In the gulf of Thailand, lies a little “paradise” island called Kohrong. It is the second largest Island in Cambodia with 43kms of clean white sandy beaches. Kohrong has long been a favorite holiday destination for many tourists, who call it a true island paradise. Before you visit Kohrong Island, you should know where you want to stay because the island is quite large.
A boat ferry is needed to arrive at the shores of this gorgeous island. It would normally take less than 45 minutes from Sihanoukville town to Kohrong. There are four small villages in the island that would easily confuse someone. Here is a guide of some things that one must know before venturing in this trip;
HOW TO GET AROUND
Kohrong is relatively undeveloped but this is bound to change in the near future due to the huge influx of tourists in this region. As of now, the island does not have organized tarmac roads. Hence, different parts of the island are not easily accessible. Most locals walk or jog from place to place as there are no cars, motorbikes or even tuk-tuks.
The best way to explore the island is barefoot. Shoes should be put on the back burner when one arrives at Kohrong. The villages are not far in between so one is able to walk from one end to another. For the more adventurous traveler, hiking is a fun option to the tropical rainforest of the island or along the eccentric shorelines.
WHERE TO SLEEP
There is a range of accommodation to suit the different types of people who frequent the area. It’s not good to generalize the type of accommodation as different people have different tastes. Some tourists look for calm and quiet while others are into the extreme nightlife. However, the majority go to the village of Koh Toch which is on the southeastern side of Kohrong. It mainly attracts young backpackers looking for fun and has since given the island the reputation of being a party island.
There are plenty of homestays and affordable dormitory beds to treehouses that caters for everyone’s budget. The eastern part of Kohrong is a great area for tourists looking for less noisy areas but still have great hangouts. Lonely Beach and Palm Beach are some of the beaches in Kohrong that offer total seclusion.
WHERE TO EAT
There are pretty good dining options on Kohrong and all are relatively inexpensive. The island has very few stand-alone restaurants but most accommodations have inhouse restaurants, cafes and bars that caters to inhouse guests and walk-ins. Koh Toch is a famous eatery area with plenty to offer from seafood to Mediterranean cuisine. Surprisingly, there is a good selection of Italian food on Kohrong. This is a result of a wave of Italian immigrants who have passed through Kohrong for quite a long time. For instance, at Treehouse Bungalows, there is an Italian chef who makes pizzas with a wood-fired oven to make pizza.
WHAT TO KNOW
The Island, as earlier said is a bit under developed so it’s not a surprise that there are no ATMs. Debit or credit cards are also not accepted in hotels and restaurants. It is then recommended to carry enough cash before you visit Kohrong Island. Additionally, one needs to carry locks for their suitcases or belt bags that can be carried on the waist as thefts are not uncommon on the island.
There are a few mini-markets where you can buy groceries, drinks, snacks but the selection is limited and often overpriced. To be on the safe side, get all your supplies at Sihanoukville town as the town has bigger with larger supermarkets.
WIFI is available at many hotels and guesthouses, however, the bandwidth is limited with a lot of downtime lasting for hours. Best bet would be getting a Metfone or a Smartsim card as soon as you arrive. 4G connection is possible with the Smart sim and you could hotspot to your laptop or to other users.