Buddha Belly - Buddha Garden

  • Vegetarian Vegetarian
    ( 29 reviews )
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913119281
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85 Tung Dinh, Cat Ba, Vietnam

Vegetarian restaurant with large garden. Open Mon-Sun 10:00am-9:00pm.

Categories: Lacto, Beer/Wine, Take-out, Vietnamese

29 Reviews

First Review by HollieHarwood

Very good vegan burger - Edit

Good place, surrounded by green outside. Friendly staff, tasty juices and fresh food. Try the veggie burger, it is really good. Portions are royal!

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ridiculous vegan burger - Edit

struggled to get my mouth around the vegan burger, was pretty satisfying if a little bland. veg fried noodles were very nice. gets an extra star for the puppies. service was a bit odd, pretty sure the owner was stoned but so are most people in cat ba

Pros: B.B.B (Bloody Big Burger)

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did not want to eat there🙀 - Edit

We got to the restaurant just before opening time. There was no one in sight other than 2 cute puppies. The place looked in disarray , dirty dishes on tables. The inside looked the same- dirty rags and mess everywhere. The food might taste good but the place is very dirty !!! 🙀

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Reasonable and filling - Edit

The food here isn't interesting or especially delicious, but it's cheap, fresh, and filling- just how food should be! Everything is vegan so there's no worries and the staff is very kind. I recommend getting the large meal (2). It's super filling and only 50k.

Pros: Quiet, peaceful location, Cheap, Kind staff

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Great Food, Great prices, Great vibes - Edit

I love this place, food is really good! The atmosphere in the evenings is so chilled. Will keep coming back

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Great experience - Edit

We were in Cat Ba for four days and ate here every day - very accommodating staff, and they knew about kosher & Shabbat, enabling us to stay on the island over the weekend (after paying for our meals in advance). Recommend the "buddla rice mix!"

Pros: kosher, Shabbat friendly

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Very yummy for the tummy! - Edit

I have been eating often at Buddha Belly during my stay on Cat Ba Island in January 2018. The restaurant is located at the corner of the lake in Cat Ba, it has a nice outside sitting area and garden and you can also sit inside. Food is prepared freshly, you can choose from menues with soup or have a veg burger, etc. I always enjoyed the food as well as my stay there.

Pros: Good food, Happy environment, Very reasonable priced

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Super value vegan burger - Edit

The only veg*n place on the island so gets points for that...and the puppies too! Not the tastiest food, but it’s compensated by the big portions. The ‘small’ com chay was anything but small. If in doubt get the vegan burger- absolute whopper!

Pros: Vegan burger , Portions

Cons: Not the tastiest

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the soups. wow - Edit

We had 2 different kind of soups - both amazing!
Its a nice place at the like. Definitely recommended

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the vegan burguer its huge and tasty! - Edit

The family that run the restaurant is friendly. There's 2 puppies in the place really cute . The food is faster and better during the lunch. The place looks clean and the cheap meal (30.000) its really nice too.

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Great food - Edit

The banh mi might look a .bit pricey but it's HUGE ! And delicious and loaded of veggies. The daily small plate was actually quite big too, and super yummy, with tons of different veggies, tofus, and rice. Definitely a must if you're around !

Pros: fresh and yummy food, great banh mi

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great - Edit

Not a lot of vegan/vegetarian options in cat ba, but that's OK because I'm perfectly comfortable eating every meal here. Friendly staff, great food, garden seating AND when we visited there were two very cute puppies running around. Please note! Hours say close at 9pm but really open until 10pm!!

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peaceful oasis - Edit

We ordered the daily menu and loved it! Very nice spot :)

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Perfect place with really low prices, tasty food and special atmosphere - Edit

It is really hard to find minuses of this place. Owner work in restaurant. Speaks English. Polite and show attention to you.
We asked for double portion of rice in cheapest dish. They gave it to us and then it is appear that we out of cash and need to pay by bank card - terminal doesn't work and owner told us something like this - " Don't worry about money. You can pay me tomorrow ."
And it was our first visit. possible that we never come back there, but he believe to people so much)
Of course we stay longer and come to Buddha Belly again and again.
And one of important thing - clean kitchen. Maybe one of the cleanest in whole Vietnam!Kitchen and toilet.
As in good European cafe.

it is a really special place. And we recommend you to visit it when you will be on island even if you are not vegetarian.

Pros: owner's energy and friendly, cleanest kitchen and toilet, cheap price for fresh and tasty food, and fast))

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hidden gem in Cat Ba - Edit

I loved this restaurant so much that I ate there everyday during my stay in Cat Ba! Not a lot of people walk by this restaurant. So it is quiet. They have a special of the day for only 30000 dongs! They had a vegan burger to the menu and it is amazing!!!!

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Delicious Food and Attentive Staff! - Edit

In our experience the staff here were really lovely and went above and beyond for us. The food is delicious and comes in massive portions and tastes extremely fresh. They even gave us a bundle of bananas from their garden while we waited for our food!

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Great tasting healthy food - Edit

Low price, generous portion sizes, intentionally not heavily salted or season so you can enjoy the natural flavour :) straight vegetable options as well as faux meat options. Overall happy with the food ??

Pros: karaoke at night by the locals

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The only option in town - Edit

The food here is poor and the service is non existent. Only once in Paris have I encountered a more miserable bunch of staff. They are so grumpy it actually becomes amusing after a while.
The Com Chay Small is the safest bet here. They use the same sauce and seasoning for every dish so they all look and taste the same. Might as well pick the cheapest.
They open at 10am so no breakfast option.

Pros: cheap-ish, vegetarian

Cons: crappy food , miserable people, not open for breakfast

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Okay food, little to no service - Edit

The food wasn't too bad but nothing exciting. Not the best com chay I've had in Vietnam but passable. Don't expect any smiles or service. I ordered the 30,000 com chay and spring rolls. Both we're okay, spring rolls quite oily.

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Look somewhere else - Edit

I had been really surprised that Cat Ba had a vegan option, but my excitement was quickly gone. Where should I start? Probably with the fact that this place has the worst service I've ever encountered. First time we arrived there around 2pm, to find the place open, but no one willing to serve us, with one person sleeping in the back. So we'd given it a second chance and arrived later in the evening. We were given the menus by one person, while the order was taken by a random woman who just arrived. Weird. We ordered 3 meals - two of them were supposed to come with a soup that never arrived, third one simply never showed up. After finishing the food, no one was willing to take the payment from us, as there simply was no one around. No one. We sat there for additional 30 minutes, left the money on the table and left the place. I don't expect the service to be like from a 5-star hotel, but I'm a polite person myself and expect this from others. Mutual respect is the key, especially when you choose to eat food prepared by the other person. Worst service ever.
The food itself? Bland. We were served a stew with veggies and some fake meat that was simply okay. Nothing too exciting. I just wished the rice wasn't dry, as it seemed like it had been cooked a day earlier.
I suggest avoiding this place and trying veggie/vegan options with other places on the island, as they're much better and people are nice and grateful.

Pros: Nice outside area

Cons: The entire experience, Flavorless food

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Presumably the worst food in Vietnam - Edit

I can only confirm everything that the "cynical" reviewer said. The food was just incredibly bad and bland. My boyfriend had the set menu which was bad enough. I ordered a mushroom soup which seemed to be exactly what he had but in a bowl.. with about three mushrooms in it. It was literally the worst noodle soup I've come across in Vietnam and it wasn't even cheap. Even the smoothie we ordered was terrible and I don't even know how it's possible to ruin a fruit shake.
I give this two stars just because the women who prepared the food seemed nice and the garden outside is nice. Maybe you want to sit there and order a coke..
Most restaurants in town have veg*options so these might be the better option.

Pros: nice seating outside

Cons: terrible food!

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exactly the same menu as Buddha belly - Edit

Didn't eat here, but went to Buddha belly a few times. Menu and prices are exactly the same. (Same owners I guess?) Buddha belly is just closer and a bit more cozy.

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A touch cynical? - Edit

Cat Ba Island is pretty bereft of decent vegan options, and this seems to be the only 100% vegan place in town, so we gave it a go. And... It was a pretty big disappointment. In total, we ate there 3 times, and the food never changed. The com chay plates were rice with a generous helping of unseasoned, unspiced vegetables (mostly cabbage and potato) with some tofu and some kind of strange doughy product. The noodle soup and mixed vegetables rice were just variations on this theme, with the same veg-tofu combo added to pretty plain carbs. We had the impression they probably buy whatever fresh veg is cheap and add it fairly indiscriminately to whatever is ordered. We also had some sad rice paper rolls, just shredded veg, no herbs, no tofu, no mushrooms. The place clearly does decent business, and judging by the reviews on here, a lot of people really do see it as wonderful, authentic Vietnamese chay food. Personally, I can't help but see a certain amount of cynicism in a place that seems to think vegetarian Western tourists will eat any old stuff if you paint a Buddha on the wall and play meditation music. You'd probably get better value for money trying to find somewhere on the beach front with a few veggie dishes. On the plus side, their smoothies are pretty good, and the atmosphere is nice enough. I'd say avoid, but there's really nowhere else to go on Cat Ba.

Pros: Good smoothies, OK atmosphere

Cons: Bland, unseasoned food, Little or no difference between dishes

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Ngon Ngon! - Edit

Great little place, don't get the large com chay (rice with veggies) when the small costs the same with no discernible difference. Dung the owner was great and even shouted is a beer on the third or so visit, staff otherwise were a little less happy to see us. Probably the only vegan options in the island but enough variety to keep coming back during a short stay. Small com chay all the way...look out for the mozzies!

Pros: only veg dedicated restaurant on the island , owner buys you beers sometimes, cheap and good

Cons: not all staff are so friendly, large come chay is strangely similar size to small, mosquitoes, take repellent or wear long pants!

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Couldn't find it! - Edit

The map marker is on the wrong side of the island!! I thought I'd stop by when I left Cat Ba, and as it's supposedly right by the ferry I thought it'd be convenient. Turns out it is apparently in Cat Ba town, 25km away. Maybe someone else can verify the actual location and update the listing, but I'd suggest copying the address and pasting it into your maps app instead.

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two super happy Brits - Edit

Okay this place is amazing. The whole menu is vegan & is written in English too, literally crazy cheap also! We both ordered the small vegan dish & a side of veggie rice paper rolls. A lovely older lady bought us two mountains of food & massive rice rolls, had no idea what was on the plate, but it was super tasty with a selection of mock meats that were fantastic. As we didn't have enough change (cause it was so cheap!) we over paid & she gave us a hand picked bunch of bananas from their garden, such a babe. Do not miss this place if you visit Cat Ba Island!

Pros: mega cheap, scrummy vegan food, super lovely Vietnamese service

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Easy 5/5 - Edit

The owner runs two veggie joint on the island and this one is 100% vegan. They have quite big outside area and lots of space indoors too. Unlike Buddha's Belly, this restaurant does not have a physical menu. You can get only either small or large portion of daily menu. The portions are massive though and the food is amazing. Lots of different local vegetables, mock meat, rice. This place is definitely worth a visit.

Pros: Portions & quality of food, Staff, Price

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