Halong bay was the first time we had ever seen limestone karsts protruding from the sea, it reminded me of scenes from “The Beach”.
We took the ferry through Halong bay to Cat Ba and stayed there for the night, picking up a day tour of Halong the next day.
The boat tour wiggled it’s way through some of the 300 rocky but green islets and dropped us off to do some kayaking and snorkelling. The area supports approximately a thousand fishermen and it was interesting seeing the families of the fish farmers living on the floating wooden platforms. The islets are beautiful but unfortunately the water is polluted so there’s very little marine life and living coral is non-existent.
Our last stop of the day was monkey island. The monkeys didn’t like the tourists very much. Twice when we were there we saw monkeys chasing tourists along the beach much to the surprise of the tourists. It was obvious it was going to happen though because people were crowding round then and getting extremely close to take photos. Luckily no one was hurt.
We had just enough time to climb a rocky path on monkey island to reap views of the bay before being picked up to be taken back to Hanoi.