Phu Quoc - Budget or Baller

Located just off the coast of Cambodia, in the Gulf of Thailand - Phu Quoc is Vietnam's largest island. Although Vietnam isn't famed for its beaches, Phu Quoc is a welcome anomaly. It boasts beautiful white sandy beaches, crystal clear waters and an abundance of tropical fish - you can see why we wanted to visit. The dry/high season is between November & March, perfect for us as we were heading there for Christmas.

We spent a total of 8 nights on the tropical island, 3 in a hostel to save our pennies, and 5 in a posh hotel for Christmas.

Getting There

By Plane

Many people fly to Phu Quoc; there are regular flights from Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) which take about 1 hour and cost as little as £50.

By Ferry

You can get a ferry from Ha Tien; the closest ferry port on the Vietnamese mainland. Tickets cost between 185,000VND (£6.60) for the slow ferry, and 230,000VND (£8.20) for the fast ferry.

You can also get a ferry from Rach Gia (this is what we did) which is the closest ferry port to the Mekong Delta. The SuperDong runs 4 boats a day to Phu Quoc and costs 350,000VND (£12.50). We managed to get an introductory rate on a different boat (sorry, we can't remember/find the name) for 250,000VNDpp (£8.90).

Find out more about ferry prices and schedule here.

We've heard ferry tickets can sell out in high season, but we had no problem rocking up to the ferry port about 40 minutes before the boat was due to leave to buy our tickets, and this was ultra high season.

Phu Quoc on a Budget

We got to see both sides of Phu Quoc as we arrived three days early for our fancy Christmas booking. Naturally we wanted to keep it cheap, so we did three nights in Antinho Hostel for £13 a night, which seemed relatively cheap for a private room on the island. The location was amazing, just south of the main town Duong Dong, and only 100m from Long Beach. This beach boasts white sand, calm & clear waters and chilled beach bars. Our favourite place to lay back and relax with a cold one was Rory's Beach Bar, which is a must visit in the day or night time; great vibes with paddle boards and kayaks to rent. Watch out though, drinks aren't cheap so what you save on accommodation you may end up spending at Rory's!

As well as Long Beach, we also went to check out Sao Beach (or Bai Sao in Vietnamese). We hired a moped to get there for 100,000VND (£3.50) from our hostel. Sao Beach is stunning. It is said to be the most beautiful beach on the island, we definitely agree.

Restaurants are plentiful around both areas, although there's an abundance of cheaper ones by Antinho Hostel.