How and Why it came to be this way

Past Influences, Development and How and Why this landscape came to be the way it is today (Q1 & 3)

Environmental- Ha Long Bay has about 1600 islands that form a seascape of limestone pillars. Most of the islands are uninhabited by humans and therefore and pure and untouched from humans. The limestone pillars have become a well matured attraction as the sea and climates have eroded them down. Smaller Islands are about 50m to 100m high because of the rock walls the islands consist of, however the structure of all islands are ever changing as erosion from the climate is a strong impact on Ha Long Bay.

Historical- Ha Long Bay has an urban myth behind it according to the Vietnamese: "The word Ha Long in Vietnamese means “dragon descending”.Legend has it that when Vietnam was threatened with invasion centuries ago, the Jade Emperor sent down a mother dragon and her children to help fight the invaders. As they descended, the dragons spat out innumerable pearls, which were changed into jade stone islands.The larger rocky islands where the dragon landed were called Ha Long, the smaller islands, Bay Too Long after the dragon’s children, and the long string of islands Long Vi (now the Tar Co peninsula), where the dragons’ tails wriggled." ~(Story located at the HSC Online website run by the NSW Department of Education)~ http://hsc.csu.edu.au/geography/ecosystems/case_studies/2475/halong_bay.html

Social- It is hard to say how society had impacted the landscape thoughout history, yet form the 90's onwards Ha Long Bay has seen major amounts of tourists and an increase of population know as "sea gypsies". Sea Gypsies however live up to their name by not living on the land, but by living on the sea in boats or sheltered waters. Occasionally they may go ashore to sell or trade produce they have fished/caught, to others. Now-a-days sea gypsies go and try to sell produce to tourists by approaching tourist vessels or larger boats.

Economic- Ha Long Bay is a naturally sculpted land that has been around for thousands of decades! Money had not played a part in developing these islands therefore is economically free. However over the past few decades tourists have played an exponential amount on exhibiting this natural wonder of the world. Tourism organisations and such have received an economic rise but it is unknown whether any money goes towards developing the land.

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Questions? (Q4)


1.How long will it be before the limestone pillars completely erode away?

2.Why aren't the caves completely flooded out with water if some are underwater?

3.What if Ha Long Bay had no man-made features to it and was kept completely untouched, would it be in better condition?


1. How had the world war affected Ha Long Bay?

2. Why wasn't Ha Long Bay discovered earlier in History

3. What if a war had occurred on the Ha Long Bay Land, what changes would that of made to the landscape today?


1. How had people first ruined to pure untouched nature of Ha Long Bay?

2. Why is it that some islands in Ha Long Bay have been untouched and have remained pure from humans?

3. What if people completely inhabited Ha Long Bay, how different would it be?


1. How much money has gone into preserving Ha Long Bay?

2. Why do tourist attractions take in more money for themselves instead of preserving the land?

3.What if Ha Long Bay had a government, what changes would that of made to the bay?

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Popular Tourist Attraction? (Q2)

Where is it?- Ha Long Bay is located in northen Vietnam, east of Hanoi.

(FUN FACT- Ha Long Bay was recently classified and stated to be the 7th Wonder of the Natural World)

Why is it a popular tourist attraction?- This place lures in 90% of tourists in Vietnam, and has been dubbed Vietnam's second World Heritage Site. (The definition of World Heritage Site: "A natural or man-made site, area, or structure recognized as being of outstanding international importance and therefore as deserving"). Most of the time whilst visiting Ha Long Bay, boats or cruises may be essential if wanting to see the inner layers of the Islands. This Bay offers many activities on your stay such as: relaxing on the many beaches, exploring the depths of the city, the villiages or caves surrounding, swimming, fishing or kayaking. The Island of Tuan Chau has been remodeled to suit the needs of tourists on holidays and has been developed into a recreation island. The best times to visit Ha Long Bay is from April to October because the weather is said to be perfect!

Referenced Map of Ha Long Bay- http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/672/multiple=1&unique_number=796


At the start of this Assessment I had never heard of Ha Long Bay before although it seemed to be pretty famous when I researched it. I found it really interesting that a vast quantity of the attraction was sea but i also found the story behind the island quite fascinating. Although I mentioned that I found the vast quantities of water interesting, I also find it quite intimidating. I would really be interested to know if there were any rare or exotic creatures living in the seas surrounding but I would actually love to experience that type of tranquility and peace in such a forceful yet calming place. I hadn't known about the SHEEPT method either. It did help me in finding out more information about Ha Long Bay. I didn't realise how much of a difference there would be between Australia and other countries such as Vietnam, but whilst using SHEEPT i have engaged more information and have seen that we are so privileged in certain resources and facilities we are able to have here.