Phu Quoc, better known as a local Vietnamese getaway spot, it is slowly getting recognized by the rest of the world and rightly so! This dreamy mainland escape is nothing short of a tropical paradise that is full of beaches which could be compared to it’s Thailand and Cambodian neighbors. If you are a Phu Quoc first timer it may be difficult to find information about this magical place, well, worry no more! Here is a first timer’s guide to Phu Quoc!
Phu Quoc has an airport that is situated about 30-40 mins outside of the main town. Flights from Hanoi are around 100 USD for the round-trip ticket, and flight prices continue to go down when flying from other more southern Vietnamese cities. Right now, getting to Phu Quoc by plane is the easiest option.
If you are on the southern coast there may be a way to get there by boat, but it probably will be a local option not widely advertised. If you are traveling from out of the country its best to fly to a Vietnamese city, then to the island. Flights from HCMC are only around one hour and flights from Hanoi about two!
Phu Quoc Transportation:
There are taxis on the island, but the most common way of transport like most SE Asian cities, is by motorbike. There are lots of places on the island where you can rent your own bike! The roads on Phu Quoc are surprisingly spacious and well maintained making it a dream to drive in! Depending on your accommodation, an airport pick-up may be included as this is common practice. Check with your hotel before arriving!
Lay out of Phu Quoc:
Phu Quoc is quite a large island, and is easily underestimated! When traveling from beach to beach be sure to take the size of the island into account. Plan for 30-40 minutes in transit at least. This island is shaped somewhat like an upside down triangle. Towards the bottom point of the island there are many different smaller islets. There are tour companies that can take you around them, or you can even choose to stay on them. As you go further north you will be able to see the Cambodian islands of Koh Seh and Koh Thmei from the shore!
Breaking down the beaches:
On this island there are a few beaches, there are some more popular than others! Here are a few favorites!
Bai Truong / Long Beach
This is probably the most popular spot for hotels to be located. When we went, we booked accommodation far away from this area thinking that it would be touristy and annoying – but it was the opposite. Along this beach there were some touristy places sure, but it was much closer to the city, the restaurants and different hotels. The beach was beautiful and not that crowded at all! I think next time we go, we would stay closer to Long Beach to cut down our driving time. Also, this was the beach where we witnessed the BEST sunset possibly that has ever happened,, just a lil’ FYI for all the sunset lovers out there.
Bai Sao Beach:
Despite being a good 30-minute drive away from the Long Beach area, Bai Sao is the islands most popular beach! This rather large beach was divided almost in half, one half having pristine white sands and other being crowded and littered. Despite the juxtaposition the immaculate, soft and quiet half was absolutely lovely and you could very easily spend a whole day there! There were lounges (approx $6 for the day) for rent on the beach along with a few restaurants you could get some food at!
Bai Ong Lang (Ong Lang Beach):
About 15 minutes up the coast from Long beach is Bai Ong Lang which is definitely a little slide of paradise. It’s quiet and beautiful, although, slightly rocky making it not the best swimming spot. It’s also a convenient location for sunset, check out Mango Bay which is a restaurant that sits on a wooden veranda right on the beach and serves up some amazing seafood #KingPrawns #Yum
We did a bit more exploring of some of the further away beaches but all we encountered was construction. Many of the other beaches we found online were now claimed by large resorts that either were very exclusive and did not allow entry unless you were a guest.
Where to stay:
There is a myriad of different options of where to stay across the island. If you stay closer to Long Beach you are going to be much more central. Walking to markets and restaurants will be much easier. There are some more resorts spread out on Ong Long beach which are beautiful as well. The further away from this area you stay, the more isolated you will be. But it may be quieter and more exclusive, which is a plus depending on what you want! A few hotels and resorts that we checked out that were gorgeous are:
**These hotels are NOT sponsored I just really liked them!
Hope that this helps you on your first trip to Phu Quoc! Any more suggestions or recommendations? Let me know in the comments below!
Flying from Hanoi? Check out my three day guide to the city here!