From Phnom Penh we hopped on a bus direction Kampot, from where we continued to Sihanoukville, where we boarded a boat which took us to some of the most beautiful paradise-esque islands we have ever seen: Koh Rong and Koh Rong Samloem which is home to one of our favourite beaches on the entire planet, Sok San beach (and trust us, we have seen MANY beaches ) 🙂
What did we visit?
Motorcycling in Kampot & Kep
Kampot (where the famous pepper is produced) is a natural stop between Phnom Penh and the islands as most buses pass through this little town. It’s a nice stop but we wouldn’t recommend taking a detour to see the place. We rented a motorbike and drove through the rice paddies and little villages, and were treated to a nice tropical rainstorm whilst doing so 🙂
Koh Rong Samloem
The first island we visited was Koh Rong Samloem. It’s the most quiet of the two islands, with the majority of the hotels located on one gorgeous long white sandy beach. Dolce far niente during the day, and amazing dining at night are on the programme here as there is literally nothing else to do. Most hotels consist of little bungalows on the beach and all have a little restaurant or bar in the sand. Everything is hip, small and cute here so do not expect big resorts or massive beach clubs.
A great activity is to cross the island by foot to go to Sunset Beach on the other side of the island (amazing beach naming here in Cambodia! 🙂 ). It’s an amazing 45 minute hike through a tropical forest and you will be rewarded by a gorgeous sunset. Make sure to bring a flashlight as you might be in the dark on the way back.
Koh Rong & Sok San Beach
The second island we visited is Koh Rong, which is like the bigger sister of Samloem, but completely different. We docked in a crowded port, and disembarked in a little village that reminded us a bit of Koh Phi Phi in Thailand. There are hotels, restaurants and bars everywhere and in the evenings the village turns into one big party. It’s a great place to have fun but don’t come here for the beach as it is dirty and not very pleasant to stay at.
However, at about 45 minutes by boat there is one of the most spectacular beaches we have ever seen: Sok San beach. This is a 10 km long secluded beach with white sand, palmtrees as far as you can see, warm turquoise blue water, and literally nobody around. There are only a handful of hotels on this beach and you can only get here by boat, so it really feels like a deserted little piece of paradise. We HIGHLY recommend this place to anyone visiting Koh Rong!
Where to sleep / eat?
- Mad Monkey hostel – the double rooms are huge and super comfy (and super cheap!). Great bar for drinks in the evening!
- Rikitikitavi restaurant – has a great 1st floor restaurant with a view overlooking the river. Probably one of the best Chicken Amok (Cambodian specialty) we had in all of the country!
In Koh Rong Samloem:
We highly recommend staying on the main beach and not on the other side of the island as this is really far and isolated and the only way to get there is by foot crossing the jungle (or by boat).
- Sweet Dreams hotel – this was our favorite hotel of the island, the rooms are beautiful little bungalows literally ON the beach, and the restaurant and bar are really nice
- Eden Seaside hotel – cute wooden bungalows on the beach, comes with an amazing breakfast!
In Koh Rong:
- Sok San Beach Resort – It’s the only comfy hotel on this amazing beach, a bit expensive (we paid 100 USD per night) but it’s was really worth on this side of the island.