Le Domaine De Tam Hai

near Hoi An, Hue - Danang - Nha Trang, Vietnam Book from

Recommended awaiting i-escape review
A simple but enchanting hideaway: 11 villas on a lagoon shaded by coconut palms, a kayak away from the sea
On a calm inlet away from the open sea, fringed by coconut palms and scented by frangipani, Tam Hai is a beautiful if basic island retreat. There are just 11 thatched villas plus a pool lined with loungers, a raffia-raftered restaurant and a sand-floored bar comfy with sofas. Each morning you open your sliding slatted door to nature.

Here you forget about work, worries, stress and shoes. Instead, bury your toes in warm white sands. If you’re feeling sporty, you can be whisked off diving, or kayak across the river to the wild-sea beach, minutes away. At sunset, dine on ocean-fresh fish, grilled with herbs and lime, at a romantic table by the water’s edge. The place is heaven-sent for families, too, thanks to tree-hung swings and staff who could not be kinder. Those who’ve stayed talk of waking to waves on the distant shore, the swish of the palms, the put-put of fishing boats from the nearby village heading out to sea. A well-guarded secret among in-the-know travellers, it’s an inspired escape from the busy beat of the mainland - and the sunsets are spectacular.


  • Wonderfully remote but easy to get to: the hotel offers transfers from Danang airport (2 hours) and Hoi An train station (90 mins) then speedboats you to the island
  • The cool circular ‘Sea Sofa’ bar, that drifts in the river shallows
  • Lazy mornings - breakfast is brought to your private terrace, any time until 11am
  • Kayaking out to sea, then snorkelling in turquoise waters
  • Excellent prices, and kids stay for free in summer


  • The lagoon water in front of the bungalows is dirty and not suitable for swimming; kayak or take the motorboat to the ocean if you want a dip (free of charge)
  • Be prepared for mud in monsoon season (Sept-Jan)
  • Poor lighting to the furthest villas at night
  • No twin beds
  • Delicious food but not much variety, mainly seafood

Best time to go

Although temperatures never drop below 25C, the seasons are clearly defined by ‘wet’ and ‘dry.’ The most idyllic time to go is between February and May - low humidity, constant sunshine, some showers. Temperatures soar to 35C from the end of May to the end of July (perfect for beach bunnies). Monsoon season lasts 5 months, from September to January, and October and November are best avoided.

Our top tips

Now's your chance to try square fishing - a traditional method of catching seafood.

Great for...

Cheap & Chic
  • = Recommended
  • = Best in region
  • = World favourite
  • Boutique Guesthouse
  • 11
  • Restaurant and bar (open daily)
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Outdoor Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Bicycles Available
  • Kayaks


There are 11 identical villas scattered between the coconut palms, each with a private terrace and a view of the sea. Some are close to the dining area and the pool, others are more distant and extra private, but note: the access path is poorly lit.

All are very comfortable inside and very spacious. There are white plaster walls, shining tiled floors, bright curtains at generous windows and slatted, sliding doors. Beds are low and kingsize (no twins); according to a visitor, “the best beds in Asia”. If you come with a child, daybeds can be made up in the sitting room. Mosquito nets protect you at night; air conditioning and ceiling fans keep you cool. Equally admired are the bathrooms, their circular his-and-her basins set into teak, and their half-open, rain showers matched by tip-top toiletries.

Features include:

  • Air conditioning
  • Bathrobes
  • Cd player
  • Coffee tea making
  • Cots Available
  • Dvd player
  • Extra beds
  • Fan
  • Fridge
  • Hairdryer
  • Mosquito net
  • Phone
  • Safe box
  • Terrace
  • Terrace
  • Toiletries
  • Tv
  • WiFi
  • Wifi internet


Breakfast is brought to your terrace whenever you like it - until 11am. On offer are omelettes, fruits, croissants, rice cakes, coffee, tea.

Lunch and dinner are a la carte, served at white-clothed tables on the beach - impossibly romantic, especially as the sun goes down. Alternatively, eat in the dining room, circular and elegantly set with round tables; sip cocktails in the sand-floored, multi-sofa’d bar beforehand. The food is mostly simple, fresh and Asian inspired, and the fish comes straight from the boats - what could be nicer? There are huge seafood platters delivered on silver dishes; barracuda and crayfish served on palm leaves and cooked with herbs and lime; fish carpaccio and lobster, tiger prawn thermidor, prawn and grapefruit salad, and the best mangoes you’ve ever had. The aperitifs are very good, the wine list is small but acceptable.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Children meals
  • Coffee tea making
  • Fridge
  • Restaurant
  • Room service


  • Wallow in the warm shallows, wade out to the floating Sea Sofa bar for a cocktail, then retreat to a hammock and nod off
  • Bask under a parasol by the pretty pool. It has an unusual blend of fresh and salt water, and is warmed by the sun
  • Wander around the authentic fishing village of Tam Hai, with its traditional market. No one will hassle you or try to flog you anything
  • The hotel’s speedboat, The Lady of Tam Hai, can take you up the Hoi An river, or to Birds Island to go diving
  • Borrow a kayak and paddle 80m across the estuary to the (sometimes rough) sea and strip of beach. Here you can snorkel and swim in turquoise waters
  • Hire bikes or motorcycles from the hotel - there are lots of small sandy paths to explore and you can even ride right the way along the beach to Hoi An for the day (45km)

  • See our top tips for the East Coast

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Birdwatching
  • Boat trips
  • Cycling
  • Fishing
  • Kayaking
  • Private guided tours
  • Scuba diving
  • Shopping / markets
  • Snorkelling
  • Swimming
  • Wildlife


This is a family-friendly resort of the most tranquil kind - and kids stay for free in the summer months. Children will love the warm pool, the warm sands, and the softly sloping beach protected by a sandbank from the sea. Food is available all day.

Best for:

Babies (0-1 years), Toddlers (1-4 years), Children (4-12 years)

Family friendly accommodation:

All villas are identical, with space for 2 baby cots or 2 daybeds for children up to the age of 12. If your child is age 13+, only 1 extra guest per villa is allowed

Baby equipment:

  • Highchairs
  • Baby cots

Remember  baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking

Kids Activities on site:

  • Swimming pool
  • Climbing frame
  • Swings
  • Books, DVDs and toys

Kids Activities nearby:

  • Swimming in the sea
  • Kayaking
  • Snorkelling
  • Boat trips
  • Bird watching


  • Airports: 30 mins from Chu Lai, 1.5 hours from Danang
  • Hospital: 1 hour to local hospital, 1.5 hours to bigger hospital
  • Shops: a 10-minute speedboat ride away
Kid Friendly:

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