Tra Bau area in Lan Ha Bay: Travel Guide in 2024

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Tra Bau area

 Tra Bau area is a hidden gem in Vietnam’s Lan Ha Bay. The area is well-known for its rich history, vibrant culture, and stunning natural beauty. 


About Tra Bau area


Tra Bau is located in the middle of Lan Ha Bay, Hai Phong City. The area is only about 25 minutes by ferry from Tuan Chau Marina and close to various attractions of Lan Ha such as Ao Ech, Vung Vieng Village or Cat Ba Island. 

Tra Bau is bounded by a system of massive limestone islets, wearing the area an serene and peaceful atmosphere. On the day time, the entire area look just like a emerald lagoon, hiding among a “jungle” of islands and islets. At night, lights from the cruise ships illuminate the entire area, transform it into a sparkling pearl in the middle of the sea. 

The beauty of Tra Bau jowellap
The beauty of Tra Bau -@jowellap/Instagram

More than just natural beauty; the area is also the home of a vibrant local community. Long ago, fishermen used the advantage of this location as a storm shelter, and it eventually grew into a floating village, which was later named “Tra Bau fishing village.” The locals here are truly warm and inviting to guests. They will gladly invite travelers to their home to learn about their everyday lives and how they managed to live in the water.


Things to do


Visiting Tra Bau, you’ll be surprise by the beauty of the natural here, together with plenty of activities to do. 

Being a pirate is a one-of-a-kind activity in Tra Bau. But don’t worry, not the “real” one though. You will get the opportunity to participate in a cosplay game as a pirate and live their sea-life for a day. This game lead by local will help you discover and understand more about the area’s history and culture. And, of course, plenty of entertaining Instagram photos too!

Cosplaying a pirate
Cosplaying a pirate

Kayaking and bamboo boat is the best way to explore the hidden lagoon and cave of the area. These caves are so small and concealed that the large cruise ships cannot enter. Bending your head and slowly kayak over low ceilings of these hidden lagoon will make you feeling immerse into the pure natural and enjoy a truly relaxing moment here.

Fishing with locals will help you to learn about the main ways of living for local people in Tra Bau fishing village. Visiting there, you will have a chance to join the natives in their fishing, trying to catch some fish and learning about their fishing technique and how they conserved the resources.

Tra bau fishing village
Tra Bau fishing village – @reviewvietnam


When to Visit


The entire area is stunning all the year. However, the best time to visit Tra Bau area in term of weather is from February to April or October to November. Both periods have little rainfall (avg 6 days per month) and pleasant weather (avg 18°C – 23°C) with lots of sunny days. It will be perfect times to join in the waters activities of the area.  


Getting there


Tra Bau area is located just next to Cat Ba Island in Lan Ha Bay, making it easy with a lot of available options to get there. 

If you’re starting from Cat Ba Island, take a taxi to Beo Pier. From the pier, it’s only take a 20 minutes ride by boat to Tra Bau. You could join a sharing boat for 80,000vnd – 100,000vnd per person or rent the whole boat for 

 In case you’re coming from Halong Bay, you could rent a canoe from Tuan Chau Marina to the area. A roundtrip may costs around 2,200,000vnd for 6 hours, which includes both the boat rental charge and the entrance fee.

Another hassle-free option is taking a Lan Ha Bay overnight cruise. These cruise won’t not only travel to Tra Bau but also explore others attractions of the bay. If you starting from Hanoi, this will be a good option since they provide a full package with transfer from the Old Quarter, which will save you lots of time planning.

If you don’t know how to get to Lan Ha Bay from Hanoi yet, take a look at our detailed guide here.


Top Lan Ha Bay Cruises visit Tra Bau area

  • Dragon Bay Cruise

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

    Private Balcony in all cabins

    From: $118
  • Rita Cruise

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

    Free Kayaking, Private Balcony

    From: $145
  • Scarlet Pearl Cruise

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

    Superb Early Bird Promotion – Only $170/person

    From: $165


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