The tropical seaside beach town of Sihanoukville is known to have some of the best beaches in Cambodia. Located in the center of a small peninsula that extends into the warm waters of the Gulf of Thailand, Sihanoukville boasts several fine white sand beaches.
The main attractions of Sihanoukville are its beaches and islands, and scuba fans will delight in underwater excursions around Sihanoukville’s outlying islands.The beaches of Cambodia don’t measure up to the serene beauty of the beaches in Thailand. Nevertheless, Sihanoukville is a a popular choice for beach lovers and a popular hangout with the backpacking crowd. Being a short drive away from the capital city of Phnom Penh, the best beaches in Cambodia can easily be reached in a few hours by bus or private car.
Ochheuteal Beach holds the title for being the most popular beach in Sihanoukville. Formerly known as UNTAC Beach in the early 90s, Ochheuteal Beach is a long, narrow, sandy stretch of beach with a nice choice of hotels and budget guesthouses, restaurants and bars located either on or near the beach. In the evening, this is the place to be. Several roadside BBQ restaurants offer a nice mix of beats and fresh seafood and meat skewers.
A popular hangout with the backpacking crowd, Serendipity Beach is located at the northern end of Ochheuteal Beach and it is well known for its budget beachfront accommodations. Little beach bars, restaurants and BBQ shacks are also strung out along the beach. People come here to socialize and take advantage of the beach parties which run late into the night.
Victory Beach can be found at the base of Weather Station Hill (Victory Hill) and it is best known for its incredible views of the town and port. There are several budget guesthouses and beach bungalows for rent located on the side of the hill. Sun chairs and umbrellas, seafood shacks, restaurants, bars, and even a nightclub can be found right on the beach.
Victory Beach has developed a reputation for its incredible sunsets; the best vantage point being at the top of Sihanoukville Mountain. The western side of the mountain offers stunning views of the town, port, ocean, and several outlying islands.
Pretty little Otres Beach may be furthest from the town center, but it is also the least spoiled of all the beaches in Sihanoukville. The sand here is fine and perfect for sun bathing, while the water is clear and perfect for swimming. Best of all, this beach doesn’t draw the crowds that Serendipity and Occheuteal Beach draw. There are plenty of seafood shacks and bars on this beach. Accommodations, though, are come few and far between.
Beautiful Sokha Beach is a wide sandy beach covered in fine, silky, sand, stretching over a kilometer in length. This quiet beach is owned by the Sokha Beach Resort, a 5-star beach resort offering luxurious beachfront accommodations. Sokha Beach is open to the general public as well as guests of the resort. A number of pretty beach gazebos and some upscale beach bars and restaurants can be found here, but if it’s cheap seafood that you are looking for, you’ll have to look elsewhere.
The historic 7-story Independence Boutique Resort and Spa lends its name to this beautiful sandy beach. Locals know it as otel pram-pul chann, and in town, street signs point the way to 7-Chann Beach. The beach is best at low tide. At high tide, it is quite narrow. The beach has been closed temporarily due to new development projects, with only the south and north ends of the beach remaining open. There are a few drinks and snacks vendors at the southern end of the beach. The northern end allows access to Independence Resort, which sits on a rocky point overlooking the ocean.
If a deserted island experience is what you’re after, head to Bamboo Island. Basic accommodations are on offer here. If an overnight stay is not in your plans, day tours to outlying islands can be booked at a number of guesthouses in Sihanoukville. Visitors can spend the day snorkelling, swimming, and exploring.
Koh Thmei Beach, Ream National Park
Ream National Park is a mountain, mangrove, island and beach park just 18 kilometers from downtown Sihanoukville. It is home to some of Cambodia’s most exquisite beaches. Once you pass through the entrance to the park, it’s another 10 kilometers to the beach.There is a ranger station on the left as you pass through the park entrance.
A small that is flanked by mangrove forests, Koh Thmei is uninhabited except for one set of bungalows. There are dozens of different species of birds on the island. The beach next to the dock boasts thousands of glittering shells. The beach on the east side of the dock is best known for its picturesque sunrises and lovely yellow sand.
Koh Rong Island
The waters around Koh Rung Island are excellent for diving and snorkeling, and it is easily one of the most beautiful islands in the Gulf of Thailand. The island boasts 43 kilometers of white sand beach. To get to Koh Rong, you can catch a boat in Sihanoukville with any of the guesthouses on the island. The journey is generally 2-3 hours long.
A five kilometer stretch of white sand beach and sparkling turquoise waters. The southern end of the beach has quite a few rocks, but it’s also a popular choice for snorkelers because you can watch schools of colorful parrot fish, sergeant fish and rabbitfish.
Long Set Beach
Long Set Beach is named after a nut and fruit farmer who lives there. The beach is nestled in the southernmost cove of Koh Rong. Long Set’s empty white sand beaches and calm waters are just a short walk away from the main part of southeast Koh Rong. It’s a beautiful beach for sunning, crabbing, and collecting shells.
If you’re there when the moon is waning, don’t miss out on doing a little night swimming. You can see bio-luminescent plankton that cause a ethereal phosphorescence in the water.
Lazy Beach, Koh Rong Saloem
Just two hours off the coast of Sihanoukville, you’ll find the beautiful beaches of Koh Rong Saloem, but of all those beaches, Lazy Beach is known for being particularly beautiful with its golden sand and numerous pine trees. In the evenings, the sun sets in a showy display of deep pinks and reds.
You’ll find Monkey Island on the southeast side of Koh Rong. An ancient Cambodia legend claims that the island was once home to a mighty ape. The deserted island is serviced by a set of beach bungalows, but there is no ATM, shops, beach vendors, or any other amenities that you’re used to. Bungalows are powered by a generator which is on between 5:30pm and midnight.