Thursday, January 20, 2011

旅遊越南 - 東北部下龍灣 / Travel to Vietnam - Hạ Long Bay, north-east Vietnam

We spent last night in Ha Long Bay on a big wooden junk. According to the tour guide, the sea there is always calm as there are several thousand islands that provide shelters for all kinds of small to medium size boats. I woke up at 5 am to watch the sunrise but the fog rolled in and the sun never showed its face. In fact, there has been no sign of the sun since our arrival to Hanoi two days ago. There are so many motor cycles and traffic here that the air is often filled with smog and particulates. Now I understand why almost everyone wears face mask.

Compared to Laso, this place is chaos. There are gazillion motor cycles all over the place, going every each way. Even when the traffic light turns red, ppl are still trying to rush across the intersections and the traffic cop could do nothing to stop the tide of vehicles.

Another thing abt Vietnam: The population here is really young, with million of youngsters less than 18 and a large proportion of the population below age 35. Finding a job is becoming more and more difficult, even when the economy is growing. Everyone is trying to make money from the tourists, from street vendors hawking T-shirts and fruit, to the three-wheel rickshaw drivers who try to ask for more tips. In hanoi and the country side surrounding the capital, there are lots of infrastructure constuction - bridges, fly-overs, railways, etc.

I guess feeding the population and finding jobs for the young will be the priorities of Vietnam for the next while !!!

Updated 2011-02-14:

According to Wikipedia:

"... 下龍灣(喃字:泳下龍)是位於越南東北部,靠近中國邊境的一片面積為1,500平方千米的水域,海岸線長120千米,屬於北部灣的一部份,河內以東。按照越南語的語序習慣,被稱為「Vịnh Hạ Long(泳下龍)」。 這個海灣中密集地分佈着1,969座石灰岩島嶼,矗立在海中,蔚為壯觀。每個島嶼都覆蓋著濃密的叢林植被。其中一些島嶼擁有巨大的洞穴。木樁洞是下龍灣區域最大的洞穴。19世紀末,法國遊客來此遊覽,命名該洞 Grotte des Merveilles。它的3個大型空間包括了無數的鐘乳石和石筍(以及19世紀法國graffiti)。這裡有2個較大的島嶼,Tuan Chau 和 Cat Ba,上面有永久居民。那裡擁有旅遊設施,包括旅館和海灘。在這些小島上擁有無數的令人驚奇的海灘。其中一些島嶼上有流動的漁村,漁民,他們在這淺水區辛勤的工作,捕捉200種魚類和450種軟體動物。許多島嶼的得名是由於對它們特別形狀的解釋,例如大象、好鬥的公雞、屋頂。這些島嶼中有989個已經命名。這些島嶼上還生活着矮腳雞、羚羊、猴子和鬣蜥等鳥類和動物。
1994年12月17日,在泰國舉行的世界遺產委員會第18次會議上,下龍灣被列為世界遺產。成為越南最受歡迎的旅遊景點之一。當地傳說稱很久以前,越南抵抗中國入侵,神派遣一個龍的家族來幫助守衛該地。龍的家族突然襲擊今天的下龍灣(下龍灣因而得名),開始吐出寶石和翡翠。這些珠寶變成了這些散布在海灣中的小島,互相連接組成一道抵抗侵略者的屏障。人們保衛了這片土地的自由,後來組成了越南國家。在歷史上,在下龍灣多次發生越南反抗強鄰的海戰。先後在3場戰爭中,越南軍隊利用這些小島之間迷宮般的水道,阻止敵人登陸。1288年,陳興道將軍阻止蒙古艦隊。越南戰爭期間,許多島嶼之間的航道被美國海軍大量佈雷,有些地方至今還威脅航行。下龍市附近地區有豐富的煤礦,由越南政府經營。 在越南現具有兩自然世界遺產:除了下龍灣外,另一個為風牙者榜國家公園(參見:廣平省)


the inner space said...

夏龍灣是仿照夏威夷的渡假勝地。。。。!Enjoy the full American way!

中國的海南島也加入競爭有樣學樣吸引美國遊客!毫無獨有的特色 。。。。。唉!

the inner space said...


Haricot 微豆 said...


>> ... 毫無獨有的特色

I agree!! It is disheartening to see that one of the Ha Long islanda is being developed into a theme-park type resort. They have a duplicate of the Australia Pavillion (?) already and plan to have a copy of the US Whitehouse too. Why would I want to see N American culture overseas ??

Luckily, we just used that island for boarding onto our boat and didn't spend time "admiring" the duplicates !!

Haricot 微豆 said...


This is my first time to these countries and I am more than happy to share my thoughts with you :)

I don't have the detail travel itinerary with me right now. I know we will be going to some cities and villages in Cambodia.

Stay tuned !!

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