The Paradise Beaches of Cambodia

When speaking of beautiful white beaches with crystal clear waters, Cambodia is definitely not the first country that comes to mind. I’d rather think of the Maledives, Seychelles and Fiji! But don’t be fooled – Cambodia has some of the nicest beaches I’ve ever seen which I’ll share with you in this blog post!

The Paradise Beaches of Cambodia

Sihanoukville & Otres Beach

The city of Sihanoukville is a 3 to 4 hour drive by bus from Phnom Penh and a starting point for a trip to the islands that I’ll mention later on. I gave Sihanoukville a miss, since it’s quite a party city with not much to do. Instead I opted for a stay at Otres Beach which I’d heard great things about!

Otres Beach5

I’d recommend staying in Otres Village, I small, quaint village with a hippie vibe. There’s quite a lot of expats in this area and lovely little cafés. There’s a small river that runs through the village and it’s only a ten minute walk to the beach.

Otres Beach3

The beach is very quiet, there are a few guesthouses and restaurants but nothing exciting. If you fancy some quiet time after a stressful journey, this might be just the spot for you!

Otres Beach2

Sihanoukville & Otres Beach – The Round Up

Where to stay:
I stayed at Pachamama Guest House, but they since seem to have it changed to a retreat.
What to eat:
Papa Pippo do amazing Italian food right on the beach with free beach beds!
What to do:
Go kayaking on the river in Otres Village, wander along the beach, take a day trip to the nearby islands (Bamboo Island, Koh Ta Kiev)

Koh Rong Island

My absolute favourite island I’ve been on ever! Once you get there on the boat from Sihanoukville (get the fast boat, the slow boat takes 4 hours as opposed to 1 on the speed boat!) you arrive at the pier of Kaoh Touch village on the south side of the island.

Koh Rong Island15

Once you walk off the pier, you’ll be standing in sand. Surprise, surprise, there are no roads here which is fab! Also, say goodbye to the internet for a while as only very few places have internet and the connection is not great.

Koh Rong Island9

The right hand side of the pier is the party bit of the island and the only spot I didn’t enjoy. It’s very party heavy and you can hear the music all night long, so if you want to get any sleep, avoid that area. I’d recommend staying on the leftern side of the pier if you want to be in the main village or walk further to the right side, there are some tree house bungalows there that look fab! On certain days, you can see the glowing seaweed at night on this side of the island, so make sure you check with locals!

Koh Rong Island1

Now the best part of Koh Rong Island is Long Beach, located on the Western side of the island. You can either walk there from Kaoh Touch through the jungle or you can take a boat. There’s no pier, so be aware that the boat will drop you off in knee high water!

Koh Rong Island8

The beach itself is the most beautiful one I’ve ever seen in my entire life. It goes on for miles and the water is super clean and the sand is so fine and white that it squeaks when you walk over it!

Koh Rong Island19

Unfortunately, there’s something you can’t see in my pictures. The island was sold off to a Chinese investment company by the Cambodian government and when I was at Long Beach, they just started building a road and a ferry port and there were plans to build numerous hotels along this beautiful stretch of heaven. I’ve since read that development is getting into more advanced stages, so make sure you visit now!

Koh Rong Island12

It’s such a shame what these people are doing to this beautiful, untouched island and I am very happy that I went before everything was destroyed by people going for money. I do really wish that they would have kept it as it was one of the last untouched beaches.

Koh Rong Island11

Koh Rong Island – The Round Up

Where to stay:
I stayed at Tyty Guest House on the left side of the pier which was nice and quiet. Very basic accommodation at $15 a night. There are barely any guest houses online as the internet on the island is slow, so it’s best to get an early ferry
What to eat:
Sigi’n Thai
is a one man stand behind Tyty Guesthouse. It’s basically a tiny hut where an expat guy called Sigi cooks up amazing Thai food! If you fancy a great breakfast, go to the Dreamcatcher Inn
What to do:
Hike or take a boat to Long Beach, stroll around the island and discover the hidden beaches!
! Warning !
Since I’ve been to Koh Rong in 2016, the island has been taken over by a Chinese investor and there has started to be extensive building works on Long Beach. If you do fancy a quiet island, maybe go to the neigbouring island of Koh Rong Samloem!

Koh Kong Province

An often overlooked little gem is Koh Kong Province. It’s a bit hard to get to as there’s only one street going there from Sihanoukville and it’s surrounded by jungle. A bus to Koh Kong City takes about 3 hours.

Koh Kong5

There isn’t really that much to do in the city itself but it’s the perfect spot to start excursions to more remote places. I took a longtail boat trip to Koh Kong Island which is a huge uninhabited island in the Gulf of Thailand.

Koh Kong4

There are a few boats a day that go there but we had the whole beach to ourselves which was great! We had a barbecue on the beach and got to spent plenty of time there. Just a warning in advance: there are sandflies on the island which will bite you to bits, no matter how much deet you put on! Still, it was absolutely worth it!

Koh Kong6

On our way back to Koh Kong City, we took a detour through the Peam Krasaop Wildlife Sanctuary to see the mangrove forests and local fishermen. There’s a viewpoint there that gives you a great overlook of the forests!

Koh Kong2

There’s also the opportunity to go hiking in the jungle and stay there overnight. I would’ve loved that but sadly I wasn’t feeling very well at that point and had to skip it! Koh Kong City is also a good place if you want to cross the border into Thailand as it’s a lot less busy than the border crossing next to Siem Reap!

Koh Kong – The Round Up

Where to stay:
I stayed at Ritthys Retreat Guesthouse which was alright. There aren’t many accommodation options, there isn’t even a hostel yet! Probably a good indication that it’s still a real hidden gem!
What to eat:
Unfortunately, food choices aren’t great here. I mostly ate at the guest house, other restaurants along the street were ok but very Western.
What to do:
Take a tour to the jungle and go hiking there or take a boat trip to see Koh Kong Island and the mangrovesRitthys Retreat Guesthouse offers lots of tours!

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The Paradise Beaches of Cambodia (1)

8 thoughts on “The Paradise Beaches of Cambodia

  1. Oh yes I love Otres beach! Its amazing, did you manage to make it to the night markets out there? Sunset Beach in Koh Rong Sanloem was definitely my fav

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Otres Village sounds lovely and Koh Rong Island looks incredible! Tree house bungalows and glowing seaweed!? I’m sold ha ha. It’s sad that the island is getting built up though.

    Liked by 1 person

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