Find Out Why Cambodia Beaches are the Best in the World
The Southeast Asian nation of Cambodia is better known for its culture and archaeological exhibits, but what many visitors don’t realise is that the ‘Kingdom of Wonders’ is actually home to some of the most picturesque coastline the world has to offer. When temple-hopping has been ticked off the travel itinerary, you may want to unwind with a cocktail in hand and feel the sand between your toes. White sand collides with the translucent water on many of the Cambodia beaches. Often overlooked in preference of Thailand’s sandy spots, there are plenty of oceanfront spaces to explore, many of which remain untouched.
An Insight into the Shores of Cambodia
What makes Cambodia quite unique to its neighbouring countries (such as Thailand) is that the landscape is relatively different in each place, as are the Cambodia beaches. The country’s many regions are a blend of flatlands, mountains, lakes, rivers and of course, gulf coast beaches that prove perfect for relaxation. Unlike typical beach resorts that provide beach lovers with just a simple stretch of sand to leave footprints on, there are a handful of offshore islands that can also be accessed by boat. Finding deserted hideaways isn’t a huge mission, which is a far cry from some other destinations around the globe.
The fact that Cambodia hasn’t caught up with tourism like travel around the rest of the world quite yet, means that those who wander the land can appreciate flawless beauty that is still unscathed by resorts, restaurants, clubs and typical fascinations that tend to go hand-in-hand with tourism. Exotic and peppered with palm trees, the shores aren’t too exhausting a trip from one another. Speckled with sea shells, visitors can choose between the backpacker-filled beaches and the more laid-back strands of sand and sea, proving that Cambodia beaches offer something for everyone in the seafront sense.
Five Cambodia Beaches Worth Visiting
- Koh Thmei Beach, Ream National Park–One of the Cambodia beaches that really stand out is Koh Thmei Beach. Fringed by picture-perfect mangrove forests, this beach is truly exquisite and is mostly uninhabited (if you don’t count the small number of bungalows that face the ocean). Part of Ream National Park, the beach can be reached by longtail boat and the sand is sunny-coloured yellow, dotted with every kind of sea shell imaginable.
- Lazy Beach, Koh Rong Samloem –Just off the coast of Sihanoukville is another of the Cambodia beaches that are worth visiting during your trip. Koh Rong Samloem is an island that only extends nine kilometres in length. Despite its small size, it is home to a private escape that goes by the name of Lazy Beach. A few wooden bungalows overlook the turquoise waters, where you can snorkel to catch sight of parrot fish and rabbitfish, among many other species. Soak up the views whilst lying in a hammock, watch the sun set with a beer or if you want to see life beneath the waves, go for a dive!
- Sokha Beach, Sihanoukville –Heading to Sihanoukville? If it isn’t for the party scene, let it be for a sunbathing session on one of the best Cambodia beaches – Sokha Beach. Ideal for travellers who are seeking out some luxury, this beach sits eight kilometres from Otres Beach and is enclosed by landscaped gardens. What’s more, Wat Krom Pagoda (one of Sihanoukville’s newest and most-visited attractions) sits on a small hill that overlooks this beach and the city landscape. Privately owned, the waters are shallow and because the beach is only open to day pass holders and people staying at the beach resort, you will feel secluded here.
- Southwestern Beach, Koh Rong –Cambodia’s second biggest island is Koh Rong, where many islanders reside and a whole lot of wanderers remain for months to work in the restaurants, bars and guesthouses that the islet is home to. Should you want to see outstanding reef, sandstone rock formations and shoals of fish gliding through the water, Southwestern Beach is the place to go. Although Koh Rong boasts 43 kilometres of stunning coastline, this sandy spot to the Southwest is not quite as busy and during the night time the atmosphere is a little calmer and not so party-oriented.
- Rabbit Island, Kep– Kep does offer its visitors a small section of sand and water to enjoy along Kep Beach, but just a 30-minute scenic boat ride away is 250-metre long Rabbit Island. Considered one of the most preferred Cambodia beaches for expats, locals and tourists alike, Rabbit Island is the translation for ‘Koh Tonsay’. Administered by the Kep Province, it is positioned on the southern coast and tickets can be acquired from the pier at Koh Tonsay Boat Ticket Office. Expect to see rocks, mangrove forests and beach bungalows, as well as cows and chickens meandering.