After spending almost two weeks in Vietnam we headed to Cambodia. The only pre-plan was to see Angkor Wat. Otherwise our plans were open. One of us had heard some good things about Cambodian islands Koh Rong and Koh Rong Samloem. So we found ourselves one day later at the first mentioned island.
A bus took us to the capital where we stayed just one night, unfortunately. It felt like the bus drove through the city and it seemed really interesting with some cool buildings, parks and statues. But in this point we had already decided to continue towards South first thing in the morning, so maybe some other day I will explore more the capital. We found us chatting with one restaurant manager (originally from Switzerland if I still got it right) after dinner and he told us that during the last five years Phnom Pehn had taken a huge step in developing. Basically the city had totally changed. He stated also that Cambodia had become more well-being during the recent years and I actually believe in him. At least a picture in my head of Cambodia was not in a same level than the city I was in two months ago.
One more bus trip ahead, or actually a minivan trip, down to South towards Koh Rong. The trip went nice but it was a bit shame that windows were so much lower than seats that even me, 158 cm, was not able to see anything, so well I slept almost the whole way.. Maybe it was better since traffic there is like a nightmare, hah. I barely wanted to keep my eyes open.
We had booked two tents at a place called Nature Beach for three night as starters. It was actually pretty funny experience. Nothing what I would eagerly do for months, but three nights created a great memory. It was impossible to sleep after sunrise since the tent turned into a sauna in sun shine so we were not snoozing. Two nights went pretty nice, but the third night turned out a bit unpleasant; we woke up when it was a pouring rain and our cute little tent was not that waterproof. So basically we panic-packed our stuff and gathered everything in the middle of the tent which was the driest place and waited weather to turn. I thing we managed to sleep maybe like two hours that night. Next day was a time to go to the main pier.
I made a horrible mistake. I booked a bungalow for us at a place which was known by its parties. I do not require a lot for an accommodation, since I am usually choosing by a price, but this place was seriously a nightmare and it really did not help that I got a food poisoning during our stay here.. Also unfortunately my asthma was also bothering me a lot there. So honestly I did not enjoy that much this short period of time. I found the whole main pier area horrible; there were trash everywhere and it smelled so bad, just tourists fooling around drunk.. No definitely not my type of a place. We were told that it was earlier nothing like this. Five years ago there were maybe three restaurants and the mood was totally different, unfortunately not anymore.
On the other hand, one day we walked past the whole main pier area to a beach which I thought was called Long Beach. I am not sure if that was its real name but at least it was long and beautiful and a restaurant in the beginning of the beach served the best vegetarian tortillas ever! So surely a success little cliché day trip with sunbathing, swimming and few beers. Well, the calm before the storm. This night was a party ”night”, extremely loud music stopped close to noon the day after at our so-called hostel. Well, did not sleep at all and the day after the food poisoning kicked in. Seriously I was totally suffering! 😀
Our last stop at Koh Rong was on the other side of the island, a resort called Palm Beach. A resort sounds a bit high class but I promise it was totally worth it. It was a bit expensive, but I could breath and sleep again, so I was more that happy. This place was a bit isolated but it felt just like a dream at that moment. Back to cliché holiday-life, heh. However the last stop was really nice and we even saw glowing plankton one night. Even
I dared to step into water after I had unsuccesfully tried snorkeling some days earlier, heh. So everything went fine, but again the last night we were not that lucky. Every night except this night I think everybody had their phones right next to pillows so everybody had access to a flash light, but just this last night all phones were plugged into chargers.. Well, after watching a film, all the lights out, of course, I hopped down from a bed and went to toilet. Behind a closed door I heard that others were talking sounding pretty frightened, my first thought was that well, I am going to die and I tried to ask what are they talking about. ”Didn’t you hear it? I think it is ok, just come back to bed.” And I went and run into panic. Something was sizzling aggressively and loudly right next to my feet. Nothing touched me. In the middle of the night it was deep dark. We were unable to see what it was, and unable to relax and sleep for couple of hours. Seriously, I was shaking. Well, in the morning it was gone and still we have no idea what it was, but everybody survived!
Time to get ourselves to the main land. Enough island-life for this time. I need to admit that I have not been that much on boats, on our travel day the sea was nothing I call still. Other were laughing at me when I was saying ”my last words”. I was so sure that the boat is going to fall and sink, but we made it to the main land, to Sihanoukville where we stayed two nights. It was enough, after spending some time in the island, I felt myself quite done with beaches for a while. And beaches are the thing in this coast town, so..
So finally after two night we jumped into a bus again on our way to Siem Reap. We were so exited (or at least I was) to see Angkor Wat that we did not make any extra stops on the way to North. Again, bus trip was plesant. I really do not understand why so many people are complaining online that busses in Asia are so bad. I had just good experiences..
Ok, this post got already so long that I will write about Siem Reap in the next post! 🙂