You haven’t experienced Vietnam’s Halong Bay until you’ve sailed on a cruise experience. The best Halong Bay cruises are all-expenses-paid trips that will relieve your stress and leave you wishing you could live on the cruise ship all year round. With excellent food, peerless entertainment, and great company, a good Halong Bay cruise experience is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
With that said, you want to make sure that you’re heading out on the right cruise. As well as ensuring you’ve got everything you need before you leave (make sure to apply online for your Vietnamese travel visa if you need one!), picking the right cruise package is essential. Here are the 10 best Halong Bay cruise experiences available right now.
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Ambassador is one of the most trusted names when it comes to five-star Halong Bay cruise experiences, and if you’ve ever traveled on one of these cruises, you’ll know why. These massive, luxurious ships are equipped with everything you could possibly want from a cruise ship, including spacious rooms, fine dining, and plenty of entertainment, as well as an open-air jacuzzi and a spa. Put simply, there’s no better way to experience Halong Bay than with Ambassador.
According to Stellar of the Seas’ website, it has over 12 years of experience providing Halong Bay cruises to interested parties, and you can tell that’s the case when you board the ship. It’s gorgeous, kitted out with all the amenities you could ask for. You’ll find a sundeck where you can look out across Halong Bay and see everything it has to offer, and you’ll also be able to enjoy activities like kayaking, as well as a fully-stocked bar for refreshments afterward.
Did you know that “Halong” means “descending dragon”? That’s according to the Indochina Sails Cruise website, anyhow. You can learn many more interesting facts from this cruise’s friendly staff, but if you’re not in the mood for an educational trip, then there’s plenty more on offer on this cruise too. The ship naturally includes dining and bar facilities, as well as tai chi. Indochina Sails prides itself on its eco-friendliness, too, so if the environment is important to you, this is the company to go for.
What more could you ask from a Halong Bay cruise than a rooftop pool, a highly secure boat with steel construction, and plenty of private suites with your very own balcony? All of those things and more are offered by Orchid Cruises. The views afforded by this cruise are truly breathtaking, and there are plenty of other activities on offer as well, including fishing, swimming to get up close to the marine life, and even a traditional Vietnamese tea ceremony.
Another excellent cruise ship that affords spectacular views of Halong Bay and its surrounding area, Mon Cheri Cruise is a great option if you want to plump for luxury. Make sure to book your spot early to beat the rush; this cruise route is pretty popular, so you’ll want to secure the best room you possibly can. The restaurant is to die for on this cruise, and your dining experience will be accompanied by soothing traditional music, too, so you’ll get the full ambiance.
Offering various options including a day tour and several days’ worth of stopover, Garden Bay is yet another excellent cruise company that you can sign up with if you want to see Halong Bay in all of its beauty. Relaxing on the deck with a cocktail is a must on this cruise, but you’ll also find gorgeous rooms in which you can relax all day if you want to. The top deck is fully equipped for all the sunbathing you could ever need as well, which is a plus.
La Regina gets its name from “the story of Vietnamese queens”, according to the cruise liner company’s official website. Activities include education about preserving traditional Vietnamese farming efforts, as well as morning tai chi or yoga if you’re of a more active mindset. You’ll also find demonstrations showing off Vietnamese food carving, and you’ll be able to learn firsthand how to carve fruit into some truly gorgeous shapes, with competition available for guests.
If you’ve already embarked on the Stellar of the Seas cruise and enjoyed it, then you’ll be pleased to know that Elite of the Seas is the official sister cruise to that journey. If this will be your first time embarking on a cruise ship, then know that Elite of the Seas will look after you. As with many other Halong Bay cruises, you’ll get a traditional Vietnamese cooking demonstration, and you’ll also be able to engage in swimming, kayaking, and local rowing.
Paradise’s first cruise set sail all the way back in 2008, and the company has been providing for discerning customers ever since then. No matter which of Paradise’s cruises you choose, you really can’t go wrong; the ships are well-equipped with luxury facilities, and you’ll get all of the important views of Halong Bay from the top deck as well. In addition, this cruise actually accommodates business meetings and conferences, so if you’re looking for a somewhat different venue for that purpose, here’s your chance!
10. Peony Cruise
Don’t let the somewhat unassuming name fool you; Peony Cruises are the real deal. These yachts are truly beautiful, and their staff will make you feel like royalty from the moment you set foot on the deck. Every room is equipped with a balcony, and there’s a sauna facility as well as a massage parlor and even a gym if you want to get a little more active. Food is available on request, too, so if you’re feeling just a little bit peckish, don’t be afraid to sample the local delicacies.
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