The highlight of our Vietnam trip (and our main reason for going) was to visit Ha Long Bay. Well, maybe I should say my reason. Victor had never really heard of it, and he quickly realized as our junk boat started on its way, that this place is one of the most surreal places on earth.
We were supposed to spend two nights on our boat, but unfortunately because of a supposed storm, we had to stay in a janky hotel in Ha Long city the first night, but first we did get to sail out and get a taste for the awesome landscape. The next day we got back on and spent the next two days cruising around.
One of the highlights of the cruise was all the people we met, literally from all over the world. Austria, Spain, Israel, Malaysia, Lebanon, Australia, Germany, France. Everyone was so nice and it was such a fun part of our cruise was getting to know everyone. We also met a super nice couple from England when we went to see the huge caves who were also LDS and are in the same ward as some of our good friends from Romania. (The fact they were LDS was attributed to Victor's BYU jacket he wears whenever we travel. Seriously, we have met so many members of the church this way ha).
Anyway, here is a massive amount of pictures! The beauty of this place was unreal.
^^our junk boat^^
Once we got back on the boat the next day, we sailed further in the bay to the floating fishing village. Victor kayaked through it while I rode in a small rowboat with one of the villagers. Great for Victor, because I was able to take pictures of him kayaking through incredible scenery.
When we got back to the boat, Victor and I decided to take the plunge into the Gulf of Tonkin. It was COLD. We'll call it the Tonkin polar plunge. We swam around together for a little but it was short lived. But hey, now we've swam in the Gulf of Tonkin. You may be wondering where J was while we went swimming together. Well, he was being held by one of the chefs. And when we ate our meals, he would be being held by one of the servers, or hanging out with the captain. They all loved him. He was the most popular person on board! I've said that the Japanese love babies, and the Balinese a little more, but they have nothing on the Vietnamese! They just come and scoop them up from you if they can. That's why we kept him in the ergo carrier so often ha.
We also did a cooking class on board learning how to make Vietnamese spring rolls. Fun times.
Sailing around this place was just so peaceful and reverent. It was such a cool place. Victor and I commented that it would be so fun to jet ski around all the limestone pillars that jut out everywhere, but then again, that would totally ruin the special feeling in the air. So sweet.