Ly Son Island

Nestled in the East Sea off the coast of Quang Ngai province in central Vietnam, Ly Son Island emerges as a hidden gem of Vietnam, captivating travelers with its pristine beauty and rich cultural heritage. This small volcanic island, also known as "Cu Lao Re," has been gaining popularity among travelers for its untouched natural beauty and unique cultural heritage. 

Where is Ly Son Island?

Ly Son Island, Ly Son Vietnam

Ly Son Island is part of the Ly Son District, which consists of three islands: Big Island (Ly Son), Small Island (Dao Be), and Mu Cu Islet. Located about 30 kilometers from the mainland, Ly Son Island is easily accessible by ferry or speedboat from Sa Ky port in Quang Ngai province. The journey takes around 45 minutes, offering breathtaking views of the crystal-clear waters and surrounding islands along the way. As you approach the island, you'll be greeted by the sight of lush green hills, white sandy beaches, and colorful fishing boats dotting the coastline.

What makes Ly Son Island special?

Ly Son Island, Ly Son Vietnam

Ly Son Island is not your typical tropical paradise. What sets it apart from other popular beach destinations in Vietnam is its volcanic origin and rich history. The island is actually a dormant volcano, with three main craters that have formed over millions of years. This geological wonder has shaped the landscape of the island, creating unique rock formations, caves, and cliffs that are perfect for exploration.

Aside from its natural wonders, Ly Son Island is also steeped in history and culture. It is home to the Hoang Sa (Paracel) Naval Fleet Museum, which showcases the island's role in protecting Vietnam's sovereignty over the Paracel Islands. The museum houses artifacts, documents, and photographs that tell the story of Ly Son's brave sailors who defended their homeland against foreign invaders.

Some highlights of Ly Son Island

Ly Son Island, Ly Son Vietnam

Ly Son Island, Ly Son Vietnam

Ly Son Island, Ly Son Vietnam

  • To Vo Gate (Cổng Tò Vò): Perched atop a cliff overlooking the sea, To Vo Gate is a natural rock formation that has become an iconic symbol of Ly Son Island. You can hike to this vantage point to enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding coastline and witness breathtaking sunsets.
  • An Hai Village: This picturesque fishing village offers a glimpse into the island's traditional way of life, with its colorful fishing boats, bustling seafood markets, and quaint wooden houses. You can stroll along the waterfront promenade, sample fresh seafood delicacies, and interact with friendly locals.
  • Garlic and Onions: The island is known as the "Kingdom of Garlic" due to its abundant production of these two ingredients. You can taste them in various local dishes such as garlic salad, fried garlic noodles, and onion pancakes. Don't forget to visit the local market to buy some fresh garlic and onions to bring back home as souvenirs.
  • Hang Pagoda (Chùa Hang): Nestled in a cave on the side of Thoi Loi Mountain, Hang Pagoda is a sacred Buddhist site that dates back to the 17th century. The pagoda is adorned with intricate wood carvings, ancient statues, and delicate murals, making it a cultural treasure worth exploring.
  • Ly Son Museum: For those interested in delving deeper into the island's history and culture, a visit to the Ly Son Museum is a must. The museum houses a fascinating collection of artifacts, photographs, and exhibits documenting the island's maritime heritage, geological formations, and cultural traditions.
  • Beaches and Snorkeling Spots: Ly Son Island boasts several stunning beaches and snorkeling spots where visitors can unwind and explore the underwater world. Among the most popular are Hang Cau Beach, Bai Bac Beach, and Hang Pagoda Beach, each offering pristine sands, clear waters, and excellent snorkeling opportunities.

Best time to visit Ly Son Island

Ly Son Island, Ly Son Vietnam

The best time to visit Ly Son Island is during the dry season, which typically extends from March to September. During these months, the weather is generally warm and sunny, making it ideal for outdoor activities such as hiking, snorkeling, and exploring the island's attractions. The peak season for tourism on Ly Son Island is from May to August when the weather is at its most favorable, and the sea is calm, perfect for boat trips and diving excursions. However, you should be mindful of booking accommodations and transportation in advance during this period as the island tends to get crowded. Alternatively, the shoulder seasons of March-April and September-October offer pleasant weather with fewer crowds, making it an excellent time to visit for those seeking a more tranquil experience.

In conclusion, Ly Son Island is a hidden paradise waiting to be discovered, offering a harmonious blend of natural beauty, cultural richness, and authentic experiences. Whether you're seeking adventure, relaxation, or cultural immersion, this enchanting island has something to offer every traveler. As word of its allure spreads, Ly Son Island is sure to become a must-visit destination for those seeking an off-the-beaten-path adventure in Vietnam.

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