Thus far in the trip we’ve been to busy Bangkok, tourist buzzing Seim Reap, and to Cambodia’s capital Phnom Pehn. Sinhanoukville was on the coast and it was fun and filled with backpackers, but now is the time for putting our feet up. We are on vacation after all, it’s time to relax in Kampot on a riverside bungalow.
Around ten miles from the coast, on the Kampot River, lies the city of Kampot all nestled in the mangroves. We stayed at a guesthouse on the river that had $6 bungalows, a local owner (mama) , restaurant/common areas, and was 20 minute walk to town. We filled our first afternoons itineray with nothing more than good food, reading books, naps and repeating. The atmoshphere was very relaxed, likely due to the fact that more than half of the other travellers staying there were recovering from moto bike accidents – limping, crutches, and road rash.
Bicyles were free to use, so we hoped on a couple of old rusty bikes (with unforgiving seats) and headed to town for breakfast across the bridge; along the riverside is where most of the restaurants are. It was still early so we planned a ride to a nearby fishing village. A bridge attaches this island to Kampot, and is filled with homes and fields of salt flats and rice pattys. We passed cows on the road and were very warmly greeted by the local kids, literally running from their homes and yards to wave excitedly and scream “helloooo!” as we biked by. We happily returned their greetings.
We were witness and participant to the hostel owners 7 year old’s birthday party, anyone in the common area at the time was treated to cake and having many photos taken. We sang happy birthday and lit sparklers and laughed as the kids ran around trying to rub icing on each others faces. We had other company at the guesthouse as well, a frog and a few geckos kept our open sided bungalow less buggy, and there was a family of cats that lived at the restaurant. The smallest orange kitten melted my heart; wobbeling around from person to person, viciously attacking your feet with tiny teeth, and then passing out in your lap.
We have one more destinatoin here in Cambodia, the even more chilled out Rabbit Island off Kep. After that we are off to Vietnam, starting out in Hoi Chi Min City (Saigon) and working our way up the coast!