Divers looking for a rich diversity of macro marine life will find it at most of the popular shore dives dotted around the sundrenched island of Koh Rong Samloem.
This section contains detailed information about the best scuba diving and snorkeling locations with easy access at Samloem Island's golden sandy beaches, Sihanoukville, Cambodia.
Sihanoukville to Samloem Island takes around two hours if you join the slow ferry - or about forty minutes by speed boat.
You will find a small fishing village located at the northern tip of the isle and a handful of bungalow resorts spaced around the periphery.
The stunning backdrop offers adventure seekers an ideal opportunity to stay on secluded beaches and try some exclusive scuba diving.
It is the permanent home of a few hundred inhabitants and the families of local fishermen. As a result, 24.5 km2 (9.5 square miles) of lush virgin forest is mostly rolling hillsides and trees - remaining largely undeveloped.
Note: Most of the islands near Sihanoukville province remain uninhabited. Even so, reports suggest there could be plans to develop a Casino, golf course, and an airport in the future.
In general, Koh Rong Samloem dive sites are not the best place to see big fishes (e.g. pelagics). Instead, divers and snorkelers should expect to catch sightings of macro marine life, such as:
One of the benefits of diving Koh Rong Samloem is having a variety of shallow waters with calm seas and relatively good visibility. Most of the year you should expect to experience water clarity ranging from five (5) to twenty (20) metres.
Important: Most of the dive schools on the islands will conduct introductory scuba programs for beginners at the locations listed below.
No matter whether you are a beginner or an experienced diver, the primary reason for scuba diving at the Cobia Point Dive Site Koh Rong Samloem is to swim among the large cobias that frequent the area.
Note: Another section contains more interesting facts about the cobia fish species - with extra information about their habitat, behavioural characteristics, and diet.
One of the lesser-known dive sites at Koh Rong Samloem Island is Fab Point. Head out east from M’Pai bay and you will find this small, fringe reef nestled in the sand.
The maximum depth in the immediate vicinity is ten (10) metres. Even so, divers can expect to see a good selection of macro creatures and sea slug Phylum Mollusca, better known as nudibranchs.
The small dive site called Last Chance is an ideal location to see different coral formations as they step all the way down to the seabed at fifteen (15) metres.
Being one of the deeper sites in the area, this could be the best opportunity for divers to get a glimpse of the different types of puffer fish, stingrays, and yellow boxfish.
Note: Another section contains tips about overcoming the fear of deep water even though most divers are attracted to diving in deep, dark water.
Koh Rong Samloem has a small fishing village in the north of the island and this is where you'll find a large coastal inlet called M'Pai Bay.
There is a shallow coral reef near to the middle of the bay (around seven metres below) and several other dive sites in the nearby vicinity. As a result, this is a good place to experience your first time diving or for conducting certain kinds of advanced diver training.
Most of the time, small tropical fish cluster in a mass of colour around the reef. You might also find schools of bigger fishes searching for food scraps at the wreckage of an old fishing boat.
I have been scuba diving for twenty years now and I have never met any divers that aren't fascinated by the 3,000 species of nudibranch (sea slugs).
This section spotlights the dive site called Nudibranch Heaven at Koh Rong Samloem Island and why you should add it to your bucket list.
This location is generally sheltered from the strong currents which allows you to use less energy, save your air, and get a longer dive.
Thus, Rocky Bay dive site at Koh Rong Samloem is a typical spot for macro photography and shallow-water scuba training.
Perhaps the Sponge Garden dive site should be called barrel sponge garden because of the large numbers in the area.
If you are an inquisitive diver, take a peep inside the barrels you are likely to see small crabs, shrimps, and scorpion fish.
You may have guessed it already but the Two Tone Garden dive site appears to separate into two distinct and differing experiences.
Head to the deeper section near the shoreline at Sunset Beach and you are likely to find lots of fish darting around the hard corals below ten (10) metres.
It is worthy of being called a 'secret' because the narrow strip of fringing corals is almost hidden away from regular divers.
This guide explains how to get to Victoria's Secret Garden dive site, average depth limits, and what species of marine life animals you might see below the surface.