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“Peaceful and beautiful island”
Review of Cat Ba Island

Cat Ba Island
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Lan Ha Bay and Viet Hai Village Trekking and Kayaking Day Trip from Cat Ba...
Ranked #2 of 33 things to do in Cat Ba
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 attraction reviews
“Peaceful and beautiful island”
Reviewed February 24, 2014

We spent 2 nights here with the hope for swimming and trekking. It's really lovely island, not busy. We did trek in the forest. But, it's too cold for us to swim at nice beach; so just took pictures and looked it.
We did ride bike around island, this is a good activity which we loved; recommend here for a couple and friends.

Visited January 2014
Thank John S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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831 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Hebrew first
  • Indonesian first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Vietnamese first
  • Any
English first
Heilbronn, Germany
Level Contributor
12 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Great nature”
Reviewed February 23, 2014

National park is great. Also boot trip and kayaking. Better to book there, a lot of different options are offered and price will go down when more pepole join.

Visited February 2014
Thank Diana P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
43 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“beautiful island”
Reviewed February 16, 2014

We spent a couple of nights here and although the weather was cold and overcast it is easy to see how lovely this place is in the sunshine. We hired mopeds and explored a bit more than we probably would have done had the weather been better and it was well worth doing. Visit the hospital cave is fascinating and gives a real insight into the resilience of the Vietnamise people. One mistake we made was booking a so called trip around halong bay and back to Hanoi, was a complete waste of time and money.

Visited February 2014
Thank sw_toluca
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charlottesville, Virginia
Level Contributor
67 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 90 helpful votes
“Good launch pad for a budget, DIY adventure”
Reviewed February 14, 2014

We stayed on Cat Ba for two nights, and while there will never be a rest to someone trying to sell you a tour of anything, Cat Ba is a good place for folks that like to go it alone. I recommend renting a motorbike or bicycle and exploring the island, doing some hiking, etc. (grab a doner kebab sandwich from the cart in town and few beers, and you've got a picnic). If you're there in decently clear weather, it's a must to see the area from the water. We've heard very good things and very bad things about doing an overnight boat tour - we opted to forgo it and not spend the $$. Instead, we rented a double kayak for $25 from Blue Swimmer Adventures and paddled ourselves around Lan Ha Bay. It was a blast, though I will warn that parts of the bay are dirty, and the kayak is not in the best shape. Overall, we enjoyed our stay on this sleepy island and were glad we made time to visit. We were there during Tet (January), which may have been the reason for the quiet. We've heard this place gets positively packed in the summer months, especially August. I'm not sure it would be so appealing then.

Visited January 2014
1 Thank WanderrlustAdv
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Bad tour but good hiking through ngu lam”
Reviewed February 4, 2014

We booked a tour with Ha Bihn Cruises for a day trip to cat ba island (was the only tour company open in halong as it is tet holiday). but if any one is thinking about booking with them do not do it, cost us 200 USD between two people and they put us in a tiny little tinny with a small 40HP engine tech screwed into the back of it. they then took us over to cat ba island where we had a private car waiting for us, he then took us through to the cat ba national park.
The trek to ngu lam peak is not for the light hearted although greatly recommended. if you do do it I highly recommend hiring the tour guide at the national park (he is amazing) cost us 250K dong to hire him (on top of the tour price) it is then about a 1 HR trek to the top of the peak and a one hour trek back down. plus the time at the top taking photos (we got up and down with 15 mins at the top in approx. 1.5 hours) the tour guide then took us into his home where we bought some nice cold water off of him. he offered us to go on the cave tour for an extra 110k although we were on a tight schedule with this so called tour. the private car took us into cat ba down and dropped us at a tiny little shop for some so called lunch (which was a plate of spring rolls a soup and a little bowl of chips) included in the price of the tour although we specifically said we didn't want it and the lady tried making us pay an extra 300k for not wanting it. (told her t shove it). after this we walked out the restaurant to find the private car and he had disappeared to which the lady in the restaurant told us he left and said we need to meet him back here at 3.5 hours. (now what the hell to do in cat ba for 3.5 hours?) we managed to locate the beach for a snooze then went back to the car and got taken back to the main land in the tiny little dingy.

To sum up my review
- Great trek to ngu lam peak would def do again.
- Never book with ha bihn cruises
- Don't pay 200 usd for a tour when its 80 USD for a boat, private car when you arrive and a return trip.

Visited February 2014
3 Thank scott p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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