Nomad Living in Sihanoukville
Living in Sihanoukville (aka Snooky) is a good ‘easy option’ introduction to Asia for anyone thinking of moving abroad.
It’s the first place I lived, for 7 months. Compare 170+ Snooky hotels on Booking.com.
Living in Sihanoukville – Pros
To me the main pro of Snooky is the laid back atmosphere of it. For digital nomads who just want to relax and get work done online then Snooky is the place for you. There’s very little traffic, the city is pretty small and things are just easy to do there. You can rent guesthouses there for $15/night or go month to month for ~$300 (that’s what I did) for an air con room, and half that for a fan room. Or apartments in Sihanoukville with a lease go for $100-$200.
Doing your visa extensions is easy too, there are places you can drop your passport off at that do it for you for a tiny fee.
Another big pro of Snooky is that there is lots of good western food in the tourist area. Good western food is not always easy to find in Asia but you have it in Snooky. In many tourist spots I’ve visited they really rip you off on the western food but it’s not bad in Snooky. I guess for a country where you can get an apartment for $150, $5 for a meal is still a bit overpriced….. but it’s not anything worth complaining about.
The other appeal of living in Sihanoukville is the beach. While the main tourist part of the beach is kind of dirty, overcrowded, and has some annoyances like people trying to sell you things and to much music it is still a good place to chill. There are also other less frequented beaches that are much cleaner and more peaceful. I took a lot of late night walks on the beach.
Drone video of Snooky beach and aerial view of the whole city
Cons of Living in Sihanoukville
Snooky does have some cons, and they are pretty major. The biggest would probably be the overall lack of quality health care. I was told if you ever needed serious medical facilities you should go to Thailand for it. Well Snooky is a long way from Thailand as you will have to take a 4 hour ride to Phnom Penh followed by a flight to Thailand.
Another big con about Snooky is that the power goes out quite often (‘brownouts’). There are weeks where it might go out three to five times. It usually goes out mid day which means no aircon when temps are at their hottest. If you are going to be living in Sihanoukville I suggest staying somewhere that has a generator, or knowing places that do that are nearby.
The last con for me is the lack of things to do in Snooky. It’s a very small city and outside of the beach and bars it didn’t seem to offer much. I lead a laid back (boring) life so that was fine for me, but I could see other people not really wanting to stay for to long. If you are just in Cambodia for tourism then it is certainly a place to check out, and the good thing is you can take a vacation there for really cheap while deciding where to live long term.
I’m happy to answer any questions on living in Sihanoukville in the comments.
how many expats living in sihanoukville, or is mostly a tourist town?
lotta old ones, young were mostly all tourists other than maybe 10-15 that work down at the bars on the beach
If we were to come to Sihanoukville mid January next year would it be easy to find a cheap room or do we need to arrange ahead of time?
January is the tail end of high season but I would say I’m like 98% certain you will find a room somewhere, and just about every place should have something available.
however it’s not a bad idea to book ahead of time just to be safe, and if you do so through my site using my links here https://www.nomadphilippines.com/hotels-in-sihanoukville/ I get a tiny commission so thats probably your best play 🙂
Hey, just wondering but how is the Internet connection out there? Is it possible to get a solid wired connection set up (like 20 d/l and 10 u/l)?
I’m planning to relocate to Cambodia (I work online and Thailand isn’t easy visa wise I’ve heard, and to be fair I don’t mind too much where I’m at. Just looking for something coastal), and “Snooky” seems like a good choice. I just need to have a stable wired connection between 5pm-9pm really. And I can’t seem to find many people talking about this online haha.
Any feedback you could give would be great! Thanks!
And on another note.. Is that town really that boring? If there’s good food, an active nightlife, and some good beaches…what else could be done? What else could the city have haha, maybe I’m misunderstanding.
hey thanks for reading, its been awhile since i have been there but i think you should be ok, the hotel i stayed at had the cheapest wifi and it was reliable enough meaning it always worked, just didnt always work well
other hotel had the highest speed and i heard good things about it, i have no idea about exact specs, but i do think good wifi can be had, plus if you get metfone 4g as backup (and maybe smart as double backup) you should be ok
its just a small town, same day same faces over and over…. you are right there really isnt much to do anywhere, but in a bigger city there is some more variety
thank you for the article:) I am in Shnkvll now and I am a bit desperate to find a place with air con where it would be possible to work. A bar or restaurant would do, if I can sit there all day and not ordering every 20mins.. Do you know about something like this?
if you mean just sitting in the restaurant and working there that will be hard because damn near every restaurant/bar in that city is open air so no aircon
charlie harpers had some pretty reliable wifi back in the day but not sure if it still does, plus it wont have aircon and they will definitely make you order some stuff
Hi! Is there enough expats to open a physiotherapy practise and osteopathy?
one thing to factor in is that most guys moving to snooky are doing so to save money, they are also mostly single middle aged to older men…. i have no idea but im guessing that isn’t your businesses target demographic
Thanks for the article. İt will be very useful for my Cambodia trip!