With a sumptuously long coastline that stretches the entire length of the country, Vietnam is fast becoming a top destination for scuba diving, watersports and snorkelling. With 3,260 km (2,025 miles) of pristine turquoise seas and wide expanses of powdery white sands, these top 5 resorts are the perfect place to dive, swim and have fun!
Nha Trang Bay
On Vietnam’s east coast is the established resort of Nha Trang, which features a spectacular beach resort with a number of nearby islands and the Hon Mun Marine Park. The park remains a popular scuba diving area and has 12 different designated diving spots. The water contains over 350 species of hard and soft corals along with nudibranches. Divers will find a vast array of tropical fish, seahorses and eels. Diving depths range from 10 to 50 meters. The terrain includes everything from sloping beach dives to deep drop offs and exhilarating drift diving. Dive shops offer equipment and training for novice to experienced divers. And did you know that Jacques Cousteau developed his love of the underwater world here!
The picturesque Whale Island lies in Van Phong Bay, just 90 minutes north of Nha Trang in Khanh Hoa province. The location received its name for the abundance of whales and whale shark species that migrate through the area from April to July each year in search of the abundant krill and plankton. The site offers turquoise water and soft, white sandy beaches that surround the basic bungalow resort. There are four different diving locations around the island. Hon Trau Nam receives its name for three rocky pinnacles that extend above the water’s surface and serve as home to a myriad of marine life. Purple, white and yellow coral carpet the ocean floor at depths ranging from 20 to 35 meters.
The White Rock site features sheer walls covered in soft corals and nudibranches and extends to 40 meters below the surface. In addition to many types of crustaceans and fish, black rays glide amongst the coral trees and gorgonians.
Located at the very southern tip of Vietnam, Con Dao Island is considered one of the best-kept secrets of the region. That said, Con Dao is quickly gaining a favourable reputation with visitors. The island remains unspoiled by urbanization and so provides a relaxing and scenic location. The more than 20 dive sites range from shallow regions that attract snorkelers and beginning divers to 21 meter depths for more experienced divers. The unique marine life found in the waters of this destination includes a wide selection of tropical fish species in addition to pelagic fish species, rays, sharks and turtles.
The island of Phu Quoc lies to the far west of Vietnam, and is actually closer to Cambodia geographically! This hideaway is also quickly becoming a popular location with guests, thanks to the new airport that serves the region. Keen divers will find warm waters here on the north-western side of the island and amongst the archipelago on the southern end. Being within close proximity to the Mekong Delta, the waters do not offer the extensive clarity found at Nha Trang. However, the water temperature provides the perfect environment for abundant coral growth. May, June and July remain the best months for diving in Vietnam. In general, visibility averages between 20 and 30 meters.
The gorgeous little town of Hoi An lies along the Thu Bồn River, south of Da Nang on the east coast. The town gained notoriety for its talented tailors and remains a bargain shopping hotspot. Divers arrive here for the pleasure of exploring the Cu Lao Cham Marine Park. The beautiful location has eight islands and the marine life includes over 200 species of fish, 155 species of coral and 84 species of molluscs. The shallows are great for snorkelling and the colorful dive sites feature an abundance of caves and rocky reefs.