Vietnam Day Three

The day started early, at 6am local time. We needed to be ready to check out by 8am for our mini bus ride to Ha Long Bay. Quick breakfast, awesome buffet again.
Before we knew it we were in our bus and on our way. The driver, yet again, could not speak a word of English. It was part of the whole trip to have English speaking guides, drivers etc
It was a rather long and boring drive, was supposed to take 3hrs (incl a short stop at a textile factory). However due to the slow driving of our guide it took a little over 4 hours!
The textile factory was about our half way point. It was amazing the quality of the products, quick stitch artwork, silk clothing and a whole lot of jewelry and stone art. Bought a couple of gifts, amazing quality yet cheap prices.
On our way again towards Ha Long Bay, the only thing that kept me entertained was the kamikaze highway rules. Basically, the bigger you are, the more you can force your way through.
Finally arrived in Ha Long Bay and we were greeted by a very friendly boat crew. All speak English quite well, was rather refreshing after that non-conversational drive up.
The Boat is beautiful, the cabin is undeniably awesome and the view from our balcony is, well… you get the idea!
Got an awesome lunch; soup, spring rolls, chicken, prawns, fish and of course the beer.
The plan for the day is a slow cruise into the bay, past an endless view of limestone islands, stop at the lookout, swim, cruise some more, optional kyak to the bat cave or boat ride to the floating village, cruise some more, dinner, drink, party, drink some more, party…. Repeat then bed!
The lookout was awesome! Just a tiny tall island with a rotunda at the very top. However to get there you need to conquer the 427 steps straight up.
It wasn’t as hard as predicted, however was still destroyed at the top. The view, well it’s …………….. Yeah that good!!
Took several photos then it’s time to battle the stairs again on the way down. Finally got to the bottom and our host Loi (lay) handed out towels so we can go for a dip. After that epic climb, I was mist definitely going for a swim.
I already had my boardies on so in I went! I was half expecting it to be cold, but it was just perfect!
Now we had a chance to relax on the sun deck and grab some drinks whilst we cruised to our next destination. After a quick nap it was time to jump into our kyak and head to the bat cave. Now before you jump to conclusions, it’s not going to contain some secret Vietnam hideout for our favorite vigilante, however I was still silently wishing it was!
The cave was more like a tunnel, just an eroded passage way to an enclosed cove. It was so calm and surreal and before we knew it, it’s time to paddle our way back.
After and awesome shower, the shower head is bigger than your average dinner plate, it was time again to relax on the star deck. Well the suns gone so it’s not a sun deck any more. We cracked open the complimentary white wine and chilled before what has been said to be, an awesome buffet dinner.
Dinner was awesome! Plenty to choose from, prawn, crab, squid, chicken, beef, spring rolls, endless salads and a chicken soup. After 2 helpings I was done. Could barely fit in the chocolate cake for dessert.
After a few drinks we ended up playing cards. Jin Rummy, we drew a crowd as all the different people from different cultures on the boat were captivated by it. We have not played cards in ages, was good fun! The crew put on a movie, The Quiet American, so we sat down to watch it, well most of it before we fell asleep. Have to get up early as for breakfast and Thai Chi session on the sun deck.

Photos
Canon IXUS 70
Nikon D90

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