Ha Long Bay has officially become one of the world's new seven
wonders of nature, according to the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.
A provisional announcement of the bay's new status was made three months ago
after global voting ended, by New Open World Corporation, an associate of the
New 7 Wonders Foundation.
Finalists include: the Amazon in South America, Viet Nam's Ha Long Bay, Iguazu
Falls of Argentina, Jeju Island of the Republic of Korea, Komodo National Park
of Indonesia, Puerto Princesa Underground River of the Philippines, and Table
Mountain of South Africa.
World-wide voters selected from 400 natural wonders in more than 200 countries
and territories in a polling session which ended on November 11, 2011.
The Ministry of Culture, Information and Tourism said it will hold a press
conference to announce the official listing on March 31.
Ha Long Bay in northern Quang Ninh Province has been recognised twice as a
UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site, notable for its breathtaking landscape and
The 1,553-sq.km bay is dotted with 1,969 islands, which collectively offer an
exquisite example of karst formation in tropical and humid conditions. One
distinctive feature of Ha Long Bay is its abundant cave system formed between
11,000 to two million years ago.
The long evolution and erosion of the bay has produced pyramid-shaped karst
towers that gave the bay its unique beauty.
The bay accommodates temperate ecosystems suitable for many species of marine
animals, in addition to its great cultural and historical value.
Scientists have shown that Ha Long was inhabited by three successive cultures
between 3,000 and 18,000 years ago: the Soi Nhu, Cai Beo and Ha Long groups.