Story: Dam Duc Vu
Photos: Ngo Tran Hai An, Stock Photos
Following two dismal years, Vietnam’s tourism market is heating up again. There’s never been a better time to enjoy a relaxing boat cruise or beach vacation.
“Healing tours”, which combine excursions to natural places and wellness activities, have become a new trend after the COVID-19 pandemic. Visitors don’t just relax in resorts but embark on journeys to create a healthy lifestyle, relieve stress, and enhance wellbeing.
Have you ever held a conch shell to your ear and heard the mysterious call of the ocean? That call is the sound of life. As we grow up, we eventually bid farewell to our childhood innocence. However, everyone needs some peaceful moments to remind us of life’s magical beauty and purity. We need to – and can – escape the hustle and bustle of big city life. A seaside adventure can boost our energy, allowing us to savor every moment and heal.
When it comes to relaxing, nothing beats a cruise. Vietnam is full of beautiful and secluded beaches and charming islets waiting to be discovered. Far from honking vehicles and traffic jams, we can immerse ourselves in nature as golden sunlight caresses distant mountains and gentle waves lap the shore. The peace leaves us enthralled and washes away our worries.
People used to associate “cruises” with giant ships carrying thousands of people that departed from places like Thailand, Singapore, or Malaysia. They were regarded as “Las Vegas at sea”, and some people were hesitant to join. It’s now possible to enjoy short boat cruise retreats across Lan Ha Bay (Cat Ba, Hai Phong) and Ha Long Bay in Northern Vietnam, where adventures await.
Convenient transportation, new highways, and bridges across the sea have remarkably shortened travel time from Hanoi. Travelers from Southern Vietnam can also take direct flights with Vietnam Airlines from Ho Chi Minh City to Hai Phong at special rates. This gives tourists more time to visit historic and cultural landmarks like Nghe Temple, Hang Kenh Communal House, Du Hang Pagoda, or Tuong Long Tower; and to enjoy famous local dishes like crab with red noodle soup (banh da cua), square crab spring rolls (nem cua be), shrimp vermicelli soup (bun tom), and jellyfish salad (nom sua).
One of the most beautiful bays in the world, the Cat Ba Archipelago holds five national and international titles: Scenic Landscapes – Special National Monument, World’s Biosphere Reserve, National Park, and Marine Protected Area. With outstanding marine and island ecosystems and biodiversity, the area of Ha Long Bay – Cat Ba Archipelago is being assessed by UNESCO for recognition as a Natural World Heritage Site. Recognizing the area’s great potential for tourism, travel companies have been actively investing in 5-star hotels and luxury cruises in recent years.
If you choose an inland resort, you will miss one-of-a-kind boat cruise experiences like lounging on a sundeck surrounded by soothing waves and singing breezes. The hardest task you’ll face is to tear your eyes off the stunning landscape to watch a seabird fly past. Standing on the deck, you can let yourself relax to the rhythm of the waves and inhale the fresh sea air as the sunset paints the sky. A refreshing cocktail, tropical juices, and delicious bite-sized tapas make the moment complete. You can even enjoy fashion shows and wine-tasting parties, admire sophisticated art exhibitions, or simply unwind with luxurious spa treatments.
All of this is available for an amazing deal of just VND 3,000,000 – 5,000,000!.