After visiting Dinh Cau for one of its spectacular sunsets, you should drop by Dinh Cau Night Market, the best place on Phu Quoc Island to sample the many different kinds of seafood, fishermen haul in from the ocean on a daily basis.
The night market in Duong Dong town offers not just the usual souvenirs and keepsakes you might expect at a famous landmark like this. The main product of this Vietnamese attraction are the seafood dishes. We tried these grilled sea urchins, topped off with a drizzle of fish sauce, peanuts and green onions. Actually the sea urchins don't taste good and the small amount of bitter meat is probably not worth the 20,000đ you pay for each. But it is an adventure and, unless you are from one of these southern fishing towns yourself, you probably never tried them before.
The road is lined with fish tanks containing oysters, clams, sharks, mantis shrimps, lobsters and other deep sea monsters that should have been left deep down in R'lyeh, where they pick the growing barnacles from Cthulhu's sleeping body. The sharks make a quite depressive impression though. I mean how would you feel in a cage your size, waiting to be eaten? Sharks need to move in order to breath, so they are probably passive due to a lack of oxygen.
Most of the creatures I have seen before, in films made by Jacques Cousteau, but of course not in the flesh. Some of that marine life though... Have they been around forever, or did they develop recently as a result of nuclear radiation? Well, I am not a marine biologist, just a culinary adventurer, so we dig in.
Grilled, boiled, steamed and stir-fried, Dinh Cau Night Market on Phu Quoc Island features great seafood cuisine at a reasonable price. Of course, without a dessert the meal is not complete. You can decide between sugar-roasted peanuts, a selection of fresh fruits, pancakes and traditional Vietnamese sweet soups.
I also bought a package of spicy, roasted seaweed for my queen. She loves seaweed and spicy food as well, so that's the perfect culinary souvenir. If you want to wash down the fish you ate, try either Saigonese beer or a cup of the wonderfully refreshing sugarcane juice they offer at various stalls.
Compared with other night markets, the amount of souvenirs is rather disappointing though. Some of the shells may be from Phu Quoc Island, but most of the cheaper pearls are of Chinese origin. The lacquerware is from the mainlands of Vietnam as well and the t-shirts at the night market are rather uncreative. Some of the souvenirs are real corals. Please be responsible and don't buy them. The reefs are a vital part of the marine ecosystem around Phu Quoc Island and they have a hard standing against the pollution anyway. No need to manually destroy them on top of that.
But that Dinh Cau Night Market offers the best seafood, we easily agreed on that.
Phu Quoc Water Sports Holidays on a tropical island would be odd without the opportunity to do sports. Water sports. Here is a selection of stuff that you can try on Phu Quoc.
Shopping on Phu Quoc You can get some really interesting products from Phu Quoc, mainly pepper, pearls and fish sauce. There are other things too, just check out the variety of shopping opportunities on the island.