Andre Akito

February 2021

Chàm Islands | Vietnam

The Chàm Islands are located in the central region of Vietnam,  a few kilometers away from the the city of Hội An. It constitutes a group of 8 islands which are only accessible by taking the market boat (~3 hours) or the speed boats (~30 minutes). It is really awesome to take the market boat, since you can see all the work that it takes to transport the essential goods to the main island.  

It is believed that the Cham Islands were home to one of the first settlements of the Cham People when they first arrived in Southeast Asia. However, after the fall of the Cham Empire in the end of the 15th century , the Vietnamese took control of the cluster of islands, which were eventually used as the stop point for cargo shops coming from all over the world towards the port of Hội An. For a few centuries, the islands acted as a convenient stop for ships coming to Southeast Asia. 

Today, the Cham Islands present itself as a popular touristic destination and it offers many white sand beaches along its coast and also corals and marine life for scuba diving. Furthermore, the islands serve as a military base for the central government. 

Cham Islands from the Sky

The agglomeration of islands constitutes of one large island surrounded by seven small islands, all of them covering a sea area of 15 square kilometers in total. There is a road that borders the edges of the main island, so it’s possible to explore all of it by motorbike. However, the in the beginning of 2021, parts of road were destroyed because due to landfalls, caused by strong rains during the previous monsoon period. Along the coast of the main island, there are many desert beaches with clear blue water that can be accessed by walking paths. 

People from Cham Islands

The citizens from Chàm Islands live in two fishing villages called Bai Lang and Bai Huong that are located in the main island . Many of them dedicate their lives to the fishing activity. Therefor,  many of the villagers wake up very early in the morning to prepare their boats and venture towards the sea. Other citizens work in the tourism industry running homestays, restaurants and travel agencies. One of the most incredible homestay in the island is  Hai Long Homestay, a small family-owned homestay in front of the beach. The family is extremely welcoming and offers on the best family dinners I’ve ever eaten in Vietnam. 

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