The beaches of Vietnam are less advertised than Thailand or Bali. But this does not mean at all that their infrastructure is worse or that the sea is not so clean. On the contrary, Vietnamese beaches are often perfectly landscaped and can boast of the same white sand and turquoise water, no matter that it sounds like a bit of a cliché. A huge advantage here is that the whole country is stretched along the South China Sea, which means that you can swim to your heart's content in any part of it.
Visit starfish - Phu Quoc
Phu Quoc Island is the southernmost part of Vietnam and the most popular resort in the country. There is not much color and sights here, but there is plenty of sun, sea and sand.
The central beach of the island is simply called Long Beach. This is where most of the hotels and cafes are located, and in the evenings, you can watch bright red sunsets. Less crowded and cheaper in terms of accommodation and food is Ong Lang Beach, and the most deserted one is the northern Vung Bau Beach.
In the south of the island, you can take pictures in the very real bounty landscapes on the Bai Sao Beach. There is practically no tourist infrastructure here, but with such views, it is not necessary at all.
Things to do off the beach. Here we can say nothing, because in Fukuoka, it is good just to lie on the clean sand for a few days, periodically taking a dip in warm water. But if you crave activity, then you can swim to the islands of the An Thoi Archipelago, go to the pearl farm or visit the traditional Vietnamese night market.
The best time for a visit. The most comfortable season for holidays is from November to April. In summer, there are large waves and intermittent heavy rains.
Not beaches alone - Nha Trang
Once upon a time, Vietnamese kings liked to relax on the beaches of the resort city of Nha Trang. But the key word here is not "resort", but "city". Thanks to this, Nha Trang has a lot of activities besides swimming and sunbathing on the beach.
The best beach in Nha Trang is the central one. You can rent a sunbed and an umbrella here, sit in a cafe or bar with a cocktail, or even have a picnic, as the locals like to do. Along the entire beach, there is a pedestrian alley with exercise equipment, which will especially appeal to athletes. Shopping centers, hotels, restaurants and coffee shops rise right across the road.
If it seems to you that the central beach of Nha Trang is too crowded, take a taxi, city bus or moped and head to the new northern area. The infrastructure here is slightly worse, but there are fewer people and a shallower entrance to the sea. If you drive a few more kilometers to the north, then beyond the city limits, you can find isolated coves with beaches, where you will be all alone.
Nha Trang is one of the most comfortable cities in Vietnam, not only for a couple of weeks, but also for full wintering. In thematic groups on Facebook, there is a huge selection of housing for rent. The nightlife and clubs are great too.
Things to do off the beach. Walk up to the Buddha at Long Son Pagoda. Recover your health in one of the mud baths. Explore the heritage of the Cham Empire at the Cham Towers. Sail to Vinpearl Island and spend the day at the eponymous amusement park. Eat lobster and other seafood at the seafood buffet.
The best time for a visit. From late October to January, it often rains in Nha Trang, and there are large waves on the sea. After the New Year, the weather is gradually improving, the driest and hottest season is from February to April, the sea is very calm in summer, it rains occasionally and is refreshing, but this fact does not spoil your holiday.
A kite surf mecca - Mui Ne
First of all, those who love to ride the waves after a sail soaring in the sky go to Mui Ne. The village is very small and cozy, and around it, there are unique multi-colored dunes.
There is only one beach in Mui Ne, but it's very long and wide. It seems that there are more equipment rentals for kite surfing, diving and snorkelling than cafes and restaurants. Hotels for package tour tourists peacefully coexist with very budget bungalows for independent travelers. You will have to look for a place for a calm swimming, most of the beach is occupied by sailing fans.
Mui Ne Beach is not particularly suitable for families with children, but it's perfect for fans of water activities.
Things to do off the beach. Walk barefoot through the picturesque Fairy Stream. Watch the sunset on the red or white dunes, arrange a photoset there, or ride along the slope of a dune on a cardboard like from a snowy mountain. Go to the fish market, choose the most attractive seafood, and this seafood will be cooked right before your eyes.
The best time for a visit. The strongest wind in Mui Ne is from November to March, so this is considered to be the best time for kite surfing. Swimming and sunbathing is best from October to April, and the sun is very scorching in this part of Vietnam the rest of the year.
Big City Beaches - Da Nang
Da Nang, for what it's worth, cannot be called a resort city. This is a real metropolis in central Vietnam, with shopping centers, huge hotels, restaurants and pristine beaches.
Da Nang City Beach is famous for its excellent infrastructure. It stretches for tens of kilometers. There are sun loungers, umbrellas, cafes, equipment rental and tour agencies. It is divided into several areas, the most popular of which is Mai Khe, and the most deserted one is Non Nuoc. All areas are great for families with children, as the entrance to the water is very smooth. 35 kilometers north of Da Nang, there is a sand bar in Lang Co Bay with a beautiful beach.
Things to do off the beach. Enjoy all the benefits of living in a metropolis. Go shopping, dine in a luxurious restaurant, stroll through the shopping malls and entertainment centers. You can rent a moped and drive north to the mountains, from which serpentines offer magical views of the city and the bay. You can even drive to the Demilitarized Zone and wander between the remains of the military fortifications that once separated the north and south of Vietnam.
The best time for a visit. From November to March, the sea near Da Nang is very stormy, so you shouldn't choose this period for your holiday.
Excursion into the past - Hoi An
Hoi An's yellow houses attract those who want to see the life of a trading city where time seems to have stood still a hundred years ago. But not everyone knows that in the vicinity of Hoi An, there are excellent and fairly deserted beaches.
The beaches of Hoi An are located 4-6 kilometers from the city, you can reach them by bike or moped, which can be rented at any hotel. You can also take a taxi or even walk, if you like long walks. The cleanest and most beautiful beach of Hoi An is Cua Dai, it has the best infrastructure. To the north, there is a chain of wild beaches for those who like secluded relaxation.
Things to do off the beach. Walk, walk and walk again. Hoi An is a real city-museum with a huge number of temples, old trading houses, cute souvenir shops and super-photogenic streets. In the evening, take a boat trip down the river with flashlights, or sip wine on the waterfront. And don't miss Réhahn Gallery, where stunningly beautiful portraits of Vietnamese are exhibited.
The best time for a visit. Hoi An is located north of most popular resorts in Vietnam, and it gets chilly here in winter. The best holiday season is from February to August.
Dragon Bay - Ha Long
Ha Long Bay is a real natural wonder of the world, which tourists from all over the world come to see. Most tourists just take day trips and swim between hundreds of islands and rocks, but some stay longer to appreciate Vietnam's northernmost beaches.
The most visited beaches of the bay with the most developed infrastructure are Long Beach, Hon Mun and Tuan Chau. On the largest island called Cat Ba, there is a beach of the same name, with the largest number of hotels, cafes and shops.
Things to do off the beach. Taking a tour with an overnight boat trip and looking at the Ha Long cliffs in sunset and dawn light is absolutely magical. Swim to one of the caves, inside you can try to guess what animals you see when looking at the stalactites and stalagmites.
The best time for a visit. Ha Long is located in the very north of Vietnam, so it is cool here in winter. The most pleasant swimming season is from April to October.
Everywhere you go in Vietnam, you will find great places to swim and sunbathe. And in many locations, you will have a great opportunity to combine a beach holiday with a cultural program.