A visit to Con Dao Island is incomplete without exploring the haunting remnants of its dark past at Con Dao Prison. Steeped in history, this prison complex serves as a poignant reminder of the island’s tumultuous past, offering a chance for tourists to understand the struggles and resilience of Vietnamese people. Con Dao Prison is built by the French to detain particularly dangerous prisoners for the French colonial regime. Later on, the Americans continued to use the prison in the war against the US. Côn Đảo Prison Relics includes Phu Son Prison, Phu Hai Prison, Phu Tho Prison, Phu Tuong Prison – The Tiger Cage, the separated cow shed, Phu An Prison, Phu Phong, and Phu Hung Prison.
Chua Dao Palace, also known as The Governor’s palace, is also a worthy attraction to visit if you would like to understand more about the magnanimous fighting history of Vietnam. Formed between 1862 and 1876 with a total area of 18,600 m2, it was formerly the home of 53 island kings during the French colonial period and the American empire over 113 years.
Situated in the center of the island, Con Dao Museum is a captivating space that offers a comprehensive insight into the island’s history and culture. The museum is divided into thematic areas, each presenting a well-curated collection of artifacts, photographs, and interactive displays.
Hang Duong Cemetary is a must-not-missed site in your historical tour to pay the respects to the ancestors. The cemetary is 20ha wide and where the Vietnamese revolutionaries were laid to rest, including the martyr Vo Thi Sau. The ambiance of the whole area after dark is peaceful and serene, however, the daytime has its own beauty as well.
The entrance ticket is available at the Con Dao Museum and could be used to access the destinations including the museum itself, Chua Dao Palace and 03 prison relics Phu Hai, Phu Tuong and Phu Binh. Please respect local customs and cover your shoulders, belly and knees when entering religious and historical sites.