Sihanoukville is the main seaside resort of Cambodia, which is developing rapidly, but still retains its unique character. Many foreigners start exploring Cambodia after arriving in the capital of this country and then go to the coast. Therefore, information on how to quickly and cheaply get from Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville and back is very relevant. On this page you will find information on the main proven ways to move between cities, the cost of transport and its schedule.
If you do not want to spend your time reading, you can simply use the search form below. Just enter your desired date and click “Find Tickets”. In the results you can see the schedule of transport and its cost, read reviews about transport companies and see the place of landing and disembarking on the map. Also there you have the opportunity to choose 1 of 10 supported languages, as well as currency – local or any of the 25 others.
Distance between Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville
Both cities are located in the southern part of Cambodia: Sihanoukville on the coast in the southwestern part of the country, and Phnom Penh a little to the north, closer to the center. The direct distance between the cities is only 180 km (112 miles), but due to the difficult terrain of the country, the distance between Sihanoukville and Phnom Penh on the roads is significantly different. The shortest road between cities is the National Road No. 4, the distance between the cities there is 227 km (141 miles).
There is also National Road number 3 between the cities, but in this case the distance from Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville will be 249 km (155 miles). In addition, the quality of the road surface on the road number 3 is significantly worse, as a result of which it is not the best choice for safe trips.. There is an air connection between the cities, and the distance between the international airports of Sihanoukville and Phnom Penh is about 170 km.
Bus from Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville – timetables and prices
Buses and minibuses of various classes depart daily from Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville. In this case, the planned duration of the trip is from 4 hours to 6 hours and 10 minutes. If you prefer minimal travel time, we advise you to pay attention to the VIP minibuses of Virak Buntham Express. Fast and comfortable minibuses Toyota companies will take you to Sihanoukville in just 4 hours. At the same time, the cost of the trip will be almost minimal for this direction – only 13.2 USD (in Cambodia, American dollars are more popular than the local currency).
You can use VIP minibuses for trips in the morning or afternoon. In the morning, minibuses leave from the center of Phnom Penh at 06:30 and 07:30. Two more flights depart from the capital of Cambodia at 15:30 and 16:30. Minibuses arrive in the central part of Sihanoukville, near the main bus terminal of the city (Ecareach Street district). As always, you can see the location of the points of departure and arrival on the map. To do this, you must click on the link in the search results (search form at the top of the page).
If you want to get from Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville by bus for minimal money and at the same time save on hotel accommodation, the company Virak Buntham Express offers another interesting option: hotel bus. In the photo below you can see how this Hotel Bus looks like inside: a large double bed awaits you, where you can sleep comfortably during a night trip from Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville. Hotel Bus departs from the capital at 00:30 at night and arrives in the resort town of Sihanoukville in the early morning – at 05:30 in the morning. Despite the speed and comfort, this option is the most affordable among all buses on the route. The cost of travel in a bus-hotel to Sihanoukville is 12.12 USD.
The second popular bus company in Cambodia is Giant Ibis Transport. Numerous travelers believe that it is the Giant Ibis that is the best bus company in the country, if we evaluate the level of comfort, service and security. The cost of travel on large intercity buses Giant Ibis in Sihanoukville from Phnom Penh is 14 USD. This is more expensive than Virak Buntham Express minibuses, but large Universe Luxury 38 class buses are equipped with sockets (this is rare for Cambodia), free Wi-Fi, and a small dry ration (drink + snacks) is included in the ticket price.
Another advantage of the bus company is the safety of travel. All the seats in the buses are equipped with individual seat belts, and drivers behave very adequately and professionally while driving. By the way, that is why the planned duration of the trip is 5 hours and 30 minutes. In reality, due to daily traffic jams in Phnom Penh, the trip duration may increase by 20-100 minutes, but this applies to all carriers on the route without exception. Giant Ibis buses do not have a toilet, but this has a positive effect on the microclimate in the cabin. During the trip between the cities there is a special sanitary stop with toilets and a cafe.
Both drivers and office workers understand and can speak in English, which is also not very common for Cambodia. In addition, for some it will be important the fact that part of the cost of each ticket goes to the fund to save one of the symbols of the country – bird Giant Ibis. These birds are on the verge of extinction, less than 350 individuals are left in the world, of which 90% are in Cambodia. Among the shortcomings of this bus company, only two flights per day can be noted: at 08:00 in the morning and at 12:30. Departures and buses arrive at the company’s branded bus stations in Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville. At the same bus station in Sihanoukville is located near the main beach and the port, where high-speed boats depart for the islands.
Finally, you can use the Mekong Express minibuses to travel from the capital to Sihanoukville. Toyota minibuses are quite comfortable for long trips, and during the trip, minibuses make several sanitary stops. The longest stop lasts about 30 minutes and during it you can not only visit the toilet, but also have lunch at a local cafe. Please note that the planned travel time from the capital to Sihanoukville is from 5 hours 30 minutes to 6 hours 10 minutes depending on the point of departure from Phnom Penh.
There are 3 morning minibuses at 07:00, 08:00 and 08:30, which depart from Orussey Market station in Phnom Penh. In the afternoon there are also 3 minibuses at 1:30 pm, 3:00 pm and 5:30 pm, but the departure point in the second case is different – the company bus station in the area of the confluence of the Tonle Sap River with the Mekong. The cost of travel by minibus company Mekong Express from Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville is 16 USD. As you understand, this is not the most affordable option, but the difference in prices between the bus companies in Cambodia is not too big. In addition, the Mekong Express has the maximum number of afternoon buses, and the point of landing on the bus in Phnom Penh may be more convenient for you.
Taxi from Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville – cheap for family
At first glance, the distance between the capital of Cambodia and the resort town of Sihanoukville is too large to use a taxi. However, in reality this is not the case, and the difficulties here may be of a different kind. Due to the poor knowledge of English from taxi drivers in Phnom Penh, it makes sense to pre-order a car transfer to Sihanoukville from Phnom Penh airport or any point in this city. When using the service KiwiTaxi (direct link to the route), this trip will cost you from 68 USD per car. In other words, for each of the 3 or 4 passengers the cost of the trip will be 18-22 USD, which is only slightly higher than the cost of the trip by bus.
And if you take into account that a car transfer implies a trip from Phnom Penh airport or a hotel in the capital to a hotel or port in Sihanoukville in any time, you are guaranteed to save on local transport in these cities and as a result, a taxi ride becomes more profitable than a bus. Finally, when using a taxi transfer, you can be sure that the driver understands exactly where you should be taken, and you can pay in full or in part in advance in local currency or the currency of your country.
Flights from Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville
Despite the fact that Sihanoukville is not a very big city (population of about 200 thousand people), there is an international airport next to the resort. However, flights from Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville are not very popular, and you will not find many daily flights between cities. Using smart search Jetradar, you can see that most of the flights on the route are carried out with a transfer in Siem Reap or Kuala Lumpur, which makes such a flight not only more expensive, but also long. The cost of a flight with 1 passenger starts from 50 USD, while the duration of such a flight is from 4 to 25 hours (depending on the airline and the duration of stop).
There is also a daily offer from the new Cambodian airline JC Airlines, which makes direct flights to Sihanoukville from Phnom Penh. The flight duration is only 40 minutes, but the cost for such a distance is very high and ranges from 120 USD one way or from 220 USD for a round trip. Depending on the day of the week, flights are operated at different times, but more often in the evening. Given the fact that you will need to get from Sihanoukville airport to the resort for an additional fee, the option becomes even less profitable and popular.
Also on some dates, you can find an offer with a lower price for a direct flight from the Chinese airline Lanmei Airlines (in general, it is Cambodian airlines, but belongs to the Chinese). The cost of a 40-minute flight at Lanmei Airlines starts from 70 USD for a one-way flight with an early booking, but flights are not regular. However, if you are in a hurry or just appreciate your time and you are ready to pay 120-150 USD for a 40 minute flight, then the option with a direct flight from Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville is for you.
Thus, you can get to Sihanoukville from Phnom Penh using 3 popular options – by bus and minibus, by taxi and by plane. Each of the options is different in cost and convenience, but now you know about the advantages and disadvantages of these options, so you can choose the most suitable type of transport specifically for you. We wish you pleasant and safe trips and a good rest in Sihanoukville.