Figuring out in advance where you are going on Koh Rong Sanloem — and how to get there — will save you time and money.
Getting to Koh Rong Sanloem couldn’t be easier in 2023. There are several speed ferries that you can book in advance. But before you set off for Koh Rong Sanloem — often misspelled as Koh Rong Samloem — make sure you know where you are going! Getting from Saracen Bay to M’pay Bay or Sunset Beach and Lazy Beach can be expensive, so it’s best to confirm that you’re heading to the right part of the island before you leave Sihanoukville. Check out our map of the island and guide to Koh Rong Sanloem’s various beaches).
It’s important to note that all ferries for Koh Rong Sanloem now leave from the Sihanoukville Autonomous Port, and the Serendipity Beach Road pier is no longer operational in 2023.
There are now three speed boats that go from Sihanoukville to Saracen Bay and M’pay Bay on Koh Rong Sanloem for which tickets can be purchased online. I’m going to sound like a broken record because I say this over and over, but reconfirm the schedules as they often change depending on the weather and the whims of the boat operators. The ferries all advertise travel times of 45 minutes, but budget up to 60. They rarely leave exactly on time and won’t necessarily stop at your beach first.
All of the speed ferries to Koh Rong Sanloem cost $25 for an open return ticket (meaning you don’t have to decide when you’re coming back from paradise in advance) and leave from the Sihanoukville autonomous Port. The Serendipity port is no longer operational. All of the operators below have life preservers for passengers (although not necessarily enough!). Scroll down for a photo of the interior and the life vests.
How to get to Saracen Bay, Koh Rong Sanloem
GTVC seems to be the preferred ferry of most of the business owners on Koh Rong Sanloem. Tickets cost $25 for an open return ticket and should be purchased online in advance.
GTVC speedboat schedule:
Sihanoukville to Koh Rong Sanloem (Saracen Bay): 9 a.m., 12 p.m., 3. p.m.
Koh Rong Sanloem (Saracen Bay) to Sihanoukville: 9:45 a.m., 12:45 p.m., 3:45 p.m.
Buva Sea pick up and drop off at the pier in front of Paradise Villas in Saracen Bay. An open return ticket costs $25 and can be purchased online.
Buva Sea boat schedule:
Sihanoukville to Koh Rong Sanloem (Saracen Bay): 8:30 a.m., 11:30 p.m., 2:30 p.m., 5 p.m.
Koh Rong Sanloem (Saracen Bay) to Sihanoukville: 6:30 a.m., 9:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 3:30 p.m.
Island Speed Ferry also drop-off near Paradise Villas in Saracen Bay. Tickets cost $25 for a round-trip ticket. Tickets should be purchased online in advance.
Island Speed Ferry fast boat schedule:
Sihanoukville to Koh Rong Sanloem (Saracen Bay): 9 a.m., 12 p.m., and 3 p.m.
Koh Rong Sanloem (Saracen Bay) to Sihanoukville: 10:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m., 4:30 p.m.
To see all high-speed ferry operators to Saracen Bay, Koh Rong Sanloem, check here.
Boats from Sihanoukville to M’pay Bay
Only two companies go to M’pay Bay (or M’pay Bay, as you prefer, which is a better spelling for how it’s pronounced, which is closer to “muh-pie bye”). Both go to the main village pier.
Several business owners in M’pay Bay sung GTVC‘s praises to us, and said they had been very supportive and helped keep everything alive there during the pandemic. So they’re the island favorite. Round trip tickets cost $25 way and should be purchased online in advance.
GTVC boat schedule:
Sihanoukville to Koh Rong Sanloem (M’pay Bay): 9 a.m., 12 p.m., 3 p.m.
Koh Rong Sanloem (M’pay Bay) to Sihanoukville: 9:45 a.m., 12:45 p.m., 3:45 p.m.
Buva Sea also runs boats to M’pay Bay. Tickets cost $25 for an open return and should be purchased online in advance.
Buva Sea boat schedule:
Sihanoukville to Koh Rong Sanloem (M’pai Bay): 2:30 p.m., 5 p.m.
Koh Rong Sanloem (M’pai Bay) to Sihanoukville: 6:30 a.m., 3:30 p.m.
The cheapest and least glamorous option is the supply boat, which leaves from Pier 52 at Sihanoukville Port. It has a scheduled departure time of 2 p.m. but waits for supplies to be loaded so it often leaves late. The cost is $5 each way and it takes between two and four hours. On the way back the boat leaves from M’pay Bay at 6 p.m.
Boats to Tube Resort
Buva sea runs speed ferries to Tube Resort several times a day. Tickets cost $25 for an open return ticket, and you can check the schedules online before you buy a ticket.
Boats to Sunset Beach
There are no direct boats to Sunset Beach. However, you can take a boat to Saracen Bay (listed above) and trek 35 minutes over to Sunset Beach. The path through the jungle is a bit steep and rocky, so it’s best to wear shoes rather than flip-flops. You can also take a fast boat to M’pay Bay and then hire a longtail fishing boat to bring you over for $30 or $40.
Boats to Lazy Beach
Lazy Beach operates a daily slow boat service that leaves Sihanoukville every day at noon and costs $10 each way. The boat takes about two hours and sometimes requires wading — or swimming — when they can’t pull up directly to the beach. (They’ll keep your luggage in a dry box). When the weather is rough they go to Saracen Bay and ask guests to walk from there; it takes about 20 minutes.
How to get from Koh Rong to Koh Rong Sanloem
From Koh Toch village on Koh Rong, there are boats going to M’pay Bay and Saracen Bay. They have at least one a day where you can pay $5 per person to go, but they need a minimum of 4 people who want to go. Otherwise, you can just pay a flat $20.
How to get from one beach to another on Koh Rong Sanloem
It’s possible to catch a longtail boat from one beach to another, but they can be expensive. We were quoted $45 to get from Saracen Bay to M’pay Bay (but it was raining when we asked which may have increased the price).
Another option are the speed ferries listed above, but again, the schedules are not fixed so these are not to be relied on. They don’t always go the same route, they can go Sihanoukville to Saracen Bay and then to M’pay Bay, but they often reverse the schedule without warning. Ask at the pier and you may get lucky.
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