Hello everyone!! So it has been a week since our terrible journey to Shitsville and it was well worth it! we got a ferry to Koh Rong island which was absolutely stunning to then get another boat to our bit of the island on Long Set Beach (or 4k beach). we walked lugging our backpacks for around 15 mins down the beach thinking we still had another 10 mins or so to go and passed this hostel that had a swamp next to it and rubbish everywhere – I was about to say how lucky we were that we weren’t staying there to Gee saying, “this is us – The Nest!”. we were not expecting this! checked in and then got shown our 10 dorm which was NOT like the pictures whatsoever… it stank of eggs with litter in sewage with a toilet that didn’t work and overflowing toilet paper bins.
The next morning we gathered our feelings together – underwhelmed, disappointed, confused. it was a beautiful beach but the photos lied quite badly this time and the backpacker vibe was a bit older than us – around 25-year old and older so not particularly friendly to us young ‘uns. at least we were all being honest and getting everything out in the open and that this will happen a lot but we are ok with that and we can work on our tans! we hit the well known Police Beach party on Saturday night which was SUPER fun. met 2 guys, one of which said he lived in Singapore for 2 years scamming rich people in England… and another 2 guys who were good fun and bought us shots. we called it a night and walked the 40 mins back to the hostel at around 4.30 am. 2 hours later I am hugging – no, clinging – to the big white telephone and remain in bed all day with a cramping stomach, nice sick feeling, achy limbs and a temperature! Welcome to Cambodia! we have now deduced that the dodgy water bottle I got on my way back from the party with a mix of a lot of foreign vodka may have been the culprit 😬 the next day I was right as rain and my new diet ended unfortunately with my appetite coming back and eating marmite on toast. thank god it had though as I would not have made our next journey!
Next one down – Gee is ill all night ready for our hour ferry boat to the other island in the morning and I’m itching all over from before bugs, yay!! Once we arrive at Koh Rong Samloem we all get an instant feeling that we’re going to like it here. Saracen Bay is idyllic and looked after a lot better than Koh Rong.
We then wait for our ferry boat to Mad Monkeys Hostel and OMG we had so much fun!! They didn’t have any wifi which was so nice to disconnect and just leave your phone all day as well as the hostel being only accessible by boat and there is nothing else. The demographic was more our age with a lot of English people too so we made lots of friends along with the staff who were so friendly and made such an effort. We worked on our tans during the day, hit the pier for happy hour – there was a Geordie rep who literally put half a bottle of vodka in each of our buckets!! – then showered for dinner and partied. All of our bowels are in complete turmoil with our new lifestyle so a lot of the time we are running to the loo or commenting on how close the bathroom is from our dorms – Mad Monkeys was a 50m walk away so we have had a few close calls (*disclaimer: I think I can call myself a backpacker two weeks in now and a very good way of breaking the ice with fellow backpackers is mentioning your activity with the toilet because this is the way of life and everyone has the shits). We extended our stay for another 2 nights there because we were having so much fun and meeting so many lovely people from everywhere around the world – Norway, Germany, India, Australia. We have come across some questionable characters too. Blue hair lady who slept underneath my bunk caused absolute havoc on the first night by locking a guy in a toilet for 10 mins and then accusing him of all sorts, Ruislip guy who was a very good looking twenty years old and proceeded to ask us where we were from 3 times (I changed it up a bit every time he asked) or what there was to do in the day 3 times and our names endless amounts but still trying it on with Cici who was having NONE of it, he then did some very questionable yoga on the beach the next day which made us laugh.
Another thing at this hostel was they did DEEP FRIED MARS BARS. I had never tried one but these were almost in a doughnut batter which really hit the spot in our hungover hazes – we will be doing the cultural part of Cambodia next, it’s not all beaches and parties but for the time being 😉
We are now back at Saracen Bay for 3 nights to hopefully get our tummies under control before we have our long bus journeys to Kampot and Phnom Penh but it’s a bit hit and miss!
Saracen Bay was idyllic with lie ins, tanning and eating stodgy food to make ourselves feel better. We didn’t do much but that really other than going on a 30 min trek through the jungle to the other side of the island to watch the sunset on Lazy Beach (that’s me!)