Koh Rong Samloem - the secluded island of Cambodia

by - Friday, August 18, 2017

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On our SE Asia trip we stumbled upon this amazing corner of paradise that has only recently been open for tourism!
It still holds its cast away vibe with no roads or shops, just cute beach huts and small restaurants.
After visiting the impressive temples of Angkor this was the perfect place to chill and recharge our batteries. 
The island is only 9 km long and is the smaller sister of the better known Koh Rong.

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adventure, asia, backpacking, backpacks, cambodia, flip flops only, island, koh rong samloem, se asia, things to do, travel, wanderlust
adventure, asia, backpacking, backpacks, cambodia, flip flops only, island, koh rong samloem, se asia, things to do, travel, wanderlust

How to get there:
To get to the island you need to take the ferry from Sihanoukville for 20$/person return ticket.
When we visited the island in 2016 there were only 2 ferry companies, but I see that now they have a dedicated site for this and more options to choose from.
Our recommendation, considering the journey is pretty long, for over 2 hours, is to make sure you go with the big ferry. Sometimes if they book to many tourists for a particular day they will supplement the journey with another small boat and cram the rest of them there. I would definitely avoid the small boat: for comfort reasons and for safety reasons, as the sea tends to be a little rough most of the times and accidents have been known to happen in this particular area.

adventure, asia, backpacking, backpacks, cambodia, flip flops only, island, koh rong samloem, se asia, things to do, travel, wanderlust

Where to stay in Koh Rong Samloem:
Our pick: Sweet Dreams Samloem
For us this was a good value for money, the owners were really nice and helpful and the bungalows were among the best on the island.
Whatever accommodation you choose make sure that besides the essential mosquito net around the bed they also have nets all over the windows. The lush jungle is just a few feet away, so all sort of creatures can visit you at night. :)

adventure, asia, backpacking, backpacks, cambodia, flip flops only, island, koh rong samloem, se asia, things to do, travel, wanderlust

Things to do:
Well...there is not much to do on the island besides relaxing...As the island is pretty remote and secluded there are no possibilities for day trips or tours.
Some of the resorts do however have kayaks or paddle boards, including the one we stayed at, but that would be pretty much it.
But honestly, after the exhausting yet incredible visit to the Angkor temple complex, all we needed was just that.

adventure, asia, backpacking, backpacks, cambodia, flip flops only, island, koh rong samloem, se asia, things to do, travel, wanderlust
adventure, asia, backpacking, backpacks, cambodia, flip flops only, island, koh rong samloem, se asia, things to do, travel, wanderlust
adventure, asia, backpacking, backpacks, cambodia, flip flops only, island, koh rong samloem, se asia, things to do, travel, wanderlust

Tips and tricks:
There are no ATM's on the island and you cannot pay with your credit card, so make sure you have enough cash in your pocket.

The island is known to have sand flies. We were lucky enough that during the time we went there weren't any, but just to be sure you better bring some strong mosquito repellent or DEET as their bite isn't that pleasant...so we've heard.

As in many islands in Asia the tide changes the landscape of the island dramatically. In the evening during the low tide the water recedes for hundreds of feet and only in the morning does the perfect blue water return. So don't panic if you get there during the evening :).

adventure, asia, backpacking, backpacks, cambodia, flip flops only, island, koh rong samloem, se asia, things to do, travel, wanderlust
adventure, asia, backpacking, backpacks, cambodia, flip flops only, island, koh rong samloem, se asia, things to do, travel, wanderlust

Hugs,
O

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