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Sihanoukville Town

Orientation

Ekareach St bisects the downtown area and stretches southwest towards Ochheuteal and northwest in the direction of Victory Hill. Most everything can be found either on or directly off this major thoroughfare. While good deals can be had downtown, if you do choose to stay there, the beach is something of a hike and chances are you'll opt to tuk tuk it, somewhat slashing your savings.

The Sihanoukville branches of most major banks stand side by side along Eakreach in the downtown area. These full-service banks offer the expected -- exchanging currencies, cashing travellers cheques, and giving cash advances. They all have 24 hour ATMs. For money transfers, Canadia Bank has Moneygram and Acleda Bank has Western Union. Stand alone ATMs and money exchange businesses dot the other neighbourhoods. Near Serendipity there are two ANZ Royal ATMs, one in front of the Golden Sands Hotel, the other in the Ocean Market. A Canadia ATM stands in front of the Seaside Hotel. On Victory Hill, there is another ANZ Royal ATM across from the Mealy Chanda Guesthouse.

Acelda Bank 135 Eakreach St, Sihanoukville. T: (034) 320 232 Open Mon-Fri, 07:30-16:00 and Sat, 07:30-12:30.
ANZ Royal Bank 215 Eakreach St, Sihanoukville. Open Mon-Fri, 08:30-16:00.
Canadia Bank 197 Eakreach St, Sihanoukville. T: (034) 933 490. Open Mon-Fri, 08:00-15:30 and Sat, 08:00-11:30.
Union Commercial Bank 195 Eakreach St, Sihanoukville. T: (034) 933 833. Open Mon-Fri, 08:00-15:30 and Sat: 08:00-12:30.

Web access is cheap and easy to come by. If your guesthouse doesn't have computers in the lobby, walk down most any street and you'll find e-businesses that open early, close late and offer a variety of services. Happy Internet and Paradise Internet, both located downtown, are typical. At the first you can burn CDs and DVDs, scan and print. The second offers fax send/receive and sells stamps and sim cards. Both have Skype and attached headphones as well as phone booths dedicated to international calls, which cost 500 R/minute. Internet access runs $0.75/hour. Expect to pay a bit more outside of the downtown area. Blue Dolphin Internet Cafe charges $1/hour, the standard rate for businesses near Serendipity and on Victory Hill.

Blue Dolphin Internet Cafe Serendipity Rd, Sihanoukville. T: (012) 592 358. Open daily, 08:30-23:30.
Happy Internet 173 Ekareach St, Sihanoukville. Open daily, 08:00-22:30.
Paradise Internet 193 Ekareach St, Sihanoukville. Open daily, 06:00-21:00.

If you've just finished your book on the bus ride in and want another paperback before you hit the beach, your best bet is a book exchange. Most guesthouses have a shelf or coffee table stacked with a few gently worn James Patterson and Tami Hoag titles.

For a better selection, check out one of Sihanoukville's three bookstores. Mr Heinz Books has arguably the biggest collection, boasting over 6,000 books in ten languages and several hundred DVDs. They buy, sell and trade titles. Bikes are also available for rent for $2/day. Q&A Books and Cafe rents bikes as well, but this special spot also rents books. At about $0.15 a day, this is an attractive option for those not wishing to add to their overstuffed backpacks. The cafe serves affordable breakfasts and snacks. Casablanca Books has fewer volumes than the other two, but still plenty of good reads and, if you're staying near Serendipity, a better location. As with its peers, most used books are priced at about $4.00.

Casablanca Books Serendipity Beach Rd, Sihanoukville. T: (012) 987 073. Open daily, 08:00-22:00.
Mr. Heinz Books 219 Eakreach St, Sihanoukville. T: (012) 478 955. Open daily, 09:00-18:00.
Q&A Books and Cafe 95 Eakreach St, Sihanoukville. T: (012) 342 720. Open daily, 08:00-20:00.

Coming from Thailand, Sihanoukville's supermarkets may strike you as less than "super". Tesco/Lotus they're not. Still, all of these corner stores offer an array of imported products that can be as refreshing as the air-con they blast. Crisps, biscuits, wine, canned goods and beauty products line the aisles while cheese, yoghurt, soft drinks and beer pack the fridges.

Orange Eakreach St, Sihanoukville. T: (034) 933 878. Open daily, 07:00-23:00
Chamreoun Phal 178 Eakreach St, Sihanoukville. T: (034) 934 065. Open daily, 07:00-24:00.
Ocean Mart Eakreach St (near the Golden Lion Traffic Circle), Sihanoukville. T: (012) 266 664. Open daily, 24 hours.
Hi-Food Serendipity Beach Rd, Sihanoukville. Open daily, 24 hours.

Many residents of Sihanoukville have capitalised on the endless supply of laundry that inevitably accompanies travellers. Signs throughout the city offer to launder your dirty duds for just $0.75/kilo. Often the wash is done by hand in buckets though sometimes, as is the case with the laundry service at Kosal Guesthouse, an electric washing machine is used. Either way, because they line dry the items, pick up is usually scheduled 24 hours later. If you need clean clothes in a hurry, go to F1 Laundry Express. They are one of the few operations in town with electric dryers and they can turn around a bag of filthy shorts and t-shirts in just three hours. You'll pay for the convenience though. One kilo costs $2.

Kosal Guesthouse Mithona St, Sihanoukville. T: (016) 840 630. Open daily, 07:00-19:00.
F1 Laundry Express 249 Ekareach St, Sihanoukville. T: (012) 988 483. Open daily, 07:00-19:00

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