Koh Rong

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Koh Rong
Native name: កោះរុង
bungalow colony Sok San Beach
bungalow colony at Sok San Beach
Koh Rong is located in Cambodia
Koh Rong
Koh Rong (Cambodia)
Location Cambodia - South East Asia
Coordinates 10°42′N 103°14′E / 10.700°N 103.233°E / 10.700; 103.233
Area 78 km2 (30 sq mi)
Length 15 km (9.3 mi)
Width 3–9 km (1.9–5.6 mi)
Coastline 61 km (37.9 mi)
Highest point 316 meters
Province Sihanoukville
District Mittakpheap
Population 1,100 estimated
Ethnic groups Khmer

Koh Rong (Khmer: កោះរុង, also romanized as Kaôh Rōng or Kos Rong), is the second largest island of Cambodia. The word Rong might refer to an old term for cave, although some islanders say Rong was a real person's name.

Located in Sihanoukville Province about 25 kilometers off the coast in the Gulf of Thailand, the island has an area of approximately 78 km2 and 43 km of its entire coastline of 61 km are beaches.[1] Four village communities exist on the island: Koh Tuich, Dam Dkeuw, Prek Svay and Sok San.[2] The island has also become home to an increasing number of foreign-owned guesthouses and bungalow resorts, scattered all over the vast terrain.

Like most of its neighboring islands, Koh Rong has had a land concession issued by the Cambodian government. The Royal Group has been granted a 99-year lease and revealed plans to build "Asia’s first environmentally planned resort island."[3]

The French "Survivor" television program Koh Lanta was filmed on Koh Rong, near Sok San village in 2012.


waterfall near Sok San village

Koh Rong is the biggest of the islands off the coast of Sihanoukville in the Gulf of Thailand. It stretches from south-east to north-west, is roughly elongate shaped and it encompasses an area of 78 square km. The terrain is predominantly hilly with a sizable mountain (316 meters) at the island’s north-west. The hills provide water for countless creeks and estuaries. The island’s interior is almost completely forested, concealing a number of seasonal waterfalls. Koh Rong has around 43 kilometers of delicate beaches. There are no less than 23 beaches of varying length and coloration – from (predominantly) white to beige to rose-colored sands - along most of the coastline. Bays, protruding capes and impressive sandstone rock formations contribute to the island’s scenic panorama. The southern coastline - exposed to the weather and open sea, is particularly spectacular, whereas the eastern coast, which faces towards the land, is characterized by a sequence of smooth hills, gently sloping towards the numerous crescent-shaped beaches, inlets and bays. Several small islets and many reefs provide an abundance of natural environments for a great variety of marine life. The center of the island is a flat “belt” of sediments that joins the two hilly massifs of the south-east and north-west. Here is a small savanna - the result of human activities and cultivation. Although most of the island's surface is still covered in forest, many years of illegal logging have seriously affected the quality and health of the jungle. Huge, old and slow-growing hardwood trees have become rare, the original arboreal variety is vanishing and gradually being replaced by commercial mono cultures, such as coco - and oil palms, in particular along the coast and in the lowlands.

Settlements and Infrastructure[edit]

There are 4 distinguishable villages on Koh Rong – Koh Tuich Village in the south, Prek Sway and Daum Skeuw in the northeast and Sok San Village in the northwest. Most people live from fishing, although an increasing number has found jobs in the quickly growing tourism sector. This is particularly true for Koh Tuich Village. Apart from paths in the jungle - many of these are dead ends and had been created by illegal loggers - there is absolutely no road network. Recent road clearings do foreshadow the island's future as a major tourist destination, promoted by The Royal Group. In September 2012 the island was hooked up with the internet via Sihanoukville. The Royal Group laid a fiberglass cable in the gulf's waters - a distance of almost 30 kilometers.


External links[edit]

See also[edit]

Coordinates: 10°42′N 103°14′E / 10.700°N 103.233°E / 10.700; 103.233