An independent selection of the best things to see and do in Con Dao Islands. No paid placements, no advertorial.

Con Dao Islands
see and do guide

Introduction

Last updated 21 Jan 2012

A visit to the Con Dao Archipelago will mostly be spent on the only inhabited island - Con Son. It's one of those magical places blessed with spectacular beauty, a delightful colonial era old town, a serene atmosphere - masking a cruel historical backdrop.

You can easily spend a couple of days exploring Con Son. The prison ruins and the museum will keep you busy for half a day or more. And the thought of the tens of thousands who perished here at the hands of the French and then US backed South Vietnamese regimes will remain with you long beyond your stay.

But there's plenty more to do as well - and you'll find exploring Con Son a refreshingly therapeautic contrast to the historical exploration. There are remote unspoiled beaches, forest walks in the National Park and bicycle rides along deserted coastal paths to shift your thoughts from the horrors of the island's past.

Con Son Island is compact and cycle friendly - though there are some challenging hills if you're planning on exploring the entire island by bike. Motorbikes are also available for hire. Traffic is light.

The surrounding islands are largely uninhabited, except by a rich array of wildlife and their protectors, but can be visited on boat trips from Con Son. This is one of the most unspoiled and fragile coastal eco-systems in Vietnam. Its population of sea turtles has been nurtured in a programme run by the World Wildlife Fund.
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Hang Duong Cemetery, Con Son Island, Con Dao Islands

Hang Duong Cemetery is where prisoners who perished in Con Son's prisons are buried. Read more

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Hang Duong Cemetery, Con Son Island, Con Dao Islands
Nguyen An Ninh St, Con Son, Con Dao Islands
 

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Exploring Con Son Island, Con Dao Islands

Con Son Island, the main island of the Con Dao Archipelago is compact and perfect for exploration by bicycle if you're energetic or by motorbike.... Read more

Con Dao Museum - Con Dao Island

The former colonial era Governor's Residence in the middle of town is now the museum that documents the sorry history of the French and US backed... Read more

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Con Dao Museum - Con Dao Island
Ton Duc Thang St, Con Son Island
 

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Con Dao National Park, Con Dao Islands

Much of the Con Dao Islands, including the main island, Con Son, has been designated as National Park. The islands and their surrounding waters are... Read more

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Con Dao National Park, Con Dao Islands
Vo Thi Sau St, Con Son Island, Con Dao
 

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Con Son Island Prison Complex, Con Dao Islands

Con Son Island is littered with the ruins of French and US era prison complexes. Tens of thousands of Vietnamese nationalists perished in these... Read more

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Con Son Island Prison Complex, Con Dao Islands
Le Van VIet St, Con Island, Con Dao Islands
 

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What's On At Morin Hotel, Hue