Have you stayed in a property that is located on sea? Recently, I got the chance to stay at one such property when I went to the Koh Rong Island in South Cambodia. The place is called Koh Rong Backpackers and it is a hostel with dorm beds and shared bathrooms. I think it is also one of the first few hostels to be located on sea. It’s location is one of its trump cards, apart from the fact that is run by an expat and the people running the day-to-day operations are also expats. I stayed at this place for 3 nights and 4 days and the below review is based on that experience of mine.
1) The Koh Rong Backpackers with its dorm beds is one of the cheapest on the island. It costs $7 per bed.
2) The place has 40 beds, comes with shared bathrooms that are really clean, free wi fi and safety lockers.
3) The place has electricity during the day and the evening. Power gets turned off at around midnight. Electricity supply can be sporadic as it is powered by generators. But, this is the case with the rest of the island.
4) The best attribute about this place are the people running this place. The are all expats who love the island and have hence decided to stay here for as long as they can. They are very welcoming, great people to talk to and ensure that all your questions and needs are addressed.
5) The other good thing about this place is its restaurant. They serve great breakfast and fantastic Mexican food due to an in-house Mexican cook. Their burritos and fajitas are very yummy.
6) The place plays some great music that attracts a lot of people. If you like good music, you will enjoy this place. If music bothers you, you will not like this place as music plays from 10:30 AM to 11:30 PM.
7) Like other hostels, this place is great to meet fellow travelers. You can meet them in your dorm room, at the restaurant down below or near any of the hammocks that surround the dorm and provide an ocean view.
8) Since this place is located on the sea, it neither gets hot or cold. Temperatures stay comfortable all through the day. The walls in the rooms have openings all over and hence there is very good air circulation.
9) The dorm beds come with mosquito nets, but I hardly saw more than a couple of mosquitos. May be, the mosquitos don’t like to fly over the sea.
10) If you can sleep with the waves rolling from under you, this is a fabulous place. If the sound of the waves can bother you, this might not be the right place for you.
11) The sunrise from the hostel is one of the best on the island as you can just slouch in the hammock outside your dorm room and watch it. Even the view of the red and the yellow moon is lovely from the balcony.
12) The place can do with some plug points inside the dorm. Right now, all the plug points are located downstairs at the restaurant.
13) Wi-Fi is good as long as electricity is there. They have a backup battery to power the wi fi and emergency lights, but sometimes the battery dies out too.
14) The hostel is located close to both the dive shops on the island, is within walking distance of the village and the village market, the other bungalows and their restaurants and the boat jetty. This makes it easy for you to move around from place to place.
I would definitely recommend this place to all kinds of travelers. Personally, I would love to return here. The people, its location, its environment, the Mexican food and its value for money make it a hot favorite.
P.S. Koh Rong Island is very beautiful. Even if you don’t like this hostel for whatever reason, you will still like the island.