Top 5 amazing things to do in Cat Ba Island - Halong Bay
As one of the largest islands in the Ha Long Archipelago, Cat Ba Island offers a wide variety of awesome alternative experiences for you to discover. Cat Ba Island is both a great resort and also suitable for passionate travelers to discover and experience. If you have the opportunity to visit Cat Ba, remember to try the following interesting tourist activities.
1. Checking out Cannon Fort
The fort was built during the French era as a look-out point and you will find the cannon bunkers and rooms containing memorabilia and a selection of paintings, photos and propaganda photos. Entry fee is 60,000 VND payable at the foot of the hill. Thanks to the favorable position where the observed point protrudes into the sea and at the height from which visitors can see a bend of the East Sea and the mountain ranges behind as a support. The Cannon Fortress has become a historical witness coming along with the Cat Ba military and civilian through two fierce wars against the French colonists and Americans, contributing to making glorious feat of the whole nation. Two cannons, each weighing tens of tons, have preserved here as historical memorials. From the Cannon Fortress, visitors will have the opportunity to contemplate the scenic of Cat Ba Island from different angles, enjoy the beautiful nature that captivates one’s heart by islands, dreamlike beaches, place-names associated with the history and legends long time ago.
2. Visiting Monkey Island
Monkey Island retains the perimeter of about 3 km. It owns mountain shape with the sandbank formed over millions of years. The wave and wind have brought the sand, rocks, coral and all shells of sea creatures such as seashells, shrimps, and crabs... to the foot of the mountain, creating the sand deserts stretching to thousands of miles. This island is an ideal venue for swimming for tourists when participating in thanks to its extremely blue and freshwater. In particular, the bungalows here are the wonderful choice for tourists to comfortably admire the sea breeze and enjoy sea flavor. Monkey Island also offers services for tourists' demands such as bathing suit renting, buoys or kayaks. Monkey Island deserves to be considered one of the most captivating tourist attractions for tourists who love to discover charming scenery. Monkey Island also has Cat Pineapple beach, which is the most beautiful satellite beach of Cat Ba Island. In front of the beach, there are undulating mountains that make the island extremely special.
3. Trekking Cat Ba National Park
Cat Ba national park offers great opportunities for trekking and hiking. Covering more than half of the island, Cat Ba National Park is at heart of the UNESCO Cat Ba Archipelago Biosphere Reserve and home to thousands of species including higher plants, terrestrial animals, birds and more. The park consists of totally 6 different ecosystem types which are tropical rain forest, mangrove forest, tidal flat, marine lake, coral red, and soft bottom.
There are up to 9 trekking trails and 5 boat trips for you to choose. The most popular tour that we’re recommending is the National Park – Frog Lake – Viet Hai Village Trail which is 14 km long, including 2 hours of boat and kayaking. National Park – Frog Lake is the most basic trail you can enjoy in the park.
4. Visiting Viet Hai village
Viet Hai Fishing Village is located in the heart of Cat Ba National Park and it is surrounded by high mountains, thick jungles, and vast ocean. Thanks to the pristine natural scenery and hospitable people, Viet Hai Village attracts a large number of visitors. Many young villagers voluntarily become your guide as all of them want to turn their hometown to a unique island of tourism. They have huge potentials to make their homeland one of the most bewitching Cat Ba attractions in the near feature. This small village plays a big role in contributing to promoting Cat Ba tourism in particular and Haiphong tourism in general. Viet Hai village today is a tourism community site with natural, original and unique landscapes with friendly people who will bring tourists the best experience in this town.
Many tourists pass by Cat Ba as an overnight stop or part of a tour to Ha Long Bay. However, the coastal area of Cat Ba, known as Lan Ha Bay, is certainly one of the greenest and most exquisite bays of Northern Vietnam. It comprises hundreds of limestone islands covered by rain forests, similar to Ha Long Bay. If you are considering this alternative, keep in mind that the water is calmer, cleaner and greener outside the summer months due to fewer tourists.
From Ben Beo Port, you should purchase the entrance ticket for the bay and rent or share a boat with other tourists to cruise around the bay according to different routes. You will be passing beautiful floating villages and small islets. Visiting the bay can take up from 3 to 5 hours or even the whole day. Most tours through Lan Ha Bay cost between 15 USD to 20 USD. Do not be afraid to bargain. Going with a local boat through the bay costs around 200.000 VND (10 USD) per person.
Written by: Hieu La