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The distance from Hanoi to Halong Bay is about 170 km. It takes around 3.5 hours by shuttle bus, including haft-hour for break time. If you go on private car, it takes around 3 hours. Alternatively, there is another route which only takes you about 2.5 hours. You can hire a car or buy a ticket of a VIP bus to travel from Hanoi city centre to Halong Bay using the new Hanoi - Hai Phong highway. The distance between Hanoi - Halong shortens to 150km. There will be a fee of 6.5 USD/turn/car for the new highway, making the price a little bit higher than the another. You can read more detail how to travel from hanoi to Halong Bay here
The distance from Halong Bay to Ninh Binh is 200km & it takes around 5 hours to travel due to the low-quality traffic system. There are 02 ways to get to Ninh Binh from Halong Bay:
The ticket's rate for the bus Halong Bay- Ninh Binh is quite cheap, only 10USD/Person. However, the bus will not pick you up and drop you off at your hotel. You have to come to the meeting point before departure time of the bus. Additionally, the quality of the service is very low since the buses are operated by local people who do not know how to serve foreign tourists, and do not speak English. So, taking the bus is not recommended to avoid the unhappy time of your journey in Vietnam
Book the private car is the best way to get to Ninh Binh from Halong Bay due to following reason
The rate for the private car from Halong to Ninh Binh:
Read more detail here.
Cat Bi Airport is located in Hai Phong city, about 50km from Halong Bay. It takes about 1 hour to trave from Halong Bay to the airport thank to new highways which have just been opened recently.
Cruises end at 4 difference ports which belong to Halong or Hai Phong, and you can choose either private or shuttle bus.
It is about 200km from Halong to Noi Bai airport in Hanoi. You can either take a private car or shuttle bus
There is a highway from Hai Phong to Hanoi. It takes only about 2 hours. You can choose to travel with private car or shuttle bus provied by some Halong cruises.
Winter (around Octobet to December) and Spring (March and April) are two best seasons to visit Halong. It has the pleasant weather and low chance of rain. There is higher chance of storm from June to September.
For Halong Bay 2 days or 3 days program is enough to discover main attraction here. The longer program is suitable for the guests who want to have more time in this stunning scenery and discover deep inside of the Bay.
Read more detail at: halong-bay-tour-itinerary-1-night-or-2-nights-on-cruise-is-better.html
Halong Bay is 500km far away to Sapa & it will be very hard if you have only one day. Please see 2 options below:
Option 1: By bus: you can take an overnight bus from Sapa to Hanoi, arriving about 6:00 AM in the morning. Relax then take another day bus (about 3 hours) to Halong Bay.
Option 2: By Train & Bus: you can take an overnight train back to Hanoi, arriving around 5:00 AM then 3 hours by bus to Halong Bay.
There are 3 ways to book Halong bay Cruise when you are already in Hanoi:
- Location: Halong Bay and Lan Ha Bay is right next to each other. Halong Bay belongs to Halong City, Quang Ninh province and Lan Ha Bay belongs to Hai Phong City.
- Landscapes: The scenery of of both are beautiful but there are some differences that Halong bay has more famous tourist attractions like Titop Island, Surprising Cave but you will find it pretty crowded here. For Lan Ha bay, this is the less touristy area than Halong bay, the scenery and the places are tranquil. It is more suitable for relaxing trip and enjoy the time at the bay.
- Location: Halong Bay and Bai Tu Long Bay is right next to each other. Bai Tu Long Bay can be called as off the beaten track. It is located to the north of Halong Bay.
- Landscapes: The scenery of both are beautiful but the main difference is that Halong Bay has more famous tourist attractions like Titop Island, Surprising Cave but you will find it pretty crowded here. For Bai Tu Long Bay, this is the less touristy area than Halong Bay, the scenery and the places are tranquil. It is more suitable to enjoy a relaxing trip and peaceful time at the bay.