Diving in Phu Quoc

By: Laura Hill

Inexperienced divers can ease into Phu Quoc’s friendly waters.

Find your adventure in Northern Phu Quoc’s easily-accessible islands.

The An Thoi archipelago is an ideal getaway for professional and novice divers alike.

Phu Quoc island, nestled in the Gulf of Thailand, is known for having a beautiful variety of sea life in its tranquil turquoise waters. Let yourself be transported to a serene place known for its scuba diving and snorkelling, far from the constant buzz of modern life, where you will find memorable moments of true peace and quiet below the waves.

When you arrive at La Veranda Boutique Beach Resort Phu Quoc, you will enter a land that is in harmony with the natural world. The lush, tropical gardens and colonial style mansion evoke memories of a time when the pace of life was slower.

La Veranda Boutique Beach Resort Phu Quoc

As you gaze out upon the azure waters of the Gulf of Thailand, sipping on a signature cocktail from the Le Bar, you may feel that you couldn’t be more relaxed. However, Phu Quoc offers one final opportunity to get away from it all, and that is to take some time away from life on land and head to another world underwater where you can see bright fish darting in and out of the coral reef in the crystal blue sea.

Learning to Scuba Dive in Phu Quoc

If you have never tried scuba diving before, Phu Quoc is a wonderful place to learn. With water temperatures ranging from 28 degrees celsius to 31 degrees celsius all year round, the water is never too cold. Diving is available throughout the year in the northern areas of the island. However, the best time to dive is during the dry season when seas are calm and visibility is at its best. Snorkelling and freediving are also options if you want to test the water before taking the plunge, but if you are keen to try scuba diving, La Veranda Resort’s gracious staff will be happy to organise an excursion.

Scuba Diving Sites in Phu Quoc

There are two main areas to dive in Phu Quoc island. The first, to the northwest, consists of two small islands around 50 minutes drive away from LaVeranda Resort Phu Quoc. The second area, off the southern tip of Phu Quoc, takes a little longer to reach as you will leave the main island to visit smaller islands in the An Thoi archipelago. If you would like to combine your dive with either a trip on the world’s longest cable car, or experience the serenity of the almost uninhabited islands then the extra effort to get to the south is worth the trip.

Northern Options for Scuba Diving and Snorkelling in Phu Quoc

Turtle Island (Hon Doi Moi) - is a very small island a few kilometres off Bai Dai beach. A popular snorkelling site, the water here is quite shallow, and although large marine species are rare, there is plenty of coral to be seen. You can access the island by joining a tour, organising a boat, or by renting a kayak and making your own way.

Fingernail Island North (Hon Mong Tay) - is a popular area for divers who are looking for fun rather than a challenge. Surrounded by a reef starting at one meter deep, this area is home to smaller marine life and coral. Kayaks are a popular choice for getting to this privately owned island but boats and tours are also available.

La Veranda Boutique Beach Resort Phu Quoc

Options in An Thoi for Scuba Diving and Snorkelling

The An Thoi Archipelago - is surrounded by coral reef, making it a popular choice for divers and snorkelers alike. With sites reaching as deep as 25 metres, this is certainly a more challenging option. However, visibility can also be poor, so visitors may prefer to snorkel rather than dive unless the conditions are particularly good on the day.

Fingernail Island South (Hon Mong Tay) - lies alongside a patch of coral that houses a variety of fish species. The island itself is secluded and almost untouched, meaning you can get a real taste of the castaway experience. Day trips often carry people to this area, but La Veranda Resort Phu Quoc can also help you to find a private boatman in An Thoi harbour if you are feeling adventurous.

La Veranda Boutique Beach Resort Phu Quoc

Pineapple Island (Hon Thom) - is connected to Phu Quoc Island by the world’s longest cable car and offers a number of picture-perfect locations to explore. The most popular sites are on the northwestern coast of the island. North Pineapple point offers a variety of coral reefs, while South Pineapple point is one of the deepest dive sites on Phu Quoc. More information on taking the cable car and selecting the appropriate dive site on Pineapple Island can be obtained from La Veranda’s well-informed staff.

Roi East Island (Hon Roi) - is a good site for all divers. Located between the shores of the island and an offshore pearl farm the dive sites reach a maximum depth of 10 metres. Larger creatures such as moray eels and sweetlips can be found in the area, alongside hermit crabs, shrimp, and a variety of coral. The only way to get to Roi East is by boat. Tour groups or private commissions are available at the An Thoi port.

If you would like the option of exploring the waters around Phu Quoc, but feel nervous about the prospect of diving or are not comfortable swimming, why not try sea walking? Making use of a weighted diving helmet, sea walking tours allow even the most inexperienced of swimmers to experience the wonder of the underwater world. Tours that incorporate sea walking with other activities are available from a number of operators. Request information from the staff at La Veranda to start planning your journey beneath the waves.

La Veranda Boutique Beach Resort Phu Quoc

Making Memorable Moments in the Sea and On Land at La Veranda Beach Resort

With options available to suit every taste, there’s no excuse to miss out on this wonderful adventure. With a little help from the staff at La Veranda Resort Phu Quoc, you are sure to have a customisable journey into the sea. For an experience that you’ll never forget, plan a little extra time to take in the serenity of the gentle waves off the coast of Phu Quoc island.

Image source: La Veranda Resort Phu Quoc

Boat Trip Phu Quoc: The Southern Archipelago

By: City Pass Guide

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.

Boats at the harbor of An Thoi town, Phu Quoc

Mr. Tu offered to take us to an island nearby, where we can snorkel and take a peek at the local reef. Now, even though I was totally unprepared, we agreed and jumped on the boat.

If you would like to read more about Phu Quoc Island, make sure to check out some of our other articles here:
The Phu Quoc Ridgeback - The cutest dog in Vietnam?
Pacifying the gourmet-monster at Salinda Restaurant on Phu Quoc Island
Complete Travel Guide for Phu Quoc Island in Vietnam

Boat Trip on Phu Quoc Island

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.Southern Archipelago of Phu Quoc Island in Vietnam

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


Boat trip on Phu Quoc Island

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.

Carrier for round fishing boats on Phu Quoc Island

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.

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.

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