The beach is always an ideal place to escape from the hustle and bustle of work life. Lucky for you, Vietnam has over 3000 kilometres of coastline, making it into the top 10 Asian countries with the longest coastlines. Perhaps you are looking for a city beach with fun nightlife, hoping for pristine beaches in a remote location, or simply looking to laze at beach resorts, Vietnam has got you covered.
Table of Contents
Dreamy Beaches in Southern Vietnam
1. Vung Tau/ Ho Tram
Known as Cap Saint Jacques in its colonial past, Vung Tau has long been a beach destination valued for its natural beauty and proximity to Ho Chi Minh City. Given that it is the closest beach town to Saigon, many city dwellers take day trips or visit during the weekends to relax at the beach and visit the bars. A slight distance away from Vung Tau town is Ho Tram, which used to be a collection of fishing villages, and is now an up-and-come luxury destination. Lying along the southern coast, come here to enjoy stunning beaches, small mountains, pagodas, and freshwater springs.
Accessible via bus or car, it will take you about two to three hours to reach from Ho Chi Minh City. We highly recommend taking the ferry for a more pleasant alternative to sitting in traffic.
Top thing to do: Visit Ho Coc Beach
Ho Coc Beach is located around 10 km away from Ho Tram Hamlet and is one of the best kept secrets of the area. This stretch of sand is hugged by dense green hills, and is still relatively pristine unlike some busy beaches of Vung Tau. Head here in the morning to catch the wonderful sunrise and get some swimming in.
2. Mui Ne Beach
Mui Ne is a natural wonder of Vietnam, attracting visitors with its rolling sand dunes and a stretch of long beach that winds through the town centre.
Located near Phan Thiet City in Binh Thuan Province, Mui Ne is home to two ginormous sand dune fields, the only desserts in Southeast Asia, it is a true geological wonder. The red sand dune field is easily accessible, it is located just off Mui Ne’s main strip, where most of the accommodation options and restaurants are. The white sand dune area is much bigger, you can ride ATVs and dune buggies to explore its barren depths.
A four hour drive from Ho Chi Minh City, Mui Ne is slightly too far away for a day trip, but perfect for a weekend visit!
Top thing to do: Water Sports
Mui Ne is a wonderful location to get in some watersports! The wind conditions make it especially suitable for kitesurfing, wake-boarding, and body boarding. In particular, stand up paddle boarding is a great sport to try out, as no previous experience is required, it is much less physical demanding than regular surfing, and thus the whole family can participate!
3. Phu Quoc Island
Off the south most tip of mainland Vietnam, Phu Quoc sits with blue water surrounding its densely forested island. The largest island in Vietnam, Phu Quoc boasts infinite stretches of beautiful white sand, thriving coral reefs great for snorkeling about, evergreen trees, walking trails, and many high end resorts along Long Beach Phu Quoc.
The Phu Quoc National Park comprises more than half the island and was declared a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in 2010. Nature lovers will find that there are endless things to do here, including camping hiking, and spotting wildlife.
Top thing to do: Ride to Star Beach
If you are looking for a particularly picturesque beach, there are many to be found dotted along the coast of Phu Quoc. The best thing to do is to avoid spending all your time in the city centre or at Long Beach, Phu Quoc has much more to offer. One of our favourite hidden beaches is Bai Sao Beach or Star Beach. It is surrounded by calm, clear waters all year round and is one of the best beaches in Vietnam.
4. Con Dao Islands
The Con Dao archipelago is a collection of 16 islands renowned for its unspoiled beaches and lagoons. Not easily accessible, the Con Dao islands are off the regular tourist trail, and the ultimate beach holiday paradise destination in Vietnam.
Con Son Island is the main island in the Con Dao archipelago, with only 5000 locals living there, has started to open up to high-end tourism. Six Senses Con Dao at Dat Doc Bay, the first hotel on the island, is just the beginning of the development of luxury resorts in the area. Now is an ideal time to visit, while the pristine beaches are still largely empty.
Con Son Island has an intriguing history, during the Vietnam War, political prisoners were kept in depressing conditions by the French in Phu Hai Prison. Near Lo Voi Beach, the main prison walls still dominate Con Son Town, a monument to the Vietnam War and to Vietnam’s resilience.
Top thing to do: Visit Dam Trau Beach
Large boulders scattered amidst a white, powdery, soft beach, with amazingly clear, turquoise waters that breathe life into a pristine coral reef, Dam Trau Beach is simply stunning even when compared to the other amazing Con Dao Island beaches. In fact, Dam Trau has been listed as amongst the 25 most beautiful beaches in the world according to Travel And Leisure.
5. Ninh Chu Beach
Last on our list of beach destinations in South Vietnam is Ninh Chu Beach. Ninh Chu is one of the most hidden gems, popular with locals, but not yet teeming with international tourists. A coast of 10km in length, this long beach is shaped like a crescent moon and surrounded by green pine trees bending in the wind; Ninh Chu is considered by many Vietnamese as one of the best beaches in Vietnam.
The sandy beaches and seafood restaurants are the main attractions, but visitors can also engage in many other recreational activities including scuba diving, learning how to surf, kayaking, sailing, fishing, and of course the classic sunbathing.
Top thing to do: Kitesurfing
The bay is well-positioned to make the most of the winds of spring and summer, and increasingly becoming a tourist destination for this water sport. In fact, it hosted the Kiteboard Tour Asia competition in 2016, where about 100 kitesurfers showed off their skills.
Popular Beaches in Central Vietnam
Photo by VIA Ambassador Benjamin Tortorelli
Moving slightly up north, we find ourselves at the central coast of Vietnam, where beaches are the main attraction. For beach tourists, avoid visiting during September to November, where the rainfall is the highest.
6. Quy Nhon Beach
A 42km coastline hugs this middle South Vietnam beach city in Binh Dinh Province. Dotted along the long stretch are many beaches, forests, lagoons, and salt marshes, apart from the natural wonders, Quy Nhon is rich in culture and history, and renowned for delicious cuisine, based on the local fresh seafood catch. Despite having so much to offer and some of the best beaches in Vietnam, Quy Nhon is still flying under the radar, not yet frequented by swarms of international or domestic tourists.
Top thing to do: Chill at Ky Co Beach
Ky Co Beach, often called the ‘Maldives of Vietnam’ is a beautiful beach where the mountains meet the sea. Sitting at the base of green peaks is a little dreamy white sand beach, where the shore extends into crystal clear waters.
7. Da Nang Beach
Da Nang is a great place for a holiday that has it all! The city offers yummy dining options, fun bars to drink at night, and of course, is great for a beach vacation. In the beach city of Danang, there are endless beaches to choose from. Our top picks are Non Nuoc Beach and My Khe Beach.
Lying gently at the foot of the Marble Mountains, a cluster of 5 marble and limestone hills, is the soft luscious Non Nuoc Beach. Non Nuoc Beach offers a quiet setting away from the bustling city life of Da Nang, great for avoiding crowds and enjoying an afternoon swim.
My Khe Beach is the iconic city beach of Da Nang, with white sands and coconut palms, it is a hot spot for tourist looking for the typical Danang beach experience. There is a lot more activity going on at My Khe Beach, with plenty of water sports to do, including surfing, kayaking, and even jet skiing!
Read more about the best beaches in Da Nang.
Top thing to do: Take in the view from Son Tra
When you need a break from the sun, leave behind the white sands, and head over to Son Tra Peninsula, almost 700m above sea level, it is also a protected zone for primeval jungles. Come here for amazing views of Da Nang city and its stunning coast; walk up Monkey Mountain and enjoy the native flora and fauna.
8. Hoi An
Apart from being a cultural treasure, the coastal city of this ancient town is also home to some of the best beaches in Vietnam, especially if you are looking for beaches less heaving with tourists than the nearby Danang beach.
Definitely visit the nearby Cua Dai Beach. A good time to arrive is at dawn to catch the sunrise and see off fishing boats sailing away for the day’s catch. Cua Dai Beach is a stretch of sand just over two miles long, but is known for its particularly soft, chalk-white sands.
An Bang Beach is another favourite. With a beach town vibe, An Bang Beach is just a small stretch of white sand but has some of the most exceptional casual restaurants in the area.
Top thing to do: Take a day trip to the Cham Islands
Eight small granite islands bobbing off the coast of Hoi An, the Cham Islands is a UNESCO World Biosphere. Take a boat from Hoi An to Hon Lao, the main island, and the only inhabited one, the rest are big rocks. Tie in a swimming and snorkelling tour, or perhaps even try scuba diving or even paragliding.
9. Nha Trang Beach
Nha Trang Beach is a city blessed with endless stretches of white sand beaches, which has earned Nha Trang City the term ‘beach capital of Vietnam’ from tourists. The epitome of scenic shores and the natural beauty of Vietnam beaches can be found here.
Looking for the most perfect beach that Nha Trang has to offer? Discover Long Beach with Tran Phu Beach, Hon Chong Beach, and Doc Let Beach on Hon Khoi peninsula.
With many beach locations all around Nha Trang, there is a beach for everyone, whether you are looking for a sunbathing spot, a tranquil atmosphere, or more of a party vibe! Find all these incredible locations in our full guide to Nha Trang beaches.
Top thing to do: Check out the Salt Fields at Doc Let Beach, Hon Khoi Peninsula
Doc Let Beach, Hon Khoi, is actually located an hours drive out of the city. Take a bus, or adventurous travellers can consider taking a motorbike. Perhaps even consider camping overnight at Doc Let Beach to truly enjoy the serenity of the darkness. During the day, you can rent a small boat and visit the nearby islands and immerse yourself in nature.
The most special thing at the Hon Khoi Peninsula is the salt fields. Natural salt is harvested along Doc Let Beach, this beautiful scene of tiny salt mounds carried by women in conical hats is well-loved by photographers.
Related article: Best places to visit in Nha Trang
Paradise in North Vietnam
North Vietnam is known for its mountainous landscape, with daring cliffs and mist-shrouded peaks. Tourists often spend their time trekking along rice paddy fields, visiting glorious waterfalls, and learning about the traditions and histories of the minority tribes. Sun-seekers, fret not! The northern part is also home to some of the best beaches in Vietnam.
10. Ha Long Bay
We end our list with a seemingly unlikely candidate for a beach holiday – Ha Long Bay, better known for its majestic seascapes than for beach bums. Hanoi and Ha Long Bay is now connected by one of the most efficient highways in the country, but you can also arrive via train or even seaplane.
Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a geographical location simply not to be missed. First, spend some time in Cat Ba Town, the largest island, and enjoy its two beaches. From Cat Ba Island, you will depart on a cruise that will take you along ancient sea routes. Your cruise will take you island hopping, squid fishing, diving, swimming, snorkeling, biking, visiting pearl farms, and more, while surrounded by the breathtaking views.
Top thing to do: Cruise to Quan Lan Island
Take a cruise to Bai Tu Long Bay and visit Quan Lan Island a sparely inhabited, outlying island in the region. Quan Lan is a small dreamy island only 11km2 in area, almost completely untouched by busy tourism or development.
Vietnam’s a Whale of a Good Time
Thinking of spending your next vacation at the beach? From the north to the south, a mammoth stretch of coastline means that the best beaches in Vietnam are waiting to be discovered.
Need help to plan your trip?
Our team of specialists will get in touch to help you organize your trip.