Popular Attractions In Halong

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Halong Bay includes more than 1900 islands and islets which were formed into many special shapes though millions of years.

The name “Halong Bay” literally means “Descending Dragon”. This came from a legend. It was said that in the past when there were invaders from the North to Vietnam, The Lord assigned a Holy Mother Dragon with her junior dragons down to the land to defend and protect the country. The Dragons fired to ruin the whole fleets of invaders sailing towards the land and poured the pearls which became defending walls preventing the conquerors to approach closer. After defeating the enemies, the Dragons found this place so peaceful and welcoming that they decided to stay here to protect this place eternally. Where the Mother Dragon landed was called Halong Bay, and the Junior Dragons stayed was call Bai Tu Long.

Because of its exceptional beauty, Halong Bay became The World’s Natural Heritage in 1994 and was selected as one of the New 7 Natural Wonders in the world in 2011. The important attributes to this success were the fanciful grottos and amazingly-carved lime stones from natural creation, such as: Surprising Cave, Heaven Grotto, Hen and Cock Stones, Titop island and many other islets.

1. Surprising Cave

Sung Sot Cave is one of the most famous and beautiful among hundreds of caves in Halong Bay. When the French first came here, they were strongly surprised by the magnificence of the cave. That was how the cave was named. Later on 1999, the cave was installed with electricity and colored light bulbs and a walk lane was built for tourists to visit.

You have to pass steep stair steps to reach the cave. It is nestled within trees and foliage. The path to the cave’s chamber is wet because of water dropping from the ceiling. The mineral water drops took thousands of years to create the stunning stalactites with different shapes within the cave. The first chamber has hundreds of stalactites hanging from the ceiling and lightened with many bulbs. The second chamber is huge and has many amazing shapes of stalactites and stalagmites.

This chamber takes about 10 minutes to walk around and admire the magnificent creatures such as a clear pond, stone garden, finger stone, heart shape, monkey, Bodhisattva stone, turtle stone. The chamber absorbs natural light from the exit of the grotto, where visitors can have a panoramic view of spectacular and legendary Halong.

2. Thien Cung Cave

The cave is considered the most beautiful grotto in Halong Bay. Even though the cave was discovered in 1999, the legend says there used to be a wedding of a beautiful girl name May (Cloud) and a Dragon Prince here. The creatures from the stalactites and stalagmites stand for the participants celebrating the wedding happily in the past.

There is a small passage leading to the grotto, covered by foliage and bushes. However, breathtaking scene will be opened up when visitors enter the cave. On the eastern wall, there is a majestic picture of fairy tale characters as sophisticatedly carved by human artisans.

In the center of the grotto is 4 big pillars supporting the roof of the heaven which were engraved with fauna and floral patterns. On the north wall is the scene of dancing and singing fairies in honor of the wedding. Behind that stunning picture is a natural curtain of glistening stalactites. Sometimes the wind blowing though the stone cracks and cliffs magically generates the drum sound.

At the last part of the grotto, the colorful lights combined with outstanding carvings of Mother Nature creates marvelous palace. There’s a stream flowing though and 3 small ponds in the bottom. It was said that Mother May (Cloud) used to bath her 100 children and grew them up. A small path lead to the exit is considered as the way that Mother May took her 50 children out for discovering new land. The left 50 children stayed with the father contributed to the motherland.

3. Other attractions

Titov island: well-known for its a white-sand beach in moon shape. It is a stop-over for visitors to swim and have a sightseeing of the whole bay from the mountain top.

Hen and Cock Stones: are shaped in a male and female chicken and became the tourism symbol of Halong as well as Vietnam. It’s near to Dinh Huong Islet and 5 km from Bai Chay Wharf.
Dau Go Grotto: It was said as a place that Tran Hung Dao and his soldiers hid the wooden stakes used to defend the enemies from the China. People also say that the name was due to its shape from outside.

This grotto has 3 chambers and features natural sculpture with fascinating images of animals, royal patterns like dragon and phoenix, a huge stalagmite pillar and a clear well at the end.
Luon cave: located in the northeast of Bo Hon Island.

This cave is very short, has low ceiling and only can be reached by kayak or small boat. Going though the cave, tourists reach a lake formed as a small water stadium because of steep limestone cliffs above. In spite of small area, the fauna and flora system here are quite diverse, including orchids, fern and golden monkeys.

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