BEST THINGS TO DO IN PHU QUOC 2023

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Things to do in Phú Quốc

Visitors to Vietnam itching to hit up the beach should head south to lớn Phú Quốc, with its large dive-friendly coasts and fresh seafood markets. But there’re many more things to vì in Phú Quốc besides swimming và surfing – the island is packed with heritage attractions to lớn discover that will reveal a side of Vietnamese culture and history you can’t find in the big cities.

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Here are 19 things to bởi in Phú Quốc for your next relaxing coastal vacation, including natural sights, museums, và amusement parks for everyone in your travel crew to lớn find something they enjoy.

We’ve organized this list by geographical location, starting from Dương Đông Town, the west coast, east coast, south, then north.

– Dương Đông Town –

1. Watch the harbor from the Dinh Cậu Temple

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Image credit:
karinost1969

Despite being just a teeny temple on an odd-shaped rock, Dinh Cậu Temple is a good place to lớn get a generous view of the harbor. Locals and tourists also drop by to lớn get blessings from the sea goddess Thiên Hậu whom the temple is dedicated to. This dates back to lớn its history since it was built in 1937, when local fishermen began coming here lớn pay their respects lớn the goddess before heading out to lớn sea.

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The lighthouse beside the templeImage credit: Tuan AnhTo get khổng lồ Dinh Cậu Temple, walk up the 28 winding steps to find a stubby little shrine coupled with a bright blue và white lighthouse.


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Image credit:
night2stay

Take a moment lớn enjoy the charming view of the sea and the harbor below, or lounge about the beach till sunset to snap those Phú Quốc sunset photos.

If you’re lucky enough khổng lồ be here during tết (the Lunar New Year) or the Dinh Cậu Festival (falling on the 15th and 16th days of the 10th lunar month, usually in November), you’ll find the place teeming with festive activity. Fishermen will gather to lớn pray for a large catch và for their safety at sea, và locals hold games such as boating và stilt-walking races that you can cheer on.

Tip: As with all sites of worship in Vietnam, be sure khổng lồ dress appropriately when visiting the temple.

Address: Khu phố 2, Phú Quốc, Kien GiangGPS coordinates: 10° 13′ 1.9806″N, 103° 57′ 23.0106″EOpening hours: 7AM-6PM, DailyEntrance fee: Free

2. Fill up on seafood at Dinh Cậu Night Market (Chợ thường Dinh Cậu)

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Image credit:
tom_leiby

After the sunset at the Dinh Cậu Temple, walk 5 minutes inland & fill your stomach at the Dinh Cậu night market. You’ll find tables laden with all kinds of raw seafood. Choose whatever catches your fancy, and it will be cooked for you right in front of your eyes. You can pick whole live fish, crabs, or shrimps from the tanks as well.

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Image credit:
edyta2106

To quench your dessert cravings, head to the ice cream stalls for Thai-style rolled ice cream.

Tip: Unless you have an iron stomach, pay attention lớn cleanliness and hygiene. Check the smell and color of seafood khổng lồ find the freshest picks.

Address: 30 Đường è cổ Hưng Đạo, TT. Dương Đông, Phú Quốc, thức giấc Kiên GiangGPS coordinates: 10° 12′ 49.0458″N, 103° 57′ 31.2762″EOpening hours: 5PM-12AM, Daily

3. Go people-watching at Dương Đông Market (Chợ Dương Đông)

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Image credit:
ashleechil

For an authentic local market experience, don’t miss out on the Dương Đông Market. This is the busiest outdoor market in the area where locals get their daily groceries. You’ll also find vendors selling famed Phú Quốc products, ranging from fish sauce & dried fish lớn pepper và cashew nuts.

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Fishing boats docking on the Dương Đông RiverImage credit:
lotusnapper


The stretch of the market by the Dương Đông River is the wet market section. Come early in the morning và see swarms of fishing boats pulling in to drop off their daily catch.

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Grilled sea urchins (left) & sea urchin porridge (right)Image adapted from:
phamduchuy1688 and
anbitran1261997

When you’re done exploring, stop for a cheap breakfast at the food và dessert stalls. Must-tries include echinus porridge (cháo nhum) made with a kind of sea urchin, and cylindrical sticky rice cakes.

Address: 21 Đ. è cổ Phú, TT. Dương Đông, Phú Quốc, tỉnh Kiên GiangGPS coordinates: 10° 13′ 14.4978″N, 103° 57′ 34.8948″EOpening hours: 7AM-late, Daily

4. See a uniquely Vietnamese religion’s place of worship – the Cao dai Temple of Phú Quốc (Thánh Thất Cao Đài Dương Đông)

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Image credit: yves frombelgium

If you see a temple in Vietnam with a bright technicolour exterior, chances are that it belongs lớn the Cao Đài religion. Also known as Caodaism, it’s a syncretic religion founded in Vietnam in 1926, combining Buddhism, Christianity, Taoism, Confucianism, and Islam.

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Image credit: Tuấn Ngô Anh

Even if you’re not religious, history and culture buffs will have much lớn see at the Cao dẻo Temple of Phú Quốc (Thánh Thất Cao Đài Dương Đông), such as images of its patron saints such as Vietnamese poet Trang Trinh, the Republic of China’s late president Sun Yat-Sen, French poet Victor Hugo, and Jesus Christ. Visitors are allowed khổng lồ watch morning worship ceremonies from a respectful distance to see the proceedings.

Address: 40 Nguyen Trai Street, Dương Đông Town, Phú QuốcGPS coordinates: 10° 13′ 3.8136″N, 103° 57′ 35.6718″EOpening hours: 7AM-6PM, DailyEntrance fee: Free 

5. Explore the eccentric, private cội nguồn Museum (Bảo tàng cội Nguồn)

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Image credit: Eleven_13


Curious culture buffs và archaeology fans should head for the Cội nguồn Museum (Bảo tàng cội Nguồn), the Mekong Delta’s first private museum opened by private collector Huỳnh Phước Huệ.

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Image credit: Bernard_Sierentz

Here you’ll find displays showing the history of Phú Quốc Island, such as medicine, ancient tools, ceramics và shipwreck artefacts, và a quirky set of shiny shell-covered furniture.

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Image credit: Helen C

Head up khổng lồ the observation deck on the vị trí cao nhất floors khổng lồ take in a 360-degree view of the island. A khách sạn and small souvenir shop that visitors can poke around are also attached khổng lồ this building.

Address: 149 trần Hưng Đạo, thành phố 7, thị xã Dương Đông, huyện Phú Quốc, tỉnh Kiên Giang, Dương Tơ, Phú Quốc, tỉnh giấc Kiên GiangGPS coordinates: 10° 11′ 34.3206″N, 103° 58′ 1.8294″EOpening hours: 7AM-5PMEntrance fee: VND20,000 (~USD0.86)

– West coast –

6. Get your chảy on at Long Beach (Bãi ngôi trường Phú Quốc)

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Image adapted from
ngoclinh.pham and
hngocanhh

You’ll be able khổng lồ practice safe distancing while working on your chảy on this beach, aptly called the Long Beach (Bãi ngôi trường Phú Quốc) for its 20KM length stretching from Dương Đông lớn An Thoi. Plenty of unblocked sunset photography ops can be found here.

Those who see themselves spending a lot of time on the beach can pick from the many resorts located here, such as the InterContinental Phú Quốc Long Beach Resort and Long Beach Resort Phú Quốc, to make the most of the yellow sand, palm trees, and calm water in the dry season from November khổng lồ May each year. Seafood restaurants with ocean views are also aplenty.

GPS coordinates: 10° 6′ 47.0592″N, 103° 58′ 52.8276″”E


7. Browse local pearl products at pearl markets và farms

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Ngoc Hien Pearl Farm’s galleryImage credit: Tuan Tran

With plenty of beaches, it’s no surprise that Phú Quốc boasts pearls as one of its famous products. Head to any pearl market or farm on the island – Ngọc hiền hậu Pearl Farm (Ngọc trai Ngọc Hiền)Quốc An Pearl Shopping Mall (CS Nuôi cấy Ngọc Trai Quốc An) are two famous stops – & you can be treated to lớn a live introduction of how pearls are cultivated.

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Quốc An Pearl Shopping MallImage credit: phân phát Thái

Of course, this is also your chance to cửa hàng for souvenirs that include not just your usual earrings và necklaces, but also sculptures made with pearl shells.

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Image credit:
anuhyun

We recommend coming with a guide or trusted local, as prices may be exaggerated và product demonstrations may be rushed – so this is best for folks who already know what they’re prepared to buy & who already have some knowledge of the market.

Ngọc hiền hậu Pearl FarmAddress: Dương Tơ, Phú Quốc, tỉnh Kiên GiangGPS coordinates: 10° 10′ 12.1902″N, 103° 58′ 14.1564″EOpening hours: 8AM-10PM, Daily

Quoc An Pearl Shopping MallAddress: Suối Mây, Phú Quốc, tỉnh giấc Kiên GiangGPS coordinates: 10° 11′ 12.6846″N, 103° 59′ 32.2686″EOpening hours: 7.30AM-7.30PM, Daily

– Hàm Ninh/East coast –

8. Hike to Suối Tranh Waterfall (Khu du lịch Suối Tranh)

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Image credit:
hungvu_21

Past visitors to lớn the east coast of Phú Quốc would probably have stopped by the Hàm Ninh Pier & fishing village with seafood restaurants, but the area’s authentic charm has faded.

So skip the seafood touts and instead head for the 4-meter-high Suối Tranh Waterfall, where you can camp among a lush rainforest, caves, & rock pools. Bring along swimwear, plenty of mosquito repellent, và food, và visit closer khổng lồ rainy season when the falls are more majestic.

The adventurous can hike 15 kilometres further in to reach Hang Dơi (Bat Cave), a cave formation 200 metres in height with stalactites.

Address: Dương Tơ, Phú Quốc, thức giấc Kiên GiangGPS coordinates: 10° 11′ 1.5534″N, 104° 0′ 56.4618″EEntrance fee: From VND10,000 (~USD0.44)

9. Climb Tiên đánh Đỉnh (Mount Heaven) for a view of the island and coast

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Image credit:
kevinhjung

Turns out, Phú Quốc isn’t all about beaches and seafood after all. Forest hiking fans should pack for Tiên sơn Đỉnh (Mount Heaven), or Hàm Ninh Mountain.

Here, a challenging four-hour trek through the evergreen forest awaits, ending with a climb up a 10-meter bamboo ladder for a magnificent view from the 565 m-high peak.

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The final part of the hike is a ten-meter ladder climb to the topImage credit: Huong Nguyen

To get here, xe đạp from Hàm Ninh fishing village và park at any local business that offers parking spots that you’re comfortable with. Vị skip the flip-flops & come in hiking shoes, and bring along trash bags to lớn keep the environment spotless after you leave.

Address: Hàm Ninh, Tp. Phú Quốc, thức giấc Kiên GiangGPS coordinates: 10° 10′ 55.6062″N, 104° 1′ 32.5266″E

– South –

10. Bask on the trắng sand of Sao Beach (Bãi rửa mặt Sao)

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Image credit:
rieke.mit.ie

A popular alternative to lớn Long Beach on the west, Sao Beach (Bãi vệ sinh Sao) boasts fine white sand and rows of palm trees. You can spend all day here thanks to the rental sunbeds and refreshments from beachside restaurants và roving vendors.

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Image credit:
juggiggo

An easy stop after you take the world’s longest non-stop three-rope cable oto ride – for deets, see #11 below – the beach is best visited from November to lớn March to avoid the summer rainy season tourist crowds.

Xem thêm: Đài Tưởng Niệm Tưởng Giới Thạch, Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Hall

There are a few guesthouses here such as My Lan khách sạn & Restaurant, but the fewer accommodation choices here mean Sao Beach will be more of a day-trip destination rather than your Phú Quốc base.

Address: Bãi tắm SaoGPS coordinates: 10° 3′ 25.9956″N, 104° 2′ 10.9422″E

11. Take a 7.9km-long cable car ride – the Hòn Thơm Phú Quốc Cable Car

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View facing the Sun World Hòn Thơm Nature Park cable oto departure terminalImage credit:
sheepoying

A steal compared to other famous cable oto rides, the Hòn Thơm Phú Quốc Cable oto is the world’s longest non-stop three-rope cable car ride – as recorded by the Guinness Book of World Records on 3 January 2018, at 7.899.9 m long.

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Image credit: Huyen Trang Chu Thi

It’ll take you from Phú Quốc khổng lồ Hòn Thơm, the largest of the An Thới Islands, on a trip lasting 15 minutes each way. After catching this birds-eye view, you can cửa hàng at Sun World Hòn Thơm Nature Park’s Roman castle-like cable car terminal and European seaside resort-like buildings.

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Image credit: Duc Hung Nguyen

Rest assured that the cable cars, which can seat 30 people each, are made by global manufacturer Doppelmayr that’s also built many Austrian, Swiss, và US ski lifts.

Address: Bãi Đất Đỏ, Phú Quốc, Kien GiangGPS coordinates (Sun World Hòn Thơm Nature Park departure terminal): 10° 1′ 41.4366″N, 104° 0′ 29.556″ETicket price: VND150,000 (~USD6.60)/adult or child over 1.3m tall, round tripVND100,000(~USD4.40)/child from 1-1.3m tallFree for children under 1mOpening hours: 8AM-12PM, 1.30PM-5.30PM, Daily

12. Snorkel and boat around the An Thới Islands (Quần hòn đảo An Thới)

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Image credit:
zhuk_sergey_travel

Snorkel, swim, or fish your way around the An Thới Islands (Quần hòn đảo An Thới), a group of 15 islands off Phú Quốc’s southern shore. Here, private island-hopping tours are available from USD139 per group, & usually come with khách sạn pick-ups, an English-speaking guide, snorkeling gear, and fruit for your final sunset viewing stop.

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Image credit:
lorenzachiarello

Ask your guide to lớn take you beyond the more popular islands of Coconut Island (Hòn Dừa) known for its coconut tree forests and shipwreck off its western beach, và Rơi Island (Hòn Rơi) with as-yet-undisturbed coral reefs. There are smaller, uninhabited islands that are less frequently visited but better for diving thanks khổng lồ their clearer waters – worth the longer trip.

Address: Quần đảo An Thới, Phú Quốc, Kiên GiangGPS coordinates: 9° 59′ 41.1246″N, 104° 0′ 36.381″E (Coconut Island)

13. See war history up close at Phú Quốc Prison (Nhà tội nhân Phú Quốc)

 

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Live-sized figurines depicting prison tortureImage credit:
tram_ngoc96

Built by the French in 1949, the Phú Quốc Prison (Nhà tù nhân Phú Quốc) is where then-North Vietnamese soldiers were imprisoned during the Vietnam War, and now serves as a museum. Once holding over 32,000 prisoners, the prison also was the site of crude torture và punishments by colonial forces from 1967 khổng lồ 1973 that led to many deaths và also permanent disabilities among its living survivors.

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Image credit:
koganei_kr

History buffs can browse the exhibits of torture instruments, photographs of former prisoners, và graphic life-size mannequins phối up lớn show how prisoners were treated in wartime. Bởi vì dress conservatively – as this is a solemn, historical site despite being on a holiday island – and bring plenty of sun protection as it can get hot here.

Address: 465, ĐT46, An Thới, Phú Quốc, tỉnh giấc Kiên GiangGPS coordinates: 10° 2′ 41.8344″N, 104° 1′ 7.989″EOpening hours: 7.30AM-11AM & 1.30PM-5PM, DailyAdmission fee: Free

14. Find a slice of peace at Hộ Quốc Pagoda (Thiền viện Trúc Lâm – chùa Hộ Quốc)

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Image credit:
_dasha_shch_

Located in the island’s largest Buddhist temple và monastery complex Thiền viện Trúc Lâm Hộ Quốc that was opened on 14 December 2012, Hộ Quốc Pagoda is located on a mountain on Phú Quốc’s eastern coast, facing the sea. This means excellent sunrise views for early risers khổng lồ visit & get their snaps in.

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Image adapted from
caohathuy và
imisna_

Those needing a dose of spiritual healing can tour the temple grounds dedicated to lớn the Vietnamese Zen Buddhist sect of Trúc Lâm. Here, you’ll find a Jade Buddha statue, a gigantic Guan Yin statue, an outdoor long staircase, and a huge worship bell.

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Image credit:
___celinus___

As photogenic as the temple is, vị dress appropriately for the religious site, and bring easily removable shoes as you’ll need to slip them off when entering any building.

Address: Dương Tơ, Phú Quốc, Kien GiangGPS coordinates: 10° 6′ 37.281″N, 104° 1′ 43.7232″EOpening hours: 6AM-6PM, DailyAdmission fee: Free

– North –

15. Take an eco-tour around bee and pepper farms

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Image credit:
eveabsentia

Bees are crucial to our ecosystem, enabling a wide variety of plants khổng lồ grow thanks lớn their role as pollinators. See them up close and personal by touring Phú Quốc’s bee farms, where you can learn how honey is made.

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Image adapted from Worldschooling with Queenie Tan and Dano

You can sample honey drinks and snacks here, and buy the hardworking bees’ fresh honey as a souvenir.

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Pepper farmsImage adapted from
bilazism and
von_hannover_nach

Pepper farms are also dotted all over the island – so it’s no wonder why pepper is a major Phú Quốc export. The island’s quartz-rich soil makes it well-suited lớn grow the essential crop, which you can of course buy on-site.

You can enquire with most hotels & travel agencies about bee and pepper farm tours, and they’ll be happy lớn set one up for you. We recommend Phú Quốc Bee Farm for its sustainable farming practices and stance against destructive honey-gathering methods. Plus, it’s conveniently located near a pepper farm too so you can hit up both spots in one trip.

Phú Quốc Bee FarmAddress:Ap 2, Cua Can, Phú QuốcGPS coordinates: 10° 18′ 53.3478″N, 103° 56′ 28.1178″EOpening hours: 9AM-5PM, DailyAdmission fee: Free

16. Wade with starfish at Rạch Vẹm fishing village (Làng chài Rạch Vẹm) and beach

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Image credit:
mie_nguyen03

Located in a less-developed part of the north coast, Rạch Vẹm fishing village (Làng chài Rạch Vẹm) and beach are best known for its floating fish farms and seafood restaurants – another alternative spot where you can experience simple village life and eat fresh seafood on the island.

It doesn’t hurt that the beach offers trắng sand and shallow waters with lots of starfish you can see up close. Do avoid picking them up and if they are stranded, release them back into the water quickly và gently.

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Wooden walkway to the floating fishing villageImage credit:
aleks.koziura

Take a walk on the wooden walkways of the village & catch the sunset views here too.

Address: Rạch Vẹm, Phú Quốc, Kien GiangGPS coordinates: 10° 21′ 53.9958″N, 103° 55′ 52.7052″EAdmission fee: Free

17. Explore UNESCO-recognized Phú Quốc National Park (Vườn non sông Phú Quốc)

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Image credit:
michaelkey10

Located 30 minutes’ drive from tị Dau, Phú Quốc National Park occupies most of the northern part of the island, boasting evergreen forest và dense mountains. It is part of the Kien Giang Biosphere Reserve that in 2006 earned its UNESCO Biosphere Reserve status and was formally awarded in 2010.

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Image credit:
thewilddaisylover

Most of the park’s over 314,000 square metres of flora & fauna are strictly protected by the government, aside from the trail mở cửa to visitors. Here, you can camp, hike, và animal-watch và spot long-tailed macaques, silver langurs, slow lories, otters, hornbills, và more wildlife. Jeep tours are also available for people who’d like to go further into the reserve.

Do kiểm tra with your local tour guide before visiting Phú Quốc if the park will be open, as intermittent closures have been observed by visitors in 2021.

Address: Huyện Phú Quốc, Kien GiangGPS coordinates: 10° 19′ 54.897″N, 103° 58′ 26.8068″E (Guardhouse)Admission fee: Free

18. Spot Cambodia from afar on Gành Dầu Beach (Bãi biển lớn Gành Dầu)

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Image credit:
lucilermn

Located on Phú Quốc’s extreme northwestern tip, Ganh Dau Beach (Bãi biển Gành Dầu) is removed from modern amenities và relatively undeveloped. Just 4km away lies the Cambodian coast that you can spot on the horizon from the beach.

While here, drop by the fishing village and market, & also a small temple dedicated to lớn national anh hùng Nguyễn Trung Trực who fought against the French in the 1860s. Admission to lớn this spot is free.

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Mun’s CafeImage credit: Kyle Byrnes

A few cafes and restaurants have also taken advantage of this view & set up cửa hàng in the scenic area. We recommend Mun’s Cafe, a beachside spot with open-air seating, pina coladas, và sunset views.

Address: Bãi hải dương Gành Dầu, Kien GiangGPS coordinates: 10° 22′ 21.4536″N, 103° 50′ 17.8368″E

19. Let loose at Phú Quốc United Center’s theme parks and safari

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Image credit: Vinpearl Land Phú Quốc

Touted as the country’s first “sleepless city”, Phú Quốc United Center comprises theme parks such as Vietnam’s largest theme park VinWonders Phú Quốc, shopping areas, casinos, golf courses, resorts, hotels, and even a safari called Vinpearl Safari promising non-stop fun.

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Image credit: Phú Quốc United Center

VinWonders Phú Quốc might be the main draw, thanks to its 6 component parks including a European street recreation, a water park, Viking-inspired village, and a fantasy-themed area.

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Image credit: Vinpearl Safari Phú Quốc

We have to give Vinpearl Safari a shoutout for being Vietnam’s largest zoo, trang chủ to indigenous và rare plants và animals, including endangered species that you can see on foot or via their zoo & safari rides.

Animal shows start at 10AM and 2PM besides Tuesdays & Wednesdays, & visitors can also dine in a restaurant right beside curious giraffes.

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Image credit: Vinpearl Safari Phú Quốc

You’ll have no problem heading to lớn Phú Quốc United Center if you’re staying at Dương Đông town, thanks lớn its không lấy phí shuttle service from the town to lớn the park. Alternatively, if you want khổng lồ make the complex your base for a few days so you can explore it thoroughly, there are over 12,000 hotel rooms here across multiple accommodation options ready for you to rest in.

Admission fee (VinWonders Phú Quốc): VND500,000/adult, VND400,000/child (1-1.4m tall) or senior citizenAdmission fee (Vinpearl Land và Vinpearl Safari bộ combo ticket): VND900,000/adult, VND750,000/child or senior citizenAddress: ĐT45, Gành Dầu, Phú Quốc, tỉnh Kiên GiangGPS coordinates: 10° 19′ 40.2888″N, 103° 51′ 55.839”ETelephone: 90 699 41 13Phú Quốc United Center website | Facebook page

Things to vì in Phú Quốc

Although Vietnam isn’t the first place Southeast Asia’s tourists think of when it comes to lớn beach holidays, the island of Phú Quốc will make you think otherwise.

And there’s more than just suntanning here – the nature hikes, temples, museums, & historical tours will show you a new side of Vietnam you can’t see in the big, crowded cities.

Xem thêm: Mãn Nhãn Cảnh Sắc Mù Cang Chải Mùa Nước Đổ, Ruộng Bậc Thang Mù Cang Chải Mùa Nước Đổ

This article was originally written by Linh Nguyen in November 2019 and updated by Xin Tian Koh in September 2021.

Cover image adapted from:
lorenzachiarello, và Phú Quốc United Center

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