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Review of Indochina Sails

Indochina Sails
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: What better way to enjoy the spectacular scenery of this UNESCO World Heritage Site than on board an Indochina Sails or Valentine Junk! With over a decade of hosting international guests on the tranquil waters of Halong Bay, Indochina Sails is proud to be one of luxury cruise teams in the Halong Bay.
Belo Horizonte, MG
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed January 20, 2014

Above of my expectations! The guide, the food, the views, the boat, etc. Everything was really amazing!

Visited January 2014
1 Thank GuilhermeAlvisi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,001 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
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English first
Redmond, Washington, United States
1 review
“Great cruise”
Reviewed January 17, 2014

We spent three days/two nights with Indochina Sails. We got to visit the Halong Bay area. We visited Titop Island, fishing village, Pearl farm, Surprise Cave and even kayaked. The food was great and the Happy Hours were always something I looked forward to. Waking up in the cabin and seeing the sunrise was probably one of my favorite memories.

Visited December 2013
Thank Jesus D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Smithton, Australia
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed January 16, 2014

Sailing on Halong Bay was one of the best things we did with of our time in Vietnam. The cities are so busy and frantic that to get out on the water and relax was total bliss. My son (19 years old) and I did the overnight cruise but in the end were wishing we'd done the 2 night cruise. For us the highlight would have to be seeing the fishing village up close and personal. Indochina Sails were an absolute delight to travel with. The staff were friendly, welcoming and helpful. Our cabin was clean and well maintained. The food was gorgeous and the atmosphere so relaxing. Transport to and from Hanoi was great, even considering the hectic & often hair-raising conditions on Vietnamese roads! Would happily recommend this experience to anyone travelling through Vietnam.

Visited December 2013
1 Thank Lisa B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Level Contributor
159 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 123 helpful votes
“Five Star Service”
Reviewed January 7, 2014

We spent two nights/three days on Valentine Two with two cabins and were wowed when the other of them was vacant. We had five crew attending to our every need and they were just wonderful. The food was delicious and we enjoyed the cooking classes both nights with Vang. The interior of the boat was beautiful and our room truly lovely with a very comfortable bed. The spa bath in the corner of the bathroom provided the final touch.
Ot was worth spending the extra money to book this boat and recommend others do the same. It makes all the difference to a very special trip.

Visited December 2013
3 Thank Halcyontwo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mountain View, California
Level Contributor
14 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Exceptional Service, Exception Boat, with a small caveat...”
Reviewed January 6, 2014

Everything from start to finish was fantastic - starting from pickup and ending at drop off.

We booked the trip with Indochina Sails for a 3 day tour of Ha Long Bay.

Pick Up
We were picked up from our Hanoi hotel on time. There was a total of 8 of us on the shuttle. It was a long ride to Ha Long Bay, with 1 stop at one of those tourist trap shops selling goods made by "disabled" people.

The Boat
The boat is one of the most luxurious boats that I have been on. (I am writing as someone who has done a few junk boat tours, catamarans, yachts, as well as a few Carnival tours. Maybe my standards aren't very high.) The room felt more like a 5 star hotel than a cruise room. The interior had dark wooden paneling and an Asiatic feel to it. The bathroom had a rain shower, marble interior, and all the amenities. Our room came with a gift, some fresh fruit and a complementary small bottle of wine (which we didn't drink.)

The dining area was very classy looking with just enough tables set out for the number of people on board. Every day they alternate who comes on board (so the 2 nighters and the 3 nighters overlap, with new people coming on board every day), so the dining area set up changed to meet the needs.The lounge area is right next to the dining area and was extremely clean and very tastefully decorated.

Top notch. Everyone was extremely friendly and polite. It definitely felt like they had our best interests in mind. The staff always made sure that things were running on schedule. If you were late to any event, they would call you to make sure you were okay.

The staff is also multi-talented - everyone was definitely hands on with all aspects of the cruise. One of the cruise directors (or cruise tour guides... not sure what their titles are) was also cooking omelets for people during breakfast. He also worked with the chef during the food cutting demonstration.

The food was pretty darned good for a cruise ship. The set menu lunch included a wide variety of seafood. It was definitely a high-class meal.

Breakfast came twice - once early in the morning for those that were going to Surprising Cave. This included some pastries, as well as coffee/tea. A second breakfast was served for those leaving from the cruise an hour later. For those visiting the cave, their second breakfast was served later in the morning. The second breakfast was a buffet that included a wide variety of Vietnamese and Western dishes and were quite good. I kept getting bowls of pho because the broth was good.

The only time the meal was mediocre was when we were on the junk boat on day 2 of our 3 day cruise.

Some people were vegetarians or had dining restrictions. The staff did their best to meet all of these dining restrictions and the vegetarians on our boat were happy with what they got.

If you are visiting Ha Long Bay, I would definitely recommend the kayaking. We had the opportunity to sit on bamboo boats, but if you can, I would still prefer kayaking. We also visited the pearl farm, as well as a floating fishing village.

Some optional activities included squid fishing, tai chi well as food decoration cutting.

The one small caveat is that we were later charged with a holiday surcharge to cover the "free drinks" for happy hour from the holiday dinner. I had skipped the dinner since I still had jetlagged and didn't capitalize on the free drinks, so the surcharge of $170 for both my husband and I was not worth it. (He pretty much had 3 drinks and I had none. This means that we paid $170 for 3 drinks, which is a tad bit obscene.) The holiday surcharge probably covered the gift that they gave us (two wooden fishing dolls and some candy), but still does not amount to the $170 additional we paid.

TL;DR Food, service and facilities were stellar. Skip visiting on a holiday because the surcharge isn't worth it.

Visited December 2013
2 Thank enginerdette
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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