Firstly, I really recommend doing 2 nights instead of 1 - the full day out is relaxing and interesting, and less 'touristy' than the 1 night tour. And don’t worry about sea sickness – the water in the bay is very calm, and the boat moves really slowly.
The boat itself is beautiful, in perfect condition with a lovely lounge and dining area and a great sundeck on top. Our cabin had a large and comfortable bed, with a jacuzzi bath and separate rain shower. The room was spacious considering it is a cabin on a boat! It has a small balcony, and although there is no space to sit out on the balcony we didn't mind this because the sundeck is so nice and has better views. We had a large suitcase and had no problem keeping it in our cabin. There is a cupboard with a safe. They even provided flip flops in the cabins! I really liked the decor on the boat - dark wood, comfy chairs and loungers, lots of big windows inside.
The food was great quality - either set menu or big buffets were served. On the first night, we found the food to be excellent - grilled chilli squid, BBQ ribs, baked stuffed crab and lots of other fresh seafood, salads, meats, rice and noodles. The second night it was slightly different but almost as good. Breakfast and lunch was also really good quality. We did have to pay extra for drinks but I am fine with this as I don't drink a lot of alcohol so don't want this included in my price. They did a wine tasting session in the evenings, and a happy hour from 9pm so we took advantage then and tried the cocktails. The staff are really friendly and helpful, giving out free water to everyone before each of the excursions.
The full day out for the people staying 2 nights was the best. There were only 10 of us staying 2 nights, so we were transferred to a smaller day boat (also had a nice dining area, sun deck etc.) where we first went swimming and kayaking (they chose a swimming spot that had no jelly fish or litter, it was lovely), showed us some caves, took us to a floating fishing village (there is some litter in the water around the fishing village, but this is not something the boat company can control) which was really interesting, and to a pearl farm. And finally some more swimming. It was a relaxing day, and the set lunch they served us was amazing. The staff on the day boat were so fun and friendly, and also told us lots about life in the fishing village.
Considering the quality of the food and service, and the beautiful condition of the boat and cabin I felt this trip was worth what we paid for it, even if it is not as cheap by comparison to other things in Vietnam.
Supported by Indochina Sails - The most luxury and safest cruises in Halong Bay
Add: 27 – A6 – Dam Trau Quarter – Hai Ba Trung District – Hanoi – Vietnam
Tel: +84 – 4- 39842362
Fax: +84 – 4 – 39844150