Halong Bay, on Vietnam’s northeastern seacoast, is often considered one of the world’s most beautiful bays. Halong Bay is also significant for cultural and historical reasons. The bay is a home of the ancient Viet people with occupation by various cultures dating back some 18.000 years and many important cultural and many important cultural and historical relics from these peoples have been found. The fishing communities who live on the bay retain their own special culture.
Cong Dam fishing village is located on Bai Tu Long bay. It is an old and small village, far from the mainland with the population of about 120 people.
This place is considered as an outdoor geological museum with the highlight is a plenty of mountains formed by a stack of huge rock, which looks like the amazing arrangement of “mother nature”. There is also the area which includes many coral reefs, underground limestone, underwater caves, etc. Besides, surrounding Cong Dam village are many different islets and beautiful beaches with white, smooth sand and clear, blue waters, such as Tra Gioi, Cay Bang and Cat Oan beaches
Cua Van Village has a population of 733 in 176 households. They mainly earn their livelihood by fishing.This makes it ideal for anchoring boats here. Their floating houses look spacious and clean. The well-off families even have tiled roof houses with radios, television sets, tables and chairs, etc.
The village boasts a training establishment for their children. Over an area of 150m2 lies four classrooms and one small room for teachers. They are the first floating classrooms in Halong. At present, Cua Van has 7 classes, mainly in grade 1 and grade 2. The youngest pupil is 8, while the oldest one is 17.
Bai Tu Long and the Vung Vieng Fishing Village is off the beaten tourist track as it is not so near to the popular Cat Ba Island which has lodging, beaches and nearby caves where most of the large tour companies and boats operate. There are about 50 families; the population is between 200 and 300 residents. This includes nearly 100 children.
These families have lived in this village for generations. The language is Vietnamese. The village is a “floating village.” There are no structures built on land. The village is very poor. Traditionally income for food and potable water (imported from the mainland) came solely from fishing. Now, there is some supplemental income from tourism also.