Ha Long Bay
Imagine thousands of soaring forested islands rising out of emerald waters and you have a vision of the breathtaking beauty that is Ha Long Bay. Ha Long (declared a World Heritage Site in 1994) means ‘where the dragon descends into the sea’ with the legend telling of a massive dragon descending from the mountains, gouging out crevasses and valleys and as it charged towards the coast. Once it settled down, the legend goes the area filled up with water leaving only the pinnacles visible. The best way to to view these wondrous islands and explore their caves is via a boat cruise, with options ranging from luxury (think an opulent Chinese-style junk boat) to budget.