The Ha Long Bay in Portuguese : "Where the Dragon enters the Ocean", with about 1,969 islets of limestone that rise from the water, is the most famous bay of Vietnam. Most of the islands are not inhabited or affected by human presence. The scenic beauty of the site is complemented by its biological interest. The islands have an endless number of beaches and caves. According to legend, when a great dragon that lived in the mountains ran to the sea, its tail dug valleys that later were filled with water, leaving only pieces of earth to the surface, that is to say, the numerous islands that are sighted in the bay. Ha Long Bay was declared World Heritage by UNESCO in 1993.