First commercial seaplane flight to Co To Island conducted
The first commercial flight by seaplane from Tuan Chau Island to Co To Island was conducted on July 9, marking the first service of its kind connecting two islands in Vietnam.
The flight, with eight tourists on board departed Tuan Chau port in the province’s Ha Long city at 8:30am and safely arrived on Hong Van beach of Co To about 35 minutes later.
Using the seaplane service, provided by the Hai Au Aviation JSC of the Thien Minh Group, passengers can save much travel time and have a chance to enjoy a bird’s eye view of the majestic beauty of destinations on Ha Long Bay such as Ban Sen, Ngoc Vung, Quan Lan, Minh Chau, and Bai Tu Long, with introduction directly presented by crew members on board.
The commercial flights use Cessna Grand Caravan 208B EX, a modern seaplane model of the US that can fly at about 300km per hour and carry up to 12 passengers. However, each trip carries only six to eight passengers to ensure their safety and comfort.
A ticket costs around VND 2.4 million (about 100 USD) per way each passenger. Each flight serves from 6 to 8 passengers. This service is not available for minors under 12 years old, seniors over 65 years old and passengers needing the assistance.
Each flight lasting 35 minutes passing by surprisingly beautiful islands of Ban Sen, Ngoc Vung, Quan Lan, Minh Chau and Bai Tu Long Bay.
Tourists will get a 20% discount if they book tickets in July.
Seaplane services have yet to be popular in Vietnam. The launch of the service in the island district of Co To is expected to help diversify tourism services and promote local tourism.
Co To, located in the northeast of Quang Ninh, boasts huge potential for sea and island tourism and is an attractive destination for both domestic and foreign tourists with the number of visitors increasing constantly over the years.
Co To has an inland waterway port with calm waters, suitable for seaplanes to take off and land safely. In April, 2023, Hai Au JSC, a private company, carried out site survey and worked with the district People's Committee on opening the flight service.
By using the seaplane, travel time between Tuan Chau international wharf in Ha Long City and Co To is estimated at 20 minutes for the 80km journey.