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Where to Stay in Halong Bay: Best Areas & Resorts to Stay

A trip to Halong Bay is an unforgettable experience! Its iconic landscape of towering limestone pillars rising out of crystal-clear waters never fails to impress travelers.

However, choosing where to stay in Halong Bay can greatly influence your trip to this beautiful place. Do you prioritize proximity to attractions, a sense of seclusion, or stretching your travel funds? Well, let's explore all the options Halong Bay offers so you can find the perfect spot for you!

Bai Chay Commune Mainland Stay in Halong City Is Recommended for First-Timers!

When considering where to stay in Halong Bay, Bai Chay Commune in Halong City is often recommended, especially for first-time visitors. Its close proximity to the main pier from where boat rides depart and return adds a level of convenience that reduces hassle, especially for those with early morning or late cruises.

This mainland area offers many affordable accommodation options, such as the family-run Sunrizon Hotel, where guests can find rooms for as little as $25 per night. After a day spent exploring the limestone pillars and seascapes, visitors can retire to comfortable rooms and enjoy the amenities of local restaurants and shops nearby.

As the entry point to the iconic sights found within Halong Bay, Bai Chay serves as an accessible home to acclimate to the area before venturing further.

How long should I spend in Halong Bay?
The length of your stay depends on your desired experience. Consider 2-3 days if you want to explore both Ha Long City and take a day cruise.

Halong City Sunrizon Hotel
Sunrizon Hotel

Overnight Halong Bay Cruise Is a Unique Way to Experience Halong Bay

An overnight cruise is undoubtedly one of the best ways to experience the magical scenery of Halong Bay. Waking up on the tranquil waters surrounded by towering limestone s is the perfect way to take in the iconic landscapes.

● Cruise Options: Budget cruises offer basic amenities aboard converted wood-strip junk boats from $30-60 per person. The mid-range from $60-150 provides more comfortable cabins and inclusive meals/activities. Luxury liners have lavish suites, fine dining, and spa treatments from $200.
● Itinerary: One overnight is sufficient, but two allow for more exploration. Schedules vary but generally include hiking, kayaking, cooking demonstrations, and swimming if weather permits. You will find seeing the glowing islands at night anchored below the stars to be a magical experience.
● Locations: There are departure points from Ha Long City, Bai Chay, and Cat Ba Island. Ask about specific itineraries when selecting your cruise.

An overnight cruise provides the optimal way to absorb the natural splendors and experience Halong Bay traditions on the water. The memories will last long after your visit.

Is it better to book a Halong Bay cruise in advance?
While day trips can be booked upon arrival, especially during the shoulder seasons, securing your spot on a cruise, particularly during peak season (June to August), is recommended to avoid disappointment. We can help you book Halong Bay cruises in advance. For more details, get in touch with us.

Is Halong Bay too touristy?
Yes, Halong Bay can get crowded, especially during peak season. So, for those looking for a less crowded space, Lan Ha Bay offers a serene alternative for those seeking a more tranquil experience.

Halong Bay Luxury liners lavish suites
Halong Bay Luxury liners lavish suites

Lan Ha Bay Cruise Becomes a New Trend Compared with Crowed Halong Bay

Located just 30 minutes from Halong Bay, Lan Ha Bay offers similar limestone islands in a more tranquil setting, avoiding Halong's crowds. Cruise options here include:

● Indochina Sails Cruises: 3-star mid-range cruises offer flexible 1-2 night itineraries.
● Paradise Elegance Cruise: A 5-star luxury cruise that features spacious suites, cuisine, an infinity pool, and an onsen bath.
● Halong Habour View Hotel: The new 4-star hotel in Cai Rong has a daily shuttle and cruise packages.

With less than 2000 visitors daily compared to thousands in Halong, Lan Ha Bay allows a more peaceful experience to take in karst scenery from the decks. Caves, lagoons, and hiking await discovery, alongside the chance to see rarely visited rural fishing villages. An overlooked gem, this region offers the next level of adventure for those wanting to escape Halong crowds.

Bai Tu Long Bay Is an Off-Beaten Tourist Track Area with Overnight Cruises

Located a further 30 minutes east of Lan Ha Bay, Bai Tu Long Bay sees even fewer visitors each year, making it ideal for those wanting to feel like explorers. Cruise options here include:

● Paradise Elegance Cruise: Luxury 5-star cruises offering secluded islets and activities like rock climbing.
● Blue Lagoon Cruises: Comfortable 3-star junk boats for budget travelers with basic facilities and services.
● Xuan Thanh Hotel: This new hotel with beachfront rooms and packages, including lunch cruise excursions.

Cruise itineraries take in fascinating geographic formations like the 'Finger Islets' and 'Elephant Islet' fringed with breathtaking beaches. With over 1500 islets of varying sizes, Bai Tu Long Bay provides ample opportunities for hiking deserted limestone trails and scenic swimming spots.

Boasting a fraction of Halong's numbers, visitors feel a true sense of discovery and escape from mass tourism. Though less developed, the sheer natural beauty of Bai Tu Long Bay makes the journey well worth it.

Should I swim in Halong Bay?
The water quality in Halong Bay varies depending on location. It's advisable to consult with your cruise operator or locals about designated swimming areas.

Halong Bay Blue Lagoon Cruises
Halong Bay Blue Lagoon Cruises

Cat Ba Island Is the Best & Largest Island, with Many Options to Stay

Reached by hydrofoil from Hai Phong city in under 2 hours, Cat Ba Island, at 388 km square, one of the best Vietnam islands, is another perfect destination to base yourself on for multi-day Halong Bay adventures. For stay in Cat Ba Town:

● Budget guesthouses and mid-range hotels situated close to restaurants are readily available.
● The Trung Trang Cave Hotel boasts picturesque mountain and sea vistas.
● Paradise Resort Cat Ba presents luxurious bungalows for a premium experience.

At Cat Ba Island, there are numerous activities awaiting exploration as well. You can trek to hidden lagoons and hikes, bike around the island, swim at white-sand beaches, or relax in local cafes. Besides, there are several islands and bays nearby that can be explored on day trips.

For those wanting a blend of island relaxation and touring Halong Bay's famous sites by cruise, Cat Ba Island combines the best of both worlds with a variety of lodging to suit all budgets. It's the ideal place to discover the natural beauty and experience the vibe of coastal Vietnam.

Halong Bay Cat Ba Island beach tour
Cat Ba Island beach tour

Co To Island Isn't Touristy with Untouched Beaches to Stay

Co To Island makes for an ideal destination for those seeking to truly escape mass tourism in Halong Bay. As one of the outermost islands in the Bai Tu Long area, it receives a fraction of visitors compared to better-known areas. With no roads, the island is car-free and retains an unspoiled tranquility.

Nature remains preserved, from virgin beaches flanked by towering rocky outcrops to inland jungles home to colorful birdlife. Here, accommodation is found in the form of basic yet atmospheric homestays, where guests integrate into laidback island life. Meals of local seafood straight off fishing boats are the perfect way to experience authentic coastal culture.

When it comes to activities, you can rent bicycles or motorbikes to explore the secluded coves and hiking trails of this beautiful island. Also, you can swim at Co To's gorgeous white-sand bays and dine on freshly caught seafood. Overall, Co To Island offers the adventurous traveler a chance to truly feel like one of the few visitors to an untouched natural paradise.

Vinpearl Resort Is the Largest 5-star Resort with Private Beaches in Halong Bay!

Where to stay in Halong Bay for luxury with private beaches? Well, Vinpearl Resort has a reputation as one of the finest luxury resorts at Halong Bay! This sprawling 5-star resort stands out as the largest resort in Halong Bay. On its own private island within HaLong Bay, Vinpearl Resort spreads across 42 hectares and over 1km of beachfront, making it easily accessible from HaLong City jetty port in 30 minutes.

When it comes to accommodation, Vinpearl Resort provides a variety of comfortable options for guests. With 661 rooms and suites boasting either ocean or garden views, this resort offers a range of comfortable options for guests. For those seeking a more secluded retreat, lagoon villas equipped with private pools are conveniently located just steps away from the beach.

With an extensive array of amenities and activities, Vinpearl Resort ensures that guests of all ages and interests are catered to with utmost care and attention. Whether unwinding in lavish accommodations or venturing out to discover the UNESCO-protected wonders of the bay, Vinpearl Resort promises an unforgettable journey filled with unparalleled luxury and natural splendor.

Halong Bay Vinpearl Resort
Halong Bay Vinpearl Resort

Monkey Island Is a Private Island for a 3-star Monkey Island Resort!

Yearning for an escape that's both luxurious and delightfully off-the-beaten-path? Monkey Island Resort, nestled on its own private island within Halong Bay, offers a unique and unforgettable experience. As the name suggests, the island is home to troops of resident macaque monkeys that inhabit the surrounding forests, adding an extra touch of adventure to your stay.

The accommodation on Monkey Island is the 3-star Monkey Island Resort, which features:
● 30 spacious villas and rooms crafted with wood, blending seamlessly with the natural surroundings
● Most villas and rooms have private terraces and plunge pools, allowing you to soak in the tranquil island ambiance

During your stay, you can enjoy activities that connect you with the island's natural beauty:
● Feed the friendly macaque monkeys in the jungle, an unforgettable experience
● Hike along nature trails, immersing yourself in the lush greenery
● Kayak or swim in the crystal-clear waters of the Secret Lagoon beach

Monkey Island Resort strikes the perfect balance between natural beauty, tranquility, and personalized service, earning it a 3-star rating. Guests can truly relax in their island home for 1-2 nights, surrounded by the timeless karst scenery of Lan Ha Bay, creating memories that will last a lifetime.

Halong Bay Monkey Island 3-star Resort
Monkey Island 3-star Resort

Cai Rong Is the Best Area for Budget Travelers & Backpackers

Where to stay in Halong Bay on a budget? Well, Halong Bay doesn't have to break the bank. For budget-conscious travelers and backpackers, Cai Rong stands out as the most affordable option. This lively area on the mainland offers a plethora of budget-friendly guesthouses, hostels, and homestays, all conveniently located for exploring the bay's wonders.

Besides, Cai Rong's lies close to harbor areas where day cruises depart, allowing you to explore the bay's wonders without splurging on an overnight cruise. Additionally, the area boasts convenient access to public transportation, making it easy to get around Halong City and explore other nearby attractions.

Cai Rong's charm lies in its simplicity and the genuine experiences it offers. It's a place where travelers can stretch their budget without sacrificing the essence of their adventure in Halong Bay. Whether you're passing through or settling in for a longer stay, Cai Rong is a welcoming haven for those seeking an authentic and cost-effective journey.


Halong Bay offers an array of accommodation options catering to every traveler's preferences. Whether you prioritize convenience, luxury, or budget-friendliness, there's a perfect spot for you to stay and explore this stunning UNESCO World Heritage Site.

No matter where you choose to stay in Halong Bay, the region's unparalleled beauty and diverse attractions promise an unforgettable experience. Contact us to plan your Halong Bay adventure, ensuring a seamless and memorable journey from start to finish!

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