Gazing out to sea and getting a breath of fresh air and salty sea breeze, you may be chanted by compelling lures of a cruise journey. But get ready to disembark quickly as you will have many things to do when your cruise ship docks at Phu My Port.
As a hard-core cruise fan, you would have a thirst to know more about many ports of call all around the world. This time, if you’re lucky enough to disembark from your cruise at Phu My Port, some research into this significant port and shore excursions from Phu My Port is crucial. From how to head for an exit to what shore excursions are available, this is all you need to take note!
An overview of Phu My Port
Unlike many ports in Ho Chi Minh City for small and midsize vessels, Phu My Port which is located in Ba Ria – Vung Tau is perfectly for large cruise ships. As the river is too shallow and there is not a cruise berth available in the city of Ho Chi Minh, Phu My Port is prefered by an increasing number of cruise ships every year.
Known as a contemporary deep-water port, Phu My Port boasts a strategic location which makes it a crucial transport hub for both domestic and international trading. This international port has an area of over 26.5 hectares and can accommodate ships of up to 70,000 DWT, not to mention that Phu My Port completely caters to large 5-star cruise ships. With an unparalleled potential for development, Phu My is said to become “Busan of Vietnam” in the near future.
Let alone the fact that Phu My Cruise Port plays a significant role in the development of Ba Ria Vung Tau and the South area in general, there is no place of interest in the vicinity. From Phu My Port, it takes approximately 33km (or 45-minute drive) to Vung Tau City and around 80km (or 2-hour drive) to reach the center of Ho Chi Minh City. Hence, discerning travelers would opt for a discreet shore excursion to get the best travel experience.
» Address: Phu My Town, Tan Thanh, Ba Ria – Vung Tau
» Coordinates: 10°35’51.8″N | 107°01’25.9″E
» Insider tips: Be aware that you have to take a long walk of 15-20 minutes to get out of the port, and then grab a taxi with caution to your desired spots. If you don’t want to travel that hard, simply book shore excursions with us to be greeted with a lovely sign and a warm smile right after you leave your cruise ship.
What to see and do near Phu My Port
For cruise ships docking at Phu My Port, Vung Tau is the nearest beach city that offers a wide range of things to do and see. Yet, if you want some excitements, Ho Chi Minh always has lots of thrilling vibes to offer.
1. Experience the sea smell of the sea in Vung Tau
The distance from Phu My Port to Vung Tau City is 33km, equivalent to a 45-minute drive. Vung Tau is exactly where you can relax under the sun, immerse yourself in turquoise beaches, and savor fantastic seafood dishes.
Vung Tau has four known beaches – Front Beach, Back Beach, Pineapple Beach, Paradise Beach, and many other beautiful beaches. Each has its own hidden charm but you certainly get the most of the sea breeze and out-of-this-world sceneries which are just great for sightseeing and photo ops.
This beach city has a lot more to welcome you; The iconic statue of Jesus Christ on Mount Nho, Pagoda of Nirvana, White Palace, Whale Temple are all alluring to any aesthetes and culture vultures. When you see these tourist spots in real life, you would know the reason why Vung Tau has always been listed as a must-see destination in Vietnam.
When you’ve already had enough time to marvel at stunning tourist spots in Vung Tau, don’t forget to enjoy epicurean with fresh local seafood. There is perhaps no better place to enjoy seafood than in the city of beach. Just feel free to choose from a wide range of culinary delights while breathing the cool fresh air of the sea. Fantastic!
2. Dig into the melting hotpot of Ho Chi Minh City center
Back to the epicenter of hustle and bustle – Ho Chi Minh City, you can have endless time to uncover the hidden charm of the Pearl of the Far East. Ho Chi Minh may be the traffic jam capital of the planet, but this city is a fascinating melting pot of Vietnamese, Chinese and French culture and architecture that impress all tourists remarkably.
What makes the city as iconic as today you see is obviously must-see tourist sites in Ho Chi Minh: War Remnants Museum – live witness of Vietnam’s history, Notre Dame Cathedral – one of the best Catholic churches in Ho Chi Minh, Central Post Office – unparalleled architectural complex of French décor.
The best way to enjoy the local breath is to take a city cyclo tour. If you have a thirst for awe-inspiring street view, your cyclo rider will ride you wherever you want to show you the niceties of daily life that give Saigon it’s extraordinary taste. This is completely amazing when you can challenge yourself in such crazy traffic!
3. Uncover the secret of Cu Chi Tunnels
It would not be exaggerating to say that Cu Chi Tunnels are a true masterpiece of Vietnamese people in wartime. Not only a secret shelter for Communist soldiers, Cu Chi Tunnels also showcase the endless creativity of Vietnamese people.
It is the one-of-kind architecture that makes Cu Chi Tunnels always included in any itinerary as a must-see spot when you decide to choose a shore excursion in Ho Chi Minh City from Phu My Port. Cu Chi Tunnels are a complicate underground network made up of 250km of tunnels and chambers. As it is said that hoes and bamboo shovels are utilized to dig the tunnels, you can find how hard it was to build up this work of resilience. And for many reasons, there were thousands of Vietnamese passing away in the tunnels due to diseases or the detection of enemy’s military. Isn’t that creepy?
Take a rare chance to unveil tragic stories and experience what people really did in wartime. Prepare to be amazed by the cunning traps and the sheer resourcefulness of the Viet Cong. From camouflaged entrances into the tunnels and bamboo traps amongst the forest to the intricate ventilation system, you’ll see it all!
4. Enjoy the best Vietnamese street treats
One of the highlights of Vietnam is the cuisine, and there’s no better to experience the quintessence of Vietnam than eating local dishes. Gone are the days when Vietnamese food only flatters Pho, now when you stroll along any street in Vietnam and in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnamese street treats will never let you down even that little.
You don’t have to worry much about food hygiene as Saigon street food is generally safe for your fragile stomach. Just know that eating where many locals eat is a rational choice!
When Pho is the heart of Vietnamese traditional food, Vietnamese baguette – Banh mi is considered a Vietnamese culinary brand. While Grilled banana – Chuoi nuong makes Vietnamese street food presented in the list of top 20 Street Food Masters (2017), you can savor every bite of Snails or increase your blood sugar quickly with sweet cooling desserts of Che. What you all need to is try the best street food on your food walking tour and say “Yummy”!
How to get the most from your shore excursion
To choose the best shore excursion that caters to your own taste, it’s worth careful research. This is how you can choose the right shore excursions from Phu My Port – and make the best use of your budget.
• Be careful with tour description: Normally, you will be provided with lots of important information in your tour description, especially time matters. Always keep in mind how much time you’ll spend in transit to a destination. If you’re not sure about time for traveling back and forth or even five minutes to take photos available or not, just ask the shore excursion manager onboard.
• Vary activities for each port: As you will disembark at many ports, make sure to diversify activities you can have for each destination: highlight tours, walking tours or food tours. This is to make your journey varying with abundant tourist sites and things to do. You never get bored if each port welcomes you in different ways. If you do careful research or contact a right tour operator, you will know exactly what kind of tour will be the best fit for your next stop, like shore excursions from Phu My Port.
• Consider both cost and value: Regarding shore excursion, you have many options to choose from and it’s up to your preference to get the best. You can either book through cruise lines or independent operators. While cruise line shore excursions are the ‘safest’ choice (the ship won’t leave without you obviously), the price is often higher than independent providers. Plus, private shore excursions provided by local operators will make your experience more genuine and memorable.
Suggested shore excursion from Phu My Port
Because your time in port is typically too short, it pays to plan your shore excursions before your trip. If Phu My Port is your next port of call then here is the list of shore excursions from Phu My Port that will enable you to save time, money, and still have fun-filled activities.
♦ Ho Chi Minh City Private Tour: Enjoy an amazing cyclo ride through 10 local markets • Visit all Ho Chi Minh’s best bits, including Notre-Dame Cathedral & General Post Office • Learn to Make Vietnamese • Dripping Coffee View HCMC From the Top (Optional)
♦ Private Cu Chi Ben Dinh Tunnels & War Remnants Museum: Explore the War Remnants Museum • Visit the fascinating underground bunkers (and crawl in!) • Visit a local family home • Rubber tapping facility and rice-paper making included
♦ Private Cu Chi Tunnels and Ho Chi Minh City Highlights Tour: Visit The Fascinating Underground Bunkers • Visit a local family home • Rubber tapping facility and rice-paper making included experience all Ho Chi Minh’s highlights
♦ Best of Vung Tau Private Tour: Witness the grandeur of White Palace • Enjoy the fresh sea breeze at Front Beach • Visit Whale Temple & Christ the King Statue
While you’re still not sure how to make the most of shore excursions from Phu My Port, simply tell us where you want to go or follow our expert advice, and we will drop you back to your cruise ship in plenty of time. Shore excursions from Maika Tours are all fully customisable and you will not regret any moments for touring with us!
Trinh Tran written for Maika Tours
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