Con Dao, Vietnam is a beautiful archipelago located off the southeastern coast of Vietnam. It is comprised of 16 islands and islets, which are surrounded by clear, turquoise waters and pristine white-sand beaches. This stunning paradise gained its reputation as being an understated yet exquisite destination, as it stays largely untouched by modern tourism.
Historical Significance of Con Dao
Con Dao was discovered by Europeans in the late 16th century, though it has long been a part of Vietnamese culture and folklore. During the French colonial era, the region was used as a prison island and many stories of struggle and hardship can still be heard from local guides. In more recent years, the island has been recognised as a National Park and its waters are now a haven for a variety of marine life.
Top 7 Things to See in Con Dao, Vietnam
Con Dao offers visitors a wide range of activities and attractions. Here is a list of the top 7 things to see in Con Dao, Vietnam:
- Dam Tre Bay – If beach hopping is your style, make sure you visit Dam Tre Bay. It is located on the southwestern side of the island, and its beaches are surrounded by palm and casuarina trees, making it a perfect spot for sunbathing and swimming.
- Crocodile Lake – This lake is located near the town of Con Son and is home to a number of saltwater crocodiles of all sizes, making it a must-see for any wildlife enthusiast.
- Hang Duong Cemetery – Located in the town of Con Son, this cemetery is a solemn reminder of the struggles faced by many during Vietnam’s colonial period. It is a historic site and visiting it can provide insights into the past.
- Hon Ba Nature Reserve – This nature reserve covers an area of 9 sq km and is home to a rich variety of flora and fauna, including some rare species. It is a great place to explore and find out more about the diverse wildlife of Con Dao.
- Nui Mot Mountain – Head to the top of this mountain for spectacular views of the entire Con Dao archipelago. It is also home to a number of endemic species, making it a great spot for bird-watching.
- Ong Dung Beach – This beach is situated on the south-eastern side of the island and is perfect for a range of activities, including sunbathing, snorkelling and scuba diving. It also has some amazing views of the surrounding islands.
- Man A Qua Temple – Located on the northern side of the island, this temple is an important landmark for the local community. It is a great place to learn more about the traditional culture of Con Dao.
Food Culture of Con Dao, Vietnam
Con Dao has a unique food culture. The cuisine is heavily influenced by the local culture, with many dishes featuring fresh seafood and locally grown produce, such as jack-fruit, yam and wild tuber. Soups and stews are also popular, with the most popular dish being ‘ca Rem’, a type of fish cooked with lemongrass and green onions. Other dishes to try include grilled lobster and speciality dishes such as ‘banh trang’, a thin, crispy rice-paper pancake.
Unique Things About Con Dao, Vietnam
Most visitors to Con Dao are unaware of its unique features. For instance, the island has a number of freshwater lakes and mangrove swamps, which provide an important habitat for a variety of species, including the rare dugong. Other interesting features include the sandalwood forests and the black coral reefs, which can be found close to the island.
How to Get to Con Dao, Vietnam
The best way to get to Con Dao is by taking a direct flight from Ho Chi Minh City to Con Son Airport, the main airport in the region. Alternatively, visitors can take a ferry from Vung Tau, located in nearby Ba Ria province.
The Con Dao archipelago is made up of the islands of Con Son, Cu Lao Trung, Cu Lao Dung, Cu Lao Chan and Hon Hom. Visiting all of these islands would require a few days, so it is best to visit the cities in the province first. Tripfany has information about the cities to help you plan your trip.
Traveling to Con Dao, Vietnam
Con Dao, Vietnam is a beautiful destination that should definitely be on everyone’s travel bucket list. With its stunning beaches, lush forests, diverse wildlife and unique culture, it is a destination that offers something for everyone.
If you are planning a trip to Con Dao and need help with your travel itinerary, you can reach out to Tripfany for assistance. We are here to help you make the most out of your trip to Con Dao and will be more than happy to provide you with all the information you need.