Set alongside shimmering lakes and framed by grassy mountains, Đồng Nai is a paradise. Đồng Nai has an abundance of places to visit and things to do; whether you trek around the Cat Tien National Park, check-in at hip attractions like the Mango Garden Resort, or sail around the Tri An Lake.
Dong Nai is a Vietnamese province located just to the northeast bordering Ho Chi Minh City. As a region it’s growing both its commercial and industry developments, as well as tourism. Though it’s still much slower to develop than HCMC, resulting in more of traditional charm being retained.
Located just outside of HCMC and about an hour from downtown Saigon, Bien Hoa is Dong Nai’s most popular and largest city. Let’s explore the the best things to do through the greater Đồng Nai province.
Đồng Nai’s best things to do
It features a lot of things to do, though even more attractions can be found outside the city further into Dong Nai. Bien Hoa also makes a great base camp due to its proximity on the outskirts of Ho Chi Minh City. You can even find a few luxury hotels in Bien Hoa to accommodate.
Here are the top tourist activities in Dong Nai, Vietnam, in no particular order:
1. Cat Tien National Park
Cat Tien National Park is known for its beauty and diversity, which explains why it’s on the bucket list of most travelers. The park offers an amazing opportunity to explore the great outdoors. Trekking is the most common activity for tourists who want to see the vibrant wildlife.
As far as trekking the Cat Tien National Park goes, you have two options. The first is to visit the Crocodile Lake, and the second is to trek along a short trail leading up to a unique habitat that’s home to diverse wildlife and ancient trees over a hundred years old. When you’re tired, you can book lodgings at the Cat Tien Farmstay, which is only two kilometers away from the Cat Tien National park.
Address: Tân Phú District, Đồng Nai
2. Long Thanh Golf Club
The Long Thanh Golf Club was designed and engineered by experienced architects from the world-renowned architecture firm Golf Plan. It’s spread out over 350 hectares of lush foliage in the Phước Tân Village at a distance of about 36 kilometers from Ho Chi Minh City. The club is famous for its 36-hole golf course, restaurants, central clubhouse, driving range, and luxurious villas.
Moreover, each hole has its characteristic shape, which is challenging and engaging for both professional and amateur golfers alike.
The golf club is maintained in pristine condition throughout the year. Its large, undulating greens and rolling fairways make it a popular destination for both locals and tourists alike. In 2013 Long Thanh Golf Club was voted as the recipient of the “Best Courses in Vietnam” by the Asian Golf Magazine, for its unique combination of modern equipment, helpful staff, and excellent golfing conditions.
Address: Phước Tân – Long Thành, Phước Tân, Long Thành, Đồng Nai
3. Great Outdoors at the Suối Mơ Park
Suối Mơ Park is widely believed to be the most popular picnic destination for tourists. It’s described as a paradise thanks to the flowing water from underground valleys surrounded by a natural environment. You can partake in a range of activities such as camping, photography, bathing, and team-building games.
Besides, the park has access to an amazing range of local restaurants that give you a taste of Vietnamese cuisine.
To get to the park, you can take a bike from the city center and head towards the National Road 1 to Dầu Giây Junction. Now, take a turn to the left into National Road 20, travel 48 kilometers and when you arrive at column 48 at Định Quán Peoples Committee, travel another 700m, take a right turn, and go straight into Suối Mơ.
Address: Suối Mơ, Trà Cổ, Tân Phú, Đồng Nai
4. Buu Long Tourist Area
Kick-off your tour of Đồng Nai by enjoying the best ecotourism experience in Vietnam at the Buu Long Tourist Area. Although Vietnam is largely focused on the development and use of ultra-modern metropolises, Buu Long offers you an escape from the bustling city life.
An interesting place to visit is Long An Lake in Bửu Long. It’s surrounded by tall cliffs, unique architectural buildings, and sidewinding rivers mixed in with the lush greenery of the grass. There’s a mountain standing in defiance right next to the resort, which makes the entire place looks so candid that it seems as though you’ve walked right into a postcard picture.
Here, you can relax in front of vast lakes or take a boat ride around. Even if you’re not engaging in either of these activities, you can take a stroll around the small mountain lakes. If you were to travel up the mountain, you’ll be able to see the entire city of Bien Hoa in Đồng Nai. Each corner of Buu Long promotes the conservation of Vietnamese ecosystems, culture, wildlife, and community.
Address: Huỳnh Văn Nghệ, Khu Phố 4, Tp. Biên Hòa, Đồng Na
5. Dao Tien Endangered Primate Species Center
If you ever happen to come across the Cat Tien National Park, you should check out this center. The Dao Tien Endangered Primate Species Centre is located on a tiny isolated island, which is home to endangered primate species such as the golden-cheeked gibbons, silvered langurs, back shanked douc, and the pygmy slow loris. These intelligent primates are taught useful skills at the center before being released back into the wildlife.
An interesting point to note is that all these animals have been rescued from people who illegally captured them. The animals lost their basic survival instincts that they naturally learn in the wild.
Address: Đồng Nai, Đạ Tẻh District, Lâm Đồng
6. Crocodile Lake
The Crocodile Lake supports many critically-endangered species and provides an important breeding area for crocodiles. You’ll find over 200 crocodiles whose habitat has been painstakingly preserved over the last few years. The lake was once home to many Siamese crocodiles, but their natural biosphere was naturally lost due to human expansion as they developed land for housing, commerce, and agriculture.
Address: Tân Phú District, Đồng Nai
7. Cycling Across the Tropical Forestry
If you’re an avid cyclist and want to spend some quality time exploring the natural beauty of the Tri An Lake, consider booking a tour with the King Fisher Company. You’ll have an experienced tour guide you through fascinating sites. There are over 25 km of tropical forest to go through, allowing you to gain brief insights into the lives of the local people. The best part is that you’ll get to meet many like-minded individuals, have fun, and challenge yourself.
8. Camp out at the Núi Chứa Chan Mountain
For the best views, head towards the Núi Chứa Chan Mountain. Nui is Vietnamese for ‘mountain’. It’s a landscape filled with natural sceneries of ancient pagodas and vast lakes that routinely attract thousands of visitors every year. The Núi Chứa Chan is 800 meters above sea level, making it the second-highest mountain in the southern area.
It has gained notoriety for a special pagoda called Buu-Quang that lies at its peak. There you’ll find a strange banyan tree with three roots planted in the mountain’s middle. To get to the mountain you’ll need to arrange your own transportation since the local buses will only take you to the nearby Long Khanh District.
We recommend hiring a local guide to help you get here. Or if you’re comfortable enough, rent a motorbike to get there faster. You can also stop on the way for cà phê sữa đá (Vietnamese iced coffee) to catch a break.
Once you get to the mountain, prepare for an experience like no other. The locals here live in an elevated neighborhood alongside a paved path to help tourists trek up the jagged, bushy terrain. On your journey to the peak of the mountain, you will see a lot of souvenir shops and small restaurants to rest at. If at all possible, bring a tour guide with you.
Xuân Lộc District, Dong Nai
9. Boat Ride Across the Đồng Nai River
Book a ride on a rustic canoe to go sightseeing across the Đồng Nai River. You can also charter a private yacht where experienced staff will guide you through famous riverside areas. Make sure to book a tour to save yourself the time and stress of navigating the waters. If you time your trips during sunset and sunrise, the views will appear much more stunning.
10. Swimming through the Magical Thac Mai
Thac Mai is known for its stunning natural hot water springs. There is a lot of potential for waterfall tourism here because the mere sight of the water is enough to add to your experience. You can find clean water baths that the whole family will enjoy. Do keep in mind that the temperature may get a little warm too at times, which can end up temporarily reddening the skin. It’s best to take breaks after 20 minutes or so.
Address: Gia Canh, Định Quán District, Dong Nai
11. Shower at the Waterfalls in Thac Giang Dien
The mere spectacle of the muddy white torrents of gushing water surrounded by a backdrop of lush green valley is enough to attract nature lovers. The site is serene, deep, and mystical – perfect for the whole family. Keep in mind that the waters may get a little polluted during peak season. Thac Giang Dien has a myriad of photo opportunities that nature photographers appreciate.
Address: 104/4 Ấp Hòa Bình, Xã Giang Điền, Giang Điền, Dong Nai
12. Sightseeing at the Bien Hung Park
Bien Hung is one of the biggest parks in Bien Hoa, with a thriving night market that sells everything from food, drinks, and cheap clothes. The atmosphere gives off chill vibes that help you relax, creating ideal conditions for walking and exercising on the weekends.
Address: Ba Mươi Tháng Tư, Trung Dũng, Thành phố Biên Hòa, Đồng Nai
These are just some of the activities you can try in Đồng Nai. Try them all to make your trip a memorable one!