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WHERE IS PHU QUOC ISLAND?

WHERE IS PHU QUOC ISLAND?

Phu Quoc – The Pearl Island of Asia – is the largest island in Vietnam, located in the Gulf of Thailand, 45km West of Ha Tien, and 15km south of the coast of Cambodia and is a part of Kien Giang Province. Phu Quoc Island has a total area of 574sqm and a permanent population of approximately 130,000. At 48km long it is about the same size as Singapore.

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HOW TO GET HERE ?

Since it is designated as a Special Economic Zone, foreigners, and Vietnamese holding foreign passports are eligible for a 30-day Vietnam visa exemption on Phu Quoc without going to any other destination in Vietnam. To do this you will need to show an outbound ticket on arrival in Vietnam. Should you wish to travel throughout Vietnam afterward, please read more information about visa requirements to Vietnam here

Traveling by air is the most convenient way to get to the island: Vietnam Airlines, Jetstar Pacific, VietJet Air, and Bamboo Airways are four main domestic commercial airlines, which fly directly to Phu Quoc Island from the main cities of Vietnam. 

From 2017 many more direct international flights have been added. See all the flights to Phu Quoc here

Traveling by sea will give the traveler time to continue their journey by sea and explore Vietnam from another angle. The duration of the trip varies from one and half hours from Ha Tien port and two and half hours from Rach Gia (it will take about 4-5 hours to reach Rach Gia Port from Ho Chi Minh City by bus).

LOCAL TRANSPORT

We recommend traveling by taxi for a more comfortable ride, and you may always ask our Guest Relations Team to call you a taxi, which is always available outside of Salinda Resort during the day. There are a great number of metered taxis now operating on Phu Quoc, such as Sasco, Mai Linh, and Phu Quoc Taxi. Rates are generally from 85,000VND from Salinda Resort to Duong Dong Town (4km and 10 minutes away).

You can find complimentary bicycle rental at Salinda Resort, which is a great way to explore the island on fresh air and enjoy the natural wonders of Phu Quoc. If you plan on cycling further away, poor road conditions and unsealed dusty roads can make this a difficult experience. We recommend purchasing a face mask before you head off on these longer journeys and take plenty of water. The coastal strip surrounding Phu Quoc makes cycling relatively easy however the island heats up when you get to move from the coast.

Renting a self-driven vehicle on Phu Quoc Island is not possible unless you have a Vietnamese driver’s license and a permanent registered address on the island. The best option is to hire a car or 4WD with a driver/guide. Alternatively, at Salinda Resort we offer our drivers for rent or full/half-day tours. Prices start from around US$50 per day, increasing depending on the size of the vehicle, number of passengers, distances traveled, and rental periods.

***As per the information from the Police Department, Expats are allowed to drive cars or motorbikes in Vietnam if they have a valid international license or a Vietnamese driver’s license. Since the end of 2007, it is now illegal to ride on a motorbike without wearing a helmet, so please ensure you request a helmet when renting a motorbike. All operators are aware of the law and will provide you with a helmet.Renting a motorbike is one of the cheapest ways to discover Phu Quoc Island and motorbikes also provide the best access if you are adventuring out to the more remote beaches and dirt roads beyond the main towns. Bikes rental rates will vary depending on the condition of the bike and your bargaining skills, here is a guide to prices:

Hiring a motorbike with a driver is one of the easiest and quickest ways to travel short or one-off distances around Phu Quoc between the main towns. If you arrive by plane, these motorbike drivers will likely find you before you find them, just find a friendly face, negotiate a little and off you go

WEATHER

WEATHER

Phu Quoc has a tropical climate that varies throughout the year so it’s worthwhile knowing what weather conditions to expect before you arrive. 

The best time to visit Phu Quoc is between the end of October to the end of May when the daily temperature is about 27-31°C and 24-26°C at night, water temperature is 28-30°C and the humidity is at its lowest throughout the year, the sky is blue and the sea is calm. In March and April, the temperature and humidity are a bit higher and the green season with occasional rain starts in June until the end of September. 

Check the weather forecast for your future holidays here

THINGS TO DO

HEART OF THE ISLAND

Some pearl farms are complemented by a host of pearl centers located in this part of the island, many of them housing cultivation pools and a jewelry store in one complex. You may witness how they retrieve pearls and how these pearls are bored, strung, or placed on silver or gold ornaments.

Another specialty of the island is the rose myrtle fruit wine, which is a slightly sweet tasting wine similar to alcoholic blackcurrant juice that has a violet color and aroma of the sim fruit. In addition to producing wine, the factory also makes simberry honey, sweets, and jams.

Phu Quoc peppercorn vines are unique as they are one of the few kinds that can be grown on an island. There are over 400 hectares of pepper plantations found throughout the central and northern regions of the island, producing three different varieties of peppercorns. All farms are easily accessible even within the perimeters of the main town Duong Dong.

The island is famous for its production of high-quality fish sauce, which are the major contributors to its economy and is undoubtedly one of the most important condiments in Vietnamese cuisine. Some fish sauce distilleries are open to the public for visit to get a better understanding of how this vital kitchen ingredient is produced.

One of the most atmospheric and best-value places to dine on the island, Duong Dong’s busy night market has stalls of snacks, souvenirs, ice cream parlors, and a parade of outdoor restaurants serving a delicious range of Vietnamese seafood, grills, and vegetarian options. Quality can be a mixed bag, so follow the discerning local crowd.

The stream at Da Ban (literally means ‘stone table’) is situated near Duong Dong Lake. The stream rises from a high mountain range, edging its way through big, flat stone slabs lying in series and overlapping each other to the upstream. The two sides of the spring are embraced by green forests with small waterfalls, becoming an ideal cool place to bathe in the wild nature.

Just inside the entrance to Suoi Tranh are Eden-like gardens adorned with large statues of figures from the ancient Chinese folk tales. The site is made up of a string of peaceful rock pools and waterfalls and the short trek to the larger waterfall at the top of the trail is well worth the effort. The best time to visit is from June to November.

Learn about the culture and watch the fishing boats throwing nets into the sea while enjoying the natural scenery and peaceful life of local fishermen. Before returning home, you can buy flower crabs, a bottle of sea-horse in liquor, or some souvenirs made of shell as gifts for friends and family.

NORTH OF THE ISLAND

There is a relatively easy and pleasant walking trail 5km before Ganh Dau. To escape the heat of the daytime sun, take a walk along a park trail or motorbike on one of the roads, giving you a taste of the natural environment on Phu Quoc. The forest contains many types of landscape, including mangroves and wetlands, sparsely forested areas, coastal vegetation, and forest on rocky hills.

A small fishing village located in the northwestern tip of Phu Quoc. Surrounded by palm trees you will find the arch-shaped yellow sand beach with a bit coarse due to the vast amount of coral found in the water toward the sun setting.

Accessible by traveling down a red dirt road is Rach Vem beach where you can relax in a floating restaurant with your choice of fresh seafood, kayak in the open sea, and snorkel nearby corals or visit remote beaches, inaccessible by land.

Along the northeast corner of Rach Vem is home of a hundred red starfishes that could be seen in the shallow crystal clear water.

Safari covers an area of 500ha designed as a half-wild and half-natural habitat model where approximately 3,000 animals are preserved. Visitors can enjoy animal shows or eye the animal species by taking trams to tour throughout the park. The safari is part of the Vinpearl Complex including an amusement park, waterpark and golf course all located at the same location – something for everyone.

The two-floor casino, with a total area of 18,800sqm, is open round the clock, including a total of 100 gaming tables, offering eight kinds of games such as baccarat, roulette, blackjack, sic bo and several forms of poker. It also has 1,000 slot machines, and close to 1,000 electronic gaming machines.

SOUTH OF THE ISLAND

The temple is located in a beautiful high between the sea and the mountainside along the eastern coast, facing the rising sun. The pagoda features Quan Am statue, various statues of Buddha, and a new bell tower, offering you a secluded spiritual retreat.

This beach is famous for its white sand, blue water and coconuts stretching towards the beach, there are many local restaurants to relish on some fresh seafood. Various beach activities are available like jet skiing, paragliding.

You can reach An Thoi Archipelago by cruise ships and catamarans organized by tours for fishing and diving on the coral reefs. Enjoy the world’s longest oversea cable car connecting Phu Quoc Island with Hon Thom Island (literally means ‘Pineapple Island’) that offers panoramic views of the ocean during the journey.