We did this tour on a cold and misty day and it was great... The comfort on the boat was terrific and we were blown away with the quality and amount of food that was cooked fresh on board. The there's the bay itself. My wife and I have traveled extensively, and were hoping the bay would be as good as the publicity that promotes it...and it is... Not only did we spend a magical couple of hours cruising between the limestone island, we stopped at a cave complex and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. The tour guide, driver and boat crew were all friendly and informative which contributed to an excellent experience. HOWEVER, it isn't all good... The trip from Hanoi to Halong Bay is about 200k and takes around 3.5 hrs, so the time from pickup to dropoff at the hotel is about 12 hours. 7:30am to 7:30pm... Having said that, the trip cost about $100 each (including lunch) and the Mercedes van that Viator used was comfortable. We also had a comfort stop at very clean facilities both way, so in summary its definitely worth the effort.
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