For my away weekend, Zoë (my neighbour in PP) and I headed off to Koh Kong City on the coast – Luckily we had Monday and Tuesday off as well due to more bank holidays.
Unfortunately I was particularly disaster prone throughout. I felt out of a hammock because the rope holding it up was rotten (landed on my elbows on the concrete floor 😦 and narrowly missed cracking my head open on a table!), got an red ant caught in my bikini, was bitten to death by mosquitoes and my camera battery died about 10 minutes after arrival. Apart from that we had a great time! Zoë kindly shared her photos with me so it wasn’t so bad after all.
Koh Kong City is not really a city at all (population 30,000) but more of a gateway to the Cardamom Mountains and conservation corridor. It’s also a stop for people travelling overland to Thailand as it’s only 8km from the border. We planned two trips for Sunday and Monday that pretty much covered all the good bits.
After a long bus journey on Saturday it was great to cool down in the infinity pool overlooking the mountains and the hotel also had a pool table, lots of games and great food so we didn’t have to go out.
On Sunday morning we were up early and out on a boat through the mangroves and down the river for about an hour before we parked and headed up the mountain. After hiking for about an hour we got to a beautiful view of the forests and the route we had just come.
We then carried on hiking for about 30 minutes until the forest opened up on to a lovely waterfall. It was so hot by then we jumped straight in. Other waterfalls I have visited in Cambodia have been disgusting but this one was very clear and you could dive in to the deep pools.
We spent 2 hours there before hiking to another smaller waterfall, then back to out boat. It was a fantastic day – one of the best so far in Cambodia!
On Monday we had a more relaxing day planned, although it was a long day. We took another boat but this time out to sea, 25km south to Koh Kong Island. It’s the biggest of Cambodia’s islands but isn’t inhabited so after a couple of hours on board we got to a completely deserted beach lined with coconut groves, moored and swam in the clear water. It was so warm as well – just perfect.
Our guide set up a BBQ and we had lunch, swam some more and lay on the sand for a few hours.
On the way home we stopped off at Preah Krasaop Wildlife Sanctuary. Sadly there is absolutely no wildlife but there are some amazing mangroves. The boat stopped and we climbed up to the look out for a photo (this was the moment I found the ant in my pants) then across a bridge to the mangrove walk. You can walk from here back to Koh Kong City but we just had a quick wander and got back on the boat before the sun set over the river.
I didn’t really have high expectations for Koh Kong – it’s not really a big highlight on the tourist trail but I had such an amazing time. Highly recommended with strong insect repellent!