The following options are available to get from Hanoi to Halong Bay:
There are many bus companies serving this route but we recommend to not opt for the cheapest local buses but look for plusher buses instead. A couple of more bucks will buy you a soft reclining seat with sufficient legroom in an air-conditioned coach.
Local buses leave from bus stations around the city including Nuoc Ngam and My Dinh, and many luxury buses offer complimentary pick-up from your hotel in Hanoi.
Hanoi to Halong Bay train departs Yen Vien train station, 12 km northeast of the city centre. It is an ordinary Vietnamese Railways train with hard seats only. The main drawback is that it runs on Fridays only. Taking into account the duration of the journey, it is not going to be the most convenient one.
Taxi, or private transfer, is the most convenient option but comes at a price. You will be picked-up at your hotel and dropped-off at the location specified. It is a door-to-door hassle-free friendly service; it is also quite fast.
Seaplanes let you travel from Hanoi to Halong Bay in style. It is fast, convenient and picturesque way to get to the bay. Flights leave from Hanoi’s Noi Bai Airport and arrive to Tuan Chau Marina from where cruises around the bay depart.
It is the easiest option though not the cheapest one. Your ticket will include transportation from Hanoi to Halong Bay as well as a 4-hour tour of the bay and a visit to a coupe of caves, too. A simple solution if you really want to keep it easy.
How far is it from Hanoi to Halong Bay?
The driving distance from Hanoi to Halong Bay is 175 km; slightly less if you fly.
How long does it take to get from Hanoi to Halong Bay?
Hanoi to Halong travel time varies depending on the means of transport. In media,
- the fastest time is guaranteed by flying a seaplane – 45 minutes only;
- you’ll need between 3 and 4 hours if travelling by taxi or private transfer;
- by bus, expect to spend between four and 5 hours on the wheels;
- by train, duration of the trip will be around 6.5 hours;
- organized tours take the whole day – 12 hours.
How much does it cost to get from Hanoi to Halong Bay?
Ticket price from Hanoi to Halong Bay lies within USD3–USD175 range depending on what you want to get from your travel.
The cheapest way to get from Hanoi to Halong Bay is by a direct train. It is wise to use online booking to guarantee your seat. One-way ticket will cost you between USD3 and USD4.
Hanoi–Halong Bay buses make multiple trips per day. Prices range from USD10 for ordinary local buses to USD15-22 for luxury or night buses. Book your tickets online to save you a trip to the bus station and avoid queues there.
Prices on organized tours vary depending on the program included but normally start from USD50.
Private transfers cost from USD100 for a car accommodating up to 3 passengers and over USD150 for a van good for 9 travellers.
Seaplane will set you back between USD175 and USD400 one-way, in the latter case a 15-minute sightseeing tour is included. Round trip tickets are available with a discount.
Hanoi to Halong Bay Timetable
Travel from Hanoi to Halong Bay is possible throughout the day with multiple departure times offered by day and night buses.
This timetable will give you an idea of bus, train, and seaplane timetable.
Hanoi–Halong Bay every hour from 6 am till 8 pm 4–5 hours USD15-18
Hanoi–Halong Bay 6 pm, 8.30 pm 4–5 hours USD18-22
Hanoi–Halong Bay on Friday only, 4.55 am 6.5 hours USD3-4
Hanoi–Halong Bay scheduled trips at 10 am, 2 pm 45 minutes USD175
Best Rated Companies for this Route
There is a wide choice of local bus companies plying the route between Hanoi and Halong Bay – Dai Phat Coach, Duc Phuc Coach, Kumho Viet Thanh, Phuc Xuyen Coach and Xuan Truong Coach to name just a few.
For comfier shuttle buses check Rosa Eco Bus, Hoang Long VIP bus, Minh Anh Limousine and the like.
Hai Au Aviation is the only company operating seaplanes on this route.
Hanoi to Halong Bay Travel Tips
- Hanoi to Halong Bay tickets sell out well any time of the year, so do book in advance.
- Ask for round trip tickets – some companies offer a discount if you travel with them both ways or you are a group of 5 or more.
- Invest a couple of more bucks into a more up-level bus seat – you won’t regret.
- Do not despair if it rains in Halong Bay – it is beautiful all the same.