travelers see Koh Kong City only briefly as they pass through town
on their way to or from the Thai border crossing, but that is
gradually changing. Koh Kong Province is only just being discovered
as a destination in itself, largely unexplored and offering a wealth
of eco-tourism, adventure and beach hopping possibilities, and Koh
Kong City is the most convenient base from which to explore the
province. The City sits on Kah Bpow River about 10km from the Thai
border and is both a sleepy provincial capital and a bustling border
town. There is an international hotel and casino on the border and
the main town area boasts a number of budget guesthouses and
mid-range hotels as well as a few western managed restaurants and
to/from KOH KONG CITY
Koh Kong may be approached directly from Thailand via
the Cham Yeam crossing (see
page 37), from Sihanouk Ville (by road or coastal ferry) and from
Phnom Penh (by road.) It is also possible to travel directly to/from
Kampot by road, though it is usually done via Sihanouk Ville. There
are no flights to Koh Kong. Contact your guesthouse or tour operator
to help you arrange tickets/transport.
The road trip to/from both Sihanouk Ville and Phnom Penh follow
Route #48 from Koh Kong to National Route #4 and National Route #4
north to Phnom Penh or south to Sihanouk Ville. Route #48 provides a
picturesque road trip through the jungled Cardamom Mountains. The
road is in good condition but two bridges are still under
construction, requiring ferrying across the rivers. Depending on
traffic, the wait for each ferry can take from 10 minutes to more
than an hour. Large buses that ply this road often require the
passengers to change vehicles at each river ferry crossing.
From/To Sihanoukville: From Sihanouk Ville, you can travel
to/from Koh Kong by road or coastal ferry.
Koh Kong to/from Sihanouk Ville by road
Picturesque road trip through the jungled Cardamom Mountains.
Construction on the road is nearing completion and most is in good
condition. Short, unfinished sections of road near the bridges can
be very rough, especially in the wet season. Four bridges are still
incomplete, requiring ferrying across the rivers. Depending on
traffic, the wait for each ferry can take from 10 minutes to 2
hours. Two of the new bridges should open in the very near future.
Van: 600B/person; Taxi: 500B/person (5-8 hours)
Koh Kong to/from Sihanouk Ville by ferry
Small bullet ferries run daily in both directions between Sihanouk
Ville and Koh Kong. The trip takes about 4 hours. US$20 for
foreigners. There are occasional cancellations due to adverse
weather during the rainy season.
From Koh Kong to Sihanouk Ville: Departs at 8:00am
everyday. The ferry dock is located on the riverfront in Koh Kong
City, 500m south of the Koh Kong Bridge.
From Sihanouk Ville to Koh
Kong: Departs at 9:30AM everyday from the ‘Port of Passenger
Ship’, near the main Port. (The departure time recently changed from
noon to 9:30AM. Double check the departure time with your
To/From Phnom Penh
Taxis: 500 baht per person for a share taxi or 3000 baht for
a private taxi.
Bus: Virak Buntham Express Travel bus company run
daily a/c buses between Koh Kong and Phnom Penh. Departure around
7AM. Check current schedule at the bus office, in Koh Kong on Street
3 in town and in Phnom Penh on Street 106 just off the riverfront.
From/To Trat Thailand: Vans from the market in Trat to the
Thai border crossing at Had Lek depart every 40 minutes or so and
take about 1h30m to the border. 110 baht/person. Cambodian tourist
visas are available on arrival at the border. Buy your visa and get
stamped in at the immigration station and walk into Cambodia.
Drivers will approach you as soon as you cross the border. Prices
into Koh Kong City run 50B for moto or shared taxi and 200B for
private taxi into town.
For more on international border crossings see the
Getting Around Koh
Motorcycle taxis (motodups) are common and priced about the same as
other Cambodian towns. Motodup drivers expect foreigners to pay
500-2000 riel for short trips in town. From the Thai border to town
is 50B though from they usually want twice that to go from town to
the border. By the day, motodups charge $5-$7. You can rent a 100 or
110cc bike through your guesthouse for about the same price. To rent
a dirt bike contact Neptune Guesthouse.
Kong Hotels and Guesthouses
oh Kong offers a limited number but good variety of accommodations
including several very reasonably priced guesthouses, a few
mid-range places and even deluxe rooms at the Koh Kong International
Resort. The town is small and most places are as conveniently
located as any other. Touts will try to direct you to commission
paying hotels. Do not believe stories that the hotel you want to go
to is dangerous, damaged, dirty, closed, etc. Insist on being taken
to your requested hotel.
Range: $10 - $20
B/FRF Clean, new riverfront hotel offering clean, large
air-conditioned rooms with all amenities. Cable TV, mini-bar, IDD,
en suite bathroom, most with hot water. Some rooms with balcony
overlooking the river. Internet cafe sand overseas calls. Restaurant
next door serving Khmer, Thai and western food. Located on the
riverfront road just south of the bridge, 100 meters from the ferry
Tel: +(855) (0)12-936 667
Bopha Koh Kong Hotel
Range: $5 - $20
B/FRF Newish hotel offering large air-conditioned rooms with
cable TV, fridge and en suite bathroom with hot water. Restaurant
serving Khmer, Thai and Chinese dishes. Conference/banquet
facilities. Located 150 meters from the Sihanouk Ville Ferry dock on
Tel: +(855) (0)16-937799, +(855) (0)11-741040
Fax: +(855) (0)35-936073
The Dugout Hotel
Range: B150 - B500
B/FRF Popular, full service
guesthouse, bar and restaurant. Fan and air-conditioned rooms with
all amenities. Swimming pool. Free internet for guests. Travel and
tour services. Lots of local travel information. Good restaurant and
bar offering western, Khmer and Thai food.
Tel: +(855) (0)16-650325, +(855) (0)35-936220
Koh Kong City Hotel
Range: $15 - $35
FRF Large, comfortable, new, mid-range hotel right on the
riverside with a great sunset view of the river and Koh Kong Bridge.
Clean, nicely furnished rooms with all modern amenities including
a/c, cable TV, mini-bar and hot water. Internet access in the lobby.
Conference facilities. Riverside seafood restaurant serving Khmer,
Thai and Chinese fare.
Tel: +(855) (0)12-901902
Tel/Fax: +(855) (0)35-936777
Koh Kong International Resort Club
Range: $45 - $190
casino, entertainment complex near the border. Superior hotel rooms,
suites and bungalows, all with a/c, cable TV, mini-bar, IDD, wall to
wall carpeting, en suite bathroom with hot water. Swimming pool
(standard and children pool), fitness centre, sauna, steam. Tennis
courts. Casino and slots. 2km beach. Water sports. Restaurant. Koh
Kong Safari World with animals and animal shows.
Located on the
Cambodian side, 200 meters from the border.
Tel: +(855) (0)16-800811
+(6639) 588173 (in Thailand)
Fax: +(6639) 588195 (in Thailand)
Koh Kong Riverside
Range: $3 - $12
B/FRF Popular guesthouse, restaurant and bar on the
riverfront not far from the ferry dock. Offering a variety of fan
and a/c rooms, some with cable TV, attached bath and hot water. All
tourist services including extensive transportation services.
Regular vans and transportation from the border to Sihanoukville,
Bangkok, Pattaya, Ko Chang and Ko Samet. Located on the river road a
few hundred meters north of the Sihanouk Ville Ferry dock. Tel:
SRF Family-oriented resort offering spacious, stylish
bungalows with a/c, cable TV, DVD, mini-bar and en suite bathroom
with hot water. Swimming pool with a beautiful mountain view.
Comfortable, complete restaurant and bar serving western, Thai,
Khmer food. Offering local excursions to the mangrove forests,
waterfalls, dolphin watching, secluded beaches and more. Located in
a quiet, scenic area about one kilometer out from the downtown area.
Tel: +(855) (0)16-331556
B/FRF Koh Kong's original guesthouse and
restaurant. Traditional Khmer stilted wooden house. Fan and a/c
rooms, cable TV, fridge. Balcony restaurant offering good,
reasonably priced western and some Asian dishes. Lots of travel
information and assistance available. Tickets, transportation and
Located just off the riverfront 50 meters from the Sihanouk
Ville Ferry dock.
Tel: +(855) (0)12-924249
BRF Well-known, well-established
guesthouse in a traditional-style Khmer house with clean, very
reasonably priced fan rooms. Nice little beer garden/restaurant out
back offering cold beer and a selection of international dishes.
Lots of local touring information and assistance. Big bikes for
rental. Motorcycle touring, Cardamom mountains, waterfall, island,
river, beach and adventure boat trips.
Tel: +(855) (0)11-984512
Range: $30 - $55
FRF Ecolodge set on 5 hectares of
riverside land in the beautiful and peaceful surroundings of the
Cardamom mountains on a river in Tatai, a small community 20kms from
Koh Kong Town. A 10 minute boat trip from the road brings you to the
Rainbow Lodge. Guests can experience first hand the sights and
sounds of the jungle, whilst in the comfort and safety of
traditional Khmer style bungalows. The Rainbow Lodge aims to provide
an ecofriendly venue for guests, employment and training for the
local community, whilst respecting local culture and environment.
Kayaks and rowboats available guests free of charge. All meals
included in price.
Tel: +(855) (0)12-1602585, +(855) (0)99-744321
These days there are a number of decent restaurants in town.
Cambodian and Thai food are most common and there are also several
guesthouses and bar/restaurants serving western dishes. The fresh
seafood is particularly good in Koh Kong. For sunset, the riverside
restaurants and bars are a good place for a drink or dinner. Very
late evening, the noodle shop on the small traffic circle on the
main road in the center of town stays open until at least 2:00AM.
Popular Thai restaurant on the main road
near the center of town. Covered, open-air seating. Large selection
of reasonably priced Thai and Asian dishes. Some English spoken.
Tel: +(855) (0)11-653321
Barracuda Beach Bar Oceanside
seafood shack and bar on the secluded Koh Yor Beach 8km from town.
Serving seafood, western dishes, cold beer and drinks and good
music. From the people at Koh Kong Divers, offering PADI
scuba courses, island tours, waterfall trips, adventure camping
trips and more. Tel: +(855) (0)17-502784
Bob Bar Welcoming little western managed restaurant and bar
in the downtown area. Good selection of reasonably priced, nicely
prepared western and Thai dishes - breakfast, lunch and dinner. Full
bar, cold beer and one of the better selection of spirits in town.
Pool table. Breezy curbside seating.
Bopha Koh Kong Restaurant Hotel restaurant serving Khmer,
Thai and Chinese food with the emphasis on seafood. Banquet and
meeting facilities for up to 100pax.
Tel: +(855) (0)16-937799.
The Dugout Hotel Western managed guesthouse, bar and
restaurant in the center of town, offering a good selection of
western, Khmer and Thai dishes. Full bar - beer, spirits, cocktails
and wine. Lots of travel information. Travel and tour services.
Tel: +(855) (0)16-650325, +(855) (0)35-936220
Koh Kong City Hotel Restaurant Riverside seafood restaurant
at the Koh Kong City Hotel. Dine in individual dining gazebos at the
river’s edge with a brilliant sunset view. Serving moderately priced
Khmer, Thai and Chinese food with the emphasis on seafood.
Tel: +(855) (0)12-901902
Neptune Guesthouse Nice little guesthouse beer
garden/restaurant offering cold beer and a selection of
international dishes. Lots of local touring information and
assistance. Big bikes for rental. Tel: +(855) (0)11-984512
Otto’s is the original traveler’s
restaurant in Koh Kong. Balcony restaurant in a traditional wooden
Khmer house. Western and some Asian food and several German
specialties. Goulash, Cordon Bleu, Pork Roast, etc. Reasonably
priced food and drink. Lots of travel information and assistance
Located just off the river 50 meters
from the Sihanouk Ville Ferry Dock. Open 6:30AM-10:00PM
Tel: +(855) (0)12-924249
Pun Pun Restaurant Popular local
restaurant on the main street in the center of town. Serving Khmer
and some Thai food. Lots of seafood dishes. Good food. Reasonable
prices. Very little English is spoken but they do have a menu in
English. Pleasant streetside patio dining area.
Rock Garden Restaurant Spectacular riverside location just
outside town - large thatch roofed platforms set on the water with a
picturesque view of the jungle, river and mountains. Offering
primarily Khmer and Chinese food including some seafood dishes. Also
a very nice sunset venue.
Sunset Bar Aptly named riverside bar set right on the water
at river’s edge. Excellent view, pleasant river breeze, popular
sunset venue. Full bar, cold beer, good selection of spirits. Some
western and Khmer food. Booking for boat trips to the island,
fishing trips, trips upriver to the waterfalls, etc.
Western Karaoke - Peter’s Bar
Aptly named, Peter at Western Karaoke
offers a full selection of western/English-language karaoke. Cold
beer and spirits.
Located on Street 3 near several
other karaoke places
Koh Kong Money and
Thai baht is the preferred currency in Koh Kong City. Hotel,
restaurant, transportation and even visa prices are set in baht. US
dollars and Cambodian riel are accepted (except for visas), but
generally speaking the tough exchange rate brings a poorer value for
your dollar or riel. Moneychangers are clustered around the main
market. Be careful to get the best exchange rate. There are no ATMs
in Koh Kong City. ACLEDA Bank next to the main market has
Koh Kong Internet
The Internet shop opposite The Blue Moon Guesthouse has reliable,
reasonably priced internet. Asean has an internet cafe. The Dugout
Hotel offers free internet for guests.
Things to Do and See in
Koh Kong is, in many ways, a brand new, largely unexplored
destination. The heavily jungled Cardamom Mountain range and rugged
rivers to the northeast, and the unexplored coast and island beaches
to the south offer a number of eco-tourism and beach hopping
possibilities. The most popular local destinations are nearby
waterfalls and beaches, not to mention the casino and Safari World
at the Thai border. But there is potentially much more to see and do
in Koh Kong province. Eco-adventures include touring the unique
nearby mangrove forests and boating further upstream to spectacular
waterfalls, rapids and jungle scenery. Or go on a multi-day 4WD or
dirt bike excursion into the Cardamom Mountains. For secluded
tropical beaches, take a boat trip to isolated coastal and island
beaches for a relaxing afternoon. And there is now a proper scuba
outfitter in town (Koh Kong Divers) offering PADI courses and
scuba diving trips to local islands and reefs. Most of the
guesthouses and hotels can offer advice and organize tours, at least
to the nearby destinations.
Koh Kong Divers and Neptune Guesthouse specialize in
various eco and adventure tours.
Beaches and Islands
There are a few beaches within easy driving distance of the main
town area. Nearest, the Resort 2000 on the opposite side of river is
popular with the locals and has a restaurant by the water, bungalows
and a muddy little beach. To get there, cross the Koh Kong Bridge
from town, turn left on a dirt road at the intersection and proceed
to a marked turnoff. Koh Yor Beach near Ba Blong Village on the
ocean is much better - a long, narrow, secluded, white sand beach
with a few little oceanside seafood shacks including the
Barracuda Beach Bar run by the people from Koh Kong Divers
- cold drinks, seafood and western food, music, PADI diving courses
and more. To get to Koh Yor Beach continue south on the dirt road
past Resort 2000 for about 10 minutes to the ocean.
The island of Koh Koh Khoa in the Gulf of Thailand about 45 minutes
boat ride from Koh Kong City has several unspoiled completely
untouristed white sand beaches. Reportedly, the boat should cost
1600-1700baht. Some guesthouses including Oasis Resort and Neptune
Guesthouse can organize picnic/snorkeling trip to the island.
Koh Kong Safari World
Full fledged animal theme park complete with animal shows and a
small zoological park displaying tigers, bears, ostriches, deer and
several other species from around the world. Regularly scheduled
dolphin shows, crocodile feedings, bird shows and orangutan boxing.
Restaurant and beach. Though some of the shows may not be to
everyone's taste, by local standards the animals have the appearance
of being fairly well fed and cared for. Open everyday. Located 500m
from the border crossing.
Koh Kong Divers, Koh Kong’s first PADI scuba diving
operation, offers PADI courses (Fun Dives and Beginner through
Professional courses) and scuba diving trips to local island and
reefs as well as multi day excursions. Koh Kong Divers report
excellent visibility and frequent Black Tip and Grey Reef Shark
sightings. Also offering snorkeling and island tours, waterfall
trips, jungle adventures and more. Office located on the riverfront
road next to the Koh Kong Guesthouse. Can also be contacted
through the Barracuda Beach Bar on Koh Yor Beach. Tel:
Koh Kong is rich with waterfalls and rapids. The rugged rivers that
run down from the Cardamom Mountains harbor spectacular jungled
falls, some near to town, others farther upstream. Many of the falls
are but a trickle in the dry season and best visited in the wet
season. The Ta Tai Waterfalls are the nearest to town and most
popular local falls, sitting close to the main road about 20km to
the east. The falls are wide and two-leveled with a drop of about
6m, set in a jungle gorge and falls over rapids. Others such as the
Koh Por Falls, Tuo Kokir Rapids and impressive jungle gorge Kbal
Chhay Falls sit father upriver within daytrip distance.
Last updated 04/08