I visited the Con Dao Islands in the East China Sea recently as the next to last stop for my current travel book project. The Con Dao group is made up of 15 small islands, with only the main island, Con Son, being inhabited. Con Son Island and Con Dao town (getting confused yet?) is easily the least Vietnamese place that I have visited in Vietnam. Beautiful scenery from lush green mountains to deserted white sand beaches coupled with the total lack of traffic, hawkers selling trinkets and noise, make this a unique place in Vietnam.
Con Son has a weighty history as it was used as a prison island by the French in colonial times and then by the American's/South Vietnamese during the Vietnam War. Around ten thousand prisoners died on the island over a period of two centuries and many Vietnamese believe that the island is haunted.
Con Son is a super photogenic place and one that I hope to revisit soon.