Excursion in Cat Ba in 2 or 3 days, what to see and do?
- on May 7, 2020       By: BN
As the largest island in the eponymous archipelago comprising 367 islands and islets, recognised as a biological reserve by Unesco, Cat Ba is an invigorating stopover that will delight all lovers of nature and beautiful discoveries. Located on the Southern flank of Halong Bay, Cat Ba Island can be the occasion for a natural and seaside stay before or after a cruise in the beautiful bays of Halong and Lan Ha. Whether you choose to stay 2 or 3 days on Cat Ba Island, your stay will be filled with wonder.
What to do in Cat Ba in 2 days?
Whether you come from Hanoi by road or a cruise in Halong Bay or Lan Ha Bay, you will arrive on Cat Ba Island a little before or after noon. Once on the island of Cat Ba, you can choose to stay in one of the many hotels to enjoy the seaside, natural and cultural pleasures of the island. Cat Ba is the ideal island to relax and unwind during your trip to Vietnam. You can enjoy its many beaches including its three main beaches which are Cat Co 1, Cat Co 2 and Cat Co 3. All three are located on the East side of the island. Going there is an opportunity for a great walk, bike or scooter.
Cat Ba Island is home to a national natural park, extending over more than 16,000 ha and is characterized by its subtropical vegetation, homes to 50 animal species including a rare species of endemic monkeys: the golden-headed langur. Several hiking routes allow you to appreciate this magnificent natural setting. You can also explore the island by bike or scooter. It’s a pleasant way to appreciate the rich landscapes of the island and to observe the local life. Along the way, you will reach the peaceful Viet Hai village which nestles in a valley with steep slopes and surrounded by fields. You can have lunch there and even sleep with the locals if this travel experience appeals to you. Be sure to visit the Cannon Fort which offers a breath-taking panoramic view of the enchanting limestone landscapes of the nearby bays. Built by the French in 1942 to control sea crossings in bays, it sits atop a hill at an altitude of 177 metres.
You can also climb some of the dizzying walls of Lan Ha Bay. An activity very well supervised by local and international professionals. Do not miss the sublime sunset over the large bay of Cat Ba Island and its hundreds of fishing boats. In the evening, feast on fresh seafood is prepared in one of the many restaurants by the sea.
What to do in Cat Ba in 3 days?
If you decide to stay a third day on Cat Ba Island, you can dedicate this one to lazing on the beach although interesting activities can also brighten your day. You can go to the central market in the morning, high places of local life in Cat Ba. In a unique atmosphere and effervescence, you will discover with surprise the wide variety of products from fishmonger's stalls. A few food stalls allow you to taste locally cooked seafood. If you don't know Lan Ha Bay, Halong Bay’s sister yet, then take this day to explore it. Much less touristy than its big sister, Lan Ha Bay is no less spectacular. Narrower, more collected, Lan Ha Bay is characterized by its concentration of karst islands and islets with surprising shapes and covered with jungle.
You can discover this magical marine world on a mini cruise lasting a few hours or on a kayak excursion. It will be an opportunity to take advantage of one of the many small coves and take a good swim in the sea. Lan Ha Bay, more sheltered from the wind, is home to many floating fishing villages. You can visit some of them to observe the curious river life, the daily activities turned towards the sea and the pearl farms. Growing pearls is an old tradition in Lan Ha Bay and you can unlock all the secrets of the pearl making process by skilled craftsmen. This can be an opportunity to bring back a beautiful memory of your three days in the Cat Ba archipelago.