Sunday 30 December 2012

Kep and Rabbit Island

Our final stop in Cambodia was the seaside town of Kep. Famous for night time seafood restaurants and ruined French villas. We got to enjoy both of these aspects during our time here and also a lovely day trip out to the small Rabbit Island.

After an expensive taxi ride from Phnom Penh we ended up arriving at our accommodations which showed a lovely garden retreat. Our expectations were not that high but we found a half finished lacking of garden hotel. Since our rooms were not ready we dropped bags and got the bikes and headed out to explore. Despite the heat its extremely refreshing to bike in Cambodia until you slow down and the breeze stops. Didn't really have too much time before the sun set, which we enjoyed dining on local fishy cuisine from the lovely night markets filled with both tourists and locals. On our ride back we started to look for new accommodations but didn't find anything. Rather than ranting here please read my review on Tripadvisor, but we ended up leaving and staying our time at the more expensive Vine Retreat. This place was amazing and in the middle of Kep National Park. Would recommend.

The next day we organised to go out to Rabbit Island. There are a number of companies in town that offer tours but we just paid for the boat which is the cheapest option as you can hire everything else out there anyway if you wanted. Wouldn't recommend swimming though as, as with the rest of SE Asia the water is not the best. There is a track around the island that is fascinating in that every cove is amazingly different. Our first stop was perfect postcard tropical paradise with white sands. Watched the locals fishing before heading on. The next cove was polluted, dark, and abandoned apart from a lone dog. The next was full of drift wood and broken tree parts. And the remainder involves a bit of bush bashing your way through things but is worth while as you end up back at the main beach.We enjoyed the rest of the afternoon in hammocks with food and cool drinks before getting a slightly earlier boat back due to a very obvious incoming storm.

Once back on the main land we enjoyed a significant water blasting which was very refreshing and cleaned the place up a bit. After having a final explore of the fairly abandoned town (used to be the premier location for French snobs to visit back in the day and has since decayed to its present state), we headed back out to enjoy the best salad with banana flowers and other unknowns, at Vine Retreat. Seriously the food alone is a reason to head here.

The next day it was off to Vietnam...

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