Having some travel fever? A need to get your feet in the sand? There’s no time like island time! And you’re in luck: you can find the most beautiful holiday islands near Vietnam. From luxury private islands to budget friendly family beach havens: here’s our epic island list.
The best island holiday on Bintan island
Just a 90 minute flight away, off the coast of Singapore, lies the island of Bintan. Also known as Singapore’s playground, it’s filled with great resorts that will suit everyone’s taste. You can book yourself a luxurious stay at the Banyan Tree or The Sansaya or go for a family vacay at Club Med. Bintan also has some more budget friendly options such as The Bintan serviced appartments.
Getting there is easy. Just fly to Singapore and take the Tanah Merah ferry (1 hour) to Bintan.
Cast away at beautiful Nikoi Island
Near Vietnam lies one of our favorite islands for a sunny escape; the almost unreal Nikoi Island. It’s a top of the bill private island, on the other side of Bintan. Surrounded by white sandy beaches and beautiful coral reefs, this is the perfect place to unwind and relax! The driftwood beach houses are in balance with nature, the food is fantastic and the staff is great with kids. Just put your feet in the sand and chill away.
Getting there: fly to Singapore and take the ferry from Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal (1 hour) to Bintan. You’ll be picked up by the Nikoi Island staff, who’ll drive you to the jetty on the other side of the island. From there it’s a short boat tour to Pulau Nikoi.
Family time: Rawa island, Malaysia
Back in the days, Rawa Island was the spot for your beach holiday. And it’s still very popular among families. Kids get hyper when they see the cool slides from the jetty, straight into the sea, and parents marvel at the pretty, white beaches surrounded by coconut trees. Stay in one of the stilted cabins, right on the beach and see the sun go down at cocktail time.
Getting there: fly to Singapore and drive to Mersing (3 hours). From there it’s a short speed boat ride.
Stay at Blissful Batu Batu
One of the most beautiful islands near Vietnam is this one. True, it’s a bit longer than an hours flight but it’s sooo worth it.
Whether you favor the beach or the infinity pool, there’s no need to choose at this stunning private island resort. Located in Malaysia’s uninhabited Pulau Tengah, this island is a slice of heaven in itself. You can chill at the beach, go snorkeling or diving or just reconnect with your loved ones. Next to that, Batu Batu has a strong ecological drive and organises conservation missions like Turtle Watch Camp. Yep, we’re fans!
Getting there: fly to Singapore and drive to Mersing (3 hours). The resort can tell help you arrange. From Mersing it’s a short speed boat ride.
Explore Whale Island, Vietnam
Not only near Vietnam, but actually ín Vietnam, is Whale Island. An option that’s a bit friendlier for the wallet and only a short flight away. The sea here is clear and shallow, making it ideal to watch the beautiful fish with the little ones. The Whale Island Resort organizes tours to the stunning coral reefs nearby if you like to do some more serious snorkeling or diving. Visitors can stay at the Whale Island resort, which is basic but pleasant and has a nice bar overlooking the bay.
Getting there: From Ho Chi Minh City, fly to Thuy Hoa. From there it is an 80-minute drive to the jetty, via a beautiful, scenic route. Alternatively, you can fly to Nha Trang, from where it is a 3-hour transfer to the jetty. A boat will take you to the island in about 15 minutes.
A romantic island stay at Con Dao
The ultimate romantic island of Vietnam must be Con Dao. An island with a history and home to the exquisite Six Senses resort. Not your cheapest stay, but it’s the ultimate zone-out place. And a treat for snorkeling and diving enthusiasts as it’s one of the best snorkeling- and diving areas of Vietnam.
Or borrow a motorbike from the resort and go for a drive around the island. Officially Con Dao still is a protected National Park and has many treasures. If you’re lucky you’ll get to see turtles eggs hatching on one of the hidden beaches.
Getting there is easy. Just hop on the direct flight to Con Dao from Ho Chi Minh City.
Feeling fantastic at Phu Quoc island
Once a black pepper island, Phu Quoc now offers something for every visitor. From white sandy beaches to starfish shores and zipline attractions. You have a varied choice of stay too, as the resort is packed to the brim with all sorts of all-inclusive swanky resorts, cool boutique resorts and budget cabins. We love the Mango Bay eco resort but some rather opt for a stay with aircon, such as The Salinda or one of the other bigger resorts.
Getting there is easy. There are several direct flights to Phu Quoc.
Islands near Vietnam: top ranking Phuket
Phuket has been in the top beach vacay ranks for years now and with good reason. This island is home to dozens of unspoiled beaches with clear blue waters. And since there are direct flights from Vietnam now, it’s one of the islands that is so near to Vietnam that you’re there in an hour. Just make sure you avoid the dreadful Patong area.
A resort that is hitting all the right notes in our book is the The Cove. Set up in a bay at the Andaman Sea, this small resort offers beautiful rooms, a perfect beach restaurant and a shallow sea to dip your toes in.
Getting there: there’s a direct flight from about anywhere to Phuket. Most resorts will pick you up at the airport.
Have a great family holiday in blissful Bali
Of course the king of all holiday islands is known as Bali. Despite the fact that it’s getting busier on the island, it will still give you that peaceful feeling straight after touchdown. There’s something to do for everyone: chill at the beach, go snorkeling or finally take that surfing lesson! Stay in Seminyak, the hip and happening Bali hub, known for its great restaurants, boutique shops, and lively beach clubs. Or go to the laidback Uluwatu, on the Southern tip of Bali, a nice alternative to the crowdy areas. The green and lush Ubud is popular for its beautiful scenes of rice paddies. Read this, if you want to know exactly where to go in Bali this holiday.
Getting there: there’s a direct flight to Bali. But be careful, Christmas is not the best Bali time.
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Having a holiday abroad might be a challenge the coming period…What a bummer! But we try to look at it from the bright side: it’s a great opportunity for traveling in beautiful Vietnam. And pssst…there are some amazing deals now!
Traveling in Vietnam: bucket list destinations
Of course we should pay attention to the bucket list destinations in Vietnam. The summer months are not the best period for North Vietnam, but hey, we’re used to hot temperatures and rain in Saigon as well.
In Vietnam, adventurous Halong Bay is a must do destination. Named on all the global travel lists as one of the most beautiful places on earth, it will take your breath away. Spending at least 2 (better 3) nights on the water is ideal and will give you enough time to explore the caves, go kayaking, enjoy the scenery and get zen. But make sure to visit the right area in the right time of year, mid summer can be quite hot and humid. Best to go a bit before or just after summer. Check out our tips here.
Hanoi is a perfect city trip, with or without the family. September an October are perfect months to visit the capital. Packed with history and full of great sight seeing and the yummiest street food ever, it’s a family friendly hotspot you shouldn’t miss. We have summarized all our tips for the perfect city trip here.
We highly recommend to combine your Hanoi trip with some days in Sapa, where the Sapa sisters can organize a nice hike for you. Take the night train or arrange a car transfer via the hotel (5.5 hours drive). Hanoi is also a great combo with a visit to the beautiful Ninh Binh area, which is only 2 hours away.
Traveling in Vietnam: let’s explore further
For all adventurous souls, we recommend a trip to the caves in Phuong Nha. As you might know, the biggest cave in the world is in Vietnam and people from all around the world come to experience it. Not a light expedition though. But luckily for us there are other, smaller caves around it. The caves are situated near Phong Nha National Park, which is also perfect for medium trekking.
If your travel companions are old enough, you can do a bike- or hike tour to explore this fantastic green area. The whole family will be happy the peppy! Check out Chay Lap Farmstay for your stay and Oxalis for all kinds of hikes and tours.
Zip lining and hot springs
Another great tip for traveling in Vietnam is an adventurous slash relaxed stay at the Alba resort in Hue. Next to the historic site of Hue, this resort is known for its relaxing hot springs and its awesome zip line park. Something for everyone!
Cool down in green Dalat
Did someone say fresh air? As the temperatures can rise high in Ho Chi Minh City, Dalat has one big fat plus and that’s the climate. Set in the Central Highlands, most of Vietnam’s flowers, coffee and strawberries come from here. There’s lots to do around Dalat: you can visit a coffee- or flower farm or go ziplining with the kids. Take one of the lovely hiking trails in the woods of Dalat, check out the mind boggling crazy house or let yourself go at rafting.
Visit between November and May to see Dalat at its best; when the flowers are blooming and everything’s green. After May it can be a bit more wet but we love to go there anyway.
Long weekends in Vietnam: let’s hit the beach
It’s lovely to be traveling in Vietnam and to explore, but sometimes you just need some beach time. Vietnam has great beach destinations, like Hoi An, Na Trang or the hidden gem Whale Island and they’re perfect for a quick getaway. Plus, it will be much more relaxed without the hundreds of tourists now. All the inside tips for our all time fav destination Hoi An can be found here.
Of course Con Dao is the ultimate beach destination. Relax, enjoy, relax seems to be the motto of this small island of the coast of Ho Chi Minh City. Chances are you’re overwhelmed with its beauty and the magnificent views. It’s the ultimate zone-out place, but also a treat for snorkeling and diving enthusiasts.
If you’re traveling in Vietnam and want to avoid air travel, then head off to Mui Ne. It’s a 3.5-hour drive from Saigon and has many amazing resorts to choose from. The weather is beautiful this time of the year, which makes Mui Ne the perfect, hassle free destination. Check out our great tips for hotels and activities in Mui Ne.
Great stays just around the corner
Let’s start with some great options just around the corner. For a stay in the Mekong, it’s only a 90 minute drive to the lovely Island Lodge. Perfect for a quick getaway, it offers a lovely scenery by the river, beautiful rooms and a nice pool to relax by.
The five star alternative in the Mekong is called The Azerai. It’s a bit further, in Can Tho (3.5 hour drive). But if you’re in need of some serious pampering, it’s sooo worth the drive. Enjoy a trip to the floating market, take a Vietnamese cooking class or take some laps in the extensive pool, it’s all bliss!
Up for some glamping in the green? The Hippo Farm is perfect for you. The Hippo Farm is situated at a convenient 40 minute drive from Ho Chi Minh City, in the green countryside. Bring your own food and drinks, fire up the BBQ and sit at the lovely pool. Or do some walking or horseback riding (the hippo part refers to the lovely horses they keep here). You can even take riding lessons. And if you want to stay over, you can rent one of the 4 basic cabins. Very kid- and dog friendly and great for groups.
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So you want to go to the beach... and see some more of Vietnam… and enjoy some culture… You’re in luck! Travelling to Hoi An will bring you all that and more. A beautiful Vietnamese village, with cozy little restaurants and views that just shout ‘Instagram me’.
When in Vietnam, make sure to visit one of the oldest capitals in the world: Hanoi. Full of historical buildings, charming walkways and lovely restaurants. Fun for a romantic escape with your loved one, but it's just as great to visit Hanoi with your kids!
Looking for a picturesque, relaxed, remote island? We have found just the place. Near Nha Trang lies the beautiful Whale Island, a chilled out place with pleasant (eco)cabins along the beach and beautiful tropical fishes in the water in front of you.
A breathtaking and majestic, the rocks of Halong Bay are a famous Vietnamese tourist attraction and for good reason. But here is our inside scoop: within Halong Bay, skip the regular tourist area and go to Cat Ba- an area that is equally beautiful, but does not have the masses of tourists.
Looking for a few days away, not too far from home? Head to The Island Lodge, a beautiful hotel in the Mekong. Great ambiance, a stunning pool and lovely food awaits you. And the best thing? It’s only a 2 hour drive away!
Set up in 2015 by French owners Michel and Francoise, The Island Lodge is the perfect getaway from Saigon. Although only a few hours a way from the city, you’ll find yourself in a completely different world. Greeted by lush green gardens, spacious rooms and a fresh breeze coming from the water, it’ll feel like a holiday immediately!
The Island Lodge is the right place for relaxing
If your itinerary is relaxing, reading, lounging, spa-ing, dining and soaking up natural beauty, you’re at the right place. The Island lodge has a beautiful pool overlooking the Mekong river, the perfect setting to create instant bliss. If you need some extra relaxation, there’s a spa, sauna and jacuzzi. And let’s not forget some taste bud pampering; after signature cocktails at the lovely lounge bar, it’s time for dinner. The chef at the Island Lodge is known for his Vietnamese and French fusion cuisine and has created a tasty menu.
Go with friends, family or sans kids
Offering spacious rooms, The island Lodge is perfect for a weekend away from the city with the kids. Or take friends and let them get a feel of the Mekong. The various tours will give them enough options to see what this bustling region is all about. But for us, this boutique resort is also the perfect romantic getaway; no need to take a flight, but far enough to finally have some time together!
Exploring the Mekong
Did enough relaxing? The Island Lodge is the perfect spot to explore the Mekong. The hotel organizes bike- and boat tours that will give you a good feel of Mekong life; the orchards, the floating markets, the coconut factories and the Mekong villages. If you’re the adventurous type, they offer tours that go off the beaten track. Taking it easy? Rent your own bike and explore the neighborhood. There are electric bikes as well.
How to get to The Island Lodge
Getting there is the easy part. The Island Lodge is situated in My Tho, on an island in the Mekong River. It’s a 2 hour drive by car from Saigon. Transport can be arranged if needed.
Special discounts apply from May till August!
The best time for visiting is between September and April. The months after December are relatively dry and up until March, it is not too hot. A big bonus of these months is that it is the fruit season and the Mekong area is full of orchards. The raining season starts in May and lasts until August. But the good news is that The Island Lodge offers a summer package for the May to October period: if you stay for 3 nights, you only have to pay for 2. The rains usually don’t last that long and are quite refreshing, so we say go for it!
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Asia is full of hotspots and Singapore is definitely one of them. Yes, Singapore is known its shops and restaurants, but the green city much more to offer. And guess what, it's a surprisingly nice destination for families. It’s full of parks, great facilities for kids and easy to get around. We've made you an itinerary full of tips from locals. Go check it out!