Photo: Canals of Ca Mau, Mekong Delta.

Vietnam forum

safe swimming halong bay?

Posted by andun on 21/11/2011 at 05:30

hi anybody been swimming in halong bay lately? I gather alote of tours stop to let customers swim, but i understand there can be alot of boat it safe/ clean?
many thanks for any help

#1 andun has been a member since 21/11/2011. Posts: 5

Posted by BC on 21/11/2011 at 05:46

I was there a couple of years ago and I had a brief swim (just because...), but I wouldn't say it was clean - at various times we saw empty oil containers and even syringes floating by.

World Heritage indeed...

#2 BC has been a member since 24/11/2005. Posts: 5

Posted by andun on 21/11/2011 at 06:00

thanks for that BC

does not sound very promising, hopefully it is abit cleaner since then. I wonder are there any smaller perhaps less touristy or cleaner bays for swimming iin the north vietnam area anyone could recommend?

#3 andun has been a member since 21/11/2011. Posts: 5

Posted by dwighthz on 21/11/2011 at 11:46


I've been to Halong Bay 3 times. The first time I went swimming off the cruise junk. There are a lot of currents in the bay, several other swimmers and I were not paying attention and got caught in a current. I was about 100 meters from the boat when I realized I was moving away. Two other swimmers started to panic and the cruise crew sent a small boat for them and then the boat got into a strong current and couldn't get back. The cruise sent a line to the rescue boat and towed it back. Everything turned out OK. So be careful.

Shore swimming is safe. There is some pollution unfortunately. Don't miss the beauty of Halong Bay.


#4 dwighthz has been a member since 18/9/2008. Posts: 4

Posted by busylizzy on 21/11/2011 at 13:15

I think it's generally safe enough - you should be able to swim around your boat without problem. (If you don't feel comfortable about it at the time, then don't jump in).

Pollution is another story. I saw the kitchen scraps floating away from the boat and at times, saw evidence of floating sewerage. (And I was on one of the better, more expensive cruises!) On that basis, I wasn't jumping in.

#5 busylizzy has been a member since 31/12/2007. Location: New Zealand. Posts: 2,153
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