Isolated from the mainland, Con Dao islands are one of Vietnam’s star attractions, it is a sixteen-island archipelago in southeast Vietnam. It is famed for its crystal clear blue-green waters, soft golden sand beaches, lush mangrove forests and beautiful coral reefs. The renowned luxury travel magazine, “Travel and Leisure”, has put Con Dao Island on the list of the top 20 most mysterious islands in the world. Located close to the equator, Con Dao enjoys a warm tropical climate, with an average temperature around 27 degrees Celsius. Con Dao was recognized as a nature reserve in 1984 and became a national park in 1993. The park is the most important egg-laying area in Vietnam for sea turtles, as well as being home to rare dugong, dolphins, and varieties of orchids found nowhere else in the country.
Con Dao is ringed with lovely beaches, coral reefs, and scenic bays and remains partially covered in thick forests. Therefore, it’s an ideal place for diving, snorkeling and relaxing on beaches.
The best time to visit Con Dao Islands is during the dry season (November to February). If you’re looking to see turtles nesting on Hon Bay Canh Islet, visit between June and September. February till July is ideal for diving excursions.
Some attraction destinations on Con Dao islands:
Bay Canh islet (Hon Bay Canh) is located in the East of Con Dao, with an area of 683ha, including two parts of the island connected by sand bars in the middle called Big Sand Beach. This is also one of the 14 spawning grounds of Con Dao sea turtle and is the beach with the highest number of turtles to lay eggs in Con Dao. During the breeding season (from April to September every year), there are at least 1-2 individuals one night, many nights from 20-30 female mother turtles to the nest and lay eggs.
Con Dao National Park covers an area of nearly 6,000 hectares of land and 14,000 hectares of water area. The association of coral reefs, seagrass beds, and mangroves has created a favorable environment for breeding, breeding and preserving marine species.
Currently, Con Dao is the most abundant sea turtle area in Vietnam, with two common species being tortoiseshell and crowded. There are 17 sand beaches recorded as turtle breeding grounds, of which up to 4 beaches are recorded as having 1,000 mother turtles giving birth every year.
Con Dao prison is considered a “hell on earth” during the war against France and the United States. This prison system was built by the French to hold prisoners who were particularly dangerous to the French colonial regime such as political prisoners, death row inmates … In the French colonial period, they held communist figures and patriots who opposed the colonial government and were later used by the Americans to imprison prisoners in the war against the US.
Dam Tre Bay is located in the north of Con Son island and 3km from Con Dao airport. This is an airtight bay, deep inland, a harmonious combination between the sea and the surrounding mountains, giving the bay many poetic, mysterious landscapes, charming scenery and fresh environment.
Nui Mot Pagoda (Van Son Tu) is located on Nui Mot, which was built in 1964. Located on a mountain, the pagoda has sweeping views of the sea, overlooking the whole town of Con Dao and Con Son bay.
Some activities on the Con Dao islands:
Scuba diving to watch the coral: Con Dao consists of different sub-islands where the convergence of coral reefs is the highest density in Vietnam, the ideal place to Explore the exciting ocean world. At the pre-explored dive sites, guests will be taught basic operations and dives with the instructor.
East Sea fishing – an interesting activity when traveling Con Dao. After that, you can enjoy your booty and just enjoy the peaceful space of the blue sea of white sand. In particular, some travelers challenge their courage with shark fishing. The most ideal place is Nhát beach, located on the famous Love Peak of Con Dao. According to shark experts from the islanders, the most suitable time to go fishing is when night falls, and big or small fish more or less depends on weather and water.
Explore deserted islands: Con Son Bay consists of a system of 14 large and small islands majestic in the middle of the sea, the islands make up the poetic beauty of Con Son Bay and the marine ecological reserve with coral reefs.
Watch turtles lay eggs: you can experience a quiet yet extremely charming night on Bay Canh island. You will see firsthand the sea turtles Chelonia mydas that people often call green turtles nesting and laying eggs on the beach.