Bai Thom Beach Phu Quoc
No longer remote, no longer restricted, no longer a challenge to get to via motorbike or even by bicycle, and no longer a mystery… it is time for you to visit Thom Beach (Bai Thom).
Bai Thom Beach and Village
Thom Beach View
Thom Beach Shoreline
Thom Beach is located in Thom Village (Bai Thom Village) which is approximately 35kms from Duong Dong Town and in the vicinity of the most lush, dense, and diverse region of the Phu Quoc National Forest. The road from Duong Dong Town to the village is well paved and it is probably the most enjoyable motorbike road trip in all of Phu Quoc Island. The beach is only 1.5kms in length and not as picturesque as the other beaches found here on Phu Quoc but Thom Beach does have its own charm.
Bai Thom village was once a restricted military zone due to its proximity to Cambodia as both of these countries were essentially at war with each other, but those days are long gone. Thom Village is now a peaceful place and its inhabitants are mainly fishermen and their families. The village is slowly preparing itself for mass tourism as the entire village will be redeveloped by 2020 into a eco-tourism hub.
Bai Thom Village Tour:
We here at PhuQuocIslandGuide.com classify Thom Beach as a semi wild beach as the beach here is still primitive and the landscape seems to have remained relatively untouched. From the beach you can see Cambodia’s Rabbit Island, Kampot Province, and Kep. The vegetation around the beach consists of mainly poplar trees with a few scattered coconut palm trees. The beach, as well as the shoreline, is riddled with various types of different rocks. Some of the rocks appear to be of the volcanic type that have small sea snails living on top of them. The sand here at Thom Beach is granular in nature and the color of the sand resembles salt and pepper. Certain sections of the beach are nicer than others.
Bai Thom Beach:
Bai Thom Beach At Low Tide
The sea at Thom Beach is very shallow and tidal in nature. At low tide, the water recedes leaving behind it a boundless sandy beach with a lot of tidal animals (e.g. crabs, crustaceans, etc). At low tide it is possible to walk across to nearby Mot Island which is only meters away from the coast. When the tides rise very little of the beach remains. The slope into the ocean is low making it easy to enter and exit it however the ocean floor consists of rocks and coral debris so you need to be careful where you plant your feet. The water clarity varies depending on the season and the sea here can be quite quite rough at times, especially during the wet season.
Thom Beach Ocean View
While swimming at Thom Beach you have to be aware of sea urchins (year round) and jellyfish (seasonal). There is also coral present at shallow depths. If you venture off to the forest nearby you may see silver langurs, macaques, wild boars, flying squirrels and deer.
Mot Island (Hon Mot)
Close to shore resides a small island known as Mot Island (Hon Mot). Mot Island is connected to Thom Beach at low tide and can be reached by foot by walking across a narrow bridge made out of rock. During high tide, you can only access the island by boat or for the adventurous, you can just swim there. Some tour operators stop off at Mot Island as part of their “North Island” adventure tour where tourists can explore the small island and take pictures of the Cambodian coast. There isn’t much to do on the island itself apart from exploring the flora and fauna, especially the tidal creatures such as crabs.
View Of Mot Island
Mon Island At High Tide
Mot Island At Low Tide
Hon Mot & Bai Thom
Hon Mot Island Tour
What To See
- Watch the sunset and sunrise: Watching the sunrise at Thom Beach is quite magical as the sun rises from behind Cambodia. Thom Beach is also a great place to watch the sunset, as the entire sky light up providing you with spectacular light show.
- Visit Phu Quoc Crocodile Farm: The Phú Hải crocodile farm is located in Đá Chồng next to the road that takes you to the slow ferry terminal. The Phu Quoc crocodile farm provides you with an overview of how crocodiles are farmed. Here you will find approximately 2,500 crocodiles which are raised and sold for their meat and skin.
You can tour the hatchery, the processing plant, and see the adult crocodiles in their pens. Vietnam has two species of crocodiles – the salt-water crocodile (Crocodylus porosus) and the fresh-water Siamese crocodile (C siamensis) – both of which have been hunted for illegal export to China, Thailand and other countries. Farming is a sustainable way to meet overseas demands and to prevent poaching of wild animals.
- Visit the cashew nut plantation: North of Thom Beach you will find a lot of cashew nut plantations which you can visit.
What To Do
There are a few activities that you can do at Thom Beach. You can rent a boat and cruise along the shoreline, fish off the boat, and also visit Mot Island. If you catch a fish (or squid) you can have one of the restaurants cook them for you for a small fee. You can also snorkel in the waters off Thom Beach as there are a few hard corals in the area. If you do not have your own snorkel and mask with you, you can rent one for the day for 50,000VND at Cay Vong Nem Resort.
If you are seafood lover, you can forage off the land and sea and collect sea urchins, sea snails, small crabs, conch, and some clams and have yourself a nice shore lunch.
Price: 500,000VND for 2 people, 700,000VND for 4-6 people.
Includes: gasoline and fishing gear.
Where To Eat & Drink
There are a few beach front restaurants that serve a variety of seafood dishes and traditional Vietnamese dishes. The portions are quite large and the price varies. In Thom Village there are also numerous small local eateries serving pho bo, com, etc.
- Name: Hang Duong Quan Seafood Restaurant
Location: Thom Beach
- Name: Cay Vong Nem Resort and Seafood Restaurant
Tel: 0912425957 | 0939045657
Location: Thom Beach
Bai Thom Village Accommodation
As of 2014 there is one resort located right next to beach where you can stay for the night or two (see below). However expect to see more as there are a lot of houses next to the beach that are in the process of converting into a guesthouse/resort.
Cay Vong Nem Resort
- Price: For 1 double bed – 500,000VND | For 2 double beds – 600,000VND
- Amenities: All rooms have a LCD TV, hot water, WIFI, and a small balcony. Restaurant on site.
- For bookings: Tel 0912425957 | 0939045657
Cay Vong Nem Resort Review: This is a nice Vietnamese run resort right on Thom Beach. The resort has lounge chairs, a large restaurant, hammocks, and motorbike parking. You can rent snorkeling equipment and a boat here to explore the sea. Currently Cay Vong Nem Resort is the only accommodation on Thom Beach at the moment.
How To Get Here
Getting to Thom Beach is quite easy as the roads are all paved. From Duong Dong Town cross over the main bridge and head to “Bai Thom”. You will pass by a few pepper plantations as well as the Phu Quoc dog racing track, both of which can be a great place for a break. It will take you about 40-50minutes to get to Thom Beach from Doung Dong town providing that you do not stop along the way, but given the amazing scenery in the north, expect to stop numerous times. The scenery around Thom Village is incredible and the ride up is one of the most picturesque on the island. Just before arriving at Thom Village you will pass by Mt. Chua, which is the islands highest mountain at 603m.
Need To Know
As of 2015 there is only one small pharmacy in Thom Village and there are no hospitals nor any ATM/Banks in town so please bring some money with you. Mosquitoes can be a problem here during the wet season so please pack insect repellant. If you plan on snorkeling, we advise that you wear water booties or snorkel fins as the sea bed has a lot of sea urchins.