Bach Dinh or the White Mansion was built during the French occupation. The mansion sits at the bottom of Nui Lon overlooking the South China Sea and is one of Vung Tau’s major landmark. Work on the mansion began in 1898 and was completed in 1916. At the time, no expenses were spared as the amount of work and manpower involved in laying the road leading to the mansion were done almost completely by manual labor. Commissioned by French governor Paul Doumer, this mansion has served as summer retreat for Emperor Bao Dai as well as vacation home for vietnamese heads of state.
The mansion is 50 m above sea level and is designed in the style of 19th century French architecture. The grounds of the mansion still show signs of a once glamorous lifestyle of the French governor who commissioned this building. The garden has an open air dance floor and many statues and details of Greek mythology. In terms of historical significance, Bach Dinh was where King Thanh Thai of the Nguyen Dynasty was under house arrest before he was finally exiled to Reunion island in Africa.