Posted by: Googie | March 1, 2010

How long to Halong?

I was picked up from my guesthouse early in the morning for a 2 days, 1 night cruise to Halong Bay. I had booked myself on the cruise for an outrageous $70 which I thought was a total rip-off.

But in reality, you pay for what you get. On the way to Halong city, each of our receipts was taken (probably to check how much we’d shelled out). Since I had paid so much, I was taken to a super deluxe junk where most of the guys were on a 3 days, 2 nights cruise.


Our dragon-headed junk

I met Fanar (Iraqi living in the UK), Ali (Iraqi living in Dubai), John (from the UK) and two Swiss girls (whose names I forgot to ask). We had lunch on board, en route to some of the most amazing places on Earth.


First hidden by fog…


…and then revealed

We kayaked to a large cave where we discovered a large badly injured jellyfish. Ali lost his footing while getting into the kayak and fell into the icy cold water, but we fished him out. From there we went to the Sung Sot cave, which has 3 massive naturally made rooms. The fine finish of the ceiling looks so much like concrete that its hard to believe that it wasn’t man-made.


View from Sung Sot cave

Once back in the boat, Ali & Fanar decided to go for a swim. As has happened many times in the past, its very hard for me to resist the temptation when I see people swimming. My clothes were off in a flash and I jumped in with a splash. The water was indeed cold, but the swim was very refreshing. I climbed back in, went to the deck of the boat, and jumped in from there – it was a LOT of fun!!!

After dinner, we all went to the topmost deck and had a few drinks. The guys had an amazing sense of humour, and we were all in splits for the next few hours.



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  1. I understand your temptation while seeing people swim… would you go for a swim in a posh hotel or would your prefer stinky cold water ? 🙂

  2. If some special person was around to teach me the breast-stroke, then I would even be willing to swim in the Yamuna in Delhi 🙂

    • The special person was probably busy learning free style …. but if there was some special person around to teach me that then I would even be wiling to rescue him in the Yamuna in Delhi 🙂

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