Monday, January 12, 2009

Halong Bay: A disappointment

Because Trina was sick, we had to cancel our trip to Halong Bay. We had opted for the two night, three day jaunt around the enormous bay. It is full of limestone formations, beautiful waters, caves and other natural beauty.

We were to spend a night on a boat and on Cat-Ba island.

We were told, yeah, it's fine, you can have your money back. Great, we said. We scheduled the one night two day one. Then we had to cancel it, because I got sick.

Funny thing, this company was highly recommended. If you look online at Halong Bay tours, this is where the Hanoi scams are epitomized. People get ripped off pretty frequently, and there is no way to know what quality you are going to get, as the agents are all brokers who don't have their own boats (but it's very difficult to get to the actual owners) and so the quality of the ride and crew change daily.

But this company (ODC) seemed to have the best reputation. After it hadn't worked out, and we were researching alternatives, we discovered that in 2006, and ODC boat sunk. Many of the people were hospitalized. And this was the most satisfied group of customers...sheesh. We are actually kind of glad it didn't work out. We learned that it is pretty, but it is a tourist choked attraction...

To give you a sense of what it looks like, here's a picture I found on the internet

I wonder how far we will have to go to find the pristine and untouched combination...

(Wait, wait, Norway, I remember it!).

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