Ha Long Bay

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Ha Long Bay is a beautiful area with 1969 limestone islands jutting imposingly upon the skyline. Unfortunately the place is a tourist trap and the unique panorama is spoilt by a tremendous amount of "junks" which are in fact slimly disguised tourist boats that bear no resemblance to the authentic Chinese sailing vessels of the same name. These diesel-powered floating money-makers careen about the bay with casual indifference to safety as they bump and crunch against each other in a frenzy to drop their fares onto the obligatory island or floating shop before depositing the harried passengers back at Halong Bay dock feeling like they've been cheated out of their Dong, even if that isn't particularly true. The romantic setting is forever spoilt by the cattle-market mentality. Still... nice scenery. Visitors to Ha Long Bay must purchase a ticket (30,000 dong) from the Ha Long Bay management department, which gives the option of following one of two routes: Thien Cung Grotto, Dau Go Cave, and other sites (excluding Sung Sot Cave). Sung Sot Cave and other sites (excluding Thien Cung Grotto and Dau Go Cave).