Exit Planet Dust
Trip Start Jan 02, 2011
58Trip End Ongoing
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After a draining 12 hours we arrived in Ban Lung to a young Cambodian holding up a piece of paper with the letter 'J' on it. We hopped on two motorcycles and 5 minutes later we approached 'Treetop Ecolodge Guest House'. Ran by Mr.T, his beautiful wife, two little girls and a mischievous jack russell puppy, we were instantly reminded of Kabak, in Turkey. Our room was spotless with shutter windows that opened onto the valley and the balcony restaurant was composed of natural wood, plants and handmade lamps. For $5 a night we were overjoyed. The food was also great and we soon realised that one portion was more than enough for two
We woke around 9am and had breakfast on the balcony. We walked into the town to rent bicycles to cycle 4km to Yeak Loam Lake. The water was crystal clear and a beautiful temperature to swim in. From an aerial perspective the lake and surrounding jungle form a perfect circle, thought to be made from a meteor 700,000 years ago. Towards the hottest part of the day we were bombarded with Chinese tourists, which changed the atmosphere somewhat. Two of them even jumped in the lake without warning, fully clothed and still wearing hats and sunglasses. We walked further around the forest which has a series of openings with quieter piers. A few hours later we cycled back to Treetop for a relaxing evening and some dinner.
A few cups of fresh ginger tea later, we were awake and ready to cycle 8km to Chaa Ong Waterfall. The last 4km consisted mainly of old dirt orange tracks through small villages and fields. It felt good to be in the heart of Cambodia. Entrance to the waterfall was $1 each. Being the dry season, the water was pretty low but the main attraction was the power shower effect of standing under the waterfall
After a lot of sweat and dust we made it back to the guest house around 4pm and jumped straight in the shower. We sat in the balcony restaurant where we met Lee and Michelle from Newcastle. Within 1 hour we realised that we were almost looking in a mirror, by having so many things in common. A few drinks later we had come to the conclusion that we would make the journey back to Phnom Penh together, as they needed money from an ATM.
Had a pretty bad nights sleep, mainly due to the loud music and chanting coming from across the valley from 4am onwards. But another big breakfast later we decided to cycle to the lake for another relaxing day. Lee and Michelle joined us in the afternoon. Some young monks were sharing the pier with us and by no time all of us were swimming and jumping in the lake together from the steps and off the trees. We were joined by a few more children who soon became mesmerised at the sight of an Ipod and were crowded around Jamie watching him use it; a contrast to Mr.T's daughter who thought our camera was a touchscreen.
Our last evening in Ban Lung, so the four of us had a lovely candlelit meal in the guest house as the electricity had gone out, and prepared ourselves for the 5.30am start to Phnom Penh.
27/01/2011 13 quid
28/01/2011 22 quid
29/01/2011 24 quid
30/01/2011 21 quid