I’d previously passed through Sihanoukville 4 years earlier, very briefly and on my way to Koh Rong Sanloem. On the way out I did the very same, but I couldn’t help but notice it didn’t look all that nice…
This time I’d decided to see what the Sihanoukville street food scene was like. Turns out it was pretty good, but let’s not jump the gun.
How to get to Sihanoukville?
Take the train! You can see how to do that here.
What is Sihanoukville like?
Sihanoukville looks like a very underdeveloped part of China. The reason for this is that the Chinese have been investing and investing heavily, mostly in casinos, but in hotels, shops restaurants and everything in between. This looks sadly like a Chinese colony. It is not uncommon even to see the Chinese flag being displayed. In fact it is quite hard to find Khmer Cuisine anywhere . Sihanoukville does though have amazing Cambodian street food, which I’ll get to later…
Hotels in Sihanoukville
I stayed at Good Time Resort Sihanoukville. it was not a good time, nor a resort. It was filthy, the staff were rude and due to Trip I’d paid twice as much as the rack rate. It also resembled a Chinese refugee camp. I’m still trying to get my money back.
Aside from the aforementioned there’s hotels to fit almost every budget, although it’s very much catered to the Chinese market and prices are bad in comparison to PP, or SR.
Street Food Sihanoukville on Otris Beach
Otris beach is one of the better beaches, but that doesn’t make it good either. Sadly the beaches have a lot of litter. There are though lots of hawkers dishing out great street seafood. Our first port of call was squid.
Perfectly cooked and 12 for $2.50. The journey continued until we were thrown with the next point of interest a “type of shrimp”.
បង្កងប៉ាក=bongkong Parg or lobster Horley is a kind of shrimp/lobster fried and quite hard to open. You start by ripping off the top and then eat the flesh as well as the fried piece of tail. Really unique and very much a mixture of lobster and squid. This was the best seafood I tried in Sihanoukville.
A kind of octopus! Or so I was told. Almost like cream cheese in the middle. The legs instead were chewy and cooked to a sinder. Another great snack. It’s really easy to just stroll down the beach grazing rather than having a full blown meal.
Escapades were finished by jumping in a Tuk-Tuk and asking to be taken to a Khmer Restaurant. A beach side hut was duly found just as the heavens opened up (again). We went for seafood fried rice and shrimp cooked in garlic. Good Khmer dishes and enough to take home for nighttime snacks.
So, Sihanoukville? I can see why the Khmer people are annoyed about the influx of Chinese here and it really does feel like a Chinese, rather than Cambodian town. But beaches are beaches and the high quality of the seafood being hawked by vendors makes it worth a stop on the the way to Koh Rong.
Now, how to get to an island during a storm?
Next stop the boat to Koh Rong…