Legend has it that the Gods sent a family of dragons to help defend the land. When the Great Mother Dragon plunged into the sea, thousands of tiny islands sprung up like perils from the ocean floor which linked together to form a great wall of protection against invaders. The name, Ha Long means’ Descending Dragon’ After the defeat of the invading forces the dragon family decided the live in the bay, the mother in Ha Long bay and the dragon children,in Ba Tu Long bay.
The islands of Ha Long Bay are one of the most ancient geographical sites in the world dating back to a tectonic age from 250 to 280 million years ago. At that time residues suggest that the bay was totally submerged in water.
In 1994 and 1997 respectively, Ha Long Bay -encompassing 434 square kilometers and 755 islands, was listed as a ‘World Natural Heritage Site’ by UNESCO under the selection criteria of
- natural phenomena of exceptional natural beauty
- major stages of earth’s history including
- The record of life – sedimentary deposits containing the remains of flora and fauna from ancient past including plants and animals that are now extinct
- Geological process in the development of land forms. As far as I can understand, these land forms are the result of complex geological process of the earth and sea movements over 5 hundred million years ago- imagine that!
Before leaving Ha Long we take a swim near Tein Ong Cave where Swedish archaeologist, J G Anderson in 1938 discovered remnants of Stone Age Man
Note to self.
In Ha Long Bay I am humbled by the splendid beauty of God’s creation.
A poem I wrote a long time ago comes to mind.
All that matters in the end is love shared with family and friends.
Everything else is just passing by.
Here for the briefest of moments.
A tiny tiny starlight in a vast timeless sky.
A final note to self
Lets pray that this miracle of creation will remain free from oil pollution, as we tourists travel over these exquisite waters in our oil fueled luxury cruisers.