The rugged and scenic Cat Ba Island is the largest island in Halong Bay. About half of it is a dedicated national park, home to both marine life and mammals, including the endangered Cat Ba langur (also known as the golden-headed langur), civet cats and Oriental giant squirrels. Trekking and canoeing options are plentiful, and in 2004, the park was recognized by UNESCO as a Biosphere reserve of the world.
The eastern side of the island is home to several beaches worthy of exploration, fishing villages and a small town (population 8,000) that tends to get crowded on weekends and public holidays. Here, you’ll find a promenade with a strip of hotels, bars and restaurants.