Ha Long Bay has been full of trash, and it’s sadly just one example of how human ignorance is destroying nature, according to readers.
“I visited Ha Long Bay early this year and I felt really sad when I saw how much trash was floating in the water. There was also a foul smell poisoning the air near a pearl farm I visited. I was really disappointed by the trip. I have traveled to many places in Vietnam where the scenery is beautiful, and the people are nice and friendly. But the biggest impressions from each trip are: too much trash and dirty toilets. These problems have prevented me from visiting some places a second time. Why are these problems so common? When will we end them? And can we even end them?”Duc Phong
“Ha Long Bay is just a typical example of how hundreds of tourist destinations in Vietnam are marred by garbage. I live near a stream in the jungle. The water is fresh, and the area is a cool retreat all year round. Gradually, it has started to draw visitors wanting to relax in nature. But they bring all kinds of trash with them, especially single-use plastics, which all get left behind when they leave. It’s all about awareness.”Dat NT
“I was impressed by a foreign tourist during a visit to a cave in Ha Long Bay. He could not find a trash bin, so he held on to a banana peel after eating the fruit. Meanwhile, many Vietnamese in my group just threw their peels into the sea. I regret that our poor awareness has turned Ha Long Bay into a trash bin. I just hope that it gets clean someday.”Le Thuy Dung
“People in Ha Long and other tourist cities should understand that they are gifted by nature with beautiful scenery, which helps them earn money from tourism activities. They are responsible for protecting the places, because if the tourism charm gets destroyed, so will their business.”Long Nam
“Vietnam can learn from the way hotels are developing sustainable tourism overseas. I visited Maui last December. When the hotel gave me my room, it also gave me a bottle of water, which was not a plastic bottle, but an aluminum one with beautiful drawings of the local sea. There were water jars and ice makers in every corridor, and in the lobby, for guests to refill their bottles. I walked around and I saw many guests bringing along their bottles like mine, and guests from other hotels as well. I still use that bottle after coming home. And I must say, those hotels have made a big contribution to protecting the environment.”Thu Diep