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“Not bad for the price”

Poseidon Sail Private Charter Halong
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Attraction details
Owner description: Halong Poseidon sail, the newest luxury Junk Boat in Halong Bay. Built as a traditional wooden junk with modern contemporary Vietnamese design, Halong Poseidon Sails will provide deluxe amenities and pampering services whilst cruising through magnificent landscapes. 8 spacious cabins and suites with own bathrooms, large sundeck.
Reviewed 2 October 2013

We were collected from our hotel and rode in a minibus to halong bay (3.5 hours) with toilet stop. Guides were good and gave lots of info on way there. Our boat, Poseidon, was fairly standard, the cabins clean and tide, good showers.
Our guide, Quy - just great!
Surprise caves
Amazing scenery
Service on boat

Not so great:
Food is average
Bit of waiting around
Vietnamese cooking- not a cooking class.... Could prob do without it.

Ok for the price around 120pp inclusive except drinks..

1  Thank TravellerNZ101
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviews (31)
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6 - 10 of 31 reviews

Reviewed 18 July 2013

I joined the tour on early December with my friend. It was easy to book as well, just send them an email and pick up and drop off transportation from Hanoi could be arranged. 3 days 2 nights is enough to spend days in Halong Bay, nothing much to do, besides kayaking, enjoy scenery and fishing at night. We meet up with new friends on the boat as well. They also organize Vietnamese cooking class on the boat. Dinner and lunch were organized and presented with amazing food carving. Recommended to stay, well not a luxury boat but worth the value.

3  Thank adrianleeweisheng
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 July 2013

I apologise for the lengthy review, after trying to find a suitable Junk tour ourselves I know the reviews are varied so hopefully this will be helpful for most.

Our tour guide Hung picked us up on time from our hotel on the morning of the tour. The bus we had to take to Ha Long was a mini bus, we had our luggage but I would recommend taking an overnight bag only and leaving your luggage at your hotel if possible. The journey is 3 1/2 hours but you stop half way at a tourist rest stop, inflated prices but great to stretch your legs!

Once you arrive at the port, depending on who is on your bus, you will split into different groups. Out of 16 people only 6 of us were taking the same tour. You then take a smaller boat to your junk boat in the harbor and board. The boat itself was a lot better than expected after reading some other reviews. The room was a lot larger than expected and you have your own private en-suite (I did not realize but some of the boats don't!). The first day is great sailing around and kayaking, as well as visiting the cave. You then get back on board for a cooking class and a night on the water. The food is fantastic and as a non-seafood eater I found the options to be more than enough!

The next bit is where it gets a little strange (but works). Depending who on your boat is doing what tour you disembark your boat onto the smaller boat mentioned earlier and are taken to another junk boat that will continue your tour. There were 9 of us on the boat going to Cat Ba but only 4 of us doing the same tour! Once on Cat Ba things only get stranger as you join other groups and then separate again but the tour and island is lovely.

I would highly recommend this tour, great staff, great boat and great food!

Sorry for the essay!

7  Thank TravelBug_SAR
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 June 2013

After hearing a few horror stories of over night trips to Halong bay we were apprehensive of how this trip would turn out and all I can say is...wow! Everything from the room standard/cleanliness, service, food (top class, tasty food about 5-6 courses per meal, the chef did an amazing job), activities and the staff was all outstanding. The one only minor downside is the cost of drinks on board approx 40k dong for a beer excluding service and tax, and ensure you keep track of what you have to drink as you pay at the end of your trip (you don't want any nasty surprises).

4  Thank Ninkx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 15 June 2013

This is a difficult review to post. I have such positive memories of Ha Long Bay, but I can't judge the tour by the splendor that it progressed through.

We were picked up at our hotel in a very nice bus. The guide, Qua (sp?) was personable and spoke English well. The bus rolled along and stopped at the mandatory tourist trap for a bathroom stop halfway to Ha Long City. We made it to Ha Long Harbor and trundled onto the boat. There was only 8 of us, which was pleasant, as we assumed we would have the run of the ship.

Lunch was fantastic and they provided plenty of food. In line with most of the cruises, beverages and water are not included. You will get stinkeye if you bring your own bottle of water to the table. The surroundings are incredible. Ha Long Bay is beautiful.

The Poseidon boat is one of the nicer boats out there. The cabins are gorgeous, and the boat itself is well maintained, which cannot be said of the competition.

We were taken off the boat to be herded through a cave tour with hundreds of other tourists. The talking points are standardized and you will be ushered along even if you are taking pictures. Following that, we got to kayak but where we were promised 1 hour, we ended up getting 30 minutes. This was something that we were really looking forward to and were bummed that we didn't get to spend the full time.

Following that, we were told we would get to go swimming. As we were on a ship, that seemed like an easy proposition. Instead we were taken to a tiny beach with hundreds of tourists and locals fighting over a tiny plot of sand. Half of our group looked at the beach and asked to just stay on the boat. We were told that was impossible, and we had to go to the crappy beach instead of staying on the great boat. We ended up going to the beach and spending 90 minutes there while the guide played football on the beach. After this, we got to go back to the Poseidon boat.

The next scheduled activity was making springrolls. This was scheduled right at sunset, so once again, most of the group didn't want to take part. Hmmm, make springrolls or watch the sunset over Ha Long Bay? We informed the guide that we weren't making springrolls. 5 times. He kept insisting that we make them, and we kept refusing. What should have been a relaxing, magnificent occasion was instead a fight to enjoy the ship and the scenery.

After sunset we had dinner and the meal was superb again. The choices of entertainment were squid fishing (a meaningless and trite expenditure of time, although I did nearly catch a crab) and karaoke, which the staff commandeered. One of the guests actually went to the lounge and told them to shut it down, as they were going to sleep.

The following day, staff began knocking on our door at 6:30am. We told them that we were skipping breakfast so we could sleep a little longer as the A/C was turned off at 3am. This was apparently not acceptable, as the crew knocked on our door and yelled into the cabin every 3 minutes for the next hour. We did not have to be ready until 7:30am but couldn't get a minute's peace. Now here's where things get weird.

We booked our entire tour with Poseidon Sail. We were kicked off the boat at 7:30am in the morning and transferred to another boat, which was not nearly as nice. We were heading to Cat Ba Island, and all told, we had to transfer between 4 boats to get there. 4 boats. Which declined in quality and amenities with each transfer. We never saw our group again. We never saw our guide again. We ended up being shoved exactly where we didn't want to be when we booked a "luxury" service: on a broken down bus filled with 20 somethings with questionable hygiene. This was not our group and definitely not what we had paid a premium for. At Cat Ba national park, the bus was left with the door open and the bus unattended for nearly two hours with our bags sitting in the doorway.

Poseidon Sail advertises itself as a luxury option to the standard Ha Long Bay tour. What we got was great when we were actually on the ship and allowed to enjoy Ha Long Bay. But the vast majority of the trip was a massive bait and switch operation. We were on the ship that we booked for a grand total of 15 hours when we booked a 3 day tour. After the end of our tour, we had been on far too many mediocre boats, far too many broken down buses with no/little A/C for the luxury price that was paid.

7  Thank Glamm808
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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