Reviews from BestPrice traveller who recently returned from their Halong Bay trip
Stories and advice from our travel experts. See more travel articles
Normally, the distance from Hanoi to Halong Bay is about 170 km. Shuttle Bus takes you around 3.5 hours, included haft-hour for break time from Hanoi to Halong Bay. If you go by private car, it takes around 3 hours.
On the other hand, there is another route which only takes you about 2.5 hours for travelling to Halong Bay. You can hire a car or buy a ticket of a VIP bus to travel from Hanoi city centre to Halong Bay through the new Hanoi - Hai Phong highway, which shortens the distance between Hanoi - Halong to about more than 150km.
However, there will be a fee for the new highway which is about 6.5 USD/turn/car and that is the reason why the price for transportation through this new route is a little bit higher than the old one.
You can read more detail how to travel from hanoi to Halong Bay here
The distance from Halong Bay to Ninh Binh is 200km. However, due to the low-quality traffic system, it takes around 5 hours to transfer from Halong Bay to Ninh Binh
There are 02 ways to get to Ninh Binh from Halong Bay:
The ticket's rate for the bus Halong Bay- Ninh Binh is quite cheap, only 10USD/Person. However, the bus will not pick you up and drop you off at your hotel. You have to come to the meeting point before departure time of the bus. Additionally, the quality of the service is very low since the buses are operated by local people who do not know how to serve foreign tourists, and do not speak English. So, taking the bus is not recommended to avoid the unhappy time of your journey in Vietnam
Book the private car is the best way to get to Ninh Binh from Halong Bay due to following reason
Driver will pick you up at the hotels, cruise pier and take you to any hotel in Ninh Binh
Driver will pick you up at any time you want. Especially if you would like to go Ninh Binh after your Halong Bay Cruise Tour, the driver will contact with cruise's operator and know when you disembark to pick you up
The rate for the private car from Halong to Ninh Binh:
Read more detail here.
Halong Bay is located in the north of Vietnam. The weather of Halong Bay is the coastal climate. There are two distinct seasons in each year: summer from May to October and winter from November to April next year.
Summer (from May to October): This is hot season in Halong bay, as is stormy season. There are usually more than 5 storms coming to Halong bay in this season.
Winter (from November to April next year): This is cold season in Halong Bay. The bad weather may occur in Halong Bay are: foggy, monsoons, cyclone and thunderstorm. Some kinds of bad weather are forecasted in advance from 2 to 3 days (storm, typhoon...) while some are not (monsoons, cyclone, thunderstorm...).
Read overall guide for weather in Halong by click here
Therefore, the cancellation may be informed before you leave Hanoi to Halong Bay or when you arrive in Halong Bay.
All cruises in Halong Bay must have permission from Management Board of Halong Bay to stay overnight in the Bay. Based on the weather conditions (high winds, monsoon, thunderstorm, cyclone, storm,...), the Management Board has the authority to cancel all cruises on certain day to guarantee the safety of tourists.
In those cases, following policies will be applied:
- If the cancellation is informed before you leave Hanoi to Halong Bay (you have not used any service yet): 100% refund.
- If the cancellation is informed during the trip (you have already used some services: transfer, lunch, day trip, hotel in Halong,...): Only the fee of these services will be charged and we will refund whole remain amount
- If the trip is cut down from 3 days/2 nights to 2 days/1 night, we will charge as 2 days/1 night trip, plus other services you have already used and refund the remain amount.
- The cancellation is announced ONLY by the Management Board of Halong Bay and often in short notice of time. Therefore your understandings in these situations are highly appreciated
- The period from May to July is considered as storm weather in Halong Bay with many unpredictable weather conditions. Hence more cruises will be cancelled with short notice during this season.
- In all cases, please contact our consultants directly for any urgent help. We are here to support you with all of our best!
=> What should you do if Halong Bay Cruise is canceled? read here
Cruise itinerary and schedule are subject to change basing on weather and operations conditions. In some case, if the cruise company decide to change the itinerary, schedule due to the policy of the Management Board of the bay, we will change the itinerary according to the new itinerary of the cruise.
If you have made the booking before the itinerary changed, we will inform you about the change and provide you more information about the new itinerary.
Nowadays there are ports in 2 places: Halong and Hai Phong.
1- From Halong:
The distance from Halong to Hanoi airport is around 200 km. If you go by private car, it takes about 3.5 hours for direct transfer (by private car - price from $60 for 4 seats car).
One cheaper option is taking a shuttle bus from Halong to Bac Ninh (it's on the way back to Hanoi), then taking a taxi to the airport (about 20 USD). It will take about 4 hours.
Another option which is more expensive but take little travelling time is going through the new Hanoi - Hai Phong highway that shortens the distance to about 170km and takes about 2.5 hours. However as there is highway fee, a private car will cost about $70 for 4 seats car.
2- From Hai Phong:
There is a highway from Hai Phong to Hanoi. By taking this route, it will only take about 2 hours transfering directly to the airport. This option is available both with private car or using shuttle bus of some Halong cruises.
Cat Bi Airport located in Hai Phong city and 50km far way from Halong Bay. There is also a new highway just open so it only takes 1 hours transfer from Halong Bay to Cat Bi Airport.
The booking process is represented through 5 steps below:
Fill in the numbers of adults, children and infants and cabins of your group, enter your departure date and click 'Check Rates' button, you will see the accommodation prices.
Once you selected an accommodation, click 'Book Now' button to continue.
Tips: To get more special discounts, please take a look at 'Trip saving for booking together' section where you can check rates and get a discount for booking 02 services at the same time. The discount amount ranges from US$3 to US$60 per room per night (hotel) or per pax (tour).
This step meets your needs in booking optional services like transfer, visa, kayaking or other interesting activities related to your current booking.
Tips: Don't forget to book hotels, tours together in this step! It's a smart way to get more savings.
Here you can review, add or remove your booking items, complete and submit your booking form.
After your booking is submitted, the system navigates to a 'Thank you page and send you an automatic email listing all the services you requested.
Our travel consultant will get in contact with you within 01 working day to inform about the service availability & payment.
1. Check availability :
After receiving your booking request, our consultant will check the availability of the services. If the services are available, our consultant will send you a payment link for the deposit by email, otherwise we will give you some alternative suggestions.
Notice: our email may go to your spam mailbox, please check your spam mailbox if you don't receive our response in one working day.
After receiving the payment link in the email sent from our consultant, please make the deposit as soon as possible to secure your booking. When we receive your deposit payment, our consultant will reserve the services for your booking as following:
If all of the services are reserved successfully, we will send you a Confirmation Email including the deposit invoice and other useful information
If the services are fully booked and are not available, we will inform you and suggest other options. In case you no longer want to book these services, we will refund all of the deposit amount.
Notice: Your booking will NOT be confirmed until we send you the Confirmation email. The remaining balance can be paid later - before departure date. For some urgent bookings or special types of promotion, 100% of the total cost will be required.
The full payment must be made before your departure date. The exact deadline will be confirmed by our travel consultant depending on each service you booked.
The remaining balance can be paid by Cash (VND, USD, AUD, EUR) or by credit card. For the customers who're going to stay in Hanoi, we are able to setup a direct meeting to collect the final payment.
Notice: Payment by cash on arrival is only applied for trips starting from Hanoi and the arrival date is before the payment deadline (confirmed by our travel consultant). All currencies are exchanged by local rate.
Some cruises in Halong Bay allow booking specific cabins. However, in most of the time, depending on the cabin type that you booked, Cruise Manager will arrange cabin for you when checking in. Besides, with some cruises in Mekong River you can book cabins specifically, ex: Jayavarman Cruise, Jahan Cruise, RV Pandaw... Please note the request for us when you make a reservation. In any case, please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any special request. We will try our best to meet your request within given circumstances.