Vietnam’s Phu Quoc Island is fast emerging as a top holiday destination that offers unspoiled beaches and plenty of unexplored terrain for tourists who are tired of finding their favorite tropical hideaways overrun by development and commercialization.
Traveloka’s Phu Quoc combo tours save you the hassle of booking flights and finding suitable accommodations on the island, especially if you’ve never been there before. And sure, there’s a lot for first-timers to see and do, but let us guide you to the experiences you absolutely shouldn’t miss out on!
The beaches of Phu Quoc are undoubtedly the region’s main attraction, and one of its best assets. There are no fewer than five easily accessible beaches located all over the island, each with its own charms and unique atmosphere.
If you enjoy beachside dining, happy hour, and socializing, head over to Long Beach. If you’d rather have a bit of peace and quiet, however, Thom Beach up north should suit you well. Choose your accommodations wisely, and try to visit a new beach every day if you can to make the most out of your Phu Quoc holiday experience.
The Cable Car
The cable car from Phu Quoc to Pineapple Island or Hon Thom continues to generate plenty of buzz as one of the island’s not-to-be-missed attractions. It was opened in February 2018 and is the current Guinness World Record holder for the longest non-stop three-rope cable car at 7899.9 meters. The ride is operated by the Sun Group, a well-known holiday resort developer and operator of some of the best theme and amusement parks in Vietnam.
Enjoy breathtaking views of the ocean and the surrounding islands on a 15- to-17-minute-long journey from Phu Quoc to Hon Thom. From there, you can visit Trao Beach while taking a peek at what the upcoming Sun World Hon Thom Nature Park has in store. The property is still currently being developed, though there are a handful of restaurants on the island that are already open to cater to tourists.
The National Park
The Phu Quoc National Park occupies over 50% of the island and is a real treat for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. Named a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in 2010, the park is home to over 530 plant species, 365 bird species, and rare and exotic wildlife, including white monkeys, long-tailed macaques, and wolves.
While there are no real hiking trails here, the area is a popular spot for mountain and dirt biking, jungle trekking, and nature walks. There are also camping facilities for adventurous souls who wish to spend the night at the park, under the stars.
The Fishing Village
Fishing has been the main industry in Phu Quoc for centuries, and the fishing villages on the island offer a much-needed respite from the exciting activities on offer. The fishing villages are also great places to score fresh seafood and hearty local specialties at reasonable prices. The floating restaurants by the pier in the Ham Ninh Fishing Village, in particular, are well-known for serving the island’s finest delicacy: flower crabs.
These crustaceans are often only boiled and served to customers with nothing but salt and pepper for them to better savor the delicate flavor. Don’t miss out on other exotic but delicious tidbits, too: try the sea cucumbers, slipper lobsters, and sea snails. Most restaurants offer many different ways to prepare these seafood, so sit back and let the chef take care of you.
The Fish Sauce
Fish sauce is an essential and ubiquitous ingredient and condiment in Southeast Asia. Most countries in the region have their own version of the pungent, amber-colored liquid, which is mainly used to flavor dishes or as a dipping sauce. It’s an umami bomb that, if used wisely, can bring out the flavors of any dish.
Phu Quoc fish sauce is said to be head and shoulders above its competitors from Thailand, the Philippines, and Cambodia, and a day trip to see how it is manufactured should be worthwhile for any serious foodie. Nuoc mam Phu Quoc, for example, is the first Southeast Asian product to have received a European Union Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) certification, a designation reserved for prestigious specialties that possess strong links to the place where they were made. Other foodstuff that have received this designation include prosciutto Toscano, Stilton cheese, the balsamic vinegar of Modena, and more.
At the Nuoc Mam Hung Thanh distillery, you can learn about why Phu Quoc fish sauce tastes so amazing, how it’s made in deep wooden vats, and how fermentation transforms a stinky, evil-looking liquid into nước mắm so good it is often referred to as “liquid gold.” Sample the different grades for yourself, and taste the difference; you may never go back to regular fish sauce off a supermarket shelf again!
Phu Quoc stands out from other Vietnamese holiday hotspots, thanks to its idyllic beaches, picturesque inland forests, diverse flora and fauna, and unique cultural traditions. Make sure not to miss out on this island paradise the next time you visit the Southeast Asian country.