the beautiful landscape below. As a result, many Asian countries are jumping on the bandwagon to offer this unique experience. It maybe worth it to jump on a seaplane and take advantage of such a rare opportunity.

Inside a Cessna Grand Caravan 208B – EX

You can enjoy your flight in a secure environment. Furthermore, behind each seat is a leather pouch that houses safety pamphlets and emergency procedures. Your pilot will talk you through the emergency process before take-off, including where emergency equipment is. Let’s take a look inside Cessna Grand Caravan 208B – EX!



Cessna Grand Caravan Seaplane Halong Hai Au Aviation  If you look ahead, you will see the two pilots sitting in their own leather seats. In front of them are steering wheels and a large control panel below the massive front windows. Each Cessna Grand Caravan is equipped with ‘glass cockpit’ avionics, weather radar, storm tracker system and Garmin GPS. All crew members are experienced and fully trained in all flight and safety regulations. This not only ensures your safety but makes for an enjoyable and memorable seaplane experience.


All procedures and comments are relayed through the built-in speaker system. The seaplane is cozy and compact so you can easily hear those around you. However, the speaker system guarantees that you will hear any information that the pilot gives, from safety procedures to tourism advice, loud and clear.


The seaplane seats allow optimal relaxation and legroom. You will have plenty of space to stretch out and enjoy the scenery to the fullest. It won’t be a problem maneuvering the cabin if you have small bags or cameras. You can lean back and take a rest or brace yourself for an exciting flight filled with amazing views.


Cessna Grand Caravan Seaplane Halong Hai Au AviationEach row has a window on either side of the plane. The windows are one of the most important features of the plane because they allow for breathtaking sites from above. Each window is large rectangular so that you can easily see the beautiful panorama outside. Whether on an airport transfer or a scenic tour, you can feel free to take photos and videos to document your wonderful journey through the sky.


If you are taking an evening flight or it is a cloudy day, there is always a reading light available to use. For those more interested in comfortably getting to their destination, the reading light will ensure that you can rest or relax with reading materials or technological devices. After peering through the window for a glimpse of the beauty below or witnessing the stunning sunset on the horizon, you will never find yourself flying in the dark.

Cessna Grand Caravan Seaplane Halong Hai Au Aviation

If you want to know more about unique features of seaplane, visit here.

Companies can easily customize their seaplanes for the benefit of their passengers. Hai Au Aviation makes sure to provide a luxurious and relaxing environment for each of its guests so that you are sure to have a wonderful trip. The interior of the Cessna Grand Caravan 208 fits right in with the high-end enjoyment guaranteed to all seaplane travelers.

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Halong Bay Weekend: A perfect escape | The 2020 Guide

A Halong Bay weekend getaway is one of the most ideal plans. Whether you are touring the Southeast Asian landscape for weeks on end or setting your sights on Hanoi and Halong Bay in particular, this Unesco World Heritage site is a must-see.

There are many options for visiting Halong Bay, but when planning a short weekend trip, it is necessary to organize and prioritize. The two main ways of enjoying a quick stay in this stunning area of Vietnam include one night in a hotel or one night on a traditional cruise ship.

Both options have their benefits and are suitable for different kinds of travelers. Detailed below are two optimal itineraries for a wonderful weekend in Halong Bay.


CRUISE 2D1N TOUR IN HALONG BAY Halong Bay weekendA 2-day cruise is one of the most popular and time-efficient ways of exploring Halong Bay. You get the opportunity to sail through the brilliant blue seas and witness some of the main tourist highlights without having to do much legwork. You will be taken from point A to point B, all of your meals are included and your itinerary is set in stone.

Who should take this option?

This tour is perfect for the traveler who would like to get the guide around the bay. While you will have to do some research in choosing a cruise, once you are on board you don’t have to worry about where you go, what you will eat or what you want to do.

Everything is pre-planned and designed for you to see as much of Halong Bay as you can in a limited time. Cruises are geared toward anything from romance to family to parties. It is pretty much ideal for almost any traveler who doesn’t mind a set itinerary.

What is included?

Halong Bay Cruises are notable for certain features. They normally include transport to and from Hanoi, meals, some drinks, accommodation, entertainment and excursions.

It is essentially an all-in-one package deal to see the most renowned parts of Halong Bay. You will most likely be picked up early from Hanoi and then shuttled to Halong Bay.

This transfer normally takes place in a car or shuttle bus, though there are fancier options including things like flying in a seaplane.

seaplane flight with famous people Halong Bay weekendMany tours include welcome drinks on board your vessel or traditional junk boat, after which you will begin to tour the bay. Stops include various limestone caves, beaches and traditional floating villages.

Most cruises allow time for kayaking, swimming and other water sports. You will have traditional Vietnamese or International fare for your meals and participate in  several onboard activities such as cooking classes, tai chi, and squid fishing.

When to take?

The high season for international tourism is during the winter months from November to December whereas high season for domestic travel is during the summertime. Months like September, November to March and May are ideal for weather, when you will be able to avoid the wet season.

Fortunately, Halong Bay cruises run throughout the year almost every day of the week. No matter when you are planning your trip to Vietnam, there is sure to be a cruise option available to book.

It can certainly be nice to avoid the prime tourism months when the already packed bay is overflowing. Despite tourist traffic, however, there will always be cruise available.

Going where?

Halong Bay is a relatively small area of Southeast Asia. Cruises generally tour through the Halong Bay and Bai Tu Long Bay regions. The latter is considered a more “off the beaten path” destination.

It is generally touristy anywhere you go in the area, though some beaches and islets are less populated than others. By booking a cruise, you are obliged to venture into the areas preset by the itinerary. These will include various limestones caves, popular beaches and floating villages.

How much?

One of the best parts about a cruise through Halong Bay is that there is a large range of price options available. There are cruises for the budget traveler as well as the luxury tourist and all manner in between.

If you have a pack of rowdy kids by your side or are backpacking on your own, cruises are by far the most economical choice around.

While you can find cruises offered for less than $100, it is generally advisable to go up a bracket and choose between one of the many options offered between $100-150. If you have interest in additional luxury, the price can go as high as you wish.

The Upside and Downside?

Cruises are generally one of the best ways to experience Halong Bay for a quick weekend away. You will see many of the most popular sights, get a taste of local culture. However, there are a few downsides.

You will want to investigate your cruise options so that your boat is safe, reputable and provides everything you require. Because Halong Bay is a prime tourist destination, you are likely to be doing all of the same activities as every other tourist out on the bay.

There are many itineraries to pick from but you have far less flexibility than if you were choosing your own adventure. A cruise is definitely not the best idea for a traveler looking to escape the traditional tourist path.

Check out our Cruise Tours with Emeraude/ L’Azalee Cruise


wyndham legend and seaplane flight Halong Bay weekendCruises are not the only option in Halong Bay, nor are they the best option for all. Travelers looking for a more flexible itinerary with a sturdier home base may want to book a hotel instead. To fully take advantage of all that Halong Bay has to offer, a hotel with an additional day cruise can be an ideal choice for people in search of tourism combined with tranquility.

Who should take this option?

Staying in a hotel has many advantages, specifically for certain types of travelers. Business people in town for a conference, tourists attending events in the area, or even seasick passengers had better stay away from cruise ships for too long.

There are several hotels in Halong Bay that cater to the luxurious surroundings and offer a comfortable destination for travelers on the go. Many cruise lines offer one-day tours and some even promote half-day tours, meaning that you can still fit in a bit of tourism despite your already busy schedule.

For those tourists who don’t have much fear for seafaring or are physically incapable of boarding a boat, a hotel will still allow you to enjoy Halong Bay.

What is included?

Not everyone wants to spend their entire trip to Halong Bay at sea. If you have specific reasons for being a landlubber, there are many hotels available. You can book one night in a hotel and a full day cruise separately or sign up for a pre-existing package that includes both.

Hai Au Aviation, for example, pairs their spectacular seaplane service one way from Hanoi to Halong Bay where you will stay for one night in at the Wyndham Legend. You can add a full day tour through L’Azalée Cruise line and have the best of both worlds at your fingertips.

You will be able to catch the hot spots of Halong Bay on a limited time schedule while still enjoying the luxury of a 5-star hotel.

When to do?

Hotels get less influence from weather conditions so you can easily book this form of accommodation all year round. With events and business engagements occurring nonstop, hotels are ready and waiting to receive you and your travel companions.

If you are heading to Halong Bay for tourism, the best months are still in the winter from November to December. However, without the worry of longer stays on board a ship, it is easier to plan.

It is still better to avoid the wetter months if you would like to see the karsts and beaches at their best, but a luxury hotel usually makes up for any weather trials.


thien cung cave, halong Halong Bay weekend
Thien Cung Cave in Halong Bay

Halong City is a petite metropolis. Waterfront property is sparse and therefore coveted by landowners so that they can boast rooms with a breathtaking view. There are also several full-day or half-day tours through many cruise lines in Halong Bay.

These tours will generally give you a glimpse into the highlights of Halong Bay, including notable limestone caves, perhaps a floating fishing village and an hour or two of swimming or kayaking. It’s a wonderful quick taste of the area for a perfect weekend by the sea.

How Much?

Hotels rates can vary vastly just as cruises do but you can also book them at wonderful prices. Rates can range from $50 per night to $250. Just as with the wide range of cruises out there, hotels will accommodate all manner of traveler.

One-day cruises have the same price. Most decent options will cost around $100 for a full day cruise. When combined with a package deal, this rate may decrease. The more luxuries and perks that you want to add to your package, the more expensive they can become.

All in all, you will most likely spend more money when combining a hotel with a day cruise option than when you book a two-night cruise out at sea. Once again, this allows for more flexibility and independence than a pre-planned cruise itinerary, but comes at a cost.

The Upside and Downside?

One night in a hotel plus one-day cruise through Halong bay will allow you the opportunity to see the many wonders of Halong Bay with the added bonus of flexibility and independence.

Business people and travelers with a specific agenda will find that this option gives them the opportunity to explore Halong Bay on their own terms, with a few hours of guided tourism.

CRUISE 2D1N TOUR IN HALONG BAY Halong Bay weekendHowever, you will not be able to see as many of the fantastic spots that you could see in a weekend if you were floating the seas of Halong Bay the whole time. It is generally a more expensive route, though there are many deals that might fit perfectly into your schedule and financial plan. You may miss out on some traditional hot spots due to such a short stay in Halong Bay.

There are amazing adventures ready and waiting for all weekend Halong Bay travelers. Southeast Asia is a veritable Utopia for anyone touring Vietnam, whether it be a few days or a few weeks or months.

Whether it be a night in a hotel overlooking the bay or a cruise floating atop the sea, a weekend in Halong Bay is always a magical experience overall.

While there is an infinite amount of itineraries available to all manner of voyager, these are two foolproof options that a large amount of tourists choose. Visit Hai Au Aviation for more great options.


Review 2 Days 2 Nights trip in Halong Bay, Vietnam | Carin Skowronsky

Ha Long Bay, located in northern Vietnam and accessible from Hanoi, is a must-see destination on your Vietnam travel. Ha Long Bay offers exhilarating experiences, from unforgettable seaplane rides with Hai Au Aviation to kayaking in some of the bay’s most coveted area.

The enchanting activities in this northeast region will make you want to stay longer than you had originally planned, and heighten your sense of wanderlust. Halong Bay seaplane flight review Halong Bay

Shortly after moving to Vietnam, I decided to plan a peaceful, out of the city quick trip.  I chose to visit Ha Long Bay with a quick one-night stop in Hanoi.

To get to Ha Long Bay, you will first need to get to Hanoi.  While there are plentiful options for transportation, I chose to travel by Hai Au’s scenic seaplane tour. Therefore, I could get a good aerial view of the bay.

When you Google “Vietnam,” you’re almost always bound to have pictures of Ha Long Bay come up in your search. These images will fill you with wanderlust beyond belief.  The bay is an absolute must-see, and I wanted to see it from a different angle.  Now that I had my transportation set, I was ready for my big adventure!


review Halong Bay trip review Halong BayTravel day arrived, and I greeted it with my new favorite, a Vietnamese coffee.  I spent most of the morning, and my hour long Uber ride to the airport, thinking about the fun flight ahead, as well as what I wanted to do with my two short days in Ha Long Bay.  With a few ideas in mind, I decided I would finalize plans upon arrival after I talked with local excursion companies.

Halong bay view from seaplane review Halong BayUntil then, I planned to sit back and enjoy the flight and its magnificent views. (If you ever have the chance to ride on a seaplane, don’t hesitate – book it!  There’s nothing else like it.)  I don’t know about you, but the thrill of a water landing excited me since it was something I’d never done before.

The scenic flight gets you to Ha Long Bay in a quick 45-minutes, plus a 15-minute tour up close and personal around the bay. The Hai Au Aviation staff is friendly and makes your flight a memorable one.  What better way to arrive in style than with a splash landing in radiant turquoise waters?

Carin's Halong Bay window view from seaplane review Halong Bay

Hai Au Aviation operates out of Noi Bai International Airport, the closest airport near Ha Long Bay, Vietnam; and offers daily flight times, as well as charter and tour package options.  Worth every penny, you’ll experience the best aviation in Vietnam.

review Halong Bay tripWhen we landed in the bay, I finalized the activities I wanted to pursue and headed to my accommodation to change, lock in my next day plans and get back out the door to explore. I walked the streets for a while, wandering aimlessly, but taking in every little bit of culture.

Fortunately, I discovered a market where vendors were selling street food including seafood dishes, fresh fruit and Pho. I also purchased a handful of items, which I’d cook for dinner at some point.

All of the scents from the market made me hungry and drove me into the first café I spotted. I noshed on a late lunch of beef stir-fry, a good dish to warm me up on this brisk afternoon.

review Halong Bay

Not too long after lunch, it started to rain, so it was back to my Air B&B to work the remainder of the evening and prepare for the one-day cruise I booked through Ha Binh Cruises.

You’re probably wondering why I brought my work with me to such a beautiful destination.  After all, I am in Ha Long Bay. The beauty of travel writing is that it allows me to work on the go from all over the world. No complaints here!


One thing to note if you’re traveling to Ha Long Bay this time of year, bring warm clothes for layering as it can be chilly. While you’ll find it to be more hot and humid between April and September, you can expect October through March to be dry, but also chilly at times, especially if you’re on the water moving at a fast speed.


Revived and ready to go after an early morning wake up call and pick up by Ha Binh Cruises, I boarded the bus that would take me to the Tuan Chau Marina where we would set sail. The 6-hour cruise I booked included the things I wanted to see and do: kayaking, floating villages and the Thien Cung Cave.

review Halong Bay tripThe first, and maybe my favorite, stop on the cruise was to Thien Cung Cave. Beautifully lit, this cave’s ambiance is one to be unmatched against any other cave I’ve seen. You’ll walk the guided concrete paths while taking in the stunning rock formations and natural beauty that lies within.

review Halong Bay tripMy other favorite stop on the cruise was for us to go kayaking. But I didn’t realize it would be within the Ba Hang floating villages!  It was the most fantastic time.  For a small fee, Ha Binh offers the option to self-paddle a kayak or ride in a bamboo boat while having a local lead the way.

I chose to paddle in and out of the boat villages for a closer look at the way these locals live.  While you’re floating by, you notice the simplicity of the floating village lifestyle – and it is fascinating.review Halong Bay trip - floating village

The remainder of the afternoon on the boat consisted of a family-style lunch, mingling with other fellow travelers and cruising on the water while taking stock of the main islands as we’d pass by, occasionally stopping to visit a few. review Halong Bay trip

One of the best parts about traveling is meeting other like-minded individuals from all over the world. In the travel time between destinations throughout the day, I had the chance to converse with many individual.

All shared their personal backgrounds, travel history and reason for this particular visit to Ha Long Bay.  I thoroughly enjoyed hearing about each person’s life journey.

Review Halong Bay tripAs our day concluded, I realized how much activity I was able to fit into one day. Man, I certainly got a lot done, didn’t I? Somehow, I was starting to get hungry again.  It must have been all that hard work paddling through the bay. I thanked myself for buying goods for dinner at the market the day prior. So by the time the shuttle dropped me off, I was tired from the big day I’d had.

This good ‘ole day deserved a glass of wine. After all, this trip had been a major success.  Who says you can’t do a lot in two days time? With that, I whipped up a tasty and easy pizza made with fresh local ingredients and raised a glass to the fact that I had a magnificent time. 

The next morning, with only a few expendable hours before my return seaplane flight, I stopped at the café around the corner from where I was staying.  As it turns out, there were a few English-speaking locals. They were interested in my profession, and we chatted briefly about work over matcha lattes.

The time had come for me to say goodbye to Ha Long Bay. With reluctance for leaving this exquisite city and World Heritage site, I boarded my flight.  At least I would be able to enjoy the extraordinary views one last time before flying back to Hanoi.

This is, and always will be, a trip to remember.


Amazing round trip flight Hanoi to Halong Bay with Hai Au Aviation

Right before moving to Vietnam for the month of March, I spent time researching places I would visit and activities I would check off my bucket list. What city was on the top of my list to visit? Ha Long Bay, of course!  It was only a question of how best to travel  there.

travel Hanoi to Halong BayThere are many transportation options available to get you to Ha Long Bay, but I wanted the most exciting, especially since I was planning the trip of a lifetime.

For me, that meant traveling by seaplane, where islets and islands feel just beyond reach, and the water landing makes you feel as though you are practically walking on water. There was only one option for this experience: Hai Au Aviation, the first and only seaplane service in Vietnam. With that, I booked my flight and the countdown until takeoff was on.


I departed for my journey to Ha Long Bay from Ho Chi Minh City. I booked an Uber, an easy $4 USD and fast 20-minute ride to the Tan Son Nhat International Airport for my flight to Hanoi.

To get to Ha Long Bay, you will first need to fly to Hanoi, Vietnam’s capital. Based on pictures I had seen, I felt it necessary to leave a day early so I could stay a night in the capital before my flight with Hai Au Aviation.

I woke up early after my night in Hanoi, extremely excited to seize the day by seaplane. I left my accommodation in Hanoi earlier than necessary – and good thing I did! What was estimated to be a 40-minute commute to the airport ended up taking just over an hour with the considerable amounts of traffic on the road. Always plan ahead and leave early!


travel Hanoi to Halong Bay

Upon arriving at the Noi Bai International Airport, I went in search of Hai Au Aviation check in which is Counter 109, Lobby E, Terminal 1. The gentleman at the counter warmly greeted me with a friendly smile and hello.  He asked for my passport, whether I was carrying any weapons or other dangerous contaminants, and then weighed my luggage.

Hai Au allows only 7 kilos of combined luggage (carry on + a personal item), so pack accordingly. To ensure that the flight doesn’t exceed weight regulations, they will ask you to step on the scale. (Don’t worry, those numbers are strictly between you and the airline, but it is for everyone’s safety.) 

travel Hanoi to Halong BayOnce the airline gathered all of my information, I was given my fancy looking paper ticket and personally walked over to the boarding gate, a nice touch and a nod to the excellent service of the airline! I felt like a million bucks. Overall, check in was a smooth, seamless and pleasant process, not something I’m always confident in saying when I travel. Rest assured your experience will be just so.

travel Hanoi to Halong BayOnce I got through security, I had 30 minutes to spare before boarding. If you have extra time before your flight, consider fueling your day with a traditional Vietnamese Coffee.  They are delightfully tasty! When it was time to board, everyone on my flight walked down a flight of stairs to a bus. Thank goodness for the bus because it started to lightly rain, but that wasn’t going to dampen my highly anticipated flight experience!


The pilots briefed all passengers on proper safety regulations and ensured we were ready for takeoff. The motor moved from a quiet hum to a revved up engine. With a quickness, we were off into the skies. The scenic flight from Hanoi to Ha Long Bay is about 45 minutes with a 15-minute scenic tour of the bay, much quicker than any other way to travel!

seaplane review Halong hai Au aviation


The first 20 minutes of the flight, because it was a hazy day, we went through a sea of white clouds. The pilot assured us that the weather would break for good views as we neared Ha Long Bay.

My eyes lit up with the first glimpse of the green-blue waters I’d been waiting to see. I took stock of the lush greenery that delicately complimented the tranquil jade waters.  Each islet felt strategically placed so that every view at any moment was perfect.

seaplane review Halong hai Au aviationThe fog finally dissipated and all that lied ahead were endless island views, the snapshots that postcards are made of.

For a moment, before even pulling out my camera like the rest of the passengers, I appreciated the beauty in the surrounding nature. Even as a worldly, seasoned traveler, I’d never seen anything like these Ha Long Bay views before.

The views captivated everyone on the plane for the duration of the scenic tour. Those of us on board took hundreds of photos and captured many minutes of video as a reminder of the allure that motivated us to book this experience in the first place. Ha Long Bay is but a dream.

As luck would have it, due to an abundance of air traffic, we would be held captive in a holding pattern. With no complaints, we all enjoyed each other’s company and basked in the thrill of our travels, and for me, the fun I would have in Ha Long Bay for the next two days.


After our scenic tour and once we can see the land, we faced our most anticipated moment, our grand entrance into Ha Long Bay – our splash landing! From cargo ships to floating villages and fisherman, the details of what lied beneath us became more recognizable as our plane descended and the waters became more radiant in color.

We hovered inches above the water as we continued to descend. The anticipation of touching the water, along with our excitement, continued to build. The landing was so soft and smooth that I almost didn’t realize we had hit the water.

The plane glided through the bay for a handful of minutes as we slowed our momentum and taxied to our gate. When I think of being “on the water”, I think of being in a boat, not a plane. It was a funny concept for me to get my head around.


The plane taxied for five minutes to what looked like a boat ramp, which we drove up to our gate at Tuan Chau Marina. Upon arrival, our two pilots thanked us for flying with the both of them and hoped we had thoroughly enjoyed our flight. The gentleman who met me upon deplaning offered to help me grab a taxi to my accommodation in Ha Long Bay.


My two days in Ha Long Bay flew by quickly, and it was time to head back to Hanoi. The minute I stepped foot in the Hai Au offices at the marina, the staff greeted me, asked about my stay in the bay and offered me a seat.

The gentleman checking me in traded me a cold bottle of water for my passport. Within minutes, I had checked in and ready to board my return flight.

seaplane review Halong hai Au aviationI was very much interested in our takeoff, this time from the water versus the airport runway. The plane glided into the bay and propelled us to the spot at which we would take off through the water and up into the air. It felt like you are on a high-speed boat until we reached the speed to take flight into the skies.

What a truly wonderful travel experience this was. I can’t say enough great things about my round-trip sightseeing flight. Given a chance to go to Ha Long Bay again, I wouldn’t change a thing and would most certainly travel with Hai Au Aviation

8 Steps to plan your Halong Bay Trip | The 2020 Guide

halong bay weather

The summer is coming and it’s time to sit down and figure out your holiday schedule. With the advent of technology, creating the perfect vacation has become simultaneously easier and harder at the same time.

There are hundreds of destinations, deals, and DIY vacation tools. With one click of your finger, you can book a flight, a hotel, and an adventure package independently or all in one. With any luck, you have already chosen Halong Bay, Vietnam as this year’s fantasy spot.

The emerald seas, junk boat cruises, and seaplane experiences make it an ideal vacation destination for solo travelers, romantic lovebirds, or globe trotting families. Instead of getting caught up in the whirlwind of choices, here is a list of the 8 steps you should take to plan your Halong Bay trip in Vietnam.



The first step in any successful vacation is to research options and start making a plan. While some travelers prefer to venture forth off the cuff, it is usually better to have at least a little lay of the land before dropping into unknown territory.

Depending on where you are coming from and how long you will be in Vietnam, you may need to acquire certain medical vaccinations. Immunizations for diseases such as Hepatitis A, Tetanus and Typhoid are frequently required for foreigners. In addition to medical and legal issues, you will want to research the various options available including travel time, transport options, activities, and food.

Visa Fee

Many countries will also demand that you obtain a travel visa before entering Vietnam. Foreign nationals of Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, Indonesia, Laos, Japan, South Korea, Russia, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and Finland are exempted from visa visas upon entry into Vietnam if stay no more than 15 days from the date of entry.

Normal visa fee for foreigners entry Vietnam is $25. However, there are some special policies for different nations. For example, American citizens have to pay $135.


Vacations are rarely cheap and are certainly never free. However, there are different options for different types of travelers. Are you a backpacker looking to do things on the cheap or plan a honeymoon and in search of luxury romance?

Are you a mother or father of 4 and wanting to combine frugality with a few splurges? Usually, Halong Bay cruise tour includes bus transfer from Hanoi to Halong so you could save some money on transportation.

Halong Bay has opportunities for all kinds of budgets. Packages and cruise deals offer options for tourists looking to lounge in lap luxury as well as winging it in the wild.

Some people prefer to spend money on beautiful accommodation whereas others would rather focus their funds on local cuisine or unique activities. If you prioritize the aspects of your trip, it will be easier to organize how and what to book.

  • First, take a look at your overall spending budget.
  • Next, highlight the parts of your voyage that are the most important to you.


Halong Bay is a small but culturally rich area of Vietnam. There are an amazing amount of things to see and do in this renowned Unesco World Heritage Site. From the limestone caves to the floating villages to the beautiful beaches, you could easily spend a week or two exploring this bay alone.

Depending on your budget and amount of vacation time, you may need to consider a more abbreviated or structured voyage. trip to Halong, Vietnam Halong Bay trip

As Halong is closest to the major city Hanoi, many travelers choose to include Halong Bay as part of their larger Vietnam trip. You can find many tours from Hanoi which will give you a glimpse of Halong Bay and many of its local landmarks. Consider booking one of the many cruise options so that you can see the highlights of Halong while gliding through the exquisite waters.

From one-day to 2D1N tours, cruises will allow you an opportunity to taste local food, kayak through the karsts, and even squid fishing in the deep blue seas. There is always time for Halong Bay, you just have to decide how much you can spare.


Since Hanoi is the closest main city to Halong Bay, most people choose to start their travels in Vietnam’s capital. Whether you are planning to spend most of your time in Halong or it is one stop on a larger trip, there are many options for transport between Hanoi and Halong Bay.

Cruise options almost always include a shuttle transfer from your hotel or a central area in Hanoi. It is by far one of the easiest methods to get to Halong Bay. This option will typically take about 4 hours one way.

You could always hire a private car but that would be much pricier than combining transport with a tour. There are also public options such as train or bus. However, these routes will take much longer than a direct shuttle.

trip to Halong, Vietnam Halong Bay tripThe fastest and most luxurious option by far is to hop on a one-of-a-kind seaplane, a unique experience provided by Hai Au Aviation. A seaplane reduces the travel time to Halong Bay by more than half and allows stunning views of the landscape below.

While it is certainly a less frugal mode of transport, it is always one of the most memorable and adventurous. You can book passage on a seaplane to or from Halong Bay or combine it with day cruise as several tour options that Hai Au Aviation offers. No matter which mode of transport you choose, a ride in a seaplane should be top on your list.


Lazalee Cruise Halong Halong Bay tripConsidering your budget and allotted travel time is the first thing you need to do before booking your accommodation. Halong Bay has several different options for where to stay from hostels to hotels to classic cruises.

If you are staying in Halong Bay for several days and want to explore everything on your own terms, hostels and hotels can be great for independence.

Hostels are perfect for backpackers or younger travelers looking to spend little money and meet some fun like-minded people. Hotels range from clean and affordable to pricey and decadent.

A Halong Bay trip is never complete, however, without at least one night on a traditional cruise. These boats take you to many spots all along Halong and Bai Tu Long Bay. You will get a chance to try many adventure activities like kayaking and swimming or fishing.

You can see the limestone caves and floating villages so typical to the bay. Companies offer cruises for all types of tourists at all different price points. No matter which kind of accommodation you choose, Halong Bay will not disappoint.


Food is one of the most interesting cultural elements to any vacation. Visiting Vietnam opens up a whole new world of culinary delights. An important thing to research before heading to Halong Bay is to find out what types of food are most unique to local culture.

It is an amazing opportunity to experience something truly delicious and authentic. It is also important to make sure that there are food options for you. In today’s climate of allergies, diets, and culinary values, many people have to prepare for their trips in particular ways.

Emeraude Cruise Halong Bay Halong Bay trip
Halong Bay is of course known for delectable seafood and traditional Vietnamese fare. Dishes such as sea snails and squid-sausages are local delicacies and must-tries when visiting Halong.

If you are a vegan or are allergic to seafood, for example, Halong Bay has international restaurants and many cruise ships will provide for alternate meals, but you want to make sure to investigate and notify before booking anything.


The weather and the season are important factors no matter where you plan on traveling. This will dictate the type of clothes you pack and what other products you might want to include in your suitcase like mosquito repellent, sunscreen or an umbrella.

The high season for inbound tourism in Halong Bay is winter time, from November to December. Domestic tourism is down and travelers from colder climates are looking for an escape from the deep chill.

Happily, Halong Bay still enjoys warm and temperate weather during these months. It’s less humid and cool at night so you can still engage in watersports but may need to pack some layers for the evenings.

The summer months are high for domestic tourism which means you will be rubbing shoulders with more native Vietnamese but still dealing with tourism traffic and longer lines.

During this time of year, the heat is most certainly on, so you will want to bring a lot of suntan lotion and make sure to invest in as many water activities as possible: swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, cruising are all great ways to avoid the heat.


No matter how you choose to get to Halong Bay, how long you stay or how much money you have, the main reason to go to this gorgeous part of the world is to experience everything it has to offer.

Even if your main agenda is lounging on a pristine beach and staring out at the sea with a cocktail in your hand, it’s worth researching exactly which beaches are the best for silence and solitude versus water sports and socializing. And for most Halong Bay tourists, there are far too many wonderful activities to choose from.

Halong Bay tripLimestone caves are a pinnacle of Halong Bay tourism and a must-see when exploring the bay. These natural masterpieces are beautiful caves with glittering walls and crystalline pools. The floating villages are home to Halong Bay locals who spend their lives fishing at sea.

Climbing Bai Tu Mountain is a wonderful way of seeing the spectacular scenery below. The kayaks, canoes, cruises, and seaplanes are all necessary activities to explore the stunning waters of the bay. Once again, you will need to prioritize the activities best for you and your travel companions so as to optimize the time you will have.

Finally, press the button and book your trip.

Every tale begins with an agenda, whether set in stone or open to interpretation. A Halong Bay holiday is a beautiful story just waiting to be told. If you want to sift through all of the websites and offers, from airplanes to accommodation, consider the best ways to plan your next exotic vacation.

Research your options and prioritize your plans. Settle on a budget and investigate local culture and customs. Finally, press the button and book your trip. From seaplanes and cruises to sea snails and beaches, these are the 7 steps to planning your Halong Bay trip in Vietnam.


We provide a wide range of Halong Bay tours from day trip to 2 days 1 night stay in L’Azalee & Emeraude Cruise with seaplane scheduled and scenic flight. Visit here.

The Cessna Grand Caravan 208B – EX – Our seaplane model

Imagine flying in a brand new seaplane over the beautiful terrain and magnificent seascape surrounding Hanoi and Halong Bay, Vietnam. To see the lively streets of city life merge into the endless green vegetation of the countryside and finally open up onto the tranquil waters of the sea.

Our seaplane model
Hai Au Aviation

From 150 feet above sea level, you can experience some of the most astounding sights of Vietnam as you fly above in one of only three cutting edge seaplanes available. Hai Au Aviation boasts the only seaplane service in Vietnam. It is a unique opportunity to have a bird’s eye view of the picturesque scenery.


Hai Au Aviation Seaplanes are state-of-the-art aerial wonders. The company owns and operates three Cessna Grand Caravan 208B – EX amphibian aircrafts. The Textron Group (USA) manufactured and released the seaplane model in 2014.

These brand new seaplanes meet all international safety standards and are considered the safest single-engine aircrafts in the world. In addition, they have the recognition as the safest single-engine aircrafts to land on water and meet the standard requirements of the FAA (Federal Aeronautics Associations), ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization) and CAAV (Civil Aviation Authority Vietnam). You will have no safety fears or concerns when flying in a Hai Au Aviation seaplane.


Clyde Cessna was one of the first American aviators and aircraft designers. In June 1911, Clyde first built and flew his very own aircraft. Eventually, he found a business partner in Victor Roos and created the Cessna-Roos Aircraft Company which quickly morphed into the Cessna Aircraft company. Clyde had many business ups and downs over the years, collapsing under the weight of the Depression but then rebuilding business when planes become more popular after World War 1.

Clyde’s innovation and technical skills created a legacy that culminated in a reputable aviation empire now parented by the Textron Company. The headquarters is in Wichita, Kansas and continues to produce a variety of Cessna models, the Cessna Grand Caravan 208B – EX one of its most reliable.


seaplane modelThe Cessna Grand Caravan is a compact model with a comfortable interior. As you approach the seaplane, you will notice that it is mainly white with several windows and the Hai Au Aviation trademark in blue and green. They are remarkably small but impressive looking vehicles. Once inside the plane, the 12 sleek leather seats allow you to sit back and relax as you soar through the clouds. Each seat is next to a window so you can easily drink in the glittering panoramas.

The plane capacity is 14 people total, including two seats for pilots and 12 seats for guests. Cabin baggage is maximum 7 kg and the dimensions should be no larger than 56cm x 36cm x 23cm. This is so that you can easily transport personal belongings but without the discomfort of excess baggage. The dimensions of the cabin are:

  • Height 54 in (1.37 m)
  • Length 16 ft 9 in (5.10 m)
  • Width 64 in (1.63 m).

You will be quite cozy but incredibly safe and comfortable in these flying machines.


For a more technical understanding of how this seaplane model work, it is important to look at the specifications involved. It is certainly a compact aircraft with abundant power.


  • The Cessna Grand Caravan 208B – EX is 41 ft 7 in (12.67 m) in length and 15 ft 1 in (4.60 m) in height.
  • The wingspan is 52 ft 1 in (15.87 m) with a wing area of 279 sq ft (25.96 sq m).
  • The maximum cruise speed is 195 ktas (361 km/h) with a maximum range of Maximum Range 964 nm (1,785 km).
  • It takes 2,160 ft (658 m) to take off and 1,871 ft (570 m) to land.


The Cessna Grand Caravan was built to maneuver “challenging missions, high payloads and short, rough runways.”


Safety and Maintenance is of the utmost importance to Hai Au Aviation. Only highly experienced and certified engineers and mechanics are allowed to do work on the seaplanes. Each plane is serviced at the international standard facilities in Tan Son Nhat and Noi Bai airports. Major maintenance checks take place at Cessna facilities in Singapore and all maintenance routines follow strict FAA standards.

In terms of safety, Hai Au Aviation seaplanes are in full compliance with CAAV and Ministry of Transport requirements. They are also always coordinating with relevant authorities while in the air, on the ground or in the water. No Hai Au Aviation seaplane operates outside of Vietnamese transport authority.


Once you have decided to take a Hai Au Aviation seaplane, you can choose from among many different flight options.

  • There are daily scheduled flights that will take you between Hanoi and Halong Bay at only a fraction of the time it would take to travel by land.
  • You can opt to book a 25-minute sightseeing tour and marvel at the beautiful vistas from an amazing perspective.
  • For the most luxurious private travel experience, book the Hai Au Aviation seaplane private charter services.

By choosing to fly in a Cessna Grand Caravan 208B- EX you are eliminating wasted time and focusing on the joy of your trip. The comfortable cabins, excellent safety and maintenance standards, and sheer speed of the trip make it the ideal way to travel around Vietnam.

Bucket List: Halong Bay places you must visit

điểm du lịch Hạ Long 2017
As one of the recognized current Natural Wonders of the world through UNESCO, you know that Halong Bay must be on your bucket list of places you must see, but what else is there to do in this area?

Halong Bay has so much to offer when you come for a visit that you’ll want to know all the best places to check out for all the activities that you want to enjoy.

Let’s go over several of the fun activities you can take part in during your stay and the best places to do them. Don’t miss out on anything during your trip. This easy to follow guide is just all Halong Bay places for you to do your trip planning.



Halong bay tour Halong Bay places

Cat Ong Island

There are numerous spots around Halong Bay that are perfect for swimming and other water activities. One of the beaches that are off the beaten path is on Cat Ong which is a smaller island by Cat Ba.

It’s a bit more secluded as it features only the Ocean Tours resort. On this sandy beach, you’ll find plenty of seashells and the ability to get back to nature.  The water is the perfect temperature and just right for swimming. Plus, the resort offers kayaks to explore the area.

Titop Island

Ti Top Island is another beach available in the bay where you can enjoy swimming and other water activities. This small beach offers a nice place to get in the water along with all the other great activities available in the area, but you may find that this area can be rather crowded as many of the tours stop here. Titop Island is often included in 2D1N cruise tour.

Lan Ha Bay

Lan Ha Bay is another spot with beautiful beaches that you’ll want to spend all day at playing in the calm and emerald clear waters. This is a great place to go swimming or play under the waves while scuba diving with rented equipment.

No matter if you decide to sunbathe or relax in the water, this is one of the best places to do that in Halong Bay. However, to visit Lan Ha Bay, you have to arrange the transport and accommodation on your own because tours to Lan Ha are not so popular.

Places to visit in Halong placesCat Ba Island

You can’t go wrong in visiting Cat Ba Island for swimming and other water activities. There are several beaches on the island where you can get your water adventures started.

Imagine being able to sunbathe on a beautiful white sandy beach while getting to see an exquisite backdrop of mountain cliffs rising out of the water. Cat Ba  Island is also famous for adventurous activities such as: climbing to Hon Nghieng, trekking in the national park, deep water solo (DWS),…


If you’re looking to experience local culture, there are a few areas you can check out during your trip to Halong Bay.  One of the first spots that you should consider visiting is one of the floating villages that dot Halong Bay.

You can take a trip out to several of these villages to see how the villagers go about their daily lives and experience what this type of lifestyle is like.  Many of these villages earn a living by fishing and by having visitors come to see what life is like on a floating city.

Another aspect of local culture that can help to connect you to the spirit of Vietnam is visiting one of the many historic Buddhist temples around Halong Bay. One excellent choice is Cua Ong Temple.

This can be a very popular tourist destination as it offers a majestic temple with a natural backdrop that is completely breathtaking. If you’re lucky enough to visit during the spring, you may even get to experience a festival where you can witness many culturally significant events.


Sun World Halong Park 

Places to visit in Halong placesOne of the top spots for entertainment while visiting Halong Bay is Sun World Ha Long Park. This amusement park is sure to attract visitors seeking entertainment from children to those that are young-at-heart.

There is a rollercoaster, arcade filled with games, Zen garden, and more to be explored. This top spot is so wonderful that it just so happens to be featured in the sightseeing section, as well.

The entrance fee is 300.000VNĐ/ adult.

Quang Ninh Museum

If you’re looking for more educational entertainment in Halong Bay, you can’t go wrong with a visit to the Quang Ninh Museum. Visitors to this museum rave about the modern displays that thoroughly discuss their chosen topic, and most can’t get over how amazingly fun the whole museum happens to be.

You can find information on natural history, Vietnam, and so many more topics. Just be sure that you check the time before visiting as they do close during the middle of the day for lunch.

Opening time: 8:00- 11:30 am; 1:30 – 5:00 pm (from Tuesday to Sunday)

Price: 10.000 – 30.000 VNĐ/person

Carnaval Halong

Depending on the time of your trip, you’re going to want to include time for the local carnival.  Carnaval Halong is a huge draw for many visitors from around the area to around the world.

You won’t want to miss the opening ceremony and the different performances that can be seen around you on the street and the stage. The whole Carnaval Halong wouldn’t be complete without some eye-popping fireworks to view in the night sky. Be ready to be immersed in fun.

The Carnaval is usually held in April – May each year.


Titop Island

Ti Top Island is not only on the list for swimming, but it also offers a splendid 360-degree view of the bay thanks to the lookout platform. Keep in mind that this platform is reached by climbing 400 stairs, so be ready for a workout to earn that view.

Plus, the path is a bit narrow and steep, so be sure that you take your time as you climb. Once you arrive at the top of the platform and can look around, you’ll be glad that you persevered through all of those steps.

This is one stop that you’ll want to use your camera, and if it has panoramic picture taking features, you’re going to have one amazing picture to show off to your friends and family. Places to visit in Halong places

Queen Cable Car

Sun World Ha Long Park is another great destination when you’re looking for sightseeing in Halong Bay.

The cable car and Ferris wheel available at this amusement park is another excellent way to get a bird’s eye view of the area, and this is perfect for those members of your group that probably won’t be able to make it up the 400 or so stairs at Ti Top Island.  This is a great experience during the day or at night.

The opening hour is 3:00 – 8:00 p.m on weekdays and 10:00 – 8:00 pm on weekend.

Sightseeing by Seaplane

Halong Bay from aboveA final idea when it comes to the top spots for sightseeing in Halong Bay is by taking a tour that will really give you the bird’s eye experience of your lifetime. Experiencing a seaplane tour will give you an amazing day.

You’ll be able to ride in a seaplane which earns you instant bragging rights all on its own, but you’ll also get a chance to see all over the bay area from the seat of the plane.

This provides yet another perfect picture taking the opportunity during your stay. You might even run out of room on your SD card with all of the gorgeous pictures you will take.

The price is $99/ person for scenic flight and from $175/ person for one-way flight.


There are a huge number of caves in Halong Bay that deserve your attention during your vacation to the area. One of the top caves is the Virgin Cave, where legend has it that a beautiful and young, but very poor fisherman’s daughter fled to this cave to escape being made to marry a man greatly her senior that held debts over the family’s head.

This legend has it that she turned to stone during her exile to his cave. Some say that you can still hear her screaming when the wind blows around the cliffs.

Caving in Halong placesSung Sot cave is another great spot to visit during your stay. This cave earned its name as it’s rather amazing to come across such huge spaces after being in very narrow paths to get to it. The area around this grotto is gorgeous. It is lush with native trees and foliage and will provide shade on your way into the cave.

Places to visit in Halong placesNo matter which cave you visit, you’re going to want to try to experience cave dining.  Many of the tour groups will offer this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity where you’re able to sit inside of one of the beautiful caves along Halong Bay and enjoy a nice meal. It’s the perfect way to relax after a day of exploring.


Cat Ba Island

Halong Bay isn’t with its own hiking and adventures ready for those that are a little more into extreme sports than sitting on the beach sunbathing all day long. One of the best places to hike in this area is on Cat Ba Island.

Not only does this island offer great beaches, but the hiking here is perfect. You can explore all of the natural beauty, and may even spot some of the resident wildlife that calls this area home. Better make sure that you’ve brought your hiking boots along for your journey.

Lan Ha Bay

You can even go rock climbing at Lan Ha Bay. Not only does it offer a picture-perfect beach setting for your time visiting the area, but you can practice your rock climbing skills in the area, as well. This is sure to give you a lovely view of the area while helping you get some adventure in your life.

Bai Tho Mountain

Places to visit in Halong places

Mountain climbing is another adventure experience that you won’t want to miss while visiting the area. Bai Tho Mountain is 200m height.

You’ll be able to climb up to the top of the mountain to see some of the best natural views available of the area, it takes about 30 minutes. Bai Tho Mountain is a perfect spot for watching sunrise and sunset.

To get to Bai Tho Mountain, you could follow Hang Noi street until reaching the Nam Phong cafe. From here, you will need to ask local for the direction because it will be a little complex. Don’t worry, they are all very friendly and willing to help.

Ban Sen Island

One final area to hike while visiting the Halong Bay area is Ban Sen Island which takes about an hour to get there by cano.

This island is very thickly forested, and easy to feel as though you’ve stepped back in time when the world was still more natural than human-made.

This is a slice of paradise for hikers with the very peaceful experience it provides. You can even hire a guide that can tell you all about this area. This is one thing to do if you’re looking to get away from it all.


In Halong Bay itself, there are two different bars that you can enjoy the nightlife at during your vacation. There’s the Whisky Gallery Bar where you can find plenty of entertainment with a singer or two on staff, attentive staff and great food and drinks.

You can also visit Funky Bar, and soak up the fun ambiance. You can expect to get some great food at decent prices and dance the night away with the great music.

Not your typical nightlife, but if you find that you’re looking for something to do at night, try to take one of the cruises that offer night squid fishing. This is a fun experience that you’ll never get anywhere else.

Depending on when you travel to the area, you may be just in time for squid season where you can see many squids surrounding the boats. Your tour will typically offer you the fishing gear you need, and then, you can catch some squid.  Often, the squids you catch will then be prepared into meals.


Pearl Farm

Shopping spots in Halong Bay placesThere are a few great places to go shopping while in Halong Bay. One of the most unique experiences you can have in this area is when you visit a pearl farm. These farms help to cultivate the pearls that are found in the oysters by painstakingly seeding them and allowing the pearls to grow.

This fascinating process is one that you’re able to view by visiting a pearl farm at a floating village. You can even purchase pearls to take home with you. There are many luxury jewelries for you to take home as souvenirs.

Bai Chay Commercial Central and Halong Night Market

You’ll also want to visit the Bai Chay Commercial Center and the Halong Night Market which offers a lot of vendors for finding all of your trinkets and souvenirs to take home with you.

Most of goods selling here are from China with cheap price and you will need to bargain if you really want to buy anything.

These Halong Bay places to visit should be on the top of your list. You’ll have so much to do on your itinerary that it can be hard to decide which you want to do first! 

Make a list of all of the things you and your family and friends want to experience while on your vacation to Halong Bay to make sure that everyone gets a chance to do what he or she has been dreaming about doing.


Ready to plan your trip to Halong Bay?  Be sure to check out our packages that feature many of the places and activities on your must experience list. Visit Hai Au Aviation for more.

Bucket List: Halong Bay Activities you can’t miss

It’s time to start checking items off of your bucket list in the upcoming year.  While taking your trip to Vietnam in 2019, there are plenty of Halong Bay activities that you can do that will perfect for your bucket list of everything you want to do in your life.

There’s plenty of natural beauty to leave you awestruck whether you’re cruising around the bay in an authentic Chinese Junk or flying high in the sky on an honest-to-goodness seaplane.

There are plenty of educational experiences that will continue to widen your horizons from being able to visit gorgeous temples to visiting a delightful museum. Adventure and excitement await you on your next trip to Vietnam’s jewel, Halong Bay.


SunWorld Halong Bay Park just recently opened, and this combination theme and water park are still being built, but there’s already plenty of fun waiting to be had on your visit. This is great for all ages with the games, rides, and the overall experience.

One experience that’s highly recommended is the beautiful Zen garden that’s ready for a peaceful and relaxing day.  Ticket prices and crowds will probably differ based on the part of the year of your visit, and how far along the redevelopment phase happens to be.

The entrance fee of Halong Park includes Sunwheel, Queen Cable, and Zen Garden is 300.000VNĐ (approximately $13.5)


The SunWheel is available in SunWorld Halong Park, but it’s so special that it deserves to earn its own particular slot on this list of must see activities. The SunWheel offers a stunning visual view of Halong Bay.

The height of this Ferris wheel is what makes it so wonderful as you can see for miles. With an impressive height, up to 215m over sea level, the Sun Wheel is one of the largest rotation in Vietnam, the rest is located in the Asia Park (Da Nang City).

Have fun in Halong Bay Halong Bay activities
Highlights Halong Halong Bay activities you can’t miss

You may want to ride this amazing wheel twice to get the full effect of the view.  Try riding it once during the day where you’re really able to see all around you, and then ride it again at night where the dark night sky is the perfect backdrop to the lights of the area.  Romance will definitely be in the air for this adventure.

Queen Cable Cab

Have fun in Halong Bay Halong Bay activities
This is the only way to go to Sunworld Halong Park

The Queen Cable Cab is another attraction within SunWorld Halong Bay Park that shouldn’t just be lumped in with the theme park. It’s a major attraction that will have you grabbing your camera and saying wow.

The view from the cable car is going to be amazing as you travel along the cable, and can’t be mimicked by any other type of experience. Children will love the chance to ride in such a unique vehicle while riding in the sky. All ages will be fans of this experience.


Have fun in Halong Bay Halong Bay activities
Highlights Halong Halong Bay activities you can’t miss

You cannot visit one of the most beautiful bays in the world, Halong Bay, without taking some time to enjoy the water.  You’ll be able to have the opportunity to explore the bay on a kayak or bamboo canoe if you have interest in being able to paddle around finding the most picturesque views of the surrounding area.

You’re going to want to make sure that you bring along a waterproof disposable camera that you can put around your neck to ensure that you get the best shots of your amazing water journey.

There are several ways that you can enjoy this activity during your holiday to the area.  Many of the different tours and cruises offer this as an included activity that you can enjoy the rest of your tour group during your package.

You can also book these activities as an all-day adventure rather than just as an add-on to another package. You’ll be under the watchful eye of your tour operator, so you can feel comfortable in exploring the surrounding area. However, the government has just announced Kayaking is banned in Halong Bay due to environment polluted.


water sport in Halong Halong Bay activities
Highlights Halong Halong Bay activities you can’t miss

The water fun doesn’t have to end with Halong Bay activities that take place on the water, but you can also go into the water. Lan Ha Bay is a picturesque area that offers pristine beaches to play the day away during a fun tour or just getting to swim.

One of the fun companies that offer the kayaking experience also has other adventures available for you to enjoy.

Scuba-diving in Lan Ha Bay, Halong Bay, and other bodies of water in the surrounding area is going to be some of the best scuba-diving you’ve done in your life. The beautiful waters and abundance of wildlife are sure to make this one of your favorite dive sites in your entire life.

A quick Google search of images gives you just a glimpse of what you can expect. Snorkeling is just right for families that want to make a splash, but not everyone is ready for full-blown scuba-diving.

Snorkeling is a fun way to view under the water to see the wildlife and makes for a great teachable moment for the importance of taking care of the world’s water.

For the really adventurous wanting to try something new, you may want to try out paddle boarding to see what the fuss is all about. This can be a very fun way to see the bay and play in the sunshine.


Being out on the water is not for everyone, and maybe you’d prefer to enjoy the view of the bay from the comfort of a window seat in a plane. There could be nothing more fun and adventurous than getting to a 25-minute ride in seaplane for a fun up-in-the-air tour of Halong Bay.

You’ll get a unique view of the area that’s unparallel from any other activity that you can enjoy. When you combine that unique view with the excitement of being able to ride in a real seaplane with a water landing it’s a spectacular jewel to place in your vacation crown. This is a memory that cannot be topped by the sheer uniqueness it adds to your trip.


Things to try in Halong Halong Bay activities
Highlights Halong Halong Bay activities you can’t miss

Tours aren’t just available to explore the bay waters and surrounding bodies of water. You can also get hiking tours that will allow you to trek around the countryside getting to see the beauty of the land in Cat Ba National Park.

You can see native animals, meet people, and explore. Plus, you can add in some fun activities while you’re exploring, such as trying traditional Vietnamese cuisine or getting to play in the water of the Bay which happens to be a perfect way to cool off after your journeys.


things to try in Halong Halong Bay activities
Highlights Halong Halong Bay activities you can’t miss

If you’re looking for a bit of insight into a simpler life and time, then, taking one of the tours to a floating village is a must see for you. These floating villages are homes that are moored together or close to each other among the islands in the waters of the bay.

The people that live in these villages are fishermen, and often, they have some items for sale. If you’re looking for a peaceful and relaxing boat ride, this may be just what you need for your time in Halong Bay. This is usually included in itinerary if you book a cruise for at least 2D1N.


It’s said that Halong Bay’s islands were created by a mighty dragon that adorned the water by spitting out jewels or so the legend says. This legend is so poetic and helps to allude to some of the treasures that can be found in the bay.

A floating village called the Pearl Farm is a must visit the site for anyone that loves jewelry or the miracle that nature can create such beauty out of nothing more than sand, a piece of the mantle, or pig toe.

You’re able to visit the pearl farm to learn how to produce the pearls, see the farm, visit the museum, and even buy a pearl or two to take home.


Things to try in Halong Halong Bay activities
Highlights Halong- Hanoi to Halong Bay activities you can’t miss

For the more adventurous and active tourists looking to burn some energy and explore the natural world in the area, there is the opportunity to climb Bai Tho Mountain. This climb is quite easy, but it can get steep in some spots on misty days.

You may wonder why to bother if it’s a rough climb, but the reward at the end of the hike is the amazing view of Halong Bay from the top of the mountain, especially for sunrise and sunset. Yet another camera moment that will take your friends’ breaths away when you get home.


There are a huge number of cruises that you can enjoy while visiting the Halong Bay area.  When you have a bay that is a global treasure, it’s not hard to see why you’d have so many businesses that want to help visitors see it in the best light.

The overnight cruise is one thing that you need to add to your itinerary if possible, and if you can, it’s great to stay on the longer cruises. If you cannot entertain an overnight cruise or longer, you should at least consider the day long excursions.

Halong Bay activities
Highlights Halong Halong Bay activities you can’t miss

An overnight cruise is a perfect addition to your vacation because you’ll get to explore the Bay on a lovely boat, maybe even an authentic Chinese junk, and if you try a luxury cruise, you’ll feel as though you’re in five-star hotel heaven.

Each cruise ship offers a different itinerary of things to do while you’re on the ship. Some may offer trips to the caves in the area; others may take you to a pearl farm, you may be able to go kayaking, or fishing, or more. Try to find a cruise that offers the variety of activities you’ll enjoy.


Things to try in Halong Halong Bay activities
Highlights Halong Halong Bay activities you can’t miss

There are numerous Buddhist temples to visit when in the Halong Bay area. One that is highly recommended is Yen Tu Pagoda. The cultural significance of the temples and the peace that they bring no matter your religious leanings make these a welcome respite during a busy trip. There is cable cab that takes you to the temple.

Cable working time: 7:00 – 6:00 pm

Price: 120.000 VNĐ/ way


Things to try in Halong Halong Bay activities
Highlights Halong Halong Bay activities you can’t miss

When visiting the area, you have to make time to visit the Quang Ninh Museum. You and your party will be able to learn about natural history, the country of Vietnam, and the natural world.

There are many rave reviews that make it easy to see why people are willing to wait around to enter this modern museum even though it closes for lunch every day for two hours before it reopens later in the afternoon.

The quality of the displays available will strongly impress you. You’ll be able to sneak a bit of education into your vacation, and your children probably won’t even notice because they’ll be having so much fun learning.

Opening time: 8a.m – 5p.m (Everyday except Monday)

Ticket fee: 30.000 VNĐ/ person


A final Halong Bay activities that you don’t want to miss is the shopping. Of course, there’s having to find beautiful and lovely souvenirs to bring home to your family and friends, but you also have to do a little shopping for yourself.

When it comes to shopping experiences, you cannot skip out on visiting the Halong Night Market. This market is located in Marine Plaza (Hung Thang Ward, Ha Long City). Besides shopping, there are also cinema, billard, bowling game and kid center. One thing to keep in mind when visiting this market is that you’ll need to have cash on hand for your purchases.

Shopping in Halong Halong Bay activities
Highlights Halong Halong Bay activities you can’t miss

After reading this article, you may have found a few things that you need to add to your bucket list. As you can see you’ll have plenty of wonderful opportunities for things to do when visiting the Halong Bay area.

This is a vacation destination that’s perfect for couples exploring the world together, families broadening their horizons, and friends looking for that next memorable moment. It’s well past time to start planning your upcoming vacation to the region.

If you only have limited time for Halong Bay, you probably would not want to miss Top 4 things to do in Halong Bay


Need some help with your planning? Check out what we have to offer when it comes to packages at Hai Au Aviation. Have questions? We’re standing by ready to help you with your upcoming vacation planning.


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