Starfish Beach is one of Phu Quoc's best beaches and one of the island's most popular attractions. The beach gets its name from the many bright red colored starfish in the shallows along the shoreline.
The beach is bustling with tourists year-round, so expect a lot of people. Aside from the starfish, there are plenty of loungers (some free, some paid), a rustic beach bar, and several restaurants.
Where is Starfish Beach Phu Quoc?
Starfish Beach is at the northern tip of Phu Quoc in the Ganh Dau district. It's a remote part of the island accessible via a long bumpy, dirt road.
How to Get to Starfish Beach Phu Quoc
Unless you are staying right next door to Starfish Beach, you will need either a scooter, taxi, or tour bus to get there.
If you are fit (and a bit cray), you can attempt to cycle from Ong Lang or Duong Dong city, but it will take at least 60 to 90 minutes, and you'll likely burn in the scorching Phu Quoc heat.
The final 1.5 miles (2.4km) of road leading up to Starfish Beach is particularly treacherous with bumps and potholes. It's pretty slow going where you'll probably only get up to 10 miles (20 km) an hour.
The main road past Ong Lang is also very busy with traffic, especially construction vehicles. So please be cautious if you are riding a bicycle or scooter to Starfish Beach.
Ong Lang to Starfish Beach
11.18 miles / 18 km - approximately 30 minutes by scooter or taxi.
Ong Lang to Starfish Beach Google Maps directions
Duong Dong to Starfish Beach
13.76 miles / 22 km - approximately 40 - 45 minutes by scooter or taxi.
Duong Dong to Starfish Beach Google Maps directions
Phu Quoc Airport to Starfish Beach
20.50 miles / 33 km - approximately 1 hour by scooter or taxi.
Phu Quoc Airport to Starfish Beach Google Maps directions
Duong Bao (Novatel/Sailing Club) to Starfish Beach
23.05 miles / 37.10 km - approximately 1 hour 10 minutes by scooter or taxi.
Duong Bao to Starfish Beach Google Maps directions
An Thoi (Sao Beach/Cable Car) to Starfish Beach
29 miles / 46.67 km - approximately 1 hour 20 minutes by scooter or taxi.
An Thoi to Starfish Beach Google Maps directions
Best Time to Visit Starfish Beach
Starfish Beach is small and can get crowded quickly. The best time to visit Starfish Beach is early morning, between 7 to 10 am. I know this is early, but you will beat the crowds and midday the heat. The tour buses will start arriving after 9 am and continue until late in the day.
If you plan to spend a few hours or the day at Starfish Beach, getting there before 8 am will ensure you get the best position on the beach and a free lounger (deck chair).
Starfish Beach Tides
I have visited Starfish Beach on many occasions and never had an issue with tides. When the tide is high, the water is still only knee-deep, so you can still see the starfish. The low tide exposes many of the starfish so that you can get a closer inspection.
Starfish Beach Phu Quoc Map
Below is a map of Starfish Beach. You can also view the map on Google Maps here.
There is a small beach bar (more of a hut) as you exit the car park onto Starfish Beach. Beyond that is a jetty with 3 or 4 seafood restaurants. Down the beach from the bar is an area with free loungers, and you'll also find a lot of starfish in the water here.
Further along, are more loungers and a long stretch of beach. If you plan to spend a long time at Starfish Beach or want to avoid the crowds, this is the best place to set up.
The starfish found at starfish beach Phu Quoc is the Protoreaster nodosus, also known as the horned sea star, chocolate chip sea star, or knobbly sea star. This starfish species is typically red with black 'horns' but can also appear brown or even tan in color.
The Protoreaster nodosus frequent warm shallow water and is common to the Indo-Pacific region, including Vietnam, Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia.
Can You Pick Up Starfish?
To breathe, starfish process oxygen by filtering water through gills on their arms. To locate food, starfish are also acutely sensitive to touch, light, temperature, orientation, and water status.
While I can't say with any authority whether this handling starfish kills them, they are sensitive to their environment and regularly die in captivity. Starfish also breathe underwater, which means picking them up will cause stress, possibly leading to death.
It's sad to see how many people pick up and even throw the sea stars at Starfish Beach. These are wild animals and should be observed without direct human interaction.
Starfish Beach Phu Quoc Review (My Thoughts)
I have visited Starfish Beach on several occasions and enjoyed myself every time. Although it's far, Starfish Beach is worth it. It's incredible to see when there are many starfish gathered—sometimes stretching 100 meters or so.
The beach itself is a pleasant place to hang out. If you manage to secure a lounger, it's a great place to sit and watch the day pass by. Most loungers have umbrellas offering some protection from the intense heat.
The beach bar (more of a hut) is seriously cool. It's a stereotypical looking island beach hut with a wooden bar and a rustic thatch roof. The menu is limited, offering beers, coolers, water, and fresh coconuts but there are restaurants to grab a bite to eat.
I've eaten at one of the restaurants on the jetty. I had excellent noodle seafood. The service wasn't great, but you sit over the water, which adds to the 'island experience.'