Highlight of Our Vietnamese Holiday
We thoroughly enjoyed the one night trip with Indochina Sails through the marvellous sights of Ha Long Bay, from the first minute to the last we felt treated like royalty. If time wasn't a constraint we would definitely have booked the longer 2 night option. Regardless this excursion was a truly wonderful experience & the highlight of our 2 week holiday in central & northern Vietnam.
Made very welcome on arrival & whilst waiting to board our boat via the little junk shuttle from the key side. The boat was made of 2 decks of accommodation, 1 deck for the dining area & a top sun deck, all very well looked after & presented in all it's splendour. Once on board the Indochina Sails staff introduced themselves & took us through a safety & itinerary briefing before taking us to our cabin (on the second deck). What a very pleasant surprise this was, very spacious, tasteful wooden panelled décor, lovely en-suite bathroom & the added bonus of our own balcony. The set menu lunch, was incredible, 4 courses, including pumpkin soup, fresh prawns & fish dishes, beautifully presented & very well cooked, & served very efficiently by the excellent staff on-board.
After retiring to the top sun deck to absorb some of the marvellous scenery, we gathered for the first organised trip off board visiting one of the islands to explore the 3 sections of caves. Very well co-ordinated by Indochina Sails to time our visit to avoid other groups of tourists, therefore it appeared as if we had the place & the time to our selves to explore at our pace & not rushed along amongst other visitors.
Upon return we had free time to again soak up some of the fantastic views, watch the sun set through the multiple island panorama, relax with a cocktail & then freshen up for the evening.
Dinner was a very nice buffet style set up, plenty of choice (we don't eat meat), always seemed hot & readily replenished, available to enjoy at your own pace, never feeling rushed. After eating, the offer to sample a bit of squid fishing on the back of the boat was enjoyed, although nobody caught anything, it was still a pleasant experience.
The following early mornings trip to Ti Top island was very enjoyable, if exhausting in the extremely hot lung busting conditions (even at 8;45am), if you can expend the energy & sweat profusely climb the 400 plus steps to the top of the island via a winding single track of steps to marvel at the view from on high. Well worth it, before you descend the same steps to enjoy a swim in the sea off a very small beach front (watch out for the jelly fish though) to cool down & catch your breath. This is a very popular excursion, multiple boats anchoring in this islands bay, but again Indochina Sails deserve some credit in allocating us the days first trip up the islands mountain side without being swamped with other visitors. Back on board to shower & change ready for a buffet breakfast, again lots of choice & well presented as the boat headed back to the mainland.
In summary an absolute definite 5 star experience that without hesitation we would 100% recommend. All of the Indochina Sails staff are EXCELLENT, very attentive, helpful, courteous & considerate, you genuinely feel they all want to do everything they can to help you enjoy this marvellous experience. Many Thanks.