Phu Quoc Island is the most famous destination in Vietnam, especially amongst expats. It is an island with beautiful coastline and resorts. You can reach there by car (then ride on ferry for about 1.5 hrs to 2.5 hrs depending on what kind of ferry do you take) or by plane. Since I don’t like travelling by ferry, I picked a flight to go there. The flight was only for 1 hour.
We were staying at Ancarine Beach Hotel in Phu Quoc and they were very informative. Right after we booked our room there, we got a message from them saying that since we’re going to spend at least 3 nights at their resort, they will provide shuttle service from and to airport! I was so happy when I got this email xD When we arrived there, they picked us up (and apparently only us for that night). The journey took 30 mins from airport to resort. On our last day, they booked and paid a taxi to take us to airport. I saw on the meter, it was about 270k vnd from Ancarine Beach Resort to Phu Quoc Airport.
Our room was supposed to have sea view and garden view, according to the description on booking.com. But all we could see was garden, the beach was too far away from our room. So my husband contacted the reception and asked if they have any room closer to the beach.
We changed to this room. A wooden bungalow with private bathroom as well. The room’s design was unique, especially the bathroom. Open-air bathroom! They folded the towel into animal shaped EVERY DAY, not just on the first day to welcome you.
Above is the pictures of Ancarine Beach Hotel area. I think it’s really nice for a 3-star resort. Much larger area than 3-star resort in Mui Ne.
Things we did at resort or Phu Quoc Island in general :
- Lazy time on the beach 😀
It’s a resort! Of course we have to enjoy our days there. The view on the beach was really gorgeous.
- Rent a motorbike and go around the city
To rent a motorbike, we contacted our receptionist and he arranged everything. It was 200k vnd per day. We got an automatic motorbike, so it was like riding a bicycle. Don’t forget to wear your helmet and practice driving your motorbike first before you go on tour.
- Rent a car to go on tourist spots
It was too hot to ride on motorbike and go far on a tour. It was not much different between joining a group tour and rent a car, so we decided to rent a car. I’m not a fan of touring with many people, because I don’t like to wait for people or people to wait for me. If I can go on private tour then I prefer that. We asked about the rent cost to our receptionist and it was 800k vnd for 8 hours. And if we joined a tour, it would be 364k vnd per person (total 728k vnd). We went to the same places as the group tour with some changes. Our reception was really good. She helped on arranging the rent, and talked to driver about our destinations, even recommended some good places as replacement.
There are 2 tour company brochure on reception table. They both have almost the same price and package. They are Red River Tours and John’s Tours. We rented a car from John’s Tours. And it was super! The driver drove really careful and calm. He was also helpful even tho he can’t speak English. He tried to show us something with his gesture. A nice guy.
The places she arranged for us were :
1. Pepper farm
There are many pepper farm there, nothing can go wrong if you go to any farm. Pepper is one of their famous commodity. I bought a mixed pepper and it is really tasty to use for eating fruits or with meal.
2. Long Beach Pearl
There are many pearl store there. One of the biggest and most trusted one is long beach pearl because they provide a certificate for their product so it has warranty. But they also have stores in the city like Ho Chi Minh City. I don’t know what makes it special to buy in Phu Quoc than in Saigon. Maybe the price is lower there?! I love the design our their jewelry case. It’s cute!
3. Sao Beach
Sao beach is located in south part of Phu Quoc Island. It is very beautiful but very crowded at the same time. Especially at lunch time. Every tour company have schedule to visit this beach and to have lunch there. So expect many buses and tour cars in parking lot, and of course a lot of people in the restaurant. It was really hard to find a good spot to sit if we didn’t reserve before. Their service also not that fast, so you will have a long waiting time. Their food was just so-so with high price. One of the dish we ordered was really good. It’s a fried fish with fish sauce. Another thing I noticed was everything costs money! For example, toilet is 20k vnd. I’m not sure I want to stay in that resort if I need to see many people everyday wandering around.
4. Fish Sauce Factory
Another famous commodity from Phu Quoc is fish sauce. Their fish sauce is really superb. Even my husband, who doesn’t like fish sauce, really hooked with this one. You can buy fish sauce anywhere, but of course the best is buying at their factory. The problem is you can’t bring fish sauce on your flight! They said if the package is broken on the way then the whole airplane will be stinky. We were too honest and ended up handing over our fish sauce to the person in flight counter 😦 My precious fish sauce! There is a souvernir shop next to the factory. They are selling many things. I still wondering how to bring the fish sauce home. I saw a lot of people buying in boxes!
5. Coconut Prison
You don’t need to know about their history to come to this place, but a little knowledge wouldn’t hurt.. At first I was hesitated to go in because the receptionist in our hotel said there will be a lot of torturing scene pictured by waxed doll. It was a bit scary though. All of torturing method you can’t imagined are there. There are some boards with history explanation as well. It was an interesting experience.
6. Ho Quoc Pagoda
This pagoda was recommended by the receptionist. She said this pagoda is more beautiful than the other one that was listed on the brochure. The driver took us there, and it was quite far from the main road. It is located on top of a hill. Very beautiful indeed! I would recommend this pagoda as well. We could see the sea once we climbed up on highest platform.
7. Fishing Village
This place is also recommended to visit. It can be really hot, so prepare sunblock, sunglasses and hat. There is a restaurant there but we didn’t eat there. Very interesting area, and also a wonderful view of sea and the village.
8. Night Market
We skipped this place because we were too tired (and it was too hot!). I just wanted tp lay down and relax after our trip to tourist spots. The other thing was the market is quite far from our resort. Well, we could have ordered taxi or rent a motorbike, but too lazy to do it. Next trip to Phu Quoc we definitely have to visit this place!
The only thing that made me uncomfortable in Phu Quoc was the scarcity of good food! Yes there are some good restaurants, but their price is not cheap. So the spending for food was big if we travel to resort. Here are the places we visited during our stay :
- Crab House
We found this place on tripadvisor and the reviews were good as well. We went there on the day we rent the motorbike. It was 20 mins trip from our resort. I must say it was worth the trip! This is a must try restaurant. Their food was really delicious. Especially the crab. Since we couldn’t decide which one we want to order, the waitress suggested Combo 2. It was awesome! The sauce is finger-licking delicious! Seriously, it was a really yummy sauce. The crab also yummy. But the shrimp was not my favorite. We love this meal so much! Highly recommended.
- Mango Bay Restaurant
We were lucky that our resort was next to Mango Bay Resort. They have a good food and beautiful view. Some people also recommended this place to enjoy sunset, but I found that Ancarine have better view with all their trees and sea waves. My recommendation for this restaurant are : mango mojito, Cha Ca La Vong, and Ong Lang Squid. Definitely have to try those!
- Sao Beach
There is a restaurant in Sao Beach, run by one of the resort there. It is always crowded at lunch. Their service is very slow, and their food is just so-so. Price also pretty high, not one of good value for money. From several dishes that we ordered that day, our favorite was fried marinated fish (marinated in fish sauce). Their scallop was very disappointing! It was like eating rubber 😦 And their waterspinach / morning glory also so-so.
- Ancarine Beach Resort
We stayed here, of course we have to try their restaurant! 😀 (the main reason was because we were lazy to go out to find food, need about 20 minutes to downtown.. unless we choose to eat at mango bay again, so nope..). They have many options for dinner. Price was high (doh!), taste was so-so, but we had no choice.
- Night Market
Many people told us to visit the market and enjoy their seafood dishes, but unfortunately we didn’t go. Next time! We will visit it next time for sure!
That is all I can share with you guys. If you have any suggestion on place to visit or to eat in Phu Quoc, please let me know in comment below. Ciao!