Stayed 4 nights last week on Phu Quoc island and would like to make a few comments on the state of the roads.
I was staying during rainy season and was well prepared for muddy dirt roads. However, nothing I have read in any guidebook or forum post has stated the quality of these unpaved roadways. They are incredibly rutted and nearly impassable in places. Forget about renting a scooter, at least outside of the paved portions of Duong Dong town north or southeast; way, way too dangerous and slow going. We hired a car and driver for a south island tour and there is pavement which begins, I believe, down somewhere around the area of Bai Sao beach or thereabouts and continues north along the eastern side of the island, extending back into Duong Dong town. However, for anyone renting scooters or bicycles, be extremely careful as the asphalt is laid in a narrow one-lane strip in the center of a dirt roadway and because of this improved road condition, traffic is maniacal. During our tour, and while motoring along the paved stretches, our car was forced off the road several times by oncoming trucks and nearly hit more than once. I will admit we did not see the north side of the island other than during a brief one night stay at a resort near Ong Lang beach, so perhaps things are easier to get to farther out than I am imagining. However, the drive there and back from Duong Dong was also along incredibly rutted, potholed roads. Many stretches can only be traversed at very, very low rates of speed. I may be wrong, but something's backwards here. With all the development either underway or in the works, it seems obvious that the first thing that should be done is improve the roadways and other infrastructure before building monster resorts. The local population certainly suffers with nearly un-navigable roads, and it seems like an emphasis should be placed on improvement for them first and foremost, as well as the tourists they are hoping to draw in. Just my 2 cents. I expect to get some negative feedback, but the above is my own honest opinion. Thanks for reading.