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Con Dao Guide - All you need to know

Con Dao, belonging to Ba Ria - Vung Tau province, is an island off the southern coast of the South, associated with many historical events of Vietnam. This island is home to picturesque, pristine beaches, natural surroundings, and Con Dao prison. Today, Con Dao is a weekend beach paradise and sightseeing destination with religious places and a national park.

Con Dao is located about 97 nautical miles from Vung Tau city in Ba Ria - Vung Tau province. Con Dao consists of sixteen islands, of which Con Son is the largest. Con Dao has been an important Vietnamese historical place, from during the reign of the French people to the Republic of Vietnam era. It was established in 1802 and named by the government later on. Nowadays, Con Dao is a touristic place that retains its natural beauty.

Con Dao Beach

Con Dao Beach


How to get to Con Dao

Generally, there are three ways to get to Con Dao Island.

  • By plane: Going by plane is the fastest way to get to Con Dao. Most people combine visiting Ho Chi Minh City with Con Dao, as the distance between the two destinations is only an hour flight. The downside is that plane tickets are expensive and can be sold out at certain times of the year.
  • By ferry: This option, though inexpensive, is not recommended for tourists for a lengthy and uncomfortable ride. A ride from Vung Tau costs from 100,000 VND to 200,000 VND, but it takes 12 hours.
  • By speedboat: This means of transport is suitable for travellers from Soc Trang province, as the Superdong speedboat's arrival spot is located here. If you are going from another city, the transfer time is 4 hours from Ho Chi Minh City. Superdong speedboat takes 2 hours and a half to get to Con Dao, and Con Dao Express takes 2 to 3 hours.

All in all, the most popular and most convenient way to get to Con Dao is by plane.


Where to stay in Con Dao

Like many other tourist destinations, Con Dao offers a wide range of hotels and resorts that will suit the different needs of travellers. You can easily book a budget hotel in Con Dao or opt for more expensive options. Con Dao's most notable resort and one of Vietnam's best five-star accommodations, Six Senses Con Dao is exceptional with luxury villas and professional services.

Six sense Con Dao Resort

Six sense Con Dao Resort


What to eat in Con Dao

Con Dao has some of the specialities that cannot be found anywhere else. One of them is the famous mackerel (ca thu mot nang) that usually serves as a gift for Vietnamese people on their trip back home. You can find many delicious dishes in Con Dao, from the highly-regarded fermented thick vermicelli soup in Bun Mam Thi Bich, to the familiar Pho and tasty crab noodle soup at a reasonable price.

On an island destination, one thing that visitors should try is fresh seafood. You can find plenty of restaurants in Con Dao serving seafood of various types. A delicious and affordable seafood restaurant in Con Dao that BestPrice recommends is Thu Ba Restaurant, Vo Thi Sau street.

For a little downtime spent in cafes, check out Bar200 and Con Son cafe.

Con Dao seafood

Con Dao seafood


Things to do in Con Dao

Many people choose to combine their trip in Ho Chi Minh City and southern Vietnam with a getaway in Con Dao. There are a lot of places to visit and explore the historical and cultural values in this area. Con Dao has grown more and more to become a popular destination among domestic and foreign tourists.

  • Visit Con Dao prison

You absolutely cannot miss the Con Dao prison — a memorial of war remnants. This place now displays the various systems and methods that were used to torture the Vietnamese during the war. Not only does Con Dao serve an educational purpose, but it is also a sacred place to look back and commemorate the fallen heroes of Vietnam.

Con Dao Prison

Con Dao Prison


  • Relax on Con Dao beaches

After visiting Con Dao Prison, head to the beaches for a little spirit uplifting. The beaches in Con Dao are unspoiled by tourism so visitors can enjoy the tranquil atmosphere and pristine natural beauty at its best. For this reason, some resorts have been built to provide an opportunity to immerse yourself in nature.

An Hai beach is one of the most picturesque beaches in south Vietnam, with a calm sea and smooth sands. It is an appealing spot for picnics.

Dam Trau is considered the most attractive wild beach in Con Dao island. A little far away from the center, Dam Trau bears exceptional. mysterious beauty with gentle waves, golden sand that will blow visitors away when visiting at sunset. The surrounding forest further compliments Dam Trau and makes it a must-see spot in Con Dao. You can also enjoy some seafood here.

Con Dao Beach

Con Dao Beach


  • Visit religious sites

Not only is Con Dao endowed with beautiful nature, but this place also has many historical and spiritual relics attracting visitors. Some historical places in Con Dao that you should not miss are the Vo Thi Sau tomb and Cau temple.

Pagoda in Con Dao

Pagoda in Con Dao


  • Try snorkelling and scuba diving.

Con Dao is one of the places available for snorkelling in Vietnam. If you are an adventure seeker and nature lover, this activity will be perfect for you. Seeing the diverse ecosystem with turtles and coral reefs with your own eyes is an unforgettable experience to cross off your bucket list. The cost ranges from 500.000 VND to 1.000.000 VND. It is recommended to go snorkelling in Con Dao from March to September.

Discover the charms Con Dao has to offer with BestPrice today.

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