I am in the process of planning our honeymoon for Cambodia from the middle to end of June and am looking for some advice/suggestions on our tentative itinerary and some other questions. Our tentative itinerary is as follows:
Day 1 - arrive (late at night) in Siem Reap
Day 2 - Siem Reap
Day 3 - Siem Reap
Day 4 - morning in Siem Reap and then afternoon flight to Sihanoukville
Days 5-8(or 9) - some combination of Sihanoukville, Koh Rong, Kampot, and Kep
Day 8(or 9) - take bus to Phnom Penh
Day 10 - morning in Phnom Penh and then afternoon bus to Saigon
Day 11 - Saigon
Day 12 - Saigon and then depart (late at night) from Saigon
I understand two and a half days in Siem Reap may be a bit much, but flights out are only every other day during the week.
Now a few questions. First, how does this itinerary sound? Second, with the 4-5 days of beach planned, does anyone have suggestions with splitting time between some combination of Sihanoukville, Koh Rong, Kampot, and Kep and any other suggestions for these beaches/towns (e.g., where to stay, eat, transportation, etc.)? Third, as you can see with the itinerary, I am trying to decide how much time to spend in Phnom Penh. Would one morning be enough? One morning and one afternoon? I also figure we could play-it-by-ear depending on the coastal weather. Which brings me to my last question: with middle to end of June being monsoon season, what can we expect from the weather, particularly the beach weather?
Any help would be greatly appreciated!
#1 rebmanjm has been a member since 18/1/2013. Posts: 2
I would make a choice for the 4-5 beach days. All 4 locations you mention are almost impossible to do in that time.
As for Phnom Penh: it depends on what you want to get out of your visit. Visiting the Khmer rouge related places might be a bit depressing for your honeymoon. Royal palace and Museum can be visited in 1 morning. I assume that you understand that you can never really see a city in just 1 morning but you'll have to make choices and for a honeymoon I'd say you made the right choice to visit PP for just the morning.
Weather wise Cambodia is alright in June. It will be hot & humid and there will be some heavy showers but they won't last all day. In general you should have plenty of time for the beach.
You'll have to choose either Sihanoukville & Koh rong or Kep & Kampot and for good advice you need to give more information about budget and interests.
In general I would say that Kep is the best place for honeymooners. There is not much to do and there are beautiful resorts and nice restaurants. However, it comes with a price tag and if beaches are very important this is also not the best place although the beach at rabbit island is great. Daytrips to Kampot for "cultural" excursions.
If the beach is very important then Sihanoukville is your best bet. It can give you the feel of mass-tourism though but June should be good. Anyway the best bare foot luxury and beaches can be found on the islands so aim to spend most time there.
Thanks for your advice eastwest. Very helpful.
I am a bit torn between Sihanoukville / Koh Rong and Kampot/Kep. From what I have read, my ideal would be somewhat of a cross between the two--more secluded-ish beach with decent accommodations, less mass tourism, good food, and town with history and culture (e.g., a slightly less populized Hoi An).
With Sihanoukville, you say it can give the feel of mass-tourism. Is this Phuket-style mass-tourism, or more tamed down? Koh Rong, sounds right up my alley; however, it sounds a bit rustic for a honeymoon (for my wife at least). Are there hotels/bungalows that would be more catering to a honeymoon (hot water, electricity, maybe a/c, etc)?
With Kampot/Kep, the draw is the food and general lifestyle in the area, from what I have read. This sounds perfect, except you say the beaches are not great. How bad are they? Rock? Trash?
As far as budget, ideally, I would like to keep it to an average of about $100 a night.
#3 rebmanjm has been a member since 18/1/2013. Posts: 2
With a decent accommodation budget like that, check out Lazy Beach on Koh Rong Saloem (the next island over from Koh Rong). I think the white sands, tropical island seclusion you'll get there would be much more appropriate for a honeymoon than the much busier Sihanoukville.
The beaches at Kep are grey and gritty - not really sand, not really rock. However, some of the resorts are really lovely places with great views and swimming pools.
Phnom Penh is great for eating and drinking and there's plenty of cultural sights such as the Royal Palace and National Museum to fill a day or two without visiting the Khmer Rouge focussed S21 and Killing Fields, if that's not your interest. I'd definitely recommend taking a look at The Plantation or The Willow as places to stay with reasonable rates and a bit of style.
Just to throw something else in - have you thought about Koh Kong as an alternative to Kampot/Kep/Sihanoukville? There are some beautiful resorts there now, with plenty of seclusion. Take a look at 4 Rivers and you'll see what I mean. OK, so even with a low season discount it's more that $100 a night, but you can easily save that on other accommodation on your trip. Have a look at this - www.ecolodges.asia. Think of a firefly boat trip at night, and waking up to those mountains ...! It's posh and romantic glamping. Hopefully the lack of air con and sleeping in a (posh) tent isn't too rustic.
As mentioned before, it's unlikely to rain every day in June, although when it does there's a spectacular downpour for an hour or two. Hot and humid, for sure, but it shouldn't stop you from having fun.
All in all, have a wonderful honeymoon!
My wife and I went in May last year for our honeymoon. We're from Philadelphia, and had a small budget. We didn't think it would work for us, but we found a deal through livingsocial.com that included airfare, lodging (4star), and stops in Siem Reap, Phnom Penh, and Singapore. Each stop was 2-3 days and included a tour on the first day. Out of NYC, it came to about $2200 each if I remember correctly. We didn't hit any beaches, but we saw a lot of temples, saw a show, toured the palace and a museum, met a lot of people, ate good food, and slept well at nice places.
#5 timwuf has been a member since 25/1/2013. Posts: 1
is actual important againis your best bet. It can accord you the feel of mass-tourism admitting but June should be good. Anyway the best bald bottom affluence and beaches can be begin on the islands so aim to absorb a lot of time there.
#6 mariajames has been a member since 29/9/2012. Posts: 57
Depending on your budget - the ULTIMATE honeymoon experience would include a stay at Song Saa - check it out, very expensive but amazing, once in a lifetime type experience!!! 20 min boat ride off the coast of Sihanoukville!
Also - I just did the overnight bus from Phnom Penh to SGN and it took 12 hours both ways, with a limited amount of time may be better off looking into a flight.
#7 UrbanForage has been a member since 27/1/2013. Posts: 4
Agree that Song Saa is amazing, but it's also about $1600 a night! And it's only a 20 minute ride if you take the $200 speed launch...
A cheaper option would be Palm Beach Resort which is just opposite on the mainland of Koh Rong island. Beautiful, same views, and only $25 a night ... of course you'll have to get the slow boat there, which takes two hours.
I've just come back from Koh Rong (my update will be on this site soon) and I would definitely suggest you consider it in your itinerary.
Yes - it's $1600 a night but for a honeymoon it would be the ultimate experience, even to do 1 or 2 nights here and then do the $25 a night for the rest of the stay - what an experience!!!!
Also just a FYI the 20 min speed boat transfer is not $200 - it is actually included in the room rate :-)
Ps. Congrats xo
#9 UrbanForage has been a member since 27/1/2013. Posts: 4