How to go on a boat cruise on Phu Quoc? Well, it’s easier than you think! While I was walking around, taking pictures of the colorful Phu Quoc fishing fleet, my coworker negotiated a good price with a local fisherman. He took us to the southern archipelago and we snorkeled to experience the local underwater fauna.
I am a good swimmer, provided I leave my glasses at home and use my contacts. This boat trip to the southern archipelago of Phu Quoc Island came as a little surprise. We were at the harbor of An Thoi town and while I checked out the scenery, taking pictures of the brightly colored fishing fleet of Phu Quoc Island, my colleague Thoai made the acquaintance of Mr. Tu, a friendly, local fisherman and owner of a small boat.
There is trash floating in the harbour and three times our captain had to turn off the outboard motor to remove a plastic bag that had caught in the propeller. I expected him to throw it back into the sea, but he put it in a bin on the boat. That earned him a good deal of respect from my side.
The surroundings by the southern archipelagos are amazing, and even if you don’t snorkel or swim, the boat tour to the southern archipelago is definitely worth the VND 300,000. The islands are seamed by rocks, formed into soft, flowing shapes by the currents of the sea. A splendid sight on your boat cruise on Phu Quoc Island.
Mr. Tu stops at a protected, small bay and hands me a snorkel and goggles. The underwater view is quite nice, including colorful corals, sponges and some scaredy fish. The water itself can not be called crystal clear, but you can see a few meters and discover interesting species.
Avoid scraping along the rocks though, the barnacles are sharp and you can get some nasty scratches
Also, don’t stand on the corals please, because even if they look like living rocks, they actually are quite sensitive and standing on them destroys the reef on the long run. Well, as I mentioned, I was not prepared for this trip, so I wore my glasses. And goggles over glasses is not such a good idea, because they are not keeping tight. A beard is not a beneficial factor either if you want the rubber lip of the goggles to keep out the seawater.
As a result, I paddled around the small bay like a wounded narwhal, rather than gracefully diving towards the marvels of the deep.
You can do better if you shave and wear contacts I believe.
These ships for example leave An Thoi for several weeks to go to a distant part of the sea. There they deploy fishermen in the small round boats. When the carrier vessel is full of fish, they return and sell their valuable cargo on the market.
Conclusion: The scenic islands are as impressive as the vivid colors of the fishing fleet, and if you are with a bunch of friends, you can rent a bigger boat for a whole day. The fee for that is around VND 1,400,000. That sounds like much, but it’s reasonable if you split expenses.
I warmly recommend the boat tour to the southern archipelago on Phu Quoc Island, Vietnam.