Things to do in Sihanoukville, Cambodia



Sihanoukville also known as Kampong Som, is a province of Cambodia, surrounded on three sides by the Gulf of Thailand. It is a growing Cambodian urban centre, located 185 kilometres southwest of the Cambodian capital, Phnom Penh. 

Currently, there are direct flight from to Sihanoukville from Kuala Lumpur by AirAsia, three times a week and started to operate on 9th August 2017.

Otres Beach

Sihanoukville attracts tourists with its relaxed beach atmosphere; the white sand beaches and warm Gulf of Thailand waters combine with a laid back, beachy atmosphere to provide a great little tropical getaway. Sihanoukville is a place to unwind by the beach, enjoy the fresh from-the-ocean seafood, take in a snorkeling or scuba trip, and generally slow-down, lay back and chill-out. 

Sihanoukville has a different look and feel than most Cambodian towns. Constructed as a port city in the late 1950s, the town is much newer, more urban and cosmopolitan than most Cambodian provincial cities. 

Otres Beach

THINGS TO DO AROUND TOWN: 

Here, I listed out all the attractions that you can visit as per my own experiences. As for myself, I stayed in Sihanoukville for 3 days, then I stayed at the Koh Rong for another 3 days. So here, the list is all about the Sihanoukville town only (not including the island activities).

1. Beach
The main attraction are the beaches: There are too many to list but in general if you start at the downtown area and walk in either direction they become less crowded, and with less hawkers trying to sell you massage, bracelets, and, yes, hair removal using cotton threads.  

Maps of Sihanoukville town, noted the beaches around. (Source

You can do many activities near or at the beach. You can swim, chill at the beachfront, enjoying the sunset and do not forget all the water sport activities.

Otres Beach - Sunset View

There are a few beaches around Sihanoukville, which are:

i. Ochheauteal & Serendipity Beach (Maps)
Ochheauteal Beach is by far the most popular and touristed in town. The beach is long, sandy and comparatively narrow, with 'Serendipity Beach" at the arching northern end and a development project taking up most of the southern half. Most of the hotels, guesthouses and restaurants are on and around the northern half. I can say, if you are backpacker, look for the accommodation around here.

Ochheauteal Beach 

ii. Otres Beach (Maps)
Otres is a three kilometer crescent of white sand similar to Ochheuteal, but not as busy, offering a more relaxed atmosphere. Just for your info, Otres Beach has Otres Beach 1 & Otres Beach 2, where the Otres Beach 2 are the farthest. From Ochheauteal Beach to Otres Beach 1, the tuk-tuk price is around 4-5USD.

Otres Beach

Enjoying my coconut juice at Otres Beach

Enjoying sunset at Otres Beach - less crowded

iii. Independence Beach (Maps)
Independence is better than a kilometer long, with much of the beach just recently opened to the public. A dozen beach restaurants fine about 500 meters of the northern end. I stayed here at the Dara Independece Resort & Spa which is amazing resort.

Relaxing at the Independence Beach

2. Kbal Chhay Waterfall (Maps)
Out of town you can visit the waterfalls (best in rainy season for obvious reasons). The Kbal Chhay Waterfalls are the series of waterfalls (3-5 meters) and chutes on the Prek Tuk Sap River. Druign the dry season (Nov-June), the falls can be little more than a trickle, but the wet season falls can be quite powerful. 

 Kbal Chhay Waterfall - View from top


 Kbal Chhay Waterfall - The upstream river 


 Kbal Chhay Waterfall - On the way using motorcycle taxi, cost me 12USD return from downtown

The area is slowly being developed and there are now drinks stands, food stalls and covered picnic areas available. Lots of local picnickers on the weekends. It's about a 30-minute ride from downtown Sihanoukville to the falls. If you renting a motocycle, you can go to here easily as per google maps. But if you using tuktuk, it will cost around 15-25USD  (depends on how many of you) both ways (they will wait for you). Some of the road are in bad conditions. FREE ENTRANCE FEE by the way.

 Kbal Chhay Waterfall - Don't it impressive? 


 Kbal Chhay Waterfall - The other waterfall, you can swim here 


 Kbal Chhay Waterfall - The locals enjoying the waterfall 


 Kbal Chhay Waterfall - Watch out your step

3. Golden Lion (Maps)
The Golden Lions Monument is the most recognizable landmark in the city of Sihanoukville in Southern Cambodia. Locally referred to as Vimean Tao Meas in Khmer, the monument is hard to miss since it is in the middle of a roundabout highway that leads to the famous Sokha, Serendipity and Ochheuteal beaches. This is a major tourism thoroughfare in this rather very tiny city. Surrounding this prominent monument are hotels, seafood restaurants, karaoke bars, and guesthouses.

Golden Lion monument - Landmark of Sihanoukville

Golden Lion is located at downtown and it is the mark point the center of Sihanoukville. It is near the Occheauteal Beach. If you are looking for the accommodation in the Sihanoukville (hostel), look for this landmark.

Golden Lion monument - View at night, many locals hangout here.

Just be careful when you taking photograph at the monument as the roundabout is a busy area with vehicles. At night, many local tend to hang out around the monument.

4. Ocean Pool / Infinity Pool at Dara Independence Resort & Spa (Maps)
I stayed at Dara Independence Resort & Spa for 3 days, and I was really impressed with their Ocean Pool which just have fully operated on May 2017.

I am enjoying the Jacuzzi

It consist of Jacuzzi, and modern design of the infinity pool. Enjoying sunset at this pool is a good idea. The best thing is, it is opened to the non-hotel-guest (8USD for adult, USD5 for child, including the towel and soft drink). 

Infinity pool with a sunset view

Do not miss out to take photos around this pool and I think it is one of a kind.

5. Others
There are a few places that you can visit too, based on your time availability and preferences. I did not have any chance to visit some places but I can listed out the other places you can go visit around Sihanoukville.

i. Phsar Leu (Upper Market) (Maps) is the largest and oldest traditional-style market in town. When people refer to 'the market', they mean this one - a dimly lit, roofed expanse of booths and stalls vending everything from fresh meat and vegetables to clothing, auto parts, jewelry, etc. Opens and closes with the sun. Located downtown on 7 Makara Street.
ii. Ream National Park (Maps) - Officially called Preah Sihanouk National Park, the park has become known as "Ream". The Park and tour operators out of Sihanoukville offer a number of different tours of the park including jungle trekking and river boat trips along the Prek Tuk River through the jungle and mangroves to the ocean. The river trip is the most popular tour and is to be arranged through a tour operator or directly through the park at the Park Office.
iii. Wat Leu Temple (Maps)
iv. Wat Krom Temple (Maps)
v. Independence Monument of Sihanoukville. (Map)
vi. Dragonhead Monument (Maps)
vii. Snakehouse (Maps)
viii. Complex Classic (Maps)
ix. Victory Monument (Maps)

Get yourself a  visitors guide booklet
When you arriving Sihanoukville, look for booklet of Sihanoukville visitors guide whether at the airport or at your hotel. It has complete information about Sihanoukville and it can ease your journey.


Alternatively, you can download the softcopy of Sihanoukville Guide at here: http://bit.ly/SihanoukVille

Any question, or want to add some info, do comment below.

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