Must see attractions in South Coast

  • Sights in Kep

    Koh Tonsay

    If you like the rustic beachcomber lifestyle, Koh Tonsay's 250m-long main beach is for you. This is a place to while away hours or days doing little but lazing on the beach, napping, reading, sipping cocktails, eating seafood and stargazing before retiring to your threadbare bungalow and drifting off to the sound of the waves. Scheduled boats to Rabbit Island (US$8 return, 20 minutes) leave from Rabbit Island Pier at 9am and 1pm and return at 3pm or 4pm.

  • Sights in Koh Kong City

    Peam Krasaop Wildlife Sanctuary

    Anchored to alluvial islands – some no larger than a house – this 260-sq-km sanctuary’s magnificent mangroves protect the coast from erosion, offer vital breeding and feeding grounds for fish, shrimp and shellfish, and are home to myriad birds. To get a feel for the delicate mangrove ecosystem, head to the park entrance, 5.5km east of Koh Kong, where a mangrove walk wends its way above the briny waters to a 15m observation tower. A moto / tuk tuk ride costs US$5/8 return.

  • Top ChoiceSights in Kep

    Kep National Park

    The interior of Kep peninsula is occupied by Kep National Park, where an 8km circuit, navigable by foot, mountain bike, or motorbike, begins behind Veranda Natural Resort. Led Zep Cafe is responsible for the quirky yellow signs that point the way to various viewpoints, sights and trailheads. The cafe, if it's open, sells a park map for 1000r. The 'Stairway to Heaven' trail is particularly worthwhile, leading up the hill to a pagoda, a nunnery and the Sunset Rock viewpoint.

  • Sights in Takeo

    Phnom Da

    The twin hills of Phnom Da are spectacularly isolated Mont-St-Michel-style by annual floods, which require guests to arrive via Takeo on a 45-minute open-air boat ride. One hill is topped by a temple whose foundations date from the 6th century, although the temple itself was rebuilt in the 11th century. Exceptionally, the temple entrance faces north; the other three sides have blind doors decorated with bas-relief nagas (mythical serpent-beings).

  • Sights in The Southern Islands

    Koh Thmei

    The large island of Koh Thmei is part of Ream National Park. It was once slated for a major development, including a bridge to the mainland, but as projects elsewhere have taken priority, this bird-laden island has remained miraculously pristine. There’s only one resort on the island, the expat-managed Koh Thmei Resort.

  • Top ChoiceSights in Kep

    Sothy's Pepper Farm

    One of the friendliest farms to visit, Sothy is passionate about his product and will gladly elaborate on the history and process behind the ' champagne of pepper '. Short tours are free and there's a wonderful gift shop on the premises if you want to bring a few packs of the good stuff back home. It's about 17km northeast of central Kep. There's also an excellent restaurant, albeit pepper ripens faster than the service!

  • Sights in Koh Rong

    Long Set Beach

    Past the Koh Tuch Beach headland (near Treehouse Bungalows) is Long Set Beach. Walk another half-hour along the sand and encounter little more than hermit crabs. A handful of hostels and boutique resorts are here, but it's still peaceful. At the extreme east end of Long Set Beach, behind Koh Rong Hill Beach Resort, a short path leads to Nature Beach. From Nature Beach, it's a 30-minute walk through the forest to Coconut Beach (the trailhead is behind Romduol Resort).

  • Sights in Koh Rong Sanloem

    Saracen Bay

    Saracen Bay is an almost impossibly beautiful 2.5km-long crescent of white sand on the island's east coast, lined by two dozen or so resorts. Saracen Bay is under serious pressure from developers, who in 2019 clear-cut a huge swath of jungle behind the beach at the south end of the bay.

  • Sights in Koh Rong Sanloem

    Sunset Beach

    This idyllic swath of sand is home to just a few resorts that are all quite lovely. It's a 30-minute hike (sneakers necessary) here from Saracen Bay, or in high season a boat brings guests over from Sihanoukville.

  • Sights in Koh Kong Conservation Corridor

    Botum Sakor National Park

    Occupying the 35km-wide peninsula northwest across the Gulf of Kompong Som from Sihanoukville, this is one of Cambodia's largest and most biodiverse national parks. Alas, some 75% of the park has been sold off. Developments include a US$3.5 billion Chinese-run tourism project that has swallowed up roughly the park's western third. Hope has arrived in the form of Wildlife Alliance, which has a concession to manage 10% of the park and has set up the groundbreaking Cardamom Tented Camp.

  • Sights in Koh Kong City

    Koh Kong Island

    Cambodia’s largest island towers over seas so crystal-clear you can make out individual grains of sand in a couple of metres of water. A strong military presence on the island means access is tightly controlled. You must visit on a guided boat tour out of Koh Kong or Tatai. These cost US$21 per person, including lunch and snorkelling equipment, or US$55 for overnight trips with beach camping or homestay accommodation. The island is only accessible from October to May.

  • Sights in Takeo

    Phnom Bayong

    Affording breathtaking views of Vietnam’s pancake-flat Mekong Delta, the cliff-ringed summit of Phnom Bayong (313m) is graced by a 7th-century Chenla temple built to celebrate a victory over Funan. The linga (phallic symbol) originally in the inner chamber is now in Paris’ Musée Guimet, but a number of flora- and fauna-themed bas-relief panels can still be seen, for example on the lintels of the three false doorways, and carved into the brickwork.

  • Sights in Kampot

    Phnom Chhnork

    Phnom Chhnork is a short walk through a quilt of rice paddies from Wat Ang Sdok, where a monk collects the entry fee and a gaggle of friendly local kids offers their services as guides. From the bottom, a 203-step staircase leads up the hillside and down into a cavern as graceful as a Gothic cathedral. The view from up top is especially magical in the late afternoon, as is the walk to and from the wat.

  • Sights in Sihanoukville

    Sokha Beach

    Midway between Independence and Serendipity Beaches lies Sihanoukville’s prettiest stretch of sand, 1.5km-long Sokha Beach. Its fine, silicon-like sand squeaks loudly underfoot. The tiny eastern end of Sokha Beach is open to the public and is rarely crowded. The rest is part of the exclusive Sokha Beach Resort.

  • Sights in Bokor Hill Station

    Bokor National Park

    The dense rainforests of this 1581-sq-km park shelter an incredible array of wildlife, including the Asiatic black bear, Malayan sun bear, clouded leopard, pileated gibbon, pig-tailed macaque, slow loris and pangolin. Elephants and tigers once roamed here, but the tigers were driven out long ago and the elephants are thought to have migrated north. Trekking trips up to the hill station used to be very popular, but these days most people arrive by vehicle on new roads.

  • Sights in Kampot

    La Plantation

    This sprawling organic pepper farm offers free guided walks in French, English and Khmer, explaining how several varieties of pepper are grown, harvested and processed. The farm also grows fruits, chillis, herbs and peanuts, and there's a restaurant and shop where you can buy pepper at steep prices. (The money helps pay for children's English classes at local schools.)

  • Sights in Tatai River & Waterfall

    Tatai Waterfall

    Tatai Waterfall is a thundering set of rapids during the wet season, plunging over a 4m rock shelf. Water levels drop in the dry season, but you can swim year-round in the surrounding refreshing pools. The water is fairly pure as it comes down from the isolated high Cardamom Mountains. Access to the waterfall is by car or motorbike. The clearly marked turn-off is on NH48 about 15km southeast of Koh Kong and exactly 3km northwest of the Tatai Bridge.

  • Sights in Koh Rong

    Sok San Beach

    On the west side of the island is Koh Rong's finest beach, a 7km, almost empty stretch of drop-dead-gorgeous white sand. Sok San village at the northern end has a cluster of local eating spots and simple guesthouses. Unfortunately the beach around the village is quite dirty; walk south for cleaner waters. Two ferry companies service Sok San village in high season (November to May). You can walk from Koh Tuch to Sok San's south end via the jungle trail.

  • Sights in Koh Rong

    Coconut Beach

    At the easternmost point of the island, this jungle-clad, white-sand cove is roughly two hours from Koh Tuch on foot along the coast or 30 minutes by moto on a rugged road that dissolves into mud in the rainy season (June to mid-October). A lone speedboat company (Buva Sea) drops guests off at the pier a couple of times a day. Island-hopping boats from Koh Tuch anchor here late in the afternoon during rainy season.

  • Sights in Kep

    Wat Kiri Sela

    This Buddhist temple sits at the foot of Phnom Kompong Trach, a dramatic karst formation riddled with more than 100 caverns and passageways. From the wat, an underground passage leads to a fishbowl-like formation, surrounded by vine-draped cliffs and open to the sky. Various stalactite-laden caves shelter reclining Buddhas and miniature Buddhist shrines. The temple is in Kompong Trach, 25km northeast of Kep. Take the dirt road heading north from the centre of town for 2km.