The Ultimate Hanoi to Halong Bay Day Excursion &  Best Halong Bay Day Tour

Halong Bay, located in northeastern Vietnam, is often considered one of the most breathtaking natural wonders in the world. Its emerald waters and thousands of towering limestone karsts make it a must-visit destination for anyone traveling in Vietnam. While many travelers opt for overnight cruises to fully explore the bay, not everyone has the time or inclination for an extended stay. Fortunately, there are excellent day trip options from Hanoi that allow you to experience the beauty of Halong Bay in just one day. In this article, we will guide you through the best day trip from Hanoi to Halong Bay and introduce the best Halong Bay day tour options.

The Journey from Hanoi to Halong Bay

The journey from Hanoi to Halong Bay is an adventure in itself. The two destinations are approximately 170 kilometers apart, and there are several transportation options available to make this journey. Here are the most common ones:

  • Bus: Taking a bus from Hanoi to Halong Bay is a popular choice for budget-conscious travelers. The journey takes around 4 hours, and you can find both public and private bus services that operate daily. While it’s economical, it might not be the most comfortable option for some travelers.
  • Private Car: For a more comfortable and convenient journey, you can hire a private car or taxi. This option allows you to stop at scenic spots along the way and travel at your own pace. It’s a good choice for those traveling in small groups or with families.
  • Seaplane: If you’re looking for a unique and picturesque way to reach Halong Bay, consider taking a seaplane. The scenic flight offers breathtaking views of the bay’s iconic limestone formations. However, this option is more expensive than other modes of transportation.
  • Train and Shuttle Bus: Another way to reach Halong Bay from Hanoi is to take a train to Ha Long City and then transfer to a shuttle bus. This can be a scenic and comfortable option for those who enjoy train travel.

Discovering the Perfect Hanoi to Halong Bay Day Trip,

Once you’ve arrived in Halong Bay, it’s time to make the most of your day trip. While you won’t be able to explore the entire bay, you can still experience its beauty and highlights. Here’s a suggested itinerary for the best day trip from Hanoi to Halong Bay:

  • Morning Cruise: Start your day by embarking on a morning cruise around Halong Bay. This is a fantastic way to get up close to the iconic limestone karsts and take in the stunning scenery. Many day tours offer guided cruises that take you to some of the bay’s most famous sites.
  • Sung Sot Cave (Surprise Cave): One of the must-visit attractions in Halong Bay is Sung Sot Cave, also known as Surprise Cave. This enormous, two-chamber cave is adorned with remarkable stalactites and stalagmites. The cave visit is usually included in most day tours.
  • Ti Top Island: After exploring the cave, head to Ti Top Island, famous for its panoramic viewpoint. Climb to the top for a mesmerizing view of Halong Bay from above. The short hike is well worth it for the breathtaking vistas.
  • Lunch on the Boat: Enjoy a sumptuous seafood lunch on your cruise. Many day tours offer a delicious buffet-style meal while you soak in the picturesque surroundings.
  • Kayaking or Bamboo Boat Ride: Depending on your tour package, you might have the opportunity to go kayaking or take a bamboo boat ride through some of the bay’s stunning areas. This allows you to get closer to the limestone formations and explore hidden caves and lagoons.
  • Return to Hanoi: After a day filled with breathtaking scenery and exploration, it’s time to return to Hanoi. Many day tours include the return trip as part of their package.

Best Halong Bay Day Tour click Hire →

When it comes to choosing a day tour to Halong Bay from Hanoi, there are several reputable companies that offer great experiences. Explore Some Top Choices:

  • Indochina Junk Day Tour: Indochina Junk offers a comprehensive day tour that includes a visit to Sung Sot Cave, Ti Top Island, kayaking, a delicious seafood lunch, and a relaxing cruise. Their reputation is built on their exceptional commitment to delivering top-notch service with an unwavering focus on the finer points.
  • Paradise Cruise Day Tour: Paradise Cruise offers a luxurious day tour experience. Their modern vessels, excellent food, and top-notch service make them a great choice for those seeking a premium experience.
  • Bhaya Classic Day Cruise: Bhaya Classic is another well-regarded cruise operator that offers an excellent day tour. Their spacious boats, knowledgeable guides, and diverse activities ensure you have a memorable visit to Halong Bay.
  • Halong Bay One-Day Tour by Luxury Limousine: For a more private and comfortable journey, consider a one-day tour by a luxury limousine. These small-group tours provide a more personalized experience and often include a visit to Sung Sot Cave, a bamboo boat ride, and lunch.


A day trip from Hanoi to Halong Bay is a fantastic way to experience the beauty of this UNESCO World Heritage Site, even if you’re short on time. Whether you choose to explore the bay on a guided cruise or venture out on your own, you’re sure to be captivated by the stunning landscapes and natural wonders of Halong Bay. Don’t miss this opportunity to witness one of Vietnam’s most iconic destinations, and make your day trip an unforgettable experience.


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