Apart from the traffic our trip to Vietnam hadn’t been too crazy. We had spent a few nights in each place and apart from 2 overnight buses we hadn’t felt like we were constantly on the go and on the move but after hearing about an island in the South of Vietnam, an hours flight from Ho Chi Minh City- our last stop in Vietnam we knew we had to go and find some beach paradise for a few days of relaxing and catching some rays so Phu Quoc here we come!
Flights to the island are very reasonable, we paid £50.00 return with Jetstar and i believe if we had booked it earlier we could have got it for even cheaper!
Phu Quoc is a relatively big island with a good airport and lots of main roads. Its tourism boom has only recently happened, there are lots of bungalows and big resorts with more and more being built. It’s definitely still the early days for this island and i was glad to be visiting it now.
After a short flight and a short taxi ride from the airport we arrived at our bungalow, not set on the beach but just a short walk away.
Long Beach is the main beach and it is indeed a long beach running from the South all the way up the West Coast to the main town of Duong Dong.
We spent our first 2 days on the beach using a resorts sun lounges with dips into the sea to cool off (the sea was my ideal temperature- basically cool bath water and it was really calm and clear), eating, drinking smoothies, having a massage on the beach and watching the sunset.. perfect!
On our second night we caught a taxi into the town and went to the night market. The market was full of seafood and most of it still live in tanks, i have my own opinions on this but for seafood lovers the options were endless! Instead i settled for a corn on the cob and ice cream made from the Ice cream roll stall, it’s basically the same principle as cooking pancakes with a liquid mix and the spreading it out but instead of having heat it has ice and freezes it as it goes.. its so yummy!
While at the night market we booked a tour for the next day with Johns Tour which seems to be the most popular company. We did the South Island Snorkelling tour and managed to barter it down to a reasonable 270.000 Dong/ £8.00.
The first stop of the day is to a Pearl farm which we weren’t bothered about so took the option to get picked up a bit later and head straight to the boat. Once on, we hit the top deck straight away to enjoy the sun until we reached the snorkelling point.
To be honest the visibility wasn’t great but it was good to get back in the water and it was a good temperature, we had lunch and then went to a different site for another snorkel before getting back on the boat to the Harbour.
We got back in the mini van and made our way to the last stop which is what i was most looking forward to- Sao Beach. Sao Beach is a beach right in the south of the island and i had heard and read some good things about it. It has an extremely bumpy road leading up to it and a guy on the trip said that 5 years ago this was the state of the road from the airport to the main town before all the big roads were built which was interesting to hear.
Sao Beach started as a hidden gem however it is a lot more visited now and of course because we were part of a tour and most tours stop here at the end of the day it was pretty busy but wow it was beautiful! Pure white sand and a bright blue sea which was totally clear to start with with palm trees running along the edge.
However even in paradise there is an ugly side and i couldn’t believe how much rubbish had been washed up on the edge of the beach which put a sour taste in my mouth. I tried to ask the guide why there was so much rubbish and if the locals knew it could ruin the beach but she didn’t speak much english so i unfortunately didn’t get an answer.
After our snorkelling trip we decided to head out onto the beach and look for a place to have a drink at, so far we had found the beach to be really quiet at night with none of the restaurants being too busy however one of my friends had told me about Rory’s Bar and how it was the place to be so we headed there and it definitely is the place to be!
It’s a western run bar, with the friendliest staff and a great atmosphere. At night there’s lots of chairs out on the beach in front of a bonfire and there’s a DJ playing music.
We found the prices to be a bit more expensive than other places a long the beach and in Vietnam in general but for the atmosphere its worth paying, for example a bottle of beer was 30,000 Dong/ £0.90 which is 6 times more than it was in Hanoi and Hoi An but still very cheap compared to home!
We ended up loving this side of the beach which was a 10 minute walk North from where we had been staying.
After a few more days and nights had passed which we had spent at Rory’s bar we were now faced with the fact we had to go back to Ho Chi Minh City the following day!!
Initially we had booked 5 nights on the island followed by another 3 in the city before leaving Vietnam but having spent a day in Ho Chi Minh City before leaving for Phu Quoc and seeing some of the sights we came to the conclusion that we would rather be on the beach than dodging mopeds in the city so we changed our flight with Jetstar for an extra £20.00 and stayed 2 more nights which were also spent having drinks, chilling on the beach (fairly hungover!) and watching more sunsets!
Phu Quoc is a really great island and it was a great way to end our Vietnam trip. I wont lie i have been to prettier beaches and smaller islands with more of a wild feel, and as i mentioned Phu Quoc is starting to become really built up and one of the big issues i saw seemed to be the amount of rubbish there is, but if you need some relaxation in paradise and in a cheap place then this is the place to come in Vietnam!
**I made a little video from my time in Vietnam which is up on my YouTube channel and features Phu Quoc, check it out here! 🙂 **