While we were in Sanloem we met a Norwegian-Sweedish couple that had just come from Koh Rong, the bigger, more famous island next to Sanloem. They sold us really well on this island, which in their opinion was just a paradise. At first, we hesitated. We hadn’t thought on going there and we were planning on returning to the mainland, in part due to the bad weather. In the end we decided to give it a shot and check out Koh Rong for ourselves to see if it was worth the visit.
After three days in the smaller island, we bought two tickets to Koh Rong on a slow (and I mean SLOW) boat for 6$ each. We were dropped off at the main pier and had lunch and a couple of fruit shakes before starting to look for accommodation. We normally book accommodation in advance, but sometimes you can find better deals going to the hostels directly. The next two nights we would sleep in the most crappy room we have been to so far, for 6$ a night. In the end it was not that bad.
Although we got to say that showering while squatting was a complete loss of dignity.
That same afternoon we went to 4K beach to check it out. It was cloudy and the waves were a bit rough, but sometimes you have to suck it up. We have to admit that despite the bad weather the beach looked beautiful. Lots of palm trees, and since there were plenty of resorts, the shore was clean from plastics. And a curious thing! The sand squeaks when you walk on it! We don’t know why this happens, but we were VERY entertained by this.
The next day we decided to go to the longest beach in the island, Long Beach. To get there from the main pier you have to walk about 40 minutes through a thick jungle, and there are some parts where some climbing is required. We walked the beach from one end to the other looking for the best spot.
We ended up not being very happy after visiting this beach, to be honest. Horrifying amounts of waste are thrown on the side of the roads all over South East Asia, and these islands were no exception. It is no wonder most of the beach is full of plastics. The clean parts are so because resorts have staff constantly cleaning the beach in front of them. When we sat in those parts we were asked to leave because they were part of a private resort. Don’t get us wrong, the scenery is still gorgeous. White sand and blue water were beautiful in the parts where there were no plastics. It’s just sad to see a beautiful natural environment being polluted.
At the end of Long Beach, there is a small village where we had lunch. Afterwards, we checked out a small waterfall close to the village. We’d say we were happier about it than about Long Beach, even though it is not a big waterfall.
To go back to the hostel, we decided to take a mototaxi back to the main pier. Long Beach is long indeed, about 7km of sand! The mototaxi experience was unique. A guy with a mini scooter brought the 2 of us to the other end of the island for 10$. We wish we had taken a picture of that trip. The 3 of us on a bike on a sandy and bumpy road for more 20 minutes. It would have been fun to watch!
On our last night in the island we decided to have a taste of home by going to an Italian place for dinner. We know, how disappointing of us. But honestly, after three weeks of noodles we think we deserved it.
And this was our visit to Koh Rong. The next morning we would repeat the trek through the jungle to have a last swim at Long Beach (which was the one beach in the island that had calm waters due to the wind) and at midday we took a ferry back to Sihanoukville. Next stop, Kampot, and as always… That is for another post.
Joan & Laura