This Beach City In Asia Is A Stunningly Affordable Destination That Feels Luxurious

We don't know about you, but these cold, dreary months have us craving sunshine and warm weather — preferably while relaxing on a scenic beach, drink in hand. And while we love an all-inclusive in the Caribbean as much as the next person, it never hurts to expand our horizons and visit somewhere new and different. When we think of stunning Asia beaches for incredible adventures, plenty comes to mind in a heartbeat. Luxurious (and pricey) family-friendly destinations like Bali are on many a bucket list, but if your heart is saying "yes" and your bank account is saying "no," don't despair — there's a seriously underrated gem in Asia that boasts beautiful beaches and a low price tag. 

Sihanoukville, Cambodia, nestled along the Gulf of Thailand, is a coastal city, historically a port village. Today, it's a bustling seaside town that offers visitors an ideal combination of beaches, natural beauty, nightlife, and cultural experiences. Sihanoukville may be best known for its signature white-sand beaches and beautiful islands, but its other attractions and activities are equally enjoyable. From stunning temples to casinos, there's something for everyone.

The beaches of Sihanoukville

Sihanoukville is lined with pristine beaches, but Ochheuteal Beach is a highlight you'll likely return to more than once during your trip. With its white sands and turquoise waters, it's the ideal spot to sunbathe with a good book or play beach volleyball. You can also grab local seafood from the casual restaurants and shacks on the beachside.

"Ochheuteal is the most beautiful beach in Cambodia. My colleagues and I visited the beach last month and we enjoyed it a lots [sic]. The sand and water were clear and clean," one Tripadvisor reviewer wrote. "We played football and did lots of fun activities on the beach. There were lots of restaurants by the beach which served good Cambodian food. I loved the seafood very much."

For a more secluded, tranquil beach experience, head to Sokha Beach. A major bonus of Sokha is that there are few crowds, so it's the perfect beach to go to when you want to relax and enjoy the peace. When you're in the mood for a vibrant nightlife scene, look no further than Serendipity Beach. At nighttime, the music begins, and the wine flows. It's also popular among locals, so spending an evening there is the perfect opportunity to mingle with residents and seek their insider tips on making the most of your time in Sihanoukville.

Take in the culture

Although it may be difficult to tear yourself away from the stunning beaches, don't miss out on the opportunity to immerse yourself in Cambodian culture. One must-visit attraction is Wat Leu, a hilltop temple with spectacular panoramic views of Sihanoukville. It also boasts stunning, intricate Khmer architecture and the opportunity to learn about the local Buddhist practices.

What is a vacation without bringing back some souvenirs? For an authentic Cambodian shopping experience, head to Phsar Leu Market. The largest traditional market in Sihanoukville has many sections to intrigue the traveler. The diverse items on sale include local handicrafts, seafood, jewelry, and traditional Khmer food and souvenirs. 

If you're feeling lucky, Sihanoukville has also earned a reputation as a burgeoning casino destination in recent years. Explore the various casinos scattered across the town for a thrilling night of gaming. The best-reviewed casinos in the city include Holiday Palace Casino Resort, Queenco Hotel & Casino, and Jin Bei Casino & Hotel. So, baby, get ready to roll the dice!