Cham Islands: World’s Biosphere Reserves in Vietnam

Cham Islands

Cham Islands

Overview of Cham Islands

Cham Islands is considered a raw pearl in Hoi An because of its stunning natural and cultural attractions. This place has become an extremely attractive destination for many domestic and foreign travelers coming to the ancient town. In this article, you will find a lot of useful information about Cham Islands as well as what you should know before traveling.

Where is Cham Islands Hoi An?

Located in Hoi An City, Quang Nam Province, Cu Lao Cham (Cham Islands) is a 15-square-kilometer island cluster consisting of 1 main island and 8 surrounding small islands. The distance from Hoi An to Cham Islands is about 20 kilometers while it is 45 kilometers if you go on a tour from Da Nang to this island cluster.

Cham Islands - Vietnam Shore Excursions
Cham Islands from the air

Cham Island Weather

In Cham Islands, the weather from March to August is extremely favorable with plenty of sunshine. This time is suitable for some activities such as swimming, scuba diving, sunbathing, … Meanwhile, the rest of the year – from September to February, has a lot of rainfalls and large waves so there are usually no boats to take tourists to the islands.

Cham Island Vietnam
Cham Islands in a beautiful sunny day

The ticket fee for Cham Islands

In 2009, UNESCO recognized Cham Islands as one of the world’s biosphere reserves. Unlike other popular destinations, aside from the entrance fee, you have to pay the ecological fee when visiting this place to contribute to protecting the environment.

  • The entrance fee: 70,000 VND/person
  • The ecological fee: 20,000 VND/person

However, note that these ticket prices are for reference only and may vary depending on the time.

Cham Island Vietnam
Cu Lao Cham Island is a good place for relaxing

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Poplar Attractions on Cham Islands in Hoi An

Not only being famous for its unspoiled natural landscapes, Cham Islands also gives visitors a chance to explore the culture and religion of the locals here with many impressive attractions.

The Windy Strait of Cham Islands

The windy strait is located to the East of Cham Islands, about three kilometers away from the Bai Lang Residential Area. It is surrounded by the endless sea with a clear blue-sky background. On your trip to Cu Lao Cham Island, this is a destination that you can hardly ignore if you want to find a place to catch the sunrise or watch the sunset.

Cham Islands Vietnam
Taking photos in the majestic view of the windy trait

The Ancient Well of the Cham people

The ancient well of the Cham people lies in ​​Xom Cam Residential Area. At present, it is more than 200 years old and has been the only source of fresh water to be not contaminated with salt or alum on the island. The locals believe that people drinking the water of the well can get lucky in terms of love and childbirth.

Cham Island Vietnam - Vietam Shore Excursions
The ancient well of the Cham people attracts a lot of tourists

Hai Tang Temple

Situated at the foot of the Western Mountain of Hon Lao, Hai Tang Temple has an impressive view over a vast field. Despite the passage of time, this sacred temple still remains intact and has become a symbol of the island. Each year, thousands of pilgrims and tourists visit the temple to pray for peace as well as get away from the hustle and bustle of daily life.

Cham Island Hoi An - Vietnam Shore Excursions
Visitors usually come to Hai Tang Temple to pray for peace

Tan Hiep Market

Located right at the pier, Tan Hiep Market is a destination you should not miss when visiting Cham Islands in Hoi An. Coming there, you can enjoy a lot of delicious seafood dishes and buy unique souvenirs made from shells, snails, stones, … Normally, the seafood at the market is cheaper than in the mainland because it is sold there and then after being caught.

Cham Island Snorkeling Tour
Fresh seafood at Tan Hiep Market in Cham Islands

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The temple of the Nest Craftsman

The Temple of the Nest Craftsman is a large-scale architectural work, classified as a national relic in 2006. It is located on a sand mound next to Cay Cua in Bai Huong. On the 10th day of the third lunar month every year, the tribute ceremony to the ancestors of bird’s nest exploitation is solemnly held at the temple. Therefore, you should visit this place on this occasion to better understand the beliefs of the locals.

Cham Islands Snorkeling Tour from Hoi An
The temple of the Nest Craftsman is a place where you should visit once

Tips to have the best Cham Islands Tour

If you are looking for a fun and adventurous activity to do on your vacation in Vietnam, why not try snorkeling at Cu Lao Cham? Located just a short boat ride away from Hoi An, this picturesque island is known for its crystal-clear waters and colorful coral reefs teeming with marine life. As you dip into the cool water, you will be able to spot schools of fish darting around you, sea turtles gliding gracefully through the waves, and vibrant corals swaying gently in the current. It is an unforgettable experience that will leave you feeling exhilarated yet peaceful at the same time.

When is the best time to visit Cham Islands?

As mentioned above, thanks to the nice weather, from March to August is the right time for a visit to Cham Islands. At this period of time, the weather is warm and sunny while the sea is calm. In particular, if you want to combine your Cu Lao Cham tour with going sightseeing in the center of Hoi An, you should go on the full moon day of the lunar month to see the most sparkling scenery of thousands of lanterns.

Cham Islands in Vietnam
The ideal time to visit Cham Islands is from March to August

What to eat in Cham Islands in Hoi An?

When visiting Cham Islands, you should try some well-known specialties here:

Cham Islands Hoi An Vietnam
Boiled abalone – a tasty food in Cham Islands
  • Grilled one-sunny-day squid: This semi-dried seafood will bring you a perfect taste when being dipped into chili sauce.
  • Pyramid top shell: This is a famous sea snail of the central coastal region. It can be processed in many ways such as boiling, grilling, salad…
  • Abalone: There are many ways to process abalone like boiling, frying, grilling, … All of them will definitely give you a very special taste.
  • Rock crab: The meat of rock crab is mouth-watering and fresh with a firm texture. It can be steamed with beer, then served with salt, pepper and lemon.
  • Grilled sea urchin: This dish is usually served with scallion oil on the top, making it a unique dish that you should enjoy once.

Cham Islands Map

How to get to Cham Islands in Hoi An?

There are two main means of transportation to go to Cham Islands:

  • By canoe: This is a time-saving way which takes visitors only around 20 minutes to go to the island cluster. It is suitable for adventure enthusiasts who desire a strong surfing feeling. The ticket fee of a canoe trip is 200,000 VND/person.
  • By wooden boat: The ticket fee of a wooden boat trip is 150,000 VND for the Vietnamese and 200,000 VND for foreigners. Compared to canoeing, it takes more time to go and is not suitable for those who are prone to seasickness. If you bring a motorbike to the island, you have to pay an additional fee of 50,000 VND/motorbike.
The best way to get to Cham Islands is by speed boat
The best way to get to Islands is by speed boat

For travelers who want to visit Cham Island Hoi An with private transport, you can book a Cham Island Snorkeling Tour from Vietnam Shore Excursions. Professional and knowledgeable tour guides will share profoundly many interesting stories about Cham people, Cham Islands, as well as the local life of local people during the tour. After doing the Cham Island Snorkeling Tour, you might like other options for Hoi An Tours for you and your group.

Cham Islands Vietnam - Vietnam Shore Excursions
Snorkeling is a must-try when traveling to the Islands

Some things you should note before visiting Cham Islands

Below are what you should pay attention to before taking a trip to Cham Islands:

  • Do not bring plastic bags to Cham Islands
  • Bring personal documents
  • Prepare some essential things: hats, sunglasses, sandals, sunscreen, insect spray…
  • Do not harm the coral reefs while taking the Cham Islands snorkeling tour
  • Suggested gifts for your relatives and friends: dried seafood and fresh seafood, swallow’s nest, medicinal herbs, dried seaweed, fish sauce, souvenirs made from seashells, …

In conclusion, Cham Islands is among the top must-visit tourist attractions in Hoi An. Thanks to a lot of interesting features, it attracts thousands of tourists every year. If you are a nature lover and want to satisfy your wanderlust, remember to put this place on your bucket list and come there someday.

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David Nguyen - Vietnam Travel Expert

Mr. David Nguyen is a travel expert and as a seasoned traveler he has the inside track on the most memorable adventures which will help you to have unforgettable memories and wonderful experiences to better your Vietnam Holiday!

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