Halong Bay is such a beautiful place and is described as the ” Paradise in the world “, I’ve never seen anything like it before! There’s over 2000 small islands there but they say they only have 1969 because that’s the year that Ho Chi Minh died.
The tour guide on the boat told us a few of the names – fighting cock, Kissing couple and big fish (the islands look like these things). We visited the Song Sut caves which was cool (check out the pictures) and did some “karaking” (kayaking- the tour guide’s english was hard to understand!). We kayaked for about an hour and explored some of the caves and floating villages around the bay (jas did most of the work, I enjoyed the scenery!) at one point we saw a couple of eagles circling above our kayak and they suddenly swooped down in front of us! Don’t think they caught any fish but they made us paddle even faster so we could get away from them. A couple of people on the boat got stung by jellyfish- someone suggested peeing on themselves but they managed to find some lemon and vinegar to rub on the sting which worked just as well!
Met some really nice people on the boat who we chilled out with on the deck in the evening (we had a choice of doing karaoke or sitting on the deck with a couple of beers and an ipod) There were a couple of French and Canadian backpackers who met over in Australia and have no plan where they’re going next or for how long. if they run out of money they work for a little while wherever they are or return home for a month to earn some money and go back to travelling again. we met an Israeli couple too who have just finished their 2 years of national service in the Israeli army and are travelling for a couple of years before they go to university or work. Everyone has their own story to tell.