Ha Long Bay was a beautiful backdrop to a whirlwind of scheduled activities.
We took a two-night tour with Ha Long Best Cruises on the Marguerite boat, though I believe most of the tours are the same. The scenery was gorgeous, but there seemed to be a designated time when all the boats brought all the tourists to one stop, be it a man-made beach with a mini market, a giant cave where they’d cemented in stairs and cordoned off a path, or a pearl farm that looked like it might not actually be real. We would all crowd in, and then all disperse. I would have preferred to spend time relaxing on deck and just cruising around away from all the other boats, but that appeared to not be an option.
Still, at the end of the day, the bay was beautiful and the food was delicious, so I can’t complain.
And hey, maybe I should be less judgemental about someone wanting to schedule 20 minutes of rest time into my day. I’m back at work now, and that seems like a pretty thoughtful itinerary addition.