Can Gio is located more than 40 km from the center of Ho Chi Minh City, and is the only suburban district of the city bordering the sea. In 2000, Can Gio mangrove forest was recognized by UNESCO as the first world biosphere reserve in Vietnam.
Visitors to Can Gio can experience many activities such as fishing, kayaking, cycling, walking through the forest, visiting monkey island, and motorboating through the forest. Can Gio has many beautiful photography corners, attracting young people. Hang Duong Market in the district center has many types of fresh seafood at affordable prices.
Currently, to get to Can Gio, visitors have to take a ferry. From the center of Ho Chi Minh City, move towards Tan Thuan bridge, then turn to Nguyen Van Linh, Huynh Tan Phat and towards Binh Khanh ferry.
The ferry ticket price has 17 levels (applicable from July 2022), the cheapest is 2,000 VND (pedestrians, bicycles), the most expensive is 220,000 VND per trip (tractor). Common vehicles such as motorbikes cost 4,000 VND, cars with less than 7 seats cost 23,000 VND.
Bus: route 75 departs from September 23 Park to Can Tho, runs through Pham Ngu Lao – De Tham – Tran Hung Dao – Ham Nghi – Ton Duc Thang – Nguyen Tat Thanh – Huynh Tan Phat streets to Can Gio island , along Rung Sac – Duyen Hai – Dao Cu – Can Thanh bus station. Ticket price is 30,000 VND. Travel time: 2 hours 10 minutes. There are 6 flights every day.
From Vung Tau City, there is a high-speed ferry every 60 minutes to Can Gio, travel time is 30 minutes. Ticket price from 50,000 VND.
The most important road route in Can Gio is Rung Sac road, running from the north to the south of the district. This road has just been upgraded with 3 lanes in each direction, both sides of the road are mangrove forests, creating a cool green color for the scene.
Can Gio is suitable for day trips, departing from Ho Chi Minh City center in the morning and returning in the afternoon. However, there are also a number of accommodation options.
Hon Ngoc Phuong Nam Resort and Can Gio Resort cost from 600,000 to 900,000 VND per night. Homestays and camping areas such as Hana’s House Homestay, Phuc Homestay, Eco Homestay, Cat Tuong Homestay, Uncle Nam Dwarf Homestay and restaurant, SAY Camp Forest cost from 300,000 VND to 600,000 VND per night.
Can Gio is known as a green tourist area with many discovery spots. The most prominent are Vam Sat tourist area, April 30 beach, Thanh An island, Dan Xay ecological area, Rung Sac revolutionary base area, Hang Duong seafood market.
Vam Sat eco-tourism area is located in the center of Can Gio Sac Forest, accessible by both road or river, depending on the vehicle and travel needs of visitors. This tourist area has many experiences.
– Entrance ticket: 60,000 VND per person (including shuttle bus)
– Entertainment and sightseeing services: range from 20,000 VND to 65,000 VND (fishing, bird sanctuary, iron crocodile cage…)
– Price of canoes and wooden boats: from 150,000 to 900,000 VND per trip, depending on type and number of people.
There are also combos available for groups.
Vam Sat Bird Melaleuca
Vam Sat Tram Chim is located about 800 meters from the central entrance gate. This is the breeding ground for wild birds in the Southern region, and is the buffer zone of the world biosphere reserve. You can find rare birds such as gannets, storks, and herons. “Bird nesting season” in Vam Sat is from April to October. During this time, birds from everywhere come to breed, possibly up to millions of birds. Visitors will see birds picking up tree branches to weave into nests. If you go by boat, you will be able to get close to the bird’s nests.
Vam Sat Dam
This is Nghe An bat sanctuary, one of the interesting attractions for tourists who like to explore wild life. The special thing is that bats only concentrate on a single small mangrove island in the lagoon. They do not live in the neighboring mangrove area even if it is only a few meters away. Many theories suggest that this island is influenced by the magnetic field, so bats gather in large numbers. Thanks to that, the bat population has been preserved and reproduced regularly for more than 20 years. This is the largest bat species, only eating fruit, not insects like other species. When moving here, visitors must keep quiet.
Local people call the island “Hoa Qua Son” because there are thousands of long-tailed monkeys living wild in the mangrove forests. They are bold and do not hesitate to surround tourists to ask for food and water. Since the 1990s, after afforestation efforts to restore the native ecosystem, monkeys began to appear and grow. From the ticket gate about 1 km inside, visitors should choose to travel by tram instead of walking. In the middle of the monkey island, you can walk through the forest, with shady trees on both sides, watching and capturing the moment the monkeys take care of their babies, groom their fur, and share food.
Fishing and crabbing
Vam Sat ecological area is located in the buffer zone of the world biosphere reserve with rich flora and fauna. After visiting the bird sanctuary, bat lagoon, and monkey island, visitors can participate in recreational fishing. Most fish in ponds and lagoons live and reproduce naturally. The tourist area will organize night fishing by wooden boat at the intersection of Vam Sat and Lo Ren rivers. Ships anchor at river sections with many fish, with a weight of 2-3 kg. There is also a crab fishing experience here. Fished products can be enjoyed on the spot. In addition, crocodiles at Vam Sat are raised in a semi-wild model. Visitors can take a boat with an iron cage to fish for crocodiles.
Rung Sac Revolutionary Base
Rung Sac War Zone is recognized as a national historical relic. This is the place to record the heroic past of the Rung Sac Special Forces, recreating all the living and fighting scenes of the old soldiers. There are statues here depicting the distillation of fresh water from salt water in the style of making wine, meetings to discuss plans to raid and destroy Nha Be gas depot or kill crocodiles in the creek. To visit the revolutionary base of Rung Sac, visitors must ride a motorboat across a river several kilometers long, through the mangrove forest. This is also an opportunity to experience the natural landscape of the pristine forest.
Kayaking and SUP
Dan Xay eco-tourism area is an ideal place to kayak or SUP board and witness the surrounding mangrove ecosystem. The first experience of rowing a boat through the forest is quite interesting, requiring teamwork and patience, but in return are entertaining moments in nature. In addition, there are other interesting experiences here such as canoe surfing, wading through mud to catch seafood and trying to be a forest guardian.
Taking photos at the seawall of Thanh An island
Thanh An is an island commune in Can Gio district, about 131 km2 wide with more than 5,000 people living. From Can Thanh town ferry station, it takes visitors about 30 minutes by train. Around the small island, the scenery is still quite wild. One of the experiences not to be missed is walking on the seawall surrounding more than half of the island, watching the waves and enjoying the cool breeze from the sea. Visitors can also wander in small alleys and take pictures of people’s daily activities. If visitors want to stay overnight to watch the sunrise the next day, they can rent affordable accommodations or camp.
Thieng Lieng Island
Thieng Lieng is an island hamlet in Thanh An island commune. Here, lush green trees cover everywhere with many colorful flowers, peaceful natural landscape, and fresh air. In December 2022, Ho Chi Minh City Department of Tourism announced Thieng Lieng hamlet as the city’s first typical community tourism destination. Visitors will have the opportunity to enjoy the unique culture and cuisine of the hamlet that not all coastal areas have. Highlights that tourists can visit include: Giong Chua mountain, Mieu Ba Ngu Hanh religious space, amateur space (enjoy amateur music), nostalgic space and dishes made by local people. Processed by hand, with self-grown ingredients.
Eat and drink
Hang Duong Market is considered a “food paradise” with many dishes, especially seafood. The market sells both fresh and processed seafood such as oysters, snails, crabs, crabs, shrimp, and fresh squid. Visitors can ask the seller to directly process it on the spot for a cost of several tens of thousands of dong. Popular dishes are roasted with salt, charred garlic, stir-fried with coconut, stir-fried with butter, stir-fried with tamarind, grilled with onion fat, grilled with cheese, grilled fish, steamed with lemongrass and lemon leaves. If you don’t mind waiting for a long time, you can choose to buy from large pans of pre-prepared seafood.
Visitors may have to wait for the ferry for a long time if traveling during rush hour or on holidays, up to several hours when it normally only takes a few minutes.
Remember to maintain general hygiene and do not throw trash.
When visiting Monkey Island, remember to be careful with your camera, phone, hat, and glasses to avoid being snatched by monkeys.
Do not feed strange foods to animals in the forest, and do not make loud noises that will agitate them.