Hanoi to Lan Ha Bay: 3 most common ways & tips (2023 Updated)



Lan Ha Bay is a part of Halong Bay, a UNESCO Heritage site in Vietnam. Despite being overshadowed by the major Halong Bay, Lan Ha nevertheless offers stunning landscape, amazing limestone karst, and unspoiled beaches. It’s an excellent choice for travelers who want to appreciate the beauty of the area while avoiding the tourist crowds.

Lan Ha Bay from above
Lan Ha Bay is a stunning part of Halong Bay yet less touristy comparing to others – Source: Internet

Since Lan Ha Bay is really closed to Hanoi, many travelers opt to visit it in 1 day or an overnight trip. However, getting there may be difficult for first-time visitors. In this article, we’ll go over the 3 most common ways to get from Hanoi to Lan Ha Bay, as well as some tips to consider when planning your trip.


Hanoi to Lan Ha Bay distance


Lan Ha Bay is located in the east of Cat Ba Island, sharing the South border with Halong City and administratively belong to Hai Phong City, Vietnam. The bay is a part of Gulf of Tonkin. 

The distance from Hanoi to Lan Ha Bay is about 130 kilometers.


3 most common transportation from Hanoi to Lan Ha Bay


There’s so many way to get to Lan Ha Bay from Hanoi, but here’s 3 popular ways that travelers use the most:


By Road & Boat


With the newest highway link between Hanoi and Hai Phong City (where Lan Ha Bay is located), getting from Hanoi to Lan Ha Bay by road is now easier than ever. From Hanoi, you can travel to Cat Ba Island (3 hours by bus), and then taking a boat or ferry (10 – 20 minutes only) to Lan Ha Bay. 

First, you have to get to Cat Ba Island. Here are some popular ways to go to Cat Ba Island from Hanoi:


  • By tourist bus or limousine:

travel in tourist bus to Cat Ba Island
Travel By tourist Bus – a popular way to get to Cat Ba island @Source: Goodmorningcatba.com

Traveling from Hanoi to Lan Ha Bay by tourist bus or limousine is perhaps one of the most popular choices for travelers. These shuttles feature only 12 – 29 seaters, so you won’t feel too crammed on board. The trip will begin with a pick-up from your hotel in Hanoi, followed by 1 or 2 stops for restroom breaks along the way, and end with a drop-off at your hotel on Cat Ba Island. The entire journey can take up to 5 hours. These buses only run in the morning, with the last bus leaving at 14:00 to ensure you get on time for the last ferry of the day to the Island.

Tickets cost: ~ 12 – 14USD/person

Departure time: 08:00, 11:00 & 14:00 every day (The departure time might change during holidays, make sure to check with your travel agency to avoid any disruption)

Below is some of the reliable companies operating tourist buses or limousines between Hanoi & Cat Ba Island:

[wptb id=5779]

  • By private car:

If you don’t want to be packed into a tourist bus, a private car can be a better option. It may take you right to Cat Ba Island. The car would travel according to your preferred timetable and, of course, faster and more efficiently than the tourist bus. However, the cost might be a little bit pricey. 

Cost: ~ 130USD/way/4 seats or ~150USD/way/7 seats, including ferry fee to Cat Ba island.

Departure time: Eveytime you want.


  • By Public bus:

You could take a public bus to Cat Ba Island. However, we are not recommending this option. The reason for this is because the bus stations are rather complicated, and most of the staff there do not speak English at all. When compared to other options, the timetable is more flexible, with buses leaving every hour of the day. However, it will only take you to Hai Phong City and you will have to navigate your way to Cat Ba island by taking an additional cab and ferry.

Gia Lam Bus Station
Gia Lam Bus Station – Source: Internet

It may also be the most affordable way to get to Hai Phong City, with a ticket costing only approximately 120,000vnd (USD 7). If you really want to give it a shot, check out Hai Au Bus, the largest local transportation company in Hai Phong. Their buses usually depart from Gia Lam Bus Station, which is around 5 – 6 kilometers from Hanoi’s Old Quarter.


From Cat Ba to Lan Ha Bay


After getting to Cat Ba Island, the only way to get to Lan Ha Bay is by boat. You now could catch a taxi to Beo Pier in Cat Ba downtown area, and buy the tickets to visit Lan Ha Bay. While the cost for entrance fee is only about 80,000vnd/adult, the cost for hiring private boat to Lan Ha may range from 1,000,000vnd (~43USD) to 3,000,000vnd (~128USD), depend on the quality of the boat.



  • You can customize places you’d like to see in Lan Ha Bay.
  • It’s the most cost-effective way to travel Halong Bay


  • It might be hassle when buying boat tickets at Cat Ba Island or arranging tickets on your own.


By Package Cruise


Traveling by cruise packages from Hanoi to Lan Ha Bay is the simplest and most efficient option of the 3. It offers a hassle-free experience for travelers, covering not just transportation but also a trip to Lan Ha Bay. The itinerary and schedule are well-planned, covering most of the area’s major attractions such as Cat Ba Island, Dark & Bright Cave, Tra Bau area, and Viet Hai Village.

The cruises will provide door-to-door service, including a pick-up by bus or limousine from your Hanoi hotel, transportation to Lan Ha Bay, and return.

There are many Lan Ha Bay cruises available, ranging from budget to luxury options. Most of cruises leave from Tuan Chau Harbor in Ha Long City, which is around 170 kilometers from Hanoi. This also means you’ll get to see some of Halong Bay before heading to Lan Ha Bay. The bus ride takes about 3-4 hours, depending on traffic and the time of day.


  • Hassle-free options, you won’t have to worry much about planning
  • Cover both Lan Ha Bay  & Ha Long Bay


  • You might have to stick with the cruise schedules.

Here’s the collections of best Lan Ha Bay Cruises:

  • Dragon Bay Cruise

    Dragon Bay Cruise

    Destination : Lan Ha Bay – Halong Bay – Dark & Bright Cave

    Private Balcony in all cabins

    From: $118
  • Rita Cruise

    Rita Cruise

    Destination: Lan Ha Bay – Halong Bay – Cat Ba Island

    Free Kayaking, Private Balcony

    From: $145
  • Scarlet Pearl Cruise

    Scarlet Pearl Cruise

    Destination: Halong – Lan Ha Bay –  Dark & Bright Cave

    Superb Early Bird Promotion – Only $165/person

    From: $165


By Seaplane


For people who looking for luxury experiences on the way to Lan Ha Bay, we have an option for you. It’s the seaplane.

Traveling by seaplane allows you to see both Halong Bay and Lan Ha Bay at the same time, and especially from above. Believe us, it’s spectacular and definitely worth the money. It allows you to fly through the sky above pristine waterways, greeny rainforests of UNESCO-listed landscapes, and emerging limestone islands in 45-60 minutes.

travel from Hanoi to Lan Ha Bay by seaplane
The most expensive way to travel to Lan Ha Bay is by seaplane – Source: Hai Au Aviation

The ticket must be booked in advance, just like any other flight. Hai Au Aviation is the only company authorized to provide seaplane flights in Vietnam. You can visit their official website here for more details.

The flight will take off from Hanoi International Airport and land in Tuan Chau Marina in Halong Bay. The trip will last 60 minutes. After that, you could take an overnight cruise to Lan Ha Bay.

Cost: ~9,000,000vnd (~380USD/person)
Departure time: 09:20 or 10:00 daily
Departure airport: T1, Noi Bai Domestic Terminal Airport, Hanoi City


  • It’s the most epic way to travel from Hanoi to Lan Ha Bay
  • You could see both Halong Bay & Lan Ha Bay


  • It’s quite expensive
  • You couldn’t bring much luggage with you.



In conclusion, exploring Hanoi to Lan Ha Bay is a must-do for anyone visiting Vietnam. Whether you choose to take a cruise, travel by road, or fly by seaplane, there are plenty of transport options available to suit your needs and budget. Lan Ha Bay offers a unique and alternative experience to Ha Long Bay, with fewer crowds and a more tranquil atmosphere. Don’t miss the opportunity to discover the hidden gems of this beautiful region and experience the magic of Vietnam.


Frequently Asked Questions 

How far is this from Hanoi to Lan Ha Bay ?

The distance between Hanoi and Lan Ha Bay is about 132km

How could I get to Lan Ha Bay from Hanoi ?

As Lan Ha Bay located in the sea are, getting there required a combination of bus & ferry.
From Hanoi, you’ll have to take transportation to Cat Ba Island & then travel to Lan Ha Bay by boat or ferry.
You’re also could take a cruise package to travel the bay from Hanoi. Flights are also available with seaplane by Hai Au Aviation to Tuan Chau Marina, then it’s taking another cruise trip to Lan Ha Bay. .

What’s the cheapest way to travel to Lan Ha Bay from Hanoi?

The cheapest way to travel from Hanoi to Lan Ha Bay is by tourist bus or limousine. They’re offer a door to door services, picking up from your hotel to Hanoi and drop you off at Cat Ba Island. The journey might take up to 5 hours.
The cost for 1 ticket is about 12USD – 14USD per way.

What’s the fastest way to travel between Hanoi & Lan Ha Bay.

The private car is the fasest way to travel to Lan Ha Bay from Hanoi. It’s take total 4 hours including ferry ride to Cat Ba Island.

What’s the closest airport to Lan Ha Bay?

The closest airport to Lan Ha Bay is Cat Bi International Airport. It’s located in Cat Bi district, Hai Phong City, about 38km from Lan Ha Bay.



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