Co To Island: An Unexplored Paradise in Northern Vietnam
If your preference is to explore the unknown thing around the world or you just simply want to get away from the hustle and bustle of the cities and have a real relaxation in a pristine beach, Co To Island deserves on your bucket list.

The island is not only a Vietnam off-the-beaten-track but also one of the most beautiful and untouched lands in the area. Therefore, you need to learn some basic information before taking your trip to this unexplored heaven.

Where is Co To Island?

Located 255 km from Hanoi and about 22 kilometers from land, Co To is a small archipelago belonging to Quang Ninh Province. It was an uninhabited island until the first village was built on the island by Nguyen Cong Tru in 1832. With the stunning beauty compared with Phu Quoc Island, it is considered a hidden gem of Northeast Vietnam coast for your beach vacations in Vietnam.

Couple taking wedding photos on Co To Island

When to visit Co To Island?

If you love to witness the beauty of Co To beach when it’s sunny and windy, summer is the best time to visit this island, especially in the month of April and May. You can also visit Co To Island in autumn when it’s not too sunny, the weather turns quite chilly but it is not suitable to swim. Since Co To Island is in a coastal area, there are also storms so make sure to check up the weather before planning your trip.

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Best Things to Do in Co To Island

Though it is a small archipelago, you will be amazed by what you can do in Co To Island. Blessed by nature, the island is home to many wonderful scenic spots, several pristine beaches with blue clean seawater and breathtaking landscapes. Let check out what we can do here, shall we?

1. Co To Lighthouse

Built in the late 19th century and put into operation in 1961, Co To Lighthouse is one of more than 30 "sea-night eyes" operating throughout the territorial waters of Vietnam. With the height of 101m, you can comfortably enjoy the panoramic views of Co To island as well as Tonkin bay from the top of the Lighthouse.

Breathtaking View from Co To Lighthouse

2. Cau My Stones

Located 3 km south from the center of Co To Island, Cau My Stones is definitely a spectacular destination that you shouldn't miss when visit Co To. It is not only the most beautiful eroded stone system on the Island but also a rare wonder in compared with other famous islands in Vietnam.

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The rocks cascading on each other have created many rock layers with many colors and shapes, making the area a masterpiece of Mother Nature. It is also a place to receive the first sunshine of the day in Co To Island.

3. The Road of Love

It is no coincidence that this beautiful road in To Co Island has its name "The Road of Love". Situated about 100 meters away from Co To town, it a small road with more than 2 km long. The highlight of this road is its red brick line along the coast with green high trees and lawns on both sides.

If you have a chance to be here, regardless of walking or cycling, it definitely brings you a romantic feeling, especially when it is sunrise or sunset. Therefore, The Road of Love is also a favorite place for couples to take a walk or take pictures.

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4. Small Co To Island

Located only 1km away from the big one, the smaller Co To is another attractive destination worth a visit in Co To. Since this island is uninhabited, it still preserved pretty well its untouched natural beauty.

Setting foot on the small Co To, you will be amazed by its majestic landscape of green mountains as well as the romantic pristine beaches and surrounding islets. Traveling around on a wooden boat or camping one night in this small island is not a bad idea, especially for those who love to experience something new.

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5. Hong Van Beach

Lying on the east side of Co To Island, Hong Van Beach is one of the most beautiful beaches in the area. With blue crystal clear water and soft white sandbanks, this beach is a perfect option for beach lovers. Thanks to the "windshield" of Thanh Lan Island, Hong Van Beach's waves are small and smooth so it is also a safe place for children to swim.

Apart from Hong Van Beach, you can also enjoy your trip in other pristine beaches such as Van Chai Beach, Uncle Ho Beach...

Related: The 8 Most Beautiful Beaches in Vietnam

Nice and beautiful Hong Van beach in Coto Island

What to Eat in Co To Island?

Once pay a visit to this wonderful island of Co To, you will not want to miss the opportunity to enjoy the all the specialties here. Since this is a coastal area, fresh seafood is definitely the best.

The cuisine in Co To Island is considered one-of-the-kind in Vietnam, you can try the most popular dishes such as Jellyfish Salad, Grilled Oyster with Onion,  Steam Blue Crab, Abalone, Sa Sung, Be Be, Nail-shaped shellfish, Trap fish...

Must-try dish on Co To Island - Grilled Trap Fish

How to Get to Co To Island?

Co To Island can only be reached by boats. Therefore, you need to get to Quang Ninh province before taking a boat trip from Cai Rong Port (Van Don - Quang Ninh) to the island.

It will take you around 4 hours to get to Quang Ninh from Hanoi and you can feel free to choose appropriate transportation such as bus, limousine, private car or taxi... Apart from departing from Hanoi, you can also take a short way from Halong Bay to Quang Ninh province by car (if you are there).

The boat to Co To Island will embark from Cai Rong Port and run through the Bai Tu Long Bay. It starts every day and each trip takes between 3 to 3.5h. In case of bad weather, the boats are restricted to depart.

View of the seashore in Co To island, Vietnam


Above are just some brief information to help you to know more about Co To Island as well as to prepare well before your trip. This island is so much more than this so grab your backpack and come to explore and experience all the amazing things in this stunning island by yourself.

Source © Vietnam Tours from South Africa

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