Difference between revisions of "Koh Kong"
Revision as of 18:26, 7 April 2012
Koh Kong has an airport but it's not currently used for commercial passenger flights. Runway is in a less than desirable shape (May '08) and airtravel will not commence commercially for a while.
Koh Kong is linked to Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville via Sre Ambel by National Route 4. The road is now completed including all 5 bridges (May 2008). It's a good scenic drive through some of Cambodia's least developed and unspoiled regions - Cardamom mountains. Minibuses and tourist air-con buses leave Koh Kong mainly in the mornings (but some do even in the afternoon, probably depending on number of passengers available). On the way back, they usually leave in the morning and arrive to Koh Kong in the afternoon. The proper price is 25000 riel (6USD).About USD8 or 10 is a price often asked in Sihanoukville travel agencies for the ticket back to Koh Kong).
There is no longer a boat from Koh Kong to Sihanoukville. It stopped in 2009 although some travel agents in Thailand still sell travel tickets for the (non existent) boat.
Currently (Jan 2010), there is a daily bus leaving to Koh Kong from Kep for 20USD. It leaves in the morning at 8:30.
The Thailand border crossing named Cham Yeam is about 10 km (by the road) northwest of the town. Motos (normal price is USD 2 to 2.5), shared taxis and taxis (USD 9 to 10 for the entire car) go between the border post and the town/port, and the drivers of these will attack you while you're waiting for your visa. You may and will be asked for much more (400 baht is quite common) - just bargain a lot, and do not let them to rip off you. Additionally, you'll have to pay toll fee for the bridge, which can be paid in either baht, riels or USD. The ongoing rate will be stated on the toll booths just before the bridge - better pay this on site and do not include in your taxi fare, to avoid a chance of being over- or double-charged. When in town, the driver will offer you to exchange some money to riels - just refuse, the rate would be very poor, USD are accepted universally in Cambodia, and, in Koh Kong, Thai baht are accepted too. If you're continuing on to Cambodia, he'll also try to convince you to buy a bus ticket for an inflated price, USD15-30 or more - just do not agree, or you'll be charged this price on arrival to the agency, and bargain when he drops you there. In the agency, you may be told that the normal price now is USD25 or 30, and, as such, USD15 is a big bargain - this is not true. The proper price to Phnom Penh is 25000 riel (6USD) if you get a ticket for 8USD you are doing well. There is a good friendly bar, Fat Sam's, in the main street where you can get good honest tourist information as well as the best Western food in Koh Kong.
Around Koh Kong, there are islands, mountains, jungles, rivers, waterfalls, a zoo, casino, and a lot more.
Koh Kong Island (considered one of the best beaches in SE Asia). There are no accommodations on Koh Kong Island as it is military run and therefore illegal to spend the night, however day trips are offered by Koh Kong Divers tour centre and some other operators in Koh Kong.
Along highway 4 (Sihanoukville - Phnom Penh), about 30 km south of Traeng Trayoung, 20 km north of the Koh Kong turn-off, there is on the west side of the road a small turn-off which leads to a nice set of rapids called O'bak Retes. Great place to stop.
Day tours and overnight adventure trips to Koh Kong Island and other Islands in Kong Province, Pream Krasop Mangroves(Asia's Largest), Waterfalls & Trekking in the Cardamom Mountainns are available from Koh Kong Divers travel & tours located next to the waterfront bar & restaurant on riverfront road. Koh Kong island has recently opened its doors to night camping. All the information can be found through Koh Kong Bay hotel, 200m left before the Thai bridge. A soon to be opened bungalow resort is also awaiting (May 2012).
Gecko adventure tours Koh Kong offer overnight camping, night canyoning, trekking to remote waterfalls, experienced guides, all gear supplied.
Fat Sam's bar on the main street in the downtown area is a fabulous place to get an idea about what to do - Fat Sam himself is very helpful and knows the place quite well.
Fat Sams on the main street 100 metres east of the roundabout. Excellent Western and Cambodian food using fresh local produce. Full bar facilities and Sam is a mine of local information.
The Blue Gecko Bar
The Aqua Sunset Bar & Resturant has just opened 01/11/09. Riverside bar and restaurant set over the water on the Koh Pow River, pleasant river breeze, popular sunset venue. Full bar facilities, selection of spirits and cocktails, western and thai-khmer food. Also offering a Sunset Cruise every evening.
The Dive Inn. Daily specials from 110 Baht, European, Thai & Khmer cuisine. the largest selection of spirits and cocktails in koh kong
Waterfront Bar & Restaurant. Great pizza's and hamburgers, Traditional Cambodian food and snacks, top place for river and sunset views.
Paddy's Bamboo Pub serves western breakfast and local meals. The pub is next to Rasmey Buntam Guesthouse.
Waterfront Bar & Restaurant – Full bar facilities-Cocktails/Beers/Spirits, Late night opening, good music. Great place to meet other travelers from around the globe and offers great river views and sunsets.
Blue Elephant Bar - Bar and lounge, opens early until late. Offers food, drinks, free WiFi, a nice selection of books in a friendly atmosphere.
There are many guesthouses and small hotels in the central part of town and on the riverside street, partially thanks to Thais who come to Cambodia for gambling (the big casino can be seen on the way from the border). Basic guesthouse room with fan costs USD3-6 (or 100-200 baht). For USD10 and more you'll get an air-con room in a guesthouse or hotel. As often in Asia, the cheapest places and room rates are usually those found "on the spot" on arrival. Motorbike taxi drivers will be happy to deliver you to a guesthouse/hotel of their choice, if you're not sure where to go - just ask them (and notice after while riding there) how far from the center is it and what's the price. Alternatively, just walk around and look for accommodation yourself - the town is quite small. Further south of the town there is a small group of 12 islands called the Koh Sdach archipelago, this area holds untamed beauty with white sandy beaches, crystal clear seas and paradise islands. This is a must for any traveler visiting coastal cambodia. Currently accommodation is only available on two of the islands Koh Sdach and Koh Toteung and room rates go from $10 - $120.