Vivutravel: Con Dao Island was hailed by the US-based Travel and Leisure Magazine as one of 20 most mysterious islands in the world in 2011.
Tourist will be surprised at the primitive nature of Con Dao after your first few steps on the island and by the hospitality of the islanders. In 2010, French television production company ALP picked Con Dao as a location to film their Koh Lanta adventure game. When it was broadcast on the French television channel TF1 in August 2010 Con Dao became increasingly well known. In November 2010, Con Dao was selected on the list of most romantic and impressive tourist destinations in the Southeast Asia and Asia as a whole, having won the votes of several world-famous news agencies including the US-based New York Times and the UK-based Lonely Planet Magazine. In 2011, Con Dao was again hailed by the US-based Travel and Leisure Magazine as one of 20 most mysterious islands of the world.
According to Truong Hoang Phuc, the secretary of the People's Committee of Con Dao District, the Ministry of Planning and Investment has ratified a socioeconomic development plan for Con Dao 2011-2020 with a view toward 2030, providing the conditions through which Con Dao will develop into an international-level tourist center.
Around 10 tourist projects have been expanded in Con Dao since 2010 including the Con Dao Six Senses Resort with investment of US$38 million, the Vietnam-Russia Tourist Resort with an invested capital of VND800 million, the Regency Hyatt Hotel Resort with capital of US$250 million. The Con Dao Six Senses Resort which recently came into operation won the prize for the best designed and built construction at the International Commercial Property Awards funded by the US-based television channel Bloomberg.
Statistics from Con Dao tourism management boards reveal that the number of local and foreign visitors to Con Dao has increased in recent years and hit a record in 2011. In the first 11 months of 2011, Con Dao received 54,955 visitors, an 82 percent increase over the same period last year. 11,567 of that number were foreigners, a 687 percent increase over the same period last year. The 11-month tourist earnings reached VND111.58 billion which accounted for 159 percent of Con Dao's annual tourist plan and increased 272 percent compared to the same period last year.
The increase in number of visitors to Con Dao in the first 11 months of 2011 resulted from the tourism promotion campaigns Con Dao launched in the year and its improved tourist infrastructure and services. For example, more Can Tho-Con Dao flights were provided by Vietnam Air Service Company (VASCO), and the Con Dao Six Senses Resort entered operation, while local tourist businesses were improved in terms of service and training quality.
Presently, there are 29 accommodation service businesses operating on Con Dao that own seven three to five star hotels, four mini-hotels and four guest houses, with 500 rooms available for more than a thousand people. Many local organizations and individuals however continue to build more hotels and guest houses so as to meet rising visitor numbers.
"Con Dao is focusing on blueprints for construction on Co Ong Island and at Ben Dam Port; for Con Dao National Park; and for conservation of historical revolutionary sites," said Truong Hoang Phuc