Halong Bay - north-east Vietnam
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  • Halong bay is in northeastern Vietnam and stretches from Yn H?ng district, past H? Long city. It's bordered on the south and southeast by the Gulf of Tonkin, on the north by China and on the west and southwest by Ct B island. The bay has a 120 kilometre long coastline and is approximately 1,553 square kilometres in size with 1969 islets. The area designated by UNESCO as the World Natural Heritage Site includes 434 km with 775 islets.

    We spent 2 days and 1 night (23 hrs really) crusing on the 'Lagoon Explorer' with 4 other 'ship mates'. The waters were calm because of the islets and we were lucky to have great weather, if not a tad cold.

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    We were given the obligatory stop at a handicraft factory. This factory employs the handicapped, mostly producing the needlework commonly found in the souvenir shops of Hanoi.
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    Partially completed needlework
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    Lacquerware art - don't think this was produced at this factory though
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    Rice fields on the way to Halong Bay
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    Anything can be carried on the back of a motorbike
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    The Lagoon Explorer 'junk' we were booked on for our cruise around the bay
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    Our cabin - small but cosy
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    The dining area of the boat
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    The lounge area - we never really 'lounged around' though
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    The deck ...
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    ... we spent quite a bit of time up here :-)
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    View of some 'prime sea-side real estate' homes as we sailed out
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    A floating village amongst the islets
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    Somewhere in the bay
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    Typical scenes of fishermen in their boats
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    Pretty sight
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    View from the window in our cabin. A similar view was also available whilst sitting on the porcelain bowl
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    Approaching a floating village
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    "Oh no! Not another bunch of bloody tourists."
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    This floating fish farm was set up for the tourists I think
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    Kids heading home after morning school. We're convinced they waited for us to arrive before leaving
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    Ditto
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    Life in the floating village
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    Some other boats in the bay area
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    Actually, lots of other boats in the bay area - all of them carrying tourists
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    The obligatory cave we had to visit. Admittedly, no where as nice as the ones back home in Australia, but it was worth it just to get the photos (that follow) from the exit point
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    View from the exit of the caves. This particular island of limestone caves has been developed for the tourists
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    'Our' boat
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    A floating stall selling goods to anyone who'll buy something
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    Same boat - note woman using back of boat as chopping board to prepare chicken; also note fish in floating 'basket'
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    Ahhh ... just relaxing and watching the world go by
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    The beginnings of an arch or land bridge, however you want to look at it
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    Us and travelling companions at dinner