Halong Bay – a magnificent magical destination (Part 1)

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Ha Long Bay
Ha Long Bay

Halong Bay is said to be a magic land of natural sea bay beauty, attracting more and more tourists ever since UNESCO’s recognition of its nature!

>> Halong Bay – a magnificent magical destination (Part 2)

>> Places to see in Vietnam 

Location & Climate

Halong Bay is located in the Northeast of Vietnam, belonging to Halong city, Quang Ninh Province, in the Gulf of Tonkin. On the world map, it has borders to China in the North and adjacent to the East Sea in the East .

The Bay has a medium size of 1,553 square kilometers. It is accomodation of many fishing communities, including the 4 communes of Cua Van, Cong Tau, Vong Vieng and Ba Hang with a population of more than 1,600 people. The residents live on floating houses and boats, making their own lives by fishing and aquaculture.

Ha Long Bay is said to be a magic land of natural sea bay beauty
Ha Long Bay is said to be a magic land of natural sea bay beauty

The bay is a sea islands in tropical wet with 2 seasons: hot and moist summer, dry and cold winter. Average temperature is from 15°C- 25°C. Annual rainfall is between 2,000mm and 2,200mm. Halong Bay has the typical diurnal tide system (tide amplitude ranges from 3.5-4m). The salinity is from 31 to 34.5MT in dry season and lower in rainy season.

Historical name

“Ha Long” means "Bay of Descending Dragons.
“Halong” means “Bay of Descending Dragons.

Literally, “Halong” means “Bay of Descending Dragons.” Before the 19th century, this name was not recorded in any document or archive. In this term, there is a mysteriously legendary tale as follows
“Long ago, in the first founding days, the Viet people were attacked by foreign aggressors. The Jade Emperor sent the Mother Dragon and her band of Child Dragons to help the Viet people fight the invaders. While the enemy vessels were launching massive attacks against the mainland, the dragons descended in flocks from the sky. They spat out innumerable pearls which changed into jade stone islands the moment they touched the water. These islands linked together to form firm citadels that checked the enemy’s advance and smashed their vessels to pieces. After the invaders were driven out, Mother Dragon and her Child Dragons did not return to Heaven but stayed on earth, right at the place where the battle occurred. The spot where the Mother Dragon landed was Ha Long, and where the Child Dragons came down was Bai Tu Long. The place where their tails violently wagged was called Long Vi, the today’s Tra Co Peninsula with its soft sandy beach stretching a series of kilometers.”