Fishing Ha Long (by jamescharlick)
The name Hạ Long is derived from the Sino-Vietnamese, meaning “descending dragon”. According to local legend, when Vietnam had just started to develop into a country, they had to fight against invaders. To assist the Vietnamese in defending their country, the gods sent a family of dragons as protectors who began spitting out jewels and jade. These jewels turned into the islands and islets dotting the bay, linking together to form a great wall against the invaders. Numerous rock mountains abruptly appeared on the sea ahead of invaders’ ships and the forward ships struck the rocks and each other.
Ha Long Bay features thousands of limestone karsts and isles in various sizes and shapes, including 1,960–2,000 islets, most of which are limestone and many of which are hollow. The core of the bay has an area of 334 km2 with a high density of 775 islets. A community of around 1,600 people live on Hạ Long Bay in four fishing villages: Cửa Vạn, Ba Hang, Cống Tàu and Vông Viêng in Hùng Thắng commune, Hạ Long city. They live on floating houses and are sustained through fishing and marine aquaculture (cultivating marine biota), plying the shallow waters for 200 species of fish and 450 different kinds of mollusks.