It’s been raining for the past few days and I’m dreaming of a beach vacation. Phu Quoc is a Vietnamese island that is known for its white sand beaches, solitude, and lush forests that cover the island 🏝.
Phu Quoc Island used to be a spot for traveler’s to get off the beaten path, but ever since they built an airport there tourism has been on the rise. Despite the rise in tourism, the island is still quiet and a relaxing place 😌 to spend a vacation.
My friends and I were able to go to Phu Quoc Island when we were living in Hanoi a few years ago. We spent the weekend finding places to soak up the sun and biking to the furthest parts of the island. Once you get out of the city of Duong Dong, you will be able to find areas of beauty that have few other visitors.
I felt like this island was a hidden gem, but I fear that tourism will slowly take over. You should go soon before resorts have taken it over. It was a real gem and a lovely way to get away from the craziness of Hanoi. Below you will find my guide for your time on Phu Quoc.
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Table of Contents
Phu Quoc Guide
When to Go to Phu Quoc
The best time to go to Phu Quoc Island is anywhere from December until May. During these months you will be able to lay on the beach and explore the island in comfort. The island gets uncomfortably hot 🥵 during the later parts of April and the month of May. You won’t want to spend any time outside. The rainy season starts in June and lasts for a few months.
How to Get to Phu Quoc
Luckily for you, the Vietnamese government built an international airport in 2012. There are daily flights into the island. You can fly into Phu Quoc International Airport (PQC) from large cities in Vietnam like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh or abroad from Bangkok or Kuala Lumpur.
The other option to get to Phu Quoc is to take the fast ferry from Ha Gien or Rach Gia. These ferry rides happen once a day and there are two companies that service this route. Superdong offers a nicer ride with air conditioning, assigned seats, water, and flat screen TVS. The other option is the Phu Quoc Express. Check the sites for times of ferry departures.
Where to Stay
There are plenty of options of where to stay including areas of the island and options from luxury hotels to cute hostels. The northern end of the island has verdant forests 🌳 and wildlife, while the southern end has white sand beaches and local villages. The three main areas that you can stay are Duong Dong, On Lang Beach, and Long Beach.
Duong Dong is the main area of the island. If you choose to stay on this part of the island you will have quick access to restaurants, night life, markets, and the airport. You will also find plenty of options of luxury hotels, mid-range hotels, and hostels in this area.
We stayed in the 9 Station Hostel and we loved it. They offered fun tour excursions, delicious food, and there was a motorbike rental next door. The downside to this area is that it is a bit more touristy and you may experience some traffic.
Ong Lang Beach
This area of the island is better for people who want a quiet holiday with the option to enjoy adventurous activities. This area is known for quiet beaches with lovely banyan trees that offer shade from the sun ☀️.
You will find that many of the resorts here have their own private stretches of beach where you can sunbathe in peace. There are also plenty of activities like snorkeling, diving, and kayaking. Most places to stay here are a bit pricier, so you need to have a larger budget.
Long Beach is famous for its beautiful sunset views 🌅 and pristine white beaches. There are plenty of fun activities to enjoy in this area and restaurants to try. You can find many options to stay here from low budget to high end. This area also gets crowded by tourists and there isn’t a lot of access to local communities.
What to Do in Phu Quoc
Phu Quoc has more to offer than just sandy beaches and fun resorts. Spend multiple days here and you will be able to enjoy activities like fishing at sea or hiking in the forest.
Lay on the Beach
The hardest part about being on Phu Quoc Island is choosing the best beach to spend your day. Long Beach and Ong Lang Beach are some of the most popular spots 🙌🏻 on the island. They are both a short drive from Duong Dong. On these beaches you’ll find calm waters and plenty of tourists.
Long Beach is the best beach to grab a drink 🍹 and watch the sunset, because it faces west. If you are looking for a bit of an oasis, head to Sao Beach. This beach offers white sand, soft, warm waves, and plenty of swings for your instagram pictures.
If this isn’t your thing, drive a motorbike to Thom Beach where you can get away from the crowds. Find yourself fairly alone as you soak in the sun. Head to Ganh Dau beach if you want a view of the Cambodian mainland. There are a few bungalows here where you can spend the day relaxing. Whichever beach you end up at, I’m sure you’ll have a relaxing and wonderful time.
Boat to An Thoi Islands
These adorable islands lay off of the southern coast of Phu Quoc Island. The An Thoi Islands are made up of 15 smaller islands and are great spots for snorkeling, fishing and kayaking.
You have to take a boat to see them, but there are plenty of ways to get there. We were able to book a boat trip through our hostel, where we snorkeled, learned how to fish, and ate fresh sea urchin. It was a really fun way to spend the day!
Explore the Island by Motorbike
If you have always wanted to try driving a motorbike 🏍, but you’ve been scared then this is your chance to drive one. While Duong Dong is a bit crowded, the rest of the island is fairly empty of cars.
Drive around the island and feel the wind in your hair. Motorbikes are the best way to explore ⭐️ the far reaches of the island and to get off of the beaten track. We drove our motorbikes all the way up north where we were able to stop at multiple beaches and spot Cambodia.
Venture into Phu Quoc National Park
Phu Quoc National Park includes more than half of the northern region of the island. There is an abundance of natural flora and fauna to see here. Much of the park is only accessible to researchers, however, there are still areas that you can see.
Visitors can spend their time hiking and camping at Khu Rung Nguyen Sinh Forest Reserve, which is accessible through Ganh Dau Village. Another option is to take a four hour trek up Mount Heaven. If you are a nature lover, then this is the spot for you.
Walk around the Dinh Cau Night Market
One of our favorite activities was walking around the Dinh Cau Night Market. The market is open from 5 pm -10 pm every night and you can try local delicacies. Lots of tourists and local flock here at night to socialize with friends or to stop at various food vendors.
The market is well known for the fresh seafood and local Vietnamese food. There are plenty of stands that offer unique dishes, like live frogs, or you can opt for delicious rolled ice cream. Your taste buds will thank you for stopping here!
Visit the Suoi Tranh Waterfall
While this waterfall may not be super high at only 4 meters, the area around it is lush and peaceful. The waterfall is a short hike from the main entrance and there you will find yourself in the middle of the rainforest. Past the waterfall, you can explore the stalactites in the Hang Doi cave. The waterfall is a great way to get off the beaches and see something different.
Phu Quoc island is one of the best beach destinations in Vietnam. I hope that this guide convinces you to stop in Phu Quoc on your vacation.
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