As I was coming to the end of my 5 month trip around SE Asia I decided I wanted a proper holiday. A beach. A pile of books. Good food. Loads of swimming.

I discovered what I was looking for in the South of Cambodia.

I flew from Siem Reap to a town called Sihanoukville. This town was a funny little place. It was touristy in a way that didn’t appeal to me. Lots of foreigners baking on the beach or going on booze cruises. Luckily I was only here for a night before heading off to an island that sounded more like me.

Koh Rong Saloem (sometimes called Koh Rong Samloem) was the island paradise I had been looking for.

It was a two hour boat ride out to the island (there is a quicker Fast Ferry if you are in a hurry). The timing was superb as a storm was hitting Sihonoukville as we left but all was calm out on the water.

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The island has two main bays you can stay in. Saracen Bay is the largest with a number of simple resorts.

Saracen Bay

Saracen Bay

Saracen Bay

Saracen Bay

Saracen Bay

Saracen Bay

 

I opted for the quieter side of the island and stayed at Lazy Beach Resort,  which is the only place to stay on that side of the island.

The resort was one of the best places I’ve stayed. It’s not a resort in the way you might think. There are no luxuries here just simple bungalows, friendly staff, great food and a beautiful atmosphere. Plus for the most relaxing holiday ever there is no internet here! The power is only on in the evenings.

The wooden bungalows all have 2 double beds so you can come by yourself or as in group. The ensuite bathroom is basic and comes complete with a resident gecko. The veranda with its hammocks was one of my favourite places to relax. The beach was only about 15 metres away and I had a private walk way down to it. Large trees lined the shore and the local birdlife kept me amused with their antics. The crested hornbills are LOUD!

 

To walk to the other side of the bay you take a stroll through the jungle (1.5km). From there you can walk to the lighthouse or to the waterfalls.

 

After all that exertion it’ll be time for another swim…

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You can buy all of your food and drinks from the Octagon Bar. It’s a great place to relax on the cushions, the hammocks, the comfy chairs and sofas…

 

The bar also has a great library to help you while away the days. It’s also a great place to enjoy the gorgeous sunsets.

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