Ha Long Bay is in northeastern Vietnam, from E106°56' to E107°37' and from N20°43' to N21°09'. The bay stretches from Yên Hưng district, past Hạ Long city, Cẩm Phả town to Vân Đồn district, bordered on the south and southeast by the Gulf of Tonkin, on the north by China and on the west and southwest by Cát Bà island. The bay has a 120 kilometre long coastline and is approximately 1,553 square kilometres in size with about 2000 islets. The area designated by UNESCO as the World Natural Heritage Site includes 434 km² with 775 islets, of which the core zone is delimited by 69 points: Đầu Gỗ island on the west, Ba Hầm lake on the south and Cống Tây island on the east. The protected area is from the Cái Dăm petrol store to Quang Hanh commune, Cẩm Phả town and the surrounding giants zone.
n 1962 the Vietnam Ministry of Culture, Sport and Tourism designated Ha Long Bay a 'Renowned National Landscape Monument'.
Ha Long Bay was first listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1994, in recognition of its outstanding, universal aesthetic value. In 2000 the World Heritage Committee additionally recognised Ha Long Bay for its outstanding geological and geomorphological value, and its World Heritage Listing was updated.
The New Open World Foundation has included Halong Bay on its list for nomination as one the World's 7 Natural Wonders.
It is really beautiful. Which part of Vietnam is this, and are you also from Vietnam?
beautiful places. I will search where is it specificaly thats: "E106°56' to E107°37' and from N20°43' to N21°09'"
Thanks for share that place. I love it
I used to live in Vietnam and every chance i had, i went to Halong Bay, it is the most spectacular place on earth, especially if you know some of the locals and they can show you caves that the Tourists don't go to.
Very beautiful. Thanks for sharing.
History of the name “ Halong”
“Ha Long” is literally translated as "Bay of Descending Dragons." Prior to the 19th century, this name was not recorded in any document or archive. When mentioning the present-day Quang Ninh Sea or Ha Long Bay, old historical books often referred to them by the names of An Bang, Luc Thuy or Van Don. Not until the late 19th century did the name of Halong Bay appear on a French Marine Map. “The Hai Phong News”, a French newspaper of the time, had an article, “Dragon appears on Ha Long Bay”, reporting the following story: In 1898 a sub-lieutenant named Lagredin, captaining the ‘Avalanse’ reported seeing a huge sea snake on Ha Long Bay. This was also witnessed by many of the crews. Thus emerged the European image of the Asian dragon. Whether this appearance of a strange animal looking like a dragon resulted the name of Ha Long Bay is not known (Reference “Quang Ninh: Art and Culture” published in 2002).
There is also a local legend, which has been handed down, relating to the name Ha Long Bay, which tells the following tale:
“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 present-day Tra Co Peninsula with its soft sandy beach stretching many kilometers.”
The system of islands and caves
Most of the islands on Ha Long Bay are limestone and were formed over 500 million years ago, and are massed in the southeast and southwest. The schist islands scattered in the southeast have an average height of between 50-200m, and have a rich covering of flora.
Within the islands of the Bay there are hundreds of beautiful caves of different shapes and sizes, including many famous names such as Thien Cung, Dau Go, Sung Sot, Tam Cung and Bo Nau. Some of them are archaeological sites retaining tangible archaeological evidence, such as Dau Go, Bo Nau, Sung Sot, Soi Nhu, Tien Long, Me Cung, and Trinh Nu caves.
Halong Bay’s outstanding global values
The permanent beauty of Ha Long is created by three factors: stone, water and sky. Ha Long’s island system is multicolored with a variety of shapes and can be regarded as a water-color, a work of art.
Evaluation and Praises
Throughout the ages many famous men, from both home and abroad, when faced with the beauty of Halong’s sky and water have sung its praises in different ways, especially in poems.
Halong Bay’s geological value has been evaluated in two ways: by the history of its formation and by its karst geomorphology.
The Cultural − Historical value
Halong Bay is a home of ancient Viet people...
The bio diversity value
Bio-diversity is an important natural resource and needs to be preserved and conserved to maintain the ecological balance of the whole region. Bio-diversity is the general term used to reflect diversify and abundance in nature and includes all living things.
The process of recognition of Halong Bay as a World Natural Heritage Area
The first time:
On 21st December, 1991, The Government of Vietnam permitted the setting up a of file on Ha Long Bay to be submitted to UNESCO for recognition of Ha Long Bay as a World Heritage Site. During the two year period 1991 to 1993, UNESCO nominated many expert delegations to come to Quang Ninh to survey, research, guide and review the ongoing file. Ha Long Bay’s file was completed and sent to UNESCO, Paris, for consideration in 1993, to be addressed at the 18th session.
On 17th December, 1994, the World Heritage Committee officially recognized Ha Long Bay as a World Natural Heritage Area at its 18th session in Phu Ket, Thailand, because of its universal aesthetic value according to criteria (iii) of the Convention.
The second time:
At the request of Ha Long Bay Management Department and IUCN, in September 1998, Prof. Tony Waltham, the top expert on Geology of Trent University, Nottingham, conducted a survey of the limestone karst of Ha Long Bay. He submitted his report to UNESCO Paris and Switzerland, IUCN Offices (Ha Noi) and to the Ha Long Bay Management Department. As a result, on 25th February, 1999, the World Heritage Center requested Quang Ninh People’s Committee, Vietnam’s National Commission for UNESCO and the Ha Long Bay Management Department to prepare a file to submit to UNESCO for the inscription of Ha Long Bay’s outstanding values of geology and geomorphology.
In July 1999, the file was completed and sent to the World Heritage Center’s Office in Paris. In December 1999, at the 23rd Congress of UNESCO held in Marakesh, Morocco, UNESCO officially considered the file. In March 2000 Professor Ellery Hamilton Smith, a member of IUCN was delegated to come to Ha Long to check the validity of the file and its geological value and to evaluate the management situation and make recommendations. In July 2000, at its mid-year meeting, the World Heritage Center, Paris, officially proposed that the World Heritage Committee recognize Ha Long Bay as a World Natural Heritage Site for its universal values of geology and geomorphology.
On 2nd December, 2000, at the 24th session of the World Heritage Committee held in Cairns, Queensland, Australia, the World Heritage Committee unanimously decided to recognize the universal geological value of Ha Long Bay for the second time according to criteria (i) of the International Convention on the Protection of the World National and Cultural Heritage.