DISCOVER

HAM NINH

Hàm Ninh, Phú Quốc

Nestled by the mighty Ham Ninh Mountain Range, the Ham Ninh region is famous for its fishing village, floating restaurants, mountain trekking, picturesque streams, and seafood.  Unlike the other Phu Quoc communes, Ham Ninh’s long shores are blessed with a vast sea grass bed that was once home to the beautiful Dugong (sea mermaid). 

map of Ham Ninh commune

ABOUT

Xã Hàm Ninh

LEARN

Long and narrow Ham Ninh (Ham-Knee-an) lies on the eastern side of Phu Quoc Island.  What was once a sleepy fishing commune, Ham Ninh has emerged as a top tourist destination on Phu Quoc Island.

ham ninh

In the past Ham Ninh was a place where many fishermen went to seek shelter from the storms.  Slowly a community was established that centered around fishing and diving for pearls.  The original inhabitants lived in either thatched bamboo huts or on their boats and led a simple life.

Today Ham Ninh is a commune in transition.  With the influx of tourists and the development of the islands infrastructure and power grid, Ham Ninh has seen sizable growth.  There are more restaurants, hotels, shops, and even a few gas stations now than a decade ago.  The main economy here is still based on fishing however a lot of locals are transitioning to servicing the booming tourist industry.  Rustic bamboo thatched homes still do exist however they are slowly being replaced by the concrete variety.

Planning Your Time

Most people usually visit Ham Ninh as a DIY half day trip after visiting the nearby waterfalls or as part of an organized tour group.  You should plan to spend at least an hour exploring Ham Ninh Fishing Village located at the central edge of the commune.  If you want to grab a bite to eat at one of the floating restaurants, then plan to stay a little bit longer.  For those of you who have more time and want to explore Ham Ninh's picturesque northern coast, 4 hours should suffice.  Within 4 hours you will see some of the dense forested areas in Bai Bon, the urban center in Rach Ham, and enjoy a fantastic beach up in Cay Sao Village.

map of ham ninh

TOWNS & VILLAGES

ham ninh market

Rach Ham

Ham Ninh's economic capital.  At Rach Ham you will find hotels, atms, local markets, shops, and more.

Bai vong port Phu Quoc

Bai Vong

This village is dominated by the Phu Quoc Ferry Port and the Vinpearl Bai Vong Resort Complex. 

 

ham ninh seafood

Lang Chai Ham Ninh

Lang Chai Ham Ninh is a picturesque and touristy fishing village located along the east coast of Phu Quoc Island and about 15 km away from Duong Dong Town.

 

ham ninh beach

Bai Bon

A small fishing community located at the very north of Ham Ninh.  The coastline has a dense seagress bed.

 

BEACHES

If you want to hang out at the beach, there are plenty of better places to do it than Ham Ninh.  Nice beaches do exist, like in Cay Sao, but mostly you’ll find rubbish and seaweed along its shores, evidence by the areas vast seagrass beds.  

cay sao beach ham ninh

Bai Cay Sao

The best beach is Bai Cay Sao located in the central part of the region, which is also home to the areas few resorts.

Bai Ham Ninh

Bai Ham Ninh

Ham Ninh Beach is the beach area by the Ham Ninh Fishing Village and pier.  Considering the amount of economic activity in this area, Bai Ham Ninh is not a beach for suntanning and beach activities.  If you want to enjoy the beach here, walk 10 minutes north along the coast for a cleaner patch of sand.

bai dat do beach on phu quoc island

Bai Vong

Bai Vong Beach is located by Bai Vong village which is currently an industry area undergoing a waterfront revitalization initiative.  Once the area has developed (2020), there will be a nice beach worth visiting. 

 

SEE & DO

ham ninh jetty on phu quoc

Ham Ninh Pier

The pier juts out far into the ocean where you can enjoy a panoramic view of the Ham Ninh mountain range and the coastline. 

rock garden phu quoc

The origin of this picturesque geological point of interest has never been determined. Giant boulders, each weighing several hundred tons, lie in knee deep turquoise waters.  The rock garden is a unique “off-the-beaten” natural wonder often overlooked by locals and tourists alike – which keeps this area particularly rubbish free.

sunrise at ham ninh jetty

Hai Tac Archipelago

You can see small islands in the distance while standing at the pier or on the beach.  These islands area also known as the “Pirate Islands”.  These islands are currently not accessible unless you are a fishermen or part of the Vietnam military/navy.  South East of the Pirate Islands you will see Nghe Island.

Mount Heaven in Phu Quoc

Trek Nui Ham Ninh

In the interior of Ham Ninh, by Bai Bon, there are a few trails that lead you to the top of Ham Ninh mountain (Nui Ham Ninh).  The summit is known as Dien Tien. You can attempt the trek on your own, with a private guide, or join a trekking your arranged by the numerous tour agencies found on the island.

fishing in ham ninh phu quoc

Fishing

You can fish off the edge of the the Ham Ninh Pier with the locals during the sunset hours and catch baby octopus.

sunrise at ham ninh phu quoc

Sunrise

If you can wake up early enough, try to make it to Ham Ninh Beach to witness a spectacular sunrise.

cay sao beach

Photography

The village, the mountains, the sea, the small canal, etc all make great subjects for the serious photographer.

ham ninh phu quoc island snorkeling

Snorkeling

Even though there is no coral reef here you can still snorkel here and see a variety of sealife that inhabits the surrounding sea grass. Some of the marine life you will see here are starfish, seahorses, small fish, crabs, and a variety of shellfish. If you are lucky and venture deep enough you may even see a giant green turtle or a hawksbill turtle.

ham ninh sea horse

Seahorses

Ham Ninh is a place where you can buy fresh or dried seahorses (unfortunately).  You can see the live seahorses still swimming in the tanks.  Locals often soak seahorses in rice wine and drink the concoction, apparently the drink has healing powers.

ham ninh cock fight

Cock Fighting

If you are lucky, you may be able to witness a cock fight in town.

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Lang Chai Ham Ninh Map

Food & Drink

Crab is the specialty here in Ham Ninh and you can find restaurants and street side eateries serving crab as well as other seafood near the pier.  The price of crab in Ham Ninh is by far the cheapest on the island.  Crab in Ham Ninh is usually steamed and enjoyed with a dipping sauce made out of lime juice, salt, and pepper. 

The other specialty here is sea cucumber soup – a unique Phu Quoc dish.  If you do not care for crab or sea cucumber, then there are a lot of other seafood and traditional Vietnamese dishes you can try.

 

ham-ninh-floating-restaurants

Floating Restaurants

The pier juts out far into the ocean where you can enjoy a panoramic view of the Ham Ninh mountain range and the coastline. 

phu quoc island traditional medicine

Medicinal Drinks

At Ham Ninh you can try a variety of “medicinal drinks” made from seaweed, ginseng, and even sea horse which has been soaked in rice wine.

ham ninh village beach

Beach Side Restaurants

At Ham Ninh Village there are a lot of seafood restaurants located around the Jetty with a nice view of the pier and ocean.  It is best to come here during high noon when the color of the sea becomes a bright turquoise green color.

ham ninh market

Chợ Hàm Ninh

A great place to buy fresh fruits, vegetables, and herbs is at the chợ Hàm Ninh Market.

Where to stay

Cay Sao is where you will find a few boutique beach resorts, which are all quite lovely. There are also a few small hotels and guest houses in Rach Ham as well.  The rooms are basic but clean and offer great value.

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