Sihanoukville (Snookyville), Cambodia

Sihanoukville (Snookyville), Cambodia (3/1/2014) – What a fabulous beach town!

Beautiful Otres Beach Sihanoukville cambodia snookyville
Beautiful Otres Beach - 
Sihanoukville, Cambodia
First visited by a few adventurous backpackers and then word started to spread after the New York Times dubbed Sihanoukville "Asia's next trendsetting beach".

Sihanoukville (often called Snookyville) is on the international backpackers circuit enjoyed mostly by young Europeans seeking the wonderful relaxed beach scene to chill and party with cheap lodging and good food and drinks. Nice simple rooms can be had for $10-30/night – some right on the beach. If you want, it can be super cheap - think 50-cent beers, $3 rooms, amazing $2 restaurant meals. The ocean is calm and when we visited in early March, the ocean water was like bath water (around 85 degrees F). And they take U.S. dollars for everything.

Around Town Sihanoukville cambodia snookyville
Around Town - 
Sihanoukville, Cambodia
Located midway between Thailand and Vietnam, Sihanoukville is surrounded on three sides by the Bay of Thailand. The town itself doesn't offer much to see but Serendipity Beach does have quite a number a restaurants and bars that are popular. If you yearn to see more temples or tire of the beautiful beach routine, you may want to visit a Buddhist temple such as Wat Leu with its views of the city and surrounding islands or Wat Kraom with its landscaped grounds.

Pat Getting Nails Legs Done on the Beach Sihnaoukville Snookyville Cambodia
Pat Getting Her Nails & Legs 
Done on the Beach
Serendipity Beach, on the northern end of Occhuteal Beach, is Sihanoukville’s most popular beach with many small beach-hut rooms and restaurants right on the silky-sand beach. Some mid-range hotels are also available. Grass umbrellas, rentable lounge chairs, and little drink huts line the beach from one end to the other.

Sunset Otres Beach Snookyville Cambodia sihanoukville
Sunset at Otres Beach - 
Snookyville, Cambodia
Just after the beach goers have watched a beautiful sunset over the South China Sea, Serendipity Beach and streets leading into it liven up at night with an active restaurant and party scene. During the day, the more active can jet ski, take jungle tours, scuba dive, or take snorkeling boat trips to the offshore islands. There are many islands off the coast with beautiful coral and fish.

Another excursion is to Cambodia’s capital, Phnom Pehn, a 4-hour bus ride away. Many people plan their visit to Phnom Pehn and the amazing Angkor Wat from here.

Love Our Beach Days Snookyville Cambodia sihanoukville
Love Our Beach Days! - 
Snookyville, Cambodia
If you are like us and are looking for a wonderful clean beach that is laid back and far less commercialized, head over to Otres Beach. Sitting on a wonderful beach with $1 draft beers of the local brewed Anchor Beer, $4 lunches, $5 pedicures, and $8 full-body massages, we spent a completely enjoyable and relaxing day at The Lighthouse Bar & Restaurant (see photos). They offered us free lounge chairs with an umbrella under their trees where we returned the favor by having drinks and lunch that were good. What a delightful day!

Beach Huts Otres Beach Sihanoukville snookyville cambodia
Beach Huts on Otres Beach - Sihanoukville
You can also stay at Otres Beach in rooms or bungalows right on the beach (see photo). A motorcycle taxi ride from Otres to Serendipity Beach is just $5 if you want a more lively nightlife or you can have a relaxing night having dinner with your feet in sand.

For a more upscale and very nice private beach resort, check out Sokha Beach. You can stay there or use the facilities for a price.

Trying Interesting Local Fruit
Travel tips: The whole area is a bit grungy but the type of nice grungy that we like. We felt safe but as usual in places like this, standard travel precautions should be taken, especially after 9pm. Also, be cautious to use plenty of suntan lotion and drink water. The typical sun is strong.

Pretty Beach Lady Snookyville Cambodia sihanoukville
Pretty Beach Lady - 
Snookyville, Cambodia
Ortes Beach Sihanoukville Cambodia snookyville
Ortes Beach - 
Sihanoukville, Cambodia
Some interesting recent history:  Sihanoukville has a colorful but tragic young history in Cambodia’s long history of 1000’s of years. Just 50 years ago to facilitate international trade, a French-Cambodian construction effort built the first (and only) deep-sea port of a newly independent Cambodia. 

It was named Sihanoukville in 1964 after the ruling prince. The port flourished and its wonderful beaches soon attracted Cambodia's elite with modern hotels. The first Angkor Beer brewery started nearby.

Everything came to an abrupt end in 1970 when Cambodia’s civil war began and Prince Sihanouk was deposed in a coup. The town was renamed Kompong Som and fell on hard times. When the victorious Khmer Rouge hijacked an American container ship, the port was bombed in 1975 by the U.S. Air Force in one of the last U.S. actions of the Vietnam War.

Say Goodbye to Snookyville Cambodia sunset sihanoukville ortes beach
Say Goodbye to 
Snookyville, Cambodia

Even after Pol Pot's infamous regime was driven from power by a military invasion from Vietnam in 1979, the highway to the capital was notorious for banditry and Sihanoukville’s beaches remained empty. Sihanoukville started getting attention again after peace returned in 1993 when Sihanouk was restored to power and following the elections organized by the UN. It is hard to spot any signs of war today.

Please also see our post on amazing Angkor Wat & Siem Reap:

Ankor Wat & Siem Reap, Cambodia

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1 comment:

  1. Very nice information about Sihanoukville you can have cheap tour to the beach we provide you best quality taxi service at low rates you can hire our Detroit airport taxi for good tour.

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