Holiday in Cambodia

Five years ago I first went to Cambodia and Vietnam. I got this great hat (ahem). Hey, it doubled as a fan!

It was my honeymoon, and D and I decided to, as the Dead Kennedys song suggested, have a “holiday in Cambodia”. We loved it. Well, once we got over the shock of Phnom Penh. In ten days time, we’re going again.

Yep, once again we’ll sample the, erm, ‘delights’ of Phnom Penh, and once again we’ll catch a bus down to Sihanoukville, or “snooky” as it’s affectionately known.

We all know what it’s like to return to a place you’ve travelled to and enjoyed, only to find it has changed dramatically, often for the worse. Our last time in Ko Samui on Chaweng beach was a big shock in that regard.

We’d had a hut on the beach for $15US a night back in 2000, and would wander down to a beach bar for dinner and a beer, and ate and drank with toes in the sand. 5 years later all the huts had been demolished to make way for grand resorts for $100US a night, and there were no beach bars left. We were so disappointed, we went to a beach on the north of the island to get away from the neon and the chavs. Next day we high-tailed it to Ko Tao to feel we were still getting away from it all a little.

So it is with trepidation that we return to Snooky. We watched video footage from our last trip there recently, so our memories are firmly etched in our mind. How much more developed will it be? How many MORE kids and touts will be wandering around trying to get you to buy this or that, not taking no for an answer?

To stave off potential disappointment, we’re spending 3 nights on Ko Rong Saloem, on Lazy Beach Bungalows. There are only a limited number of huts on the beach, and only one operation, so it’s still fairly basic and low-key.  But the huts ARE on the beach, as is the restaurant/bar.  And no touts.  Bliss.

I’ll certainly let you know how it goes.