Cong Do Island, a special island

Reaching to Halong Bay, tourists cannot forget to visit Cong Do Island, a special island that always make the curiosity for tourists. Situated on Bai Tu Long Bay in the southeast of Halong Bay, about 25 kilometers from Bai Chay Port, Cong Do Island is under the world natural heritage area with the area of 23.363 square kilometers and the mountain peak of 172 meters in high. This island is known as the wildest island on Halong Bay that tourists should not ignore when visiting Halong. It will take you about one hour to travel from Bai Chay Port to Cong Do Island by canoe. Setting foot on this land, tourists will enjoy the wild and mysterious beauty and the fresh air of this island.

Cong Do Island is one of the many beautiful islands in the sea has wonderful natural salt lake, making it home to many species of marine life such as shrimp, crab, fish, squid, seaweed, algae. Particularly, at the southwestern coast of the island, there is a pristine coral reef with the size of 700 meters long and 300 meters wide. The coral reef involves many rare species of coral (like red coral). This is also the habitation of seahorses and many kinds of fish. The coral reef is preserved in good condition.

Cong Do Island also houses a sea grass bed including a kind of higher plants belonging to monocots class.  The existence of sea grass beds in Cong Do Island is related to animals such as dugong or sea turtles. These animals have appeared in the area with relatively high density since decades and having been in danger of extinction. Discovering Cong Do Island is definitely one of the most unforgettable things to do in Halong Bay.

Cong Do Island Valley is also home to many species of reptiles such as lizards, cobras, sea turtles and crustaceans, for instance, long-eyed crabs, square-shelled crabs, stone crabs. In addition, it also houses many species of precious birds such as hornbills, big kestrel, Burmese eagles. As one of the most pristine islands in Halong Bay, Cong Do Island Valley is the convergence of large old trees. In particular, there is the large number of precious timber trees, namely Chukrasia velutina, Fagraea fragrans, Nageia fleuryi, etc. together with the extremely diverse vegetation.  It is the unique feature that has brought Cong Do Island to become one of the most tourist Halong Bay attractions alluring tourists.

Cong Do Island is one of particular islands with the system of lakes. The island consists of 5 large lakes with an area of approximately 4 hectares each. Among them, the most prominent is the lake located in the middle of the island. The lake owns an area of about 5 hectares with its water surface connecting with the sea. The lake is surrounded by high limestone mountains (the highest peak is 172m). Also thanks to the unique topography, the ecosystem of Cong Do Island is extremely diverse. Visitors can easily find it without any prior biological knowledge.

In terms of vegetation, stretching from the foot of island to the mountain’s peak is home to large kinds of tree (with the diameter of 30-40 meter), small trees interspersing with vines. Around the sides of the mountain and lakeside are bushes of cycads, cymbidium… clinging to the cliffs. These kinds of plants have become characteristic features of Halong Bay’s ecosystem making Cong Do Island to be one of the appealing tourist attractions in Halong Bay in general and Bai Tu Long Bay tour in particular increasingly alluring tourists.

In addition, the vegetation for pharmaceutical materials in the area of Cong Do Island is extremely special. Thanks to the rising and lowering of the tide daily, the vegetation for pharmaceutical materials becomes richer by the plants living in the water. On account of this vegetation retaining the water, it is a great shelter of sea crabs and sea snails. Currently, this area is home to at least 7 species of square-shelled crabs. Besides, there are also other types such as long-eyed crabs, black-lipped pearl oyster, and snails… According to the statistics of Halong Bay Heritage Conservation and Marine Recreational Center, the terrestrial vegetation on Halong Bay (on the island and coastal) consists of 435 species, 45% of which are valuable medicinal plants. Discovering this unique vegetation will definitely leave unforgettable impressions in the journey of exploring Bai Tu Long tours.

Cong Do Island is the paradise of holiday. On the island, tourists can have trekking up to the hill and enjoy a panoramic view at the hilltop to charming scenery on Halong Bay. It’s also an ideal place for kayaking to discover the hidden lagoons on the island and its bio-diversity. Scuba-diving service is very potential to develop on Cong Do Island. Tourists will certainly get exciting experiences when exploring the wonderful island. The journey exploring the island thus will be much more memorable to tourists in mind.

In the southeast of Cong Do Island, archaeologists found many trails of the ancient commercial port of Van Don. These evidences prove that Cong Do Island in the past had been a transit point of goods in the system of Van Don Commercial Port.

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