Travel Planning to Halong Bay

The best Halong bay airport to fly into: Van Don, Cat Bi or Noi Bai?

Currently, there are three major airports near Halong Bay including Van Don International airport, Cat Bi International airport, and Noi Bai International airport. Each airport has its own perks that you should consider flying.

1. Van Don international airport

Van Don International airport, the first private airport in Vietnam is officially kicked-off at the end of 2018 with total capacity up to 2.5 million passengers per year. Located in Doan Ket, Van Don, around 52km far from Halong City, Van Don is the nearest airport connecting surrounding areas to the heritage land.

Van Don International airport mostly serves domestic flights from/to Ho Chi Minh City provided by Vietnam Airlines, Bamboo Airways, and Vietjet Air. Other international flights to Taipei by Bamboo Airways and Incheon (Korea) by Vietnam Airlines are also newly exploited since May and June. At the end of 2019, there will have flights from Tokyo and Bangkok.


From Van Don Airport, passengers can take two FREE buses 14A and 14B to Halong City. It takes about 35 – 45 minutes for a one-way trip.

  • Bus 14A follows 18 Highway from Halong Flower Park at Le Thanh Tong Street, Bach Dang Ward, Halong City to Van Airport.
  • Bus 14B runs from Sunworld Compex Halong to Van Don Airport on the brand-new Halong-Van Don Highway.

Why you should fly to Van Don airport:

  • Van Don is the closest airport to Halong Bay.
  • Free buses connecting Van Don and Halong Bay are convenient and time-saving.
  • Airfare is much cheaper compared to flights to other airports such as Noi Bai International airport

2. Cat Bi International Airport

Cat Bi International airport is the second nearest airport to the World Heritage site. At present, Cat Bi international airport hosts domestic flight routes mostly to Ho Chi Minh City, Danang, Nha Trang, Buon Ma Thuot, and Phu Quoc. Additionally, there are also non-stop international flights to Seoul, Bangkok, and Shenzen. Major airlines exploiting these routes are Vietnam Airlines, Vietjet Air, Bamboo Airways and Dong Hai Airlines.

From Cat Bi, there are several ways to transfer to Halong Bay.

  • Taxi: a one-way trip takes less than 1 hour and it costs around $40.
  • Shared car: this is a more money-saving way than a taxi as you just need to gather enough people and share the fare of around $20 for one trip.
  • Bus: take a taxi to Lac Long Station to reach Hon Gai pier and then take another taxi from Hon Gai to Halong Bay. The cost is around $10.

Reasons to choose Cat Bi international airport:

  • It is a short distance to Halong Bay (65km)
  • Means of transportation are varied and also convenient to reach Cat Ba Island and Lan Ha Bay.
  • International flight options are more abundant than Van Don International airport.

3. Noi Bai International Airport

Noi Bai International airport is 2nd largest airport in Vietnam. The airport caters to many non-stop domestic and international flights mostly provided by Vietnam Airlines, Vietjet Air, Thai Airways, Japan Airlines, and Hongkong Airlines.

This is the farthest airport flying into Halong Bay (~170km) yet the most modern one. It takes about a 3.5-hour drive to Halong Bay.

From Noi Bai International airport, there are 4 major means of transportation to Halong Bay.

  • Bus: Take a bus/ taxi from Noi Bai airport to Bac Thang Long toll station and then another bus to Halong Bay.
  • Taxi: a plethora of taxis around Noi Bai airport can drive you directly to Halong Bay with cost around $90.
  • Limousine from Hanoi center: take a taxi or bus No.7 from Noi Bai airport to Hanoi center. There are plenty of limousine services transferring to Halong Bay. One is Megabus Limousine that departs at 4h30, 5h30, 6h30, 7h30, 8h30, 12h and 19 every day. You can book through the hotline: 19006772.
  • Seaplane: the quickest way to get from Noi Bai airport to Halong Bay is taking the seaplane provided by Hai Au Aviation. It costs from $180 - $340 for a 45-minute flight. There are two flights daily.

Reasons to choose Noi Bai International airport:

  • The airport uniquely provides seaplane service which is very fast and convenient.
  • Despite being the farthest airport to Halong, Noi Bai is the largest and most modern one.
  • There are plenty of international flight.

Last updated: September 29, 2019

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