Our first Christmas tree

Trip Start Aug 14, 2012
Trip End Ongoing

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Where I stayed

Flag of Cambodia  , Kampot Province,
Monday, December 10, 2012

Our bus ride here was probably the shortest bus journey in Cambodia - 30 minutes! Kampot was very similar to Battambang, small, quiet and beautiful. We found a guesthouse rather quickly, it was more like a hotel in the sense of cleanliness but with a guesthouse price of $7. We looked around the town, which didn't take long, saw some more old French colonial buildings and then stopped for lunch. After lunch we went to a small cinema to watch The Killing Fields. I had watched it just before leaving England hoping to understand what happened here, but I appreciated the film more the second time after seeing the country for myself.  

The next day we hired bicycles and went to some "rapids" 8km out of town. A recently built dam and the dry season has meant that the so called rapids had declined to a slightly fast running stream. We had a drink to cool off and then headed back. On the way we stopped for lunch in a restaurant over looking the river. We then headed to a small island. We had intended to cycle to the bottom of it to see out across the sea but we were too hot and tired so we just stopped off at a small temple and sat facing the river...again. 

The next day we had arranged a tour to go to a place called Bokor Mountain. The French had built hotels, churches and even a casino up there when they occupied the country. All of these, apart from the casino which had been re-plastered, had all been left in ruins giving it a ghost town effect. On the tour we stopped of at a development office. The office had a large model town on display - this is what Bokor Mountain would look like in ten years time. The model looked like an American suburb crossed with Las Vegas. Houses all lined out neatly with four different prices brackets, three or four large hotels, and a couple of casinos (one had already been built)! It looked like the American dream. It was strange to see this wide open space, with stunning views overlooking the sea and coastline and then picturing a wannabe American suburb being built there - we were both glad that we were there before it had completely changed. We went for lunch down by a waterfall, the climb down was a bit dangerous and a few of us on the tour joked that climbing up would be a lot of fun. Everyone else managed the climb back up safely, and then there's Kate! Kate managed to lose her footing on a rock and slip backwards, with her back smashing against a very large boulder! Luckily she managed to walk away with a sore back and a graze - it could've been a lot worse!

That night for dinner we went to a restaurant just down the road. I had a local dish called chicken Amok and it was one if the best dishes I've had since I've been away. It was so good that I asked the cook for the recipe, I can't wait to get back to England so Kate can cook it for me!!

Anyway, the next day we caught a minibus to Sihanoukville.
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