Ha Long Bay - Vietnam

By Chloe McDonald

Ha Long Bay

Ha Long Bay is located in Vietnam, it is a series of many small islands between Cat Ba Island in the south and the Vietnamese mainland in the north west. The mainland is heavily populated with many towns and villages and is mountainous, particularly inland. Cat Ba Island also has a rugged terrain but is much more sparsely populated. Much of Ha Long Bay is a World Heritage Site and the bay is split between two provinces.


Ha Long Bay is a World Heritage-listed site. This means that the site is of great interest to tourist. The mainland is heavily populated while Cat Ba island is sparsely populated.


Different groups of people have lived here over time and the area has been influenced by the Chinese and the French, for example. Various spiritual beliefs and legends regarding the development of the physical landscape formed by dragons etc. Ha Long Bay formed over millions of years ago. The rise and fall of the sea water created unusual caves and grottoes that are filled with amazing limestone features. The process which created Ha Long Bay has given scientists and interesting perspective on the regions development over time, and they have found clues that have helped them to better understand the prehistoric evolution of the areas inhabitants.


A karst environment has a long geological history. Karst means karst, terrain usually characterised by barren rocky ground, caves, sinkholes, underground rivers, and the absence of the surface streams and lakes. Ha Long Bay is made of spectacular limestone pillars and is part of a mature karst environment. Karst landscapes are formed by the chemical weathering of the rocks rich in calcium carbonate and form unique weathering patterns. This karst landscape has developed during a warm and wet tropical climate. It is a World Heritage site located within an area of high tourism, marine transport, fisheries and the daily activities of people living and conducting their business on Ha Long Bay. So the management of the area applies strict regulation and control of activities in an attempt to minimise impacts on the integrity of the property.


Popular tourist destination because of the warm tropical climate and natural landscape. The economic system relies on the fishing industry and tourism.


Its such a nice place, with a beautiful bay surrounding the islands. There are nearly two thousand rocky islands located in the bay and it was inscribed into the UNESCO world heritage list in 1994.