Idyllic beaches, rich marine life, and year-round tropical weather are just some of the reasons why the Vietnamese island of Phu Quoc is one of Asia’s best-kept secrets.
Floating in turquoise waters 50 kilometers from the Vietnamese mainland, Phu Quoc island is a tropical paradise worth visiting. You can reach the island via just a 40-minute flight from Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), making it a lovely day trip for travelers. With idyllic beaches, rich marine life, and warm weather year-long, the alluring island draws an increasing number of visitors each year.
If you’ve got just 48 hours to spare, here’s how you can make the most of your island getaway at the luxurious InterContinental Phu Quoc Long Beach Resort, which opened just shy of summer last year.
Start your journey by checking into the atmospheric Club InterContinental Panoramic Suite, which offers one of the best views in the resort. Here, guests can enjoy breakfast at the balcony’s private cabana and take in dramatic views of the azure ocean and beaches dotted with inviting palm trees.
Afterwhich, embark on a boat excursion out to sea, where guests can explore the 22 islands that make up Phu Quoc. Most of the islands are uninhabited and surrounded by protected waters and picturesque beaches. The Catamaran Sarita cruise is the first and only luxury yacht tour in Phu Quoc, which offers two distinct programs, Snorkelling & Sailing Adventure, and Luxury Sunset Sail. Best of all? Guests will be picked up right from the resort’s front steps.
After the sea excursion, guests can make a pit stop at Ham Ninh, a quaint fishing village featuring floating restaurants, picturesque streams, and delicious local seafood served with the island’s famous fish sauce. Ham Ninh’s long shores are blessed with a vast sea grass bed that is rumored to have once been home to the beautiful dugong (sea mermaid).
Back at the resort, guests can indulge themselves at the serene HARNN Heritage Spa, which lies upon a secluded lotus lagoon at InterContinental Phu Quoc Long Beach Resort. The spa focuses on restoring the natural balance of body and mind, by using the finest healing treatments inspired by the traditions of Vietnam, Thailand, as well as Ayurveda medicine. The bamboo treatment, which is inspired by natural elements, is a must-try after a long day of exploring the island.
As night falls, relaxed beachfront restaurant and bar Sea Shack prepares mouth-watering seafood BBQ, that’s best enjoyed with playful tiki cocktails for a memorable evening.
Guests hungry to explore more of the island can venture out via Jeep Tours to check out Phu Quoc Safari, a conservation park that is the first and only open zoo on the island. A variety of rare native species and exotic animals including lemurs, macaques, Arabian antelopes, the white Bengal tiger, and the one-humped camel, can be observed up close.
Not for the faint of heart, a cable car to Pineapple Island is the longest non-stop three-way cable car in the world at almost eight kilometers long, as verified by the Guinness Book of World Records. Guests can explore the Sun World Hon Thom Nature Park, and hop between islands while marveling at a bird’s eye view of the islands below.
Meanwhile, guests can also visit the local pepper groves, which Phu Quoc is famed for. Other local specialties include the popular fish sauce and sim wine.
As the day winds down with a glowing sunset, guests can make a beeline for Phu Quoc’s highest rooftop bar INK 360, located on the 19th floor of the resort’s Sky Tower, for dazzling 360-degree panoramic views of the landscape. Designed by the award-winning bar designer Ashley Sutton, the rooftop bar features contemporary elements that pay homage to mythical creatures of the deep.
To celebrate their final evening, guests can tuck into dinner at the resort’s newly opened LAVA restaurant. Featuring a fossilized coral centerpiece, the restaurant invites guests to pick fresh seafood and meats, which will be cooked to perfection in their method of choice. To complete the experience, sip on fine wine and take in the sights of the horizon.
All in all, Phu Quoc’s serene and unspoiled natural surrounds have cemented it as one of Asia’s best-kept secrets, whether it’s one’s first visit or tenth.
This article was brought to you by InterContinental Phu Quoc Long Beach Resort.