Only an hour’s flight from Saigon, Phu Quoc Island has one of the best beaches in Vietnam and is the perfect escape spot. Everything here seems to be untouched, with all the hallmarks of a traditional Vietnamese fishing village.
There are a few adventure activities that you can do on the island. Phu Quoc is extremely easy to get around, and the easiest way is by hiring a motorbike. There is only one main road through the island.The north of the island is a wildlife reserve where you can visit a safari or climb Mount Chua, Phu Quoc’s highest point. The south is where all the beautiful beaches are located.
If you want to get back to nature, the best place to stay is at the Mango Bay resort in Long Beach. This is an eco-resort where guests stay in private bungalows without phones or air conditioning. If you are a business traveller, there is WIFI throughout the area and a business centre at reception in case you want to stay connected.
The best beach in Phu Quoc, perhaps Vietnam, is Sao Beach. If you’re traveling with kids, this is the best place to spend the day. You can walk them up and down the beach looking for crabs, snails and small fish. Alternatively, if you want to have a bit of fun, there are plenty of water sports to take part in such as Jet Ski, Snorkelling or Diving.
Not too far from Sao Beach is An Thoi fishing pier. Here, you can hire a boat and go to the smaller islands at the very end of Phu Quoc. This is one of the areas you can go night fishing for squid. You can buy the tickets directly at almost every tour operator, and the tour normally starts around sunset and lasts for a few hours. Although you can keep any squid that you catch, the chance of catching one is fairly slim.
If you crave for some seafood and wonder where the best places are to eat, Bach Dang night market is the place to be; when the sun goes down, this night market is the liveliest part of town. Choose from grilled fish, skewers or fresh oysters. My favourite is steamed squid with ginger, which goes well with a seafood fried noodle. The best time to visit the market is around dawn, when you can see fishermen trade their daily catch.
- Time to visit: November to April.
- Things to do: Squid fishing, safari, Sao Beach, snorkelling, island hopping.
- Transportation: If you go by air, there are many direct flights from Saigon. Approximately $100USD return. Alternatively, you can take a fast ferry from Ha Tien or Rach Gia (Mekong Delta) which takes about 1.5 hours.
- Airport transportation: From the airport you can take a taxi to city center at about 200,000 VND ($10USD). Alternatively, you can take the shuttle bus which drop you off around Long Beach area for 50,000 VND ($2.50USD).