• River cruise
  • Northern Vietnam
  • Central Vietnam
  • Southern Vietnam
  • Day Trip
  • Beach Destination
  • Ecotourist Destination
  • Vietnam Discovery
  • Cambodia Wonders
  • Laos Highlights

Destinations

QUANG NINH * HA LONG

Quang Ninh is a large province located along the northeastern coast of Vietnam. The province is home to Ha Long Bay, a natural World Heritage Site recognized twice by UNESCO, in 1994 and in 2000 . It shares the northern border with China; the gulf of Tonkin borders the south on 250km, Hai Duong province and Hai Phong city are on southwest, Lang Son, Bac Giang are on northwest.
 

Area: 6,102.4 km2

Population: 1,163,700  inhabitants (2011) composed of 34 ethnicities (1,011,794 Viet  people, the remaining people are Dao, Tay, San Diu, San Chay, Hoa, Nung, Muong, Thai...)

Topography: Quang Ninh is a mountainous and coastal province. Hills and mountains cover more than 80% of its natural land. Over 2,000 islands are also mountains. Topography can be divided into 3 regions:

· The mountainous zone can be divided into two parts: the eastern mountainous region  which is a continuation of a mountain range in China, comprising 2 main chains (Quang Nam Chau 1,507 m and Cao Xiem 1,330 m); the western zone features smooth and curved mountains called Dong Trieu (Yen Tu Mount 1,068 m in Uong Bi region and Am Vap Mount 1,094 m in Hoanh Bo district)

· The midland and coastal plains include a low range of hills weathered by both wind and water; forming fields and river basins, extremely favourable for agriculture and transport. It has become a densely populated area of the province. In the estuaries, alluvial soil is deposited, creating low tidal flats.

· The sea and island zone of Quang Ninh has a unique terrain. There are more than 2,000 islands, making up two thirds of the country’s islands. They extend along the coast for more than 250 km and are divided into numerous layers.There are thousand of islands on Ha Long Bay and Bai Tu Long Bay, many of which contain caves. Besides areas of alluvial deposits, there are also white sand zones which have built up from tidal action. Some places have formed white sand mines producing materials for the glass industry (Van Hai), or have developed into wonderful tourism spots (Tra Co, Quan Lan, Minh Chau, Ngoc Vung).

The sea bottom terrain of Quang Ninh isn't smooth, and has an average depth of 20 m. There are the remnants of ancient streams and underwater rocky banks. The streams from the mainland connect to deep drains along the sea-floor; creating a series of waterways, canals and harbours along the coast.

Rivers: Quang Ninh province has about 30 rivers and streams, with a lenght of more than 10 km, in which there are 4 big rivers (downstream Thai Binh river, Ka Long river, Tien Yen river, Ba Che river). However, both of the rivers are short, small and strong slopes. The flow and the speed have a big difference between seasons. In winter there is no water, but in summer water rises very fast.

Administrative units: 11 units (4 cities, 1 town, 7 rural districts, 2 island districts).

Climate: Due to the influence of monsoon, the climate is divided into 2 seasons: summer  is hot and rainy, winter is cool and dry. Average temperature ranges between 21 and 230C. Winter begins in late November and ends by the end of March of the following year; summer lasts from May to early October. Between the hot and the cold season are 2 transitory months (April and October).

Sights of interest

Ha Long Bay

Ha Long Bay was recognized the 1st time by UNESCO as a natural world heritage in 1994 for its outstanding scenic beauty, the 2nd time in 2000 for its geological and geomorphological values. In 2011, Ha Long Bay has been voted one of the New Seven Natural Wonders of the World after a poll held by the New7 Wonders Foundation.

Ha Long Bay (literally: "descending dragon bay") is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Administratively, the bay belongs to Ha Long City. The bay features thousands of limestone karsts and isles in various sizes and shapes. Ha Long Bay is a center of a larger zone which includes Bai Tu Long bay to the northeast, and Cat Ba islands to the southwest. These larger zones share similar geological, geographical, geomorphological climate, and cultural characters.

Hạ Long Bay has an area of around 1,553 km2, including 1,960–2,000 islets, most of which are limestone. The core of the bay has an area of 334 km2 with a high density of 775 islets. The limestone in this bay has gone through 500 million years of formation in different conditions and environments. The evolution of the karst in this bay has taken 20 million years under the impact of the tropical wet climate.The geo-diversity of the environment in the area has created biodiversity, including a tropical evergreen biosystem, oceanic and sea shore biosystem. Ha Long Bay is home to 14 endemic  floral species and 60 endemic faunal species.

  

 

Bai Tho Mountain is a coastal limestone mountain, half under water, is part of the heritage site of Halong Bay. On this mountain remains  poems of King Le Thanh Tong  in Chinese characters carved in stone in 1468, and of Trinh Cuong Lord  in 1729. The poems have given  the name to the mountain.

Thien Cung grotto located on Dau Go island at an elevation of 27 meters over sea level.

  

Dau go grotto located on Dau Go, covering about 5000 m2, situated at a height of 27 meters over sea level, with an entrance of 17 m wide and of 12 m high. The cave is divided into 3 compartments: the 1st compartment  with many familiar images to life: lions, pythons, turtles, and even 2 combatting cocks; the 2nd like a monumental paintings with rocky island on the waves; the 3rd compartment  comprises giant stone columns.

Sung Sot grotto within Bo Hon Island, is divided into two immense compartments: one resembles to an immense theater, the other can accommodate thousands of people.

 

Luon grotto located in the northeast of Bo Hon Island, 1km from Sung Sot cave, famous with a circular lake closed by mountains. The entrance is from 2.5m to 4m high, depending on the tide. Tourists have to be on small rowing boat to get inside.

Trong and Trinh Nu caves, located separately 700 to 800m, on the east of Bo Hon island, 3km southeast of Sung Sot cave. The entrances’caves are in opposite direction. These 2 caves are very attractive with beautiful stalactites and have archaeological sites of Soi Nhu culture , dated back from 18000 to 7000 years.

Yen Tu pagoda consists of a complex of pagodas, towers scattered among  forest trees, built on the eastern slopes of the mountain. Yen Tu is the center of Buddhism in Vietnam and kings of different dynasties have embellished the complex.

  

 

 Beaches: Dozens of beaches are beatiful and modern such as Tra Co (Mong Cai), Co To, Bai Chay, Tuan Chau Island  and have been renovated and upgraded with a variety of services to serve the diverse needs of visitors.

 

 

Bach Dang stakes used in the campaign in 1288: Bach Dang river is the one running between the towns of Quang Yen (Quang Ninh province) and Thuy Nguyen district (Hai Phong city), 40km from Ha Long Bay. The Battle of Bach Dang, which took place at the Bach Dang River was a battle between Dai Viet and the invading army of the Yuan Dynasty. General Tran Hung Dao studied the tidal lore, had beds of stakes planted under the water and arranged ambushes in a unified plan of campaign.

 

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