well we finally made it to the coast, after 8 weeks of travelling, going from rain and freezing temperatures where we spent most of the day in bed with jumpers and blankets and still being able to see our breath, to slowly warming up from about christmas time and now we are basking in 30' heat on a beautiful white sand beach and totally loving life.....not to make you all jealous back in rainy england :)
when we arrived in SihnoukVille I was totally gutted to find what looked like magaluf in cambodia! we had been looking forward to and talking about this moment ever since we started this trip and what we saw was sooo dissapointing. We had heard that the place we were staying had a lot going on, but I didnt imagine it would be as cramped and crowded as it was. The beach was lined with row after row of sunbeds and the strip behind the beach was lined with bars blasting loud music....this may seem like heaven to some people and it must be for all the thousands that were there enjoying it all but me and my Damo favour a quieter more relaxed atmosphere where the main aim is not to get as pissed and as high as you can. So you get the picture we didnt like it very much, we decided to stay just one night and that was more than enough time.
The next morning and we got a tuktuk to take us to an place called Otres beach which we had heard was a lot quieter, and it was. We are staying on Otres 2, Otres 1 is bigger and Otres 2 is even quieter so we love it. The beach is just stunning, pure white sand and clear blue sea, this is the first tropical beach that Damian has seen so he was really excited, once he had got over his sand issues, well i say once he got over them but in reality he still has sand issues...hes not much of a beach boy but he sure will have to get used to it!
There is only about 20 hotels/guesthouses on Otres 2 and I would say 17 of those are really fancy pants hotels, like $50 a night is the cheapest out of the fancy places and the top price was $170! we only went to one place, our tuktuk driver knew the manager and he did us a massive favour because we managed to haggle a room down from 15-12, and i still dont get why it was only 15 to start with because it is a gorgeous room.
Once we had settled in we went straight to the beach, we found a spot where we lay down our towls and finally got to feel the sun on our skin and swim in the beautiful warm water. We made a friend that day, a little local girl who couldnt have been any older than 3. she was out on her own, i think she lived not far and its not a big thing for young children to be out on thier own over here, they have to become very independent at an early age. She didnt speak a single word of english, not even hello which is really unusual but that didnt stop her wanting to play. She started by burring our feet in the sand, she was with us for over an hour, her and Damo were drawing pictures in the sand, she was such a cutie. I say she because we didnt even get to learn her name. We played in the sea, she was loving me and Damo swinging her around, I was picking her up and pretending to drop her like I do with Esme...it actually really made me miss that pickle and I was really grateful for the time I had playing with this little girl, it was lovely. That evening I noticed I was coverd in these tiny red dots, I soon realised they were bites from sand flies, its one of the problems with beaches like these, they leave little red bits that are really itchy, I got quite a few. At least they stay small, unlike the giant lumps that the mozzies leave on me that look like a third leg or foot! Since then we have made sure we get a sun bed to stay off the sand and away from the dreaded biting flies.
On our first full day we were up early with a run on the beach, running barefoot on such a beautiful beach when the sun hasnt fully come up and a cool sea breeze is just the best, it needed to be barefoot for me after I wore my new addidash trainers once in Phnom Phen and ended up with a blister on nearly every single toe..ouch! Damo on the other hand with his super girly soft feet found he got sore spots and had to get his trainers back on.
We spent the whole day on the beach, it didnt feel all that hot and there was a really lovely breeze, which is why I think we both ended up getting burnt...we took a photo of me in the nuddie so excuse the nacked pic but it looked so funny! we had fruit for lunch that day, there are ladies who walk up and down the beach with a baskets of fruit on thier heads, we got a whole pineapple, mango and 2 banannas all for £1.80!
We spent the next day out the sun, no need to burn any further, we have like 3 months of sun still to come. we used the day to run some errands....yes errands! ha well just a few bits and bobs we needed to get like more sun cream and mozzi spray. We hired out a moto for the day and headed back to SihanoukVille, there are no shops or AMTs where we are which is why we had to go back. As much as we dont like it we managed to spend nearly the whole day there doing our shopping and having lunch at one of the loud bars, it was ok because we knew we didnt have to stay. Every where was really busy because it was chinese new year this weekend so there were loads of locals having a day on the beach with their picnics and music. There are loads of street food people along the main beach there, we tried a couple of new things, one was like a very thin batter that gets rolled up and cools so its like a big tube of wafer and filled with coconut, yum! and then the next thing we tried we didnt have much of a choice in, a young boy puts a tray of this stuff right infront of us, we only asked what is was and he cut a huge chunk and baged it up, when he said $2 i said a shocked no thanks and put the bag back on his tray ($2 is a lot for something like that over here), he gave it to us for a $ in the end, it was potato and coconut, like a tray bake I guess, double yum! I am a mean haggelor, there is nothing I wont haggel for, and most of the time they will cut the price down, they expect it and its kind of fun too :)
One of the restaurants on the beach does a nightly BBQ, its amazing! steak, chicken and seafood. we have had the steak and chicken, we are leaving the seafood for when we are at a place called rabbit island which is a fishing island and they literally go to the nets in the sea and catch whatever you order right there and then. life here is so layed back, its taking a time to adjust, we have been on the go pretty much every day since we left and now we have just stopped, dont get me wrong its total bliss but it will take some getting used to for both of us. We actually went and brought a bat and ball to help keep us occupied and we found Damo a new book so that should help with his itchy feet whilst being a beach bum!
We have spent 4 lovely days here but its time to move on, we are headed to an island called Koh Rong, its supposed to be beautiful, its described as having the idillyc beaches you dream about...we will see for ourselves as we head over there tomorrow morning, just a short 2 hour boat ride over. More sun and more sand and more beach time to come....its a hard life this travelling buisness :)