Vietnam's Ha Long Bay is one of the New Seven Wonders of Nature, announced the New7Wonders Foundation on November 12 after the first count of global voting ended a day earlier.
In alphabetical order, the seven winners are the Amazon, Ha Long Bay, Iguazu Falls, Jeju Island, Komodo, Puerto Princesa Underground River and Table Mountain.
The New7Wonders of Nature campaign have been carried out over the past four years, starting with more than 440 locations from about 220 countries.
The New7Wonders of Nature have been chosen from the 28 finalist candidates, according to Bernard Weber, founding president of Switzerland-based New7Wonders Foundation.
According to the foundation, the results are provisional and based on the first tally of votes. The votes still need to be checked, validated and independently verified.
Once the voting validation process is complete, in early 2012, New7Wonders will then work with the confirmed winners to organize the official inauguration events.
The foundation also noted that it is possible that one or more of the provisional winners will not be confirmed during the validation process. New7Wonders will issue a media update if that occurs.
"When the New7Wonders of Nature are confirmed, they will join the man-made New 7 Wonders of the World in becoming part of global memory for humankind forever," Weber said.
Ha Long Bay is located in the northern province of Quang Ninh. It features thousands of limestone karsts and isles of various sizes and shapes. The bay has a 120-kilometer long coastline and is approximately 1,553 square kilometers in size, with 1969 islets.
Several of the islands are hollow, with enormous caves. Others support floating villages of fishermen, who ply the shallow waters for 200 species of fish and 450 different kinds of mollusks.
Another feature of Ha Long Bay is its abundance of lakes inside the limestone islands. For example, Dau Be island has six enclosed lakes. All these island lakes occupy drowned dolines within fengcong karst.