Beach + Island

Hidden Beaches

by Bob Payne

Paradise Lost?

Spread Your Towel: Bai Dai Beach, Phu Quoc, Vietnam

Shore lines: Vietnam's biggest island, mountainous Phu Quoc, has some of the best beaches in the country. They have remained off the radar largely because Phu Quoc lies close to Cambodia, which has long claimed it, and the Vietnamese military response to the claims was to build bases there, with many of the beaches falling within their boundaries. Rumors of development on the horizon have loosened things up, though, and the military now allows access to some of the beaches, including Bai Dai, which is among the most remote and pristine. The water is calm, the sand is gold, and the quiet is soul-soothing. Visit October through March, but don't wait too long—unless you love golf.

Best bunk: La Veranda is a 43-room colonial-style resort on Long Beach, along the west coast of Phu Quoc. The high-ceilinged rooms have teak furniture and 1930s decor.

La Veranda
Tel: 84 77 982 988
Doubles from $125

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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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