Vung Tau is a golfer’s paradise. Co-incidentally the closest course to Vung Tau city is the Paradise Golf Course. one of South Vietnam’s biggest and best 18 hole courses. Home of the internationally renowned SPE Golf Tournament. Slightly further afield The Bluffs course designed by Greg Norman at Ho Tram can be reached by a 60 minute free bus ride from Vung Tau.
Vung Tau is most interesting and loved for its extensive beaches. Tourists always prefer sightseeing at Front Beach (Bai Truoc) to go swimming in Back Beach (Bai Sau).
The first beach is Bai Truoc (translated as “front beach” in Vietnamese), in the West of the city, where the sun goes down. Bai Truoc is considered the façade of Vung Tau city. It is also called by other names such as Tam Duong beach or Hang Dua bay. Besides the best location, the beach is also preferred for having many restaurants and elegant hotels. Sparking, colorful and bright light boulevard make Bai Truoc more beautiful.
Opposite to Bai Truoc is Bai Sau, Back beach (or Thuy Van beach). Back Beach is well-known for its over 10 km of fine sand seaside. The beach is always excited and busy with almost tourists both from the city itself and the world. At weekends or on holidays, there are thousands of people coming here for swimming and entertainment. In Bai Sau, there is a popular kind of entertainment: Paradis, the upgraded swimming and relaxing area, and a system of modern hotels, welcoming all tourists.
Beside, tourists can visit other beautiful beaches such as: Bai Dau and Bai Dau
For the more adventurous Vung Tau offers plenty of aquatic fun. The back beach is the place to head. Kitesurfing and surfing are common along the stretch of the beach. Lessons, gear rental and advice are available at a few spots along this stretch but the Beach Club is the most prominent with a beachside bar and plenty of kitesurf/surf/SUP/windsurf and more gear available. Jetski’s and other activities are available for rent along the stretch but be warned it gets SUPER crowded during Vietnamese holidays and weekends.
Vung Tau’s landscape is suitable for climbing mountains, few of the hikes in Vung Tau are:
– Hike to the Lighthouse in the little mountain. The entrance is at in Phan Chu Trinh street, about 1 km from the beach.
– Hike to the Jesus statue in the little mountain. This is a very nice short hike.
– Hike to the big mountain. The trail starts in Tran Hung Dao street. The top is very flat, and there are couple restaurants on top.
There is also a cable car to the top of the big mountain where there is a small amusement park. Pricey at 300,000 VND a ticket for the cable car ride and entrance to the park.
There are a lot of beautiful places that tourists can visit at Vung Tau:
– Bạch Dinh (Villa Blanche) (Trần Phú St on the slopes of Big Mountain, along Tran Phu St, 50 m above sea level). Built by the French (1898-1916) as a summer holiday house for French Governor-General Paul Doumer. The building was named Villa Blanche after his favourite daughter. The name Villa Blanche accurately describes its appearance. For that season, local people call it Bạch Dinh (White Palace). Later governors used this summerhouse so occasionally so it is also called “Villa du Gouverneur” (Dinh Toan Quyen). Both Ngo Dinh Diem and Nguyen Van Thieu used it for R&R. The outside walls were decorated with beading and Hellenic statues. This was also the location where the French colonialists placed Thanh Thai Kin under house arrest. He belonged to the last feudal dynasty in Vietnam and fought against the French before being exiled to Reunion Island off the coast of Africa (1909-1910). From its balcony there’s a panoramic view of Front Beach and opposite the villa at the foot of that mountain is Hai Nguu Islet with a stone rock shaped like a water buffalo wallowing in water. Next to Hai Nguu at the seaside was the helicopter pad. Today Villa Blanche exhibits hundreds of antiques collected from Cau Islet-Con Dao and attracts hundreds of tourists every day.
– Đài Liệt Sĩ (Martyr’s Memorial), Lê Hồng Phong St. A stone obelisk on a hilltop, on the way to the sea, the Martyr’s Memorial Hill is said to incorporate the biggest traffic circle in Indochina. A cool hangout for lovers.
– Đình Thần Thắng Tam (Thắng Tam Local Gods Communal House), Thắng Tam Ward (From the Front Beach, follow Truong Cong Dinh St to Tran Hung Dao Park. Here take Hoang Hoa Tham St to Thang Tam).
– Jesus Statue on Summit of Small Mountain: The enormous 28 m figure of Jesus gazing to sea with outstretched arms is at the south end of Small Mountain. Built in 1971, this giant Jesus rests on a 10 m high platform. The interior of the statue is hollow and contains a spiral staircase of 129 steps, ascending from the foot of the statue to its neck. The two shoulders of the figure are balconies, each able to accommodate up to six people, which offer a splendid view of the surrounding landscape. This is the largest sculpture in southern Vietnam. Recent construction of a pathway has made the 30 min hike up the mountain more pleasant and the panoramic view from various vista points along the way is magnificent. A must-do!
– Pagodas (Small Mount summit). Niết Bàn Tịnh Xá and Thích Ca Phật Đài are most popular among the pagodas and temples in Vũng Tàu.
– Vũng Tàu Lighthouse (On top of Small Mountain). First built in 1907 on the lower peak of Small Mount, it burned kerosene in its lamp. In 1911, it was rebuilt to 3 m in diameter and 18 m in height, and moved to the higher peak where it stands today. The Vũng Tàu Lighthouse projects light as far as 65 km (35 mi) and is equipped with telescopes to follow and direct ships at sea. Next to the platform, 4 old French cannons (weighing several tons) were once used to defend the area from naval attacks. The lighthouse affords a panoramic view of the whole of Vung Tau. 4,000 dong
With roads along the coast, Vung Tau is a great location for tourists can enjoy the natural cool breeze along with charming scenery at sunset.
Tourists can choose yourself cycling or riding a motorbike but that most excellent option is to hire a cyclo – a special media in Vietnam, Unlike other type of party, cyclo bring a relaxing, enjoyable, along with a moderate pace enough for you to admire and enjoy the wonderful scenery here
The Grand at Ho Tram is Vietnam’s first full facility casino. An impressive resort/multiple swimming pools/Greg Norman golf course and of course plenty of chances to make (or break) your fortune. On a more local and low key level the Petro House Hotel nearby has gaming facilities.