Yen Ngua Islet
The Yên Ngựa or Saddle Islet lies in Hạ Long Bay, in the centre of the World Heritage Area. Nature has creatively shaped two pieces of stone, one high and one lower, which are linked together to form an imposing rock, looking like a saddle. Boats can go through underneath.
The whole rock resembles a sewing machine. How wonderful to have such a magnificent but elegant “saddle”, jutting some 10 m above the sea surface.
Ga Choi Islet ( Fighting Cocks Islet ).
Ga Choi is situated on the south-west side of Hạ Long Bay, 5 km from the tourist wharf near to Ðỉnh Hương Islet. In a somewhat large expanse of open sea, the island seems to grow up from the bottom of the deep emerald waters. At sunset, the island with the height of over 10 m is bright red and in a somewhat tottery position.
Their tiny legs support heavy bodies, and it appears that one strong wave could throw the two stone blocks into the sea. However, hundreds of millions of years have passed, and the Trống Mái is still there. The image of the island is the logo of Hạ Long Bay and Vietnam Tourism.
Cho Da Islet ( Stone Dogs Islet )
In the itinerary of Thiên Cung – Ðầu Gỗ – Ti Tốp, after visiting Thiên Cung and Ðầu Gỗ, one needs 10 minutes boating to the Chó Ðá Islet or Stone Dog Islet.
Some 8 m up the islet one can figure out a piece of stone in the shape of a dog sitting with its back to the sea, standing guard for the safety of seagoing boats for millions of years.
Dau Nguoi Islet ( Human Head Islet )
From a far, you can see a 25-meter islet, which reminds us of a huge Egyptian head with a big nose. Its chin lies close to the sea surface. Many people associate it with the image of the Egyptian Sphinx.
The Ðau Nguoi Islet in Ha Long Bay, a masterpiece of nature, has its own poetic beauty as it lies amidst seawaters. The islet lies near Luồn Cave, 13 km away from the tourist wharf.
Ngon Tay Islet ( Finger Islet )
On the way to Ti Tốp Island, visitors see a stone rock resembling a thump jutting out of the sea.
Nature has put the Ngón Tay (Finger) Islet here as a reminder of many interesting extras in the discovery of HạLong.
Ba Trai Dao Islet ( Three Peaches Islet )
This island consists of three small mountains with the height of 23 m, seen from afar, resemble three peaches (Ba Trái Đào).
The island connects to a legend of about the romantic love between a youngest fairy who was very pretty with a young and poor fisherman. Because of feeling in love with him, she stole three peaches from Heaven for him, that if he ate, would give him eternal life, allowing them to live together forever. The King of the Heavens discovered the robbery and turned the peaches into three stone islands. Chastised, the young fairy had to return.
Today, Ba Trái Ðào is a famous tourist attraction with three nice fairy beaches, romantic landscape. It is 22 km from south north of Bãi Cháy Tourist Wharf.
Su Tu Bien Islet ( Sea Lion Islet )
On the canoe route to Thiên Cung – Ðầu Gỗ Grottoes, one should visit Hòn Sư Tử Biển or Sea Lion Islet, which is 10 minutes away from the Bãi Cháy Tourist Wharf.
Amidst the vast seawaters of Hạ Long, you recognize a high rock jutting from the sea, resembling a lion stretching.
Con Coc Islet ( Toad Islet )
Con Cóc or Toad Islet is one of the most exquisite works nature has presented Hạ Long. Just imagine, an 8-meter-tall toad sitting to wait for rain amidst the vastness of the sea.
The Toad Islet lies in the southeast of Hạ Long Bay, 17 km away from the tourist boat wharf.
Thien Nga Islet ( Swan Islet )
In the waters of Bái Tử Long Bay, a stone islet is bobbing like an alluring and graceful swan (Thiên Nga) – a swan losing its herd.
This stone swan has taken up countless time and rolls of film of tourist near and far.
Am Islet ( Tea Pot Islet )
On the route to Quan Lan – Ngọc Vừng islands; Ấm Rock or Kettle Islet is situated in Bái Tử Long Bay. An island jutting out of the seawaters, the teapot of the Jade Emperor, who accidentally dropped it into Hạ Long so, its handle was broken.
But Islet ( Pen Islet )
Some 30-minute boating away from the Con Cóc Islet, on the way to the Ba Trái Ðào (Three Peaches) Island, visitors see a pen bobbing (Bút Islet) in the seawaters. This constitutes a monument of knowledge Mother Dragon wanted to pass down to the present-day generations.
Lying adjacent to the Pen Islet is a small attractive beach. Tourists can anchor there to take a bath.
Quan Lan Island
Quan Lạn Island belongs to Bái Tử Long Bay; part of an island range on the outside of the gulf of Bắc Bộ. It has an area of 11 sq. km, and features eight populated hamlets. Quan Lạn Island stretch toward East – West from the foot of Vân Đồn Range to the Gót Mount with many high mountains to the east barring waves and winds, protect the villages. The island is situated on an important navigation route that connects China, Japan, Thailand and Philippines to Vietnam.
Along two sides of the island are tens kilometres of sand beaches. This is the endless resource for glass making which the sea gives to man and it is also the extremely interesting tourism
Since the 11th century, Quan Lạn had been one of the centres of the ancient commercial port of Vân Ðồn, which was animated and prosperous at the time. Today, there are still many vestiges linked to the ancient commercial port.
This also explains why the island, lying deep in the sea, has the large pagodas and archaeological sites seen today. On the island there is the Quan Lạn Communal House built in the 18th century; exceedingly beautiful and almost entirely preserved. Next to it is Quan Lạn Pagoda (Linh Quang Tự), which is dedicated to Buddha and God Liêu Hạnh.
The pagoda also worships the statue of old Hậu, a local person who made lots of contributions to the construction of the pagoda. The statue features a gentle and cheerful old woman, which adds an original character to the pagoda. Beside Quan Lạn Pagoda lies Nghè Quan Lạn (Ðức Ông) Shrine, which is dedicated to Phạm Công Chính, a local people who participated in the historical Vân Ðồn battle against the Yuan invaders. He was later honored as a god. Quan Lạn has many valuable sea products such as octopuses, butterfish, mackerel, holothurian, shrimp, and sái sùng.
Tuan Chau Island
Ha Long, one of the World Heritages, comprises thousands of big and small islands. Each one has its own characteristic with various caves: Sung Sot Cave,Thien Cung Cave, Trinh Nu Cave. Tuan Chau Island is the only soil island of all. It is not only a place having beautiful natural surroundings: pine trees, lakes, beautiful beach…but also where President Ho Chi Minh chose to be the relax place of other State officials’ and his when they came here in 1959.
On the total area of 400 ha, Tuan Chau has the population of 1500. As planned, the total area of Tuan Chau will be widen to 675 ha. It enjoys the advantage of having both road and river transportations. It is about 18 km away from National Highway No.1. This route is an important blood vessel of the robust Hanoi – Hai Phong – Quang Ninh economic triangle. It takes about 3 hours from Mong Cai ( 2 hours by boat) and 1 hour from Hai Phong.
Tuan Chau island’s name is the combination between ‘linh tuan’ (the patrolman) and ‘tri chau’ (district chief) because in the feudal time, the royal army set up a guard station here to patrol and defend the borderland. Prior to 1999, the island’s residents suffered from a very modest living standard.There was no power network and no clean water. Roads were only trails and there was no mechanical means of transportation. Tuan Chau was a very poor town where fishing with very rudimentary tools is the only means of living.
The first project of great significance was to link Tuan Chau and the National Highway No18 by building a road. The work was officially started on February 28th, 1998. All company staff had to overcome numerous hardships to achieve this difficult task, which translated people’s dream into reality.
Tuan Chau has become well- known to both international and domestic tourists as an attractive destination with:
– a dolphin&seal club
– a circus
– a crocodile club
– an (artificial) beach with 4 km long.
– a Vietnamese culinary area
– a hotel and resort area of 5-star standard (200 rooms)
– a water recreation park with activities such as motor racing, canoeing, parachuting, water skiing, etc.
– Ha Long Bay sight- seeing services by canoe, boat, helicopter.
– a high tech water fountain with music playing, laser lighting and film projecting on water
Ti Top Island
Situated about 7-8 km south-east of Bãi Cháy lies the small Ti Tốp Island. It displays a beach shaped like a crescent moon, and sand that has been washed to a snowy white by the tide. On 22 November 1962, this tiny island had the honour of receiving a visit from astronaut Ghermann Ti Tốp, a hero of the former Soviet Union, accompanied by Hồ Chí Minh. To perpetuate the remembrance of their visit, Uncle Hồ named the place Ti Tốp Island. It has now become an attractive beach for tourists and has various of tourist services.
Thirty-five years afterwards, on 27 June 1997, Ti Tốp returned to the island having his name. Deeply moved, he wrote in the souvenir book of the Management Board of Hạ Long Bay: “My deepest thanks to destiny, which has allowed me to come back to this tiny island.” It has become a beach attracting many visitors.
Bo Hon Island
When speaking of the beautiful islands of Hạ Long Bay, one must speak of Bồ Hòn Island or Soap-Berry Tree Island, not only because of its splendid scenery, but also as it is one of the largest in the area. There are many grottoes located here, such as the Surprise, Luồn, Virgin and Male grottoes. There is also a concentration of high mountains with vertical cliffs like citadel wall; mountains follow closely make a huge beautiful watercolour picture on the sea.
There are various species of plants such as benjamin fig trees, cycads and orchids… and animals are monkeys, deer and chamois. Perhaps, Bồ Hòn Island famous for the grotto system hiding inside it. Each of them has their own marvellous beauty and is related to the moved legends.
Ngoc Vung Island
Ngọc Vừng, or Gem Island, is a pretty site sitting between the Nét Islet and Phượng Hoàng (Phoenix) Island, in the Vân Ðồn District. From above, Ngọc Vừ