Search ‘quick beach trips from Ho Chi Minh City‘ and you’ll most likely leave with Vung Tau and Mui Ne as the only options. But trust me when I say to you that Coco Beachcamp (down Le Minh Cong alley, Tan Phuoc, La Gi, Vietnam) is Southern Vietnam’s best kept secret. Off the beaten path in the sleepy fishing village of Lagi, you’ll discover that solitude and fun can coexist in the same space. Coco Beachcamp is the base for all beach raves come the weekend and mellows out on the weekdays, transforming into a chill resort. Two hours from Mui Ne, and 2.5 hours away from Ho Chi Minh City, I was lucky to visit the campsite during my last month in the country, when I so badly needed to recharge from the chaos of readying my transition back to the USA. This hipster hideaway is the perfect remedy for a Saigon-weary soul.
How to get there from Ho Chi Minh City: Arrange a private van to Lagi at one of the many transportation hubs on Bui Vien (the backpacking street) and make sure to tell the driver your stop is “Coco Beachcamp.’ Private vans start at 150,00 VND one-way. You can also get there by motorbike, taking around 2.5-3 hours from Saigon.
- Full on-site restaurant and bar
- Complimentary bikes
- A variety of room-styles
- Swimming pool looking out onto the beach
- Beach-themed gift shop
- En-suite bathrooms in each private bungalow/beach hut
- Air-conditioner and fans available in bungalows
- Fully equipped beach tents with sofas, beds, and personal fans
- Photoshoot areas (for those looking for something gram-worthy)
- On a private beach
- Car service to center of town available
- Hosts a number of musical events
- Self-service outdoor barbeque area
- In-house sea sports such as catamaran, kite-surf, windsurf, kayak, jet ski
Coco Beachcamp boasts five kinds of accommodation with over 40 beach huts and bungalows, two-person tents, as well as luxury tents sitting on the beach. They also have camping trailers parked near the entrance for guests to live out their camper van fantasies! For those going down the camping route, there are shared bathrooms and power stations to keep your batteries juiced up, while the bungalows and beach huts are outfitted with private bathrooms and air conditioners for those in need of creature comforts. There is also a room arrangement that can host up to eight people but you have to specify your desire to book it in person.
I was lucky enough to stay in beach hut room 01A, which offers an unadulterated view of the shoreline. The interior design is a subtle touch of boho meets coastal chic. I was truly excited to have a private bathroom but don’t get your hopes up for something fancy. Also make sure you bring bathroom slippers because the bathroom floor is slippery as hell and I almost smashed my face on the floor trying to brush my teeth. Right behind the row of beach huts perpendicular to the beach is Lang Moc Rustic Village, a set of triangular bungalows with small wooden decks.
Closer to the dining area and the main entrance of Coco Beachcamp are camper vans and more private bungalows. For families looking for some semblance of peace, I’d suggest booking the bungalows in this general section as they are farthest away from any loud music playing near the beach bar. If I could’ve done it over again, I would’ve loved to stay in one of the luxury tents out on the beach. Each of the luxury tents comes fully furnished with a real mattress, a loveseat couch, a tiny coffee table, and an electric fan. And for only $10 USD a night, you won’t find a glamping deal much better than this. Although we were warned that during the hot season in Vietnam, once the sunrises, the heat gets oppressive as the tents are without any shade.
Pro-tip: Book rooms weeks in advance and they sell out quickly, especially on the weekends.
Uniquely its own, Coco Beachcamp is a polychromatic mecca for photo mavens and EDM thirsty ravers. Each corner of the beachcamp, which sprawls across a large spread of unspoilt coastline (save for the fear of encroaching erosion), is decked out in beach-themed knicknacks, refurbished vintage cars, hemp dreamcatchers, and colorful mandala tapestries. As you enter Coco Beachcamp, you’ll see the a row of pastel mini campers lining the walkway to the main reception area. To the left of the reception desk is the “Beach Shop” just in case you want to bring the camp look to your own home. The beach view is shrouded by a surplus of greenery so bank right and you’ll come across the complimentary bike parking lot, featuring Fornix models, and an epic view of sandy white beach. But it’s not a barren wasteland out on the beachfront. The light-up Coco Beachcamp sign is unmissable, as is the rainbow-hued oldsmobile, a line of multicolored wooden lawn chairs, pastel teepee skeletons, and a cluster of flatbed swings. The luxury tents are pitched out on the far right next to the car. When we arrived, we saw the beach jampacked with mostly Vietnamese friends and couples running photoshoot sessions with all the props. Before you hit the beach, check out the Beach Kitchen and Bar to get your feast/buzz on. You can lounge at one of the many dining areas, but there is also a space with purely soft seating (think: bean bags and papasan chairs) in case you need to squeeze in an afternoon nap prior to hitting the beach. The pool was erected to look out onto the ocean,with only a few picnic tables slightly obscuring the view. Near to the beach huts and bungalows, you’ll find a number of picnic tables and grills, just in case you want to bring your own food. Coco Beachcamp warrants an hour or two of thorough exploration and you’ll be rewarded in the process with strange finds like netted seating platforms and dreamy hammocks.
WATCH A VIDEO FOR A PERSONAL TOUR OF COCO BEACHCAMP.
THE BEACH KITCHEN
Don’t expect much beyond traditional Vietnamese food and seafood entrees, but the drinks are stellar. With Lagi township being 20 minutes away by car, there aren’t any other restaurants closeby save for the little quan (a humble Vietnamese-style restaurant) on the beach way past the teepees and Lang Moc Rustic Village, but I’m not advising it. When we passed the quan there weren’t any guests and the food was just sitting there ready to be warmed up, but not fresh. The Beach Kitchen is good but simple. The alcoholic range however is good to keep you partying the night long. Cocktails are 80,000 VND and feature the tropical classics like ‘Sex on the Beach’ and ‘Dark & Stormy,’ while also delivering up some Vietnamese-inspired mixes infused with lemongrass and lychee. There are also fresh fruit juices and smoothies. There is also a happy hour from 5-7 pm! If you’re looking for breakfast in the morning, make your way to the beach kitchen and don’t leave the counter until your order is up or else you’ll never get your food! I found the breakfast choices to be more pleasing than the lunch and dinner options. For breakfast, I ordered a hu tieu nam vang, a Cambodian-style thin rice noodle soup. The broth was packed with flavor, the proteins were tender, and the whole meal was made bright by the addition of fresh herbs. Some of the orders come out slowly but that’s because the bar/kitchen is understaffed so complaining will not get you anywhere. Do as the Vietnamese do and practice patience. You aren’t going anywhere anytime soon so what’s the rush?
Pro-tip: Bring cash. The closest ATM is in Lagi, which is 20-minutes away by car. If you don’t have a car, you can ask for a car service at the reception desk.
As it goes with hipster places, the staff working the floor exude an air of cool. The manager, Henry, teaches surfing and flies massive kites, while making sure the place doesn’t burn down. The waitstaff are outfitted in bright, splashy oxfords printed with tropical fruits like bananas and watermelons, available at the gift shop. There are DJs from all over the world hitting up the turntables (FYI, the resident DJ is from Singapore) and they even have an on-site artist who decorates the space in anything her heart desires.
Check-In: 2 PM. Check-out: 11 AM.
Regular tents starting at $7 per night. Beachfront tents starting at $10 per night. Private bungalows starting at $35 per night. BOOK TODAY!
DISCLAIMER: I was a guest of Coco Beachcamp, but all opinions and photos, as always, are my own.
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