Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Backpacking Silhanoukville, Cambodia

the promise of a great sunset in Otres Beach, Silhanouk Ville, Cambodia

Back in my first visit in Cambodia, I did not bother check out Silhanoukville as I heard that it’s been very touristy. Then again, since I’m doing Cambodia on a second entry, and been hearing a lot about Otres beach, I decided to drive to this coastal town anyway.

Apparently, Silhanoukville isn’t so bad considering how cheap it is. It is very good for those times when you’d just like to lay over without spending so much; Kampot, as I thought, was the cheapest city for backpacking in Indochina, but after this visit, I’ll have to replace that thinking with Silhanoukville.

In Occheteal beach, you can stay in Utopia for $1, and 20 meters in front, take meals for $1 each too. The town is also alive with all the shops, restaurants, and the seaside bars for hard parties. You can not expect so much though with its beach, as it has been the old public destination.

$1 for burger and another $1 for fries; may be ordered separately

$1 dorm in Utopia in Silhanoukville, cambodia

beachfront in Silhanoukville, cambodia

kids playing in the beach of Silhanoukville, cambodia

If you want a better beach, and don’t mind spending a little bit more, consider Otres Beach. Tuktuk from Occheteal beach to Otres 1 is $4 up, or $2 for a motorbike. If you don’t have so much baggage anyway, you may walk through the beach for about 45mins to 1 hour. Accomodations in Otres 1 beach are from $5 per room (such as Sunshine CafĂ©) to $3 a dorm which goes to $2 on low season (Done Right Guesthouse).

For food, the beachside restaurants will serve plates from $3 up, but there are 2 roadside local restaurants where you can get a plate for $2.25 and coffee for $0.50.

Otres Beach, Silhanoukville, cambodia

Otres Beach, Silhanoukville, cambodia

seaside vendors in Otres Beach, Silhanoukville, cambodia

Otres 1 beach in Silhanoukville, cambodia

On the farther end of the island is Otres 2, which is more quiet, and with the limited options, tend to be even more expensive.

Then, there are also accomodations in the Village, about 2-3kms from Otres 1. There are restaurants here too (and a grocery) that are cheap, but again, if you want to stay right next to the beach, it will be a walk away. The is a grocery/restaurant shops that also sell all sorts of liquor from the cheapest to the most expensive imported brands.

village store in otres, Silhanoukville, cambodia

menu in the village in otres 1, silhanoukville, cambodia ; click to zoom

From Otres, you can take tours to Ko Ta Kiev island (along with 2 other snorkeling sites) for $12. You may opt to do overnight in the island; Inform your agency to leave you in the island on day 1, and pick you thru their tour to the island the following day (or the day you prefer to leave).  In the island, you may choose to camp ($2 camping fee plus tent rental $5; or you may just ask to sleep in one of their hammocks or bring your own tent). Food in the island is expensive though. Around $4 up for a plate.

arriving in Koh Ta Kiev, Silhanoukville, Cambodia

Koh Ta Kiev, Silhanoukville, Cambodia

Koh Ta Kiev, Silhanoukville, Cambodia

trekk to fishing village in Koh Ta Kiev, Silhanoukville, Cambodia

There are also trips to Koh Rong, and land trips to Kampot, kep, Siem Reap, Phnom Penh, or even Thailand and Vietnam. You may contact Simon, one nice guy who walks the beach daily to sell tours;  for questions 0975 538 243.

Laundry services are $1/kilo.

And, of course.. the best thing to do in this part of indochina is.. to RELAX!

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