Like any other island, Cat Ba island too has most of its hotels facing the water front. If they are not facing the water, they are on the beach and such ones are the luxury resorts, which are located on private beaches. The backpacker and budget type hotels are located on a road that runs perpendicular to the waterfront road and is right opposite the main boat jetty of Cat Ba Island. I found a great budget hotel on this strip and ended up staying for 4 nights. The below review is based on my recent stay here.
1) For its price, this place is a steal. For USD 4, you get a very large room with 2 double beds and a big window, a fan and an attached bathroom with hot shower facility. There is an option for AC in the room, for that you will have to pay another 4 USD.
2) Proximity is never a problem for anywhere on Cat Ba as it is an extremely small place. All the restaurants, grocery stores and travel agencies are either on this road, the road parallel to it or on the waterfront road.
3) The hotel is run by a family who hardly speak any English, but they try and answer your questions by using Google Translate on their computer. They do not provide any booking services, but sell water and beer.
4) They provide a large pool table at the rate of 40,000 VND for one hour.
5) If you take the corner rooms, not only are the rooms much larger, but you get a hill view too.
6) The main problem with this place is that the wi-fi has pretty weak reception in the rooms and even the speed is less. The speed is less primarily due to the fact that the son of the hotel owner is busy streaming videos on the computer downstairs. If you tell him to go easy on the streaming, the speed will get better.
7) It is a belief in Vietnam that if you are a man, then you have to smoke. Hence, you will always find a cloud of smoke near the reception and at the pool table. Thankfully, this doesn’t affect the stay in the rooms.
For its price and room size, the rooms here are a steal. They are perfect for budget travelers. The only problem being slightly slow internet connectivity.<>/span