Phu Quoc (written as Phú Quốc) is a tropical island resort off the southern coast of Vietnam and close to Cambodia. If you are looking for a stunning Southeast Asian island paradise that's less busy than Bali, then you should consider Phu Quoc. Come and get some tropical island R&D! Phu Quoc one of the most relaxed paradises in Vietnam to go.
Also, Phu Quoc forms a separate visa region from the rest of Vietnam; it is visa-free but you are restricted from visiting the mainland. There are many reasons why you should visit Vietnam and Phu Quoc is just one of them.
If you are coming for a week or 10 days then there are plenty of things to see and do on this island. Much more than that and you may start getting a little bored unless you are content to lay on the beach drinking beer and cocktails all day every day!
When To Go: Dry Season November-May
The main attractions on this island are, the beaches (including Starfish Beach), the night market, the Vietnam prisoner of war camp museum, the cable car out to outlying islands, and the Buddhist temples and monasteries. There are also activities like scuba diving and sailing.
- Visa Policy Of Vietnam: 30 Day eVisa For Western Countries (Very Easy)
- Visa For Phu Quoc Only: 30 Day Visa Free For All Visitors
Phu Quoc: The Facts
- Population: 180,000
- Main Access: International Airport
- Alternative Access: Ferry From The Mainland
Arriving On The Island
This island is serviced by an international airport that hosts direct flights all the way from Europe. You will have no problem with immigration as the island is visa-free to all. At the airport SIM cards are sold, so you can get internet and make calls right away. You can also exchange money without issues. Additionally, the taxis here are all metered and the taxi drivers will actually use them (they are often reluctant in other places like India). To avoid being scammed make sure your taxi driver actually uses the meter, but there shouldn't be an issue.
- Hire Mopeds To Get Around
- Most Smaller Transactions Are In Cash Only
- Daily Cost Of Moped Approx. $10
Then you will head to your coastal hotel. In the evening you should visit the night market and try the delicious seafood that Vietnamese love. Remember Vietnamese like to eat a very broad range of animals so expect to see frogs, sea urchins, and just about anything living from the sea on the menu.
Vietnam: The Facts
- Currency: Dong
- Exchange Rate: $1.00 = 23,000 Dong (July, 2021)
- Population: Around 100 Million
- Government: Communist (Avoid Posting Negative Things Online While In Vietnam - You May Get Deported)
The shopping and restaurant street is in the middle of the small town and its called Dương Đông market. This is the main urban attraction on the island.
To get around you can hire taxis, they are everywhere and are very cheap and comfortable. Or and perhaps better, the main mode of transport on this island (and all over South-East Asia) is by moped (called motorbike here). You can easily hire mopeds from just about any hotel on the island - the price should be around $10 per day.
On the north side of the island is Starfish Beach. This is a must-see for every visitor on the island and is quite possibly the most beautiful beach on the island. This should be a day trip on your hired moped. The beach is stunning and the water is clear and sheltered. Once you are here you will see why it is called Starfish Beach. It has so many Starfish in the water! Here you can order food and enjoy all manner of alcohol and tropical fruit juices, but be sure to start your day here with a coconut!
Trúc Lâm Hộ Quốc Zen Monastery
There are a number of Buddhist temples and monasteries on the island, but one of the must-sees on the island is the Truc Lam Ho Quoc Zen Monastery on the southern end of the island. This is a stunning monastery and a great day trip. It is perched upon a hill overlooking the sea and a great place to relax.
- Take Your Shoes Off Before Entering The Rooms
- Talk Quietly And Enjoy The Ambience
- Avoid Drinking Alcohol In Holy Buddhist Sites
Phu Quoc POW Camp
This museum is the real Vietnam POW camp of the war. This will be a less joyous visit but it is highly educational and interesting. It was first built in 1949-50 by the French and was later used by the Americans and South Vietnamese. Here you will see some of the horrors of the war.
Dương Đông Market
This market is really a must-do. During the day, the market is quiet and much of it is closed, but after sundown, it comes alive. It is bustling with tourists (local Vietnamese tourists and international tourists). It is full of souvenirs and restaurants. But don't expect to be partying into the night. Things are mostly winding down by 11.00 pm. In fact, if you are a party animal it may be difficult to find much nightlife on this island. The atmosphere is very chill and quiet.
In short, if you are looking for some tropical island peace and relaxation, then Phu Quoc is the place to go!