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15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
We booked an independent trip to Hanoi with a Vietnamese company and it was very good. The driver collected us just outside the port and we picked up the guide as we entered Hanoi. He was excellent and varied the itinerary to accommodate ... Read More
We booked an independent trip to Hanoi with a Vietnamese company and it was very good. The driver collected us just outside the port and we picked up the guide as we entered Hanoi. He was excellent and varied the itinerary to accommodate our requests. Read Less
16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Beautiful destination. Again, we joined an organized boat tour through Cruise Critic to see Halong Bay up close, including one of the caves with a huge chamber and interesting rock formations.
Beautiful destination. Again, we joined an organized boat tour through Cruise Critic to see Halong Bay up close, including one of the caves with a huge chamber and interesting rock formations. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Enjoyed this. Transferred to a junk where we had a Vietnamese fish meal. Sailed through the amazing Unesco site to the caves. Interesting visit to the caves then sailed back to the ship.
Enjoyed this. Transferred to a junk where we had a Vietnamese fish meal. Sailed through the amazing Unesco site to the caves. Interesting visit to the caves then sailed back to the ship. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2018
The tour was good. But the tour guide rushing us to get back. Then when we were at the cruise ship, she said we still had 1 hour to spend. We could go elsewhere. By that time, people just wanted to get back to the ship and said no.
The tour was good. But the tour guide rushing us to get back. Then when we were at the cruise ship, she said we still had 1 hour to spend. We could go elsewhere. By that time, people just wanted to get back to the ship and said no. Read Less
17 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
Hanoi is just too far away for a visit. Once the new highway is finished, it will be a far easier trip. We opted for two tours one on UNESCO World Heritage's Halong Bay, surely one the most camera ready sights in the world. The ... Read More
Hanoi is just too far away for a visit. Once the new highway is finished, it will be a far easier trip. We opted for two tours one on UNESCO World Heritage's Halong Bay, surely one the most camera ready sights in the world. The next day we went to a Buddhist monastery outside Halong City where we took part (voluntarily) in Meditation session. Unforgettable. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
2 private excursions. First one to Yen Tu temple and surrounding countryside. Second one a half day Halong Bay junk cruise. Excellent, especially as the sun came out and the haze cleared somewhat.
2 private excursions. First one to Yen Tu temple and surrounding countryside. Second one a half day Halong Bay junk cruise. Excellent, especially as the sun came out and the haze cleared somewhat. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
We had 1.5 days in Halong Bay. We had to tender to land. We took a ship-provided shore excursion to Hanoi the first full day. Although it's only 115 miles away, due to road conditions, it takes 4 hours each way. The bus stops at a ... Read More
We had 1.5 days in Halong Bay. We had to tender to land. We took a ship-provided shore excursion to Hanoi the first full day. Although it's only 115 miles away, due to road conditions, it takes 4 hours each way. The bus stops at a hospitality center on the way there and back with decent bathrooms and a large handicraft and convenience store. Our excursion included a walking tour of the old quarter, which we found most interesting. Hanoi is a large city--8 million people, 4 million motorbikes--and felt frenetic. We had lunch at a nice hotel with a variety of dishes served family style. Afterward, we went to a temple for Confucius and the Ho Chi Minh complex to see the exterior of the mausoleum, a couple of his houses, and the one-pillar pagada. Then back on the bus for another 4 hours. We arrived after the tenders were supposed to have stopped for the night, but they continued until all the buses were back. We met up for our tour at 7:30am, got on the bus at 8am, to Hanoi by 12pm, tour for 5.5 hrs, 4 hours back to Halong Bay, tender back to ship after 10pm. A LONG Day. The ship left port at 1pm on the second day in port. We did a ship-arranged 1/2-day boat tour of Halong Bay as we didn't feel we would make it back in time if we booked it on our own. However, if doing it on a full day, it would be very easy to tender ashore and book separately, and probably less expensively. The tour we did book was good. The junk boat pulled right up to the ship and then took us to a couple of caves. We toured one as a group and the second cave was optional. Then the boat piloted through part of the bay, between and around different rock "islands", and back to the boat. Both days in Hanoi and Halong Bay were cooler than normal for this time of year so we had to wear three light layers of clothing. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
We picked a tour with an independent operator (www.smiletoursvietnam.com) and did the Halong Bay Island tour for 8 hours, viewing multi-shaped rocks and visiting the Sung Sot cave. We had lunch on the boat (it was great !). In the ... Read More
We picked a tour with an independent operator (www.smiletoursvietnam.com) and did the Halong Bay Island tour for 8 hours, viewing multi-shaped rocks and visiting the Sung Sot cave. We had lunch on the boat (it was great !). In the afternoon, we continued the cruise passing by a fishing village,Tortoise island, Man's head island, Bo Nau cave, bamboo sampan row to Luon cave. In total, it was an awsome experience and 8 hrs tour versus de 5 hrs tour the ship offered. The price was also good (110 USD for 2 persons, compared to 298 USD - the ship's price) Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We opted for the Hanoi excusion, which I am so glad we did. It was a long transfer, 3 1/2 hours each way, but well worth it. I have been to HaLong in the past, and took the book cruise of the bay, as well as the cave tour...and I felt it ... Read More
We opted for the Hanoi excusion, which I am so glad we did. It was a long transfer, 3 1/2 hours each way, but well worth it. I have been to HaLong in the past, and took the book cruise of the bay, as well as the cave tour...and I felt it was beautiful. It would be very nice if the boat docked over night in HaLong so passengers could experience both Hanoi and HaLong harbor. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We got together with other folks from Cruise Critic to take a boat tour to Ha Long Bay and the Caves. We had a fantastic seafood lunch on board. It was a long, full day. We actually had very cold weather this day, so be prepared with ... Read More
We got together with other folks from Cruise Critic to take a boat tour to Ha Long Bay and the Caves. We had a fantastic seafood lunch on board. It was a long, full day. We actually had very cold weather this day, so be prepared with your wardrobe. We weren't and only had very lightweight jackets. Being on the water made it even colder. This is beautiful but a very busy waterway. Boats jockeying for position is eye opening. Things are different here, that's for sure! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
Touring through Halong Bay on a boat, lunch provided.
Touring through Halong Bay on a boat, lunch provided. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2017
The shore excursion staff on Azamara inadvertently retained our shore excursion tickets - this caused a problem when boarding our coach to the marina and I had to sign a statement to say I had “lost” them! We literally had to “walk ... Read More
The shore excursion staff on Azamara inadvertently retained our shore excursion tickets - this caused a problem when boarding our coach to the marina and I had to sign a statement to say I had “lost” them! We literally had to “walk the plank” to board a rather dilapidated boat for our 3 hour cruise. We sat on the boat for half an hour waiting for the Captain ( our guide said there was a hold up with the paperwork) when we got to the island to visit the caves we only had time to visit the first cave (which was very good) because of the delays. Our guide assured us it wasn’t worth the effort to get to the second cave -we were told by other passengers it was very good. We then seemed to be in a race with one of the other boats who completely blocked our view of the fishing village as we passed between two islands. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2017
Boat trip too long. Visit to caves was fascinating but “hundreds” of steps that you are not warned about.
Boat trip too long. Visit to caves was fascinating but “hundreds” of steps that you are not warned about. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
We have booked a scenic water plane flight on the first day which is a life time experience and the secind day a full day cruise to BAI TU LONG BAY with a visit of a floating village, a pearl farm, cave visit and a very tasty lunch on ... Read More
We have booked a scenic water plane flight on the first day which is a life time experience and the secind day a full day cruise to BAI TU LONG BAY with a visit of a floating village, a pearl farm, cave visit and a very tasty lunch on board! Read Less
Sail Date: December 2017
The sail into port is stunning but it’s still worth doing a small boat tour to get closer and also see the Heavenly Caves which are beautiful and not nearly as strenuous as they make out. We took the afternoon trip which sailed out in ... Read More
The sail into port is stunning but it’s still worth doing a small boat tour to get closer and also see the Heavenly Caves which are beautiful and not nearly as strenuous as they make out. We took the afternoon trip which sailed out in daylight, gave us gorgeous sunset photos and returned to the port in darkness. Best of both worlds. Read Less

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