Fishing boats in south of Phu Quoc island. Photo by Christian Berg
The main drag, known as Long Beach, is relaxed and offers easy public access to the water. Toward the island's southern coast, Bãi Sao is famous for its scenery and comes with the added adventure of navigating Phú Quốc's dirt roads. Further north, you'll find more secluded shores, from Ông Lang beach to the long, empty stretch of Bãi Dài.
With more than 50% of Phú Quốc's land area protected as a national park, a large part of Phú Quốc's best assets are hidden inland in sites such as Suối Tranh. Hire a motorbike and find your way around the island, stopping off to explore independent hiking trails and freshwater springs.
To get a better sense of local life on Phú Quốc, pay a visit to Dinh Cậu, a modest temple at one end of Long Beach. Curious foodies can also swing by the fish sauce factories in Dương Đông, to learn how Vietnam's most important condiment is made. On the opposite side of the island, Phú Quốc's Coconut Tree Prison reveals a troubled history, while Vinpearl Resort's many attractions up north signal a new age in the island's development.
Begin your stay by getting your bearings in Dương Đông, the island's main town. Be sure to get a glimpse inside one of the island's fish sauce factories before passing by Dinh Cậu Temple. For more on-land activities, pay a visit to the Cội nguồn Museum, a privately run outfit celebrating the history of Phú Quốc, or lay down a towel on Long Beach for some R&R. In the evening, make a point of visiting the local night market for fresh local seafood.
For your second day, hire a motorbike and head south to Bãi Sao, an popular stretch of sand with few beachgoers. Have lunch on the beach before heading to Coconut Tree Prison for a Phú Quốc history lesson. Round out the day by taking a wander through An Thoi, the southernmost fishing village on the island, before heading back.
For an extra beach day, hire a motorbike again and travel north of Dương Đông to peaceful Ông Lang beach. You can grab lunch in sleepy Cửa Cạn village before heading on to Bãi Dài, arguably one of Phú Quốc's most secluded stretches of coast, and Gành Dầu. Once you've had your share of beach time, turn into the forest for more outdoor adventure.
Phú Quốc is best visited between November and April when rainy season is not yet in effect. Peak season for foreign travelers typically occurs in December and January.
Daily flights to Phú Quốc International Airport depart from Ho Chi Minh City, while high-speed boats travel between the island and the Mekong Delta towns of Rạch Giá and Hà Tiên.