Following the amusing bus ride to Ban Lung we new exactly where we were staying and although we told the moto drivers that we had a reservation at the Lakeview lodge they insisted that it was full. Hmmm not heard that one before. Still, they took us and said if it was full then we could stay at their guesthouse because its ''very nice and has a view of the lake''. Fortunately there was one available room at lakeview so we got to stay where we wanted. We decided we were gunna chill for a day and then head off on a trek. Theres not much at Ban Lung Town but all the surrounding area is amazing. We got a couple of scooters and drivers and went off to see some waterfalls and ethnic villages. The area is basically cashew nut plantations and other farms with small streams running through them. Unfortunately the driver I had lost the others when we stopped for petrol and we got lost and ended having to get off the bike to get it through the river! It was a very good day out and on the way back we went to the lake that is close by. Although I did feel they ripped us off, charging 300 riel for locals and 4000 for foreigners! WTF!! But the lake itself was very nice and good to swim in.
The day after we set off on our trek. A 2 day 1 night trekout in the jungle. Our guide spoke very good English and I asked him questions about the local area and land mines. There are still mines in the Rattanakiri area but fortunately not where we were going. People are still killed from unexploded land mines in Cambodia most of them laid there from no other than the great U.S of A! But as it turned out, Pailin (our guide) hated the vietnamese with a passion, not the yanks.
After walking a few hours we had dinner by a stream and then were back on our way. Again just a few hours walking and we were at the camp area, I had a swim and a bath in the stream whilst the food was cooking. It was great being out in the jungle, no one around for miles and the all the noise was just the insects and animals that were around. We drank some rice wine with the Frenchies and our guide and then hit the hammocks, unfortunately mine broke during the night and I couldnt fix it so I woke Pailin up for me! Poor sod was fast asleep!
Up early for breakfast then back a different route to our lodge. The sights were pretty awesome and it was great fun trekking - definately gunna be doing it again somewhere. The next day we went to the lake on bicycle and spent most of the day there. Stacy wanted to adopt the baby monkey we saw, but had to make do with just holding it.
After about 5 days in Ban Lung we had to get into Cambodia fairly quick as we had booked our accomodation for the festive period already. So a 12hr bus journey to Phnom Penh was ordered! It wasnt too bad and we new where we were heading once we got there, so all in all pretty good.
2 nights in Phnom Penh and we were back on a boat heading for Vietnam.