Beach Life in Cambodia

Andrew Leeson


Cambodia Beach Life

The South-Western coast of Cambodia is home to some of South East Asia’s most beautiful and cost effective beachside locations. The coastal towns of Sihanoukville, Kampot and Kep have in recent times been a favourite of backpackers and the more adventurous travellers, but as more accommodation and infrastructure has been built, they have become increasingly popular locations for retirees and long stay visitors. In this weeks blog we explore just what you can expect to find this regional rediscovered jewel.


Also known as Kampong Som, Sihanoukville is located at the tip of an elevated peninsula beside the Gulf of Thailand. Its beaches are its focal point and major attractions. They include Ochheutral, Serendipity, Otres, Sokka, Independence, Victory, Lamherkay (Hawaii) and Hun Sen. Each varies considerably in size, accessibility and popularity, and it could be said that each has its own character.

Aside from providing all the traditional seaside activities you’d expect from a coastal town (fishing, scuba diving, snorkelling, parasailing etc…), Sihanoukville is also the gateway to a range of wonderful tropical islands. The most well known of these would be Koh Rong, and Koh Rong Sanloem. Other islands include Koh Kaong Kang, Koh Koun, Koh Tuich and Koh Puos. It’s fair to say accommodation is modest on the main islands, and non existent on the smaller islands, but development plans are in place. Certainly no visit to the region would be complete without exploring these beautiful islands, which offer endless opportunities to enjoy the spectacular marine life, tropical forests and local wildlife.

Sihanoukville Cambodia

Chilling out

After a tough day relaxing beside the beach, you’ll no doubt have built up an appetite (and a thirst). Well you won’t be disappointed. Sihanoukville has a great mix of restaurants, cafes, bars and entertainment (which is growing rapidly). Main areas for chilling out at night include the beach bars along Serendipity, Ochheutral and Otres beaches. You’ll also find a cluster of good bars at ‘The Square’ which is close by to the Golden Lions statue. And about 10 minutes by motorbike taxi from the main town centre, you have another bar/entertainment area at Victory Hill. Prices are generally very cheap, but of course it does depend on the cuisine, and your choice of beverage.

Kampot & Kep

Kampot is about 90 minutes drive from Sihanoukville, and is often used by visitors as a base to visit the nearby Bokor National Park and Bokor Hill Station, famous for its colonial ruins, which include an abandoned palace, casino and church. Kep is just further on from Kampot. This beautiful little town is well known for its outstanding fresh crab market. Its here you must try the Kampot Pepper Crab – Superb!

Expat Living

There is a growing community of expats which live in Coastal Cambodia, especially Sihanoukville. Aside from the relaxing laid back lifestyle, the cost of living here is about as low as it gets in South East Asia. It really is possible to live on around A$1,250 a month, which includes accommodation. It is of course important to note that healthcare and transport in this area are still ‘developing’, and would be considered some way below what can be found in the popular retiree locations of Thailand and Malaysia.
Cambodian Beaches

Island Life


Sihanoukville International Airport (KOS), formerly called Kang Keng Airport is about 20kms from the town centre. Whilst small it does offer regular flights to the capital Phnom Penh, and the other major domestic tourist centre of Siem Reap. International routes include Kuala Lumpur with Air Asia, which for many Australians may be the easiest and most cost effective way to get to Sihanoukville. Other international connections include Ho Chi Minh City, Seoul and a number of Chinese cities.

Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville are connected by National Highway 4, and a number of visitors choose to arrive by road. However, we would suggest a degree of caution be applied as the road is notorious for accidents. If travelling overland, we suggest considering the train, details of which were covered in an earlier blog this year.

Beach Life

Whether you’re visiting for a week, or planning to base yourself on the Cambodian Coast for months, or even years, you’ll find this part of world really does offer its residents a friendly, laid back experience. Life is simple, relaxing and fun, and what’s more it comes with a price tag that anyone can afford. 

If you’d like more information or have any questions, please feel free to call 1800-961-377 or email in**@re**********.au and let the team at Retire to Asia help make your dream lifestyle a reality.

Andrew Leeson

Andrew Leeson

Over 20 years of experience helping people live a better life in SE Asia. Having worked in financial services in Asia I understand the challenges when moving to and living in a new country. I have travelled extensively throughout the region and experienced what SE Asia has to offer to retirees.

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