vietnam accommodations

Sustainable Tourism in HaLong Bay aboard the Au Co Luxury Cruise

A08A6337-5B29-4521-A6E5-1AE09A886403 2.jpg

Named a UNESCO world heritage site in 1994, HaLong Bay is easily one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen, and a popular tourist destination in Vietnam for domestic and international visitors alike.

For years, waking up in the crystal blue waters of the bay on a junk boat amidst the limestone cliffs was at the top of my bucket list, and, in 2017, I finally made it there. According to statistics from the Halong City People’s Committee, so did about 7 million other tourists... with a majority of them flocking straight to the port to board their cruise in the bay.

As you can imagine, this mass tourism can have detrimental effects on the environment in HaLong Bay, however, I don't think tourists should let this dissuade them from visiting. There are companies who care about preserving the beauty of HaLong Bay, its wildlife, and the local communities who call this place home... companies like Bhaya Cruise Line.


About Bhaya Cruise Line

In 2007, Bhaya's first ships set sail, and just over ten years later, with four different fleets and several cruise packages to choose from, it is already become the largest cruise operator in HaLong Bay. It is also one of the Bay's most reputable cruise companies.

In 2017, Bhaya launched several sustainable tourism initiatives designed to protect and preserve the environment, and to help local communities.

This summer, I had the pleasure of exploring the beauty that is HaLong Bay a second time aboard Bhaya's Au Co Luxury Cruise. I was very impressed with the ship, the staff, the off the beaten tourist track excursions, the food(!), and with Bhaya's overall dedication to leading the way for sustainable tourism in HaLong Bay.

Want to learn more about the Au Co Luxury Cruise, Bhaya's social and environmental initiatives, or how you can get involved?


A Night in HaLong Bay with Glory Legend Cruise

Waking up on a junk boat amidst the limestone cliffs of Ha Long Bay has been at the top of my bucket list since, well... since the first time I saw a photo of the limestone cliffs of Ha Long Bay. When planning my trip to Vietnam, experiencing this was my number one priority.


My search for the perfect junk boat led me to Glory Legend Cruise Line. Though it was a bit more expensive than other boat companies, I decided that, when it came to crossing off this item on the bucket list, I was willing to splurge on quality. There are lots of budget backpacker, party boat cruises as well, but that wasn't really the vibe I was after for this leg of my Southeast Asia trip.

An acquaintance from Seoul (aka a social media friend who I'd actually never met before), was travelling through Vietnam around the same time as me, and, since she also planned to do Ha Long Bay, we decided to book the same cruise. We met up at the dock on the day of our departure, and immediately hit it off - (She offered me snacks and I knew I'd found a forever friend).

Turns out, the cruise company had TWO boats departing that afternoon... and we, of course, as luck would have it, were not on the same one. This is how I ended up riding solo on a junk boat in Ha Long Bay. Aside from the workers on the boat and a couple of honeymooners, I was the youngest person on the boat by at least 30 years. Other than that, my boat was mainly full of Austrian retirees. As unfortunate as this situation may sound, believe it or not, riding solo actually worked in both of our favor... turns out, the Austrians know how to party.


Want to find out more about my journey through HaLong Bay with Glory Legend Cruise? 

Already sold??

To book your stay your HaLong Bay Trip with Glory Legend Cruise click here

When you book using my affiliate links, I receive a small commission that goes towards the cost of this webpage... (and, lets be honest... future travel). 

Other Vietnam Activities