Ha Long Bay (literally: Descending Dragon bay; Vietnamese: Vịnh Hạ Long) is a UNESCO World Heritage site located in Quảng Ninh province, Vietnam. Administratively, the bay belongs to Ha Long City, Cam Pha Town and part of Van Don District. The bay features thousands of limestone karsts and isles in various sizes and shapes. Ha Long Bay is a center of a larger zone which includes Bái Tử Long bay to the northeast, and Cát Bà islands to the southwest. These larger zones share similar geological, geographical, geomorphological, climate and cultural characters. Ha Long Bay has an area of around 1553 km², incuding 1960 islets, most of which are limestone. The core of the bay has an area of 334 km² with a high density of 775 islets. The limestone in this bay has gone through 500 million years of formation in different conditions and environments. The evolution of the karst in this bay has taken 20 million years under the impact of the tropical wet climate. The diversity of the enivironment, climate, geology, geography, and geomorphology in the area have created biodiversity, including tropical evergreen biosystem, oceanic and sea shore biosystem. Ha Long Bay is home to 14 endemic floral species and 60 endemic faunal species. Historical research surveys have shown the presence of prehistorical human beings in this area ten of thousands years ago.
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