Dungun was the recreational place for British employees of the mining company of the day. It was where they relaxed and pursue extracurricular activities. There were music halls, record stores, cricket fields etc. that made Dungun different from other townships in Terengganu at the time. The locals were somehow influenced by this, especially by the 60s and 70s pop music brought in by the stores to cater for the British. The late 70s were known as the time where there were a lot of local musicians and bands active in the small township. One of the bands was Purple Haze, a psychedelic hard rock band in which Malaysia's well-known music composer Manan Ngah a member. The first Malaysian punk rock scene was started here in 1978/79 by Joe Kidd and his friends.
As of 2006, Dungun is experiencing an uplift. To keep money in the district, Dungun has received an influx of funds that has gone to the improvement of roads and establishment of several new shopping areas