Tho Chau is an 8 island archipelago which is one of the 8 communes that makes up Phu Quoc District. It is currently off-limits to foreigners as it is under military control however the restrictions will be lifted shortly. Those in the media and medical fields can receive special permission to visit Tho Chu. In 2017 a new fast ferry from Phu Quoc to Tho Chu was launched. Learn more today by scrolling down.
About Tho Chua Commune
Tho Chu Islands, locally known as Tho Chu, is an archipelago commune consisting of 8 islands:
The Xã Thổ Châu commune is located 160 km northwest of Cau Mau, 220 km west of Rach Gia, and 160 km south west of Phu Quoc Island. The largest island, Tho Chau, lies 50 km away from the other 7 islands and it is here where most of the people reside.
The Tho Chu archipelago consists of the following 8 islands: Tho Chu Island, Kho Islet, Nhan Islet (Hon Nhan), Xanh Islet, Tu Islet (Hon Tu), Cao Islet (Hon Cao), Cao Cat Islet (Hon Cao Cat), and Mo Islet.
The main source of income for the people comes from the sea however with all the development and interest happening in Phu Quoc District, the local tourism sector is heating up especially since new ferries started to arrive beginning in 2017.
The weather is governed by the monsoon and can be quite rough at times. With the strong winds this island has the potential to be another Kite-surfing destination such as Mui Ne.
As of 2017, Tho Chu Commune has 621 homes with about 1,916 inhabitants. Most of the population live near the coastal areas of Bai Ngu and Bai Dong on Tho Chua Island.
Where to eat and drink
You can find local eateries serving seafood and traditional Vietnamese food near the market on Tho Chu Island by Bai Ngu.
Where to stay
Currently the island is not setup for tourism but that will change as the government has a plans to turn Tho Chu into a eco-tourist island. However you can freely camp on any of the islands or stay with a local family for about $10USD/night, assuming you are allowed to come here.
Tho Chu (9˚18'N, 103˚28'E), the largest island among the eight islands in the archipelago, houses the communal administrative center and holds a special strategic position of being near international maritime routes in the Eastern Sea. The island is well developed and has a market, dock, residential area, schools, health clinics, a post office, and two beaches: Bai Dong Beach and Bai Ngu Beach.
Built in 2000, the lighthouse is an interesting place to visit mainly because of the picturesque view of the island and the sea from on top as it is located in one of the island’s highest location (167m).
The best beach on Tho Chu has turquoise water and white sand. The best time to visit this beach is during the dry season from October to April.
Black terns are residents on this little rock island.
At Hòn Cao, nature lovers can observe flying foxes. During the day they just sleep and become active during the sunset hours.
The Tho Chu archipelago is surrounded by coral reefs and thus great for observing underwater marine life.
On Hòn Từ there is a picture perfect white sand beach which you can laze on.
Discover gorgeous waterfalls found in the interior.
The trees on some of the islands are quite large.
How to get to Tho Chua
The only way to get to Tho Chua is by taking a ferry. There is helicopter service available as well, but mainly for emergency situations.
From Ho Chi Minh City:
Take the bus to Rach Gia and then catch a ferry to Tho Chua. The total travel time is approximately 16 hours however ferries are not always available.
From Phu Quoc
There are two ways to get to Tho Chu from Phu Quoc, both of which depart from Bai Vong Port in Ham Ninh Commune.
The Tho Chu ferries depart Phu Quoc at 8:00 AM and depart Tho Chua at 5:00PM.
A ferry from Phu Quoc's Bai Vong Port directly travels to Tho Chua with a total duration of 7 hours.
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