There are not many places of this kind left on Earth; untouched silken sands, hammocks and beach swings, scattered seaside bamboo huts, warm azure shallows, surreal sunsets and after dark one can dive into the sea of stars – quite literally. Glowing plankton is one of the best-kept secrets of Koh Rong Sanloem.
WHERE ARE THE KOH RONG ISLANDS
When the Koh Rong archipelago was discovered, the first visitors would endlessly rave about this mind-blowing, idyllic fairyland and they compared it to the fictional island in Alex Garland`s novel ‘The Beach’. Truly, these Cambodian islands remind of Thailand 20 years ago – utterly pristine!
While the bigger one – Koh Rong, features fast-growing development and a well-established backpackers scene, his tiny sister-island – Koh Rong Sanloem, is an idyllic tropical hideaway perfect for couples.
WHERE TO STAY
There is a good range of accommodation on Koh Rong Sanloem – from simple beachfront bamboo bungalows is M`Pay Bay to luxurious eco-villas in Saracen Bay, and there are numerous lovely seaside taverns along the beaches.
Local boats can take the visitors around the island and various boat tours are available at any resort or guesthouse. In fact, a ferry is the only way to reach the island from Sihanoukville.
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Jungle Trekking, Mountain Biking, Sea Kayaking, Snorkelling and Scuba Diving can be arranged in any resort or with your guesthouse, as well as a boat tour around the island and ferry to Sihanoukville.
OUR SECRET TIP – HAVE A NIGHT SWIM WITH SPARKLING PLANKTON
This magical encounter is a big secret of the Koh Rong Islands. No one really tells you that the Koh Rong islands provide some of the best conditions for the bio-luminescent plankton in the world. This is an absolute miracle!
Best on a cloudy night, slowly walk into the shallow waters of the sea (Saracen Bay & Lonely Beach are ideal for their calm and shallow waters) and try to swirl the water with your hands and feet as plankton reacts to movement only. That is how the magic starts. The more you move the more sparkly it becomes. So, keep swimming and dancing and enjoy your personal Avatar World 🙂
Remember to bring goggles and feast your eyes on the underwater glittering tornado
Be advised that the plankton bites (just gently)!
Tourism in Cambodia is rapidly growing and soon roads and more resorts will be built on Koh Rong Sanloem and possibly an airport on Koh Rong. Therefore hurry up! In a few years “the secret islands of Cambodia” might be no secret anymore…
For more information about Koh Rong Sanloem visit the official website https://www.koh-rong-samloem-island.com/
WHEN TO TRAVEL
The best time to visit is between November and May when the island gets the least rain.
However, a shower or two will not make any difference as the untouched paradise is as much enjoyable when wet and maybe even better for some reasons (the lightning plankton is best to see by cloudy nights).
HOW TO GET THERE
Fly to Sihanoukville.
Catch a ferry from the Serendipity Beach Pier in Sihanoukville to Koh Rong Sanloem. Boats depart 3 times a day, they stop on both islands and the ride takes about 45 min. Any guesthouse or travel agency in Sihanoukville will happily help you to book the trip.
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