Another bus journey not too long only 4hrs this time. Back home I would of thought 4hrs on a bus was hell but having done several 12hr stints 4hrs is chicken feed! We hadn't booked anywhere to stay as none of the usual web sites we use recognized Koh Kong as a place so we thought we would just wing it. As it happened the bus dropped us off right outside a hotel so we booked in there for three nights. That night we went for an explore round and discovered that there's not a great deal to Koh Kong, we still managed to find an Irish bar though, Paddy's bar which was just a bamboo shack! After some food we went back as the next day we had booked a trip to Koh Kong Island. We got picked up at 8.30am and taken to a little boat. After 3hrs of chugging across the sea and dodging huge sand dredging and fishing boats we came to a secluded white sand beach with palm trees and clear turquoise waters, this was paradise! They anchored the boat and we jumped off and waded to shore. After walking up the beach and checking out a lagoon we decided to go for a swim and do some snorkeling, it was just like getting into a bath the water was so warm. As we headed over to some rocks we saw a big dark patch in the water thinking it was just a patch of sea weed, we swam over to it but the patch began moving, we put our snorkels on and saw it was a massive shoal of little fish! As we swam through them the shoal engulfed us and all we could see was fish all around us. After getting through the fish we made our way over to the rocks which were teaming with life: fish off all shapes and sizes were just hanging around along with crabs and star fish. Then I spotted a rock full of sea urchins!! Quitting while we were ahead we thought we would go back and chill on the beach for a while. After a dinner of prawns, fish, salad and rice it was time to head back. That was definitely a Valentines day I won't forget in a hurry!
The next day we booked to go on a trip to the Cardamon mountains. This trip consisted of some mountain biking in the morning, some dinner and then a tour round the mangroves wildlife spotting in the afternoon. We got picked up and taken into the mountains where Hans the German guy who owned the tour lived, it was like going back to the Akha hill tribe, his house and bungalows were set on a hill side amongst the jungle. He fitted us up with some bikes and off we went, we were gone over 3hrs and did about 35km stopping at a temple and a pier that went out into the mangroves along the way. When we arrived back extremely hot and sweaty Hans cooked us a meal of BBQ pork and some strange German noodle things, it was one of the nicest meals we had in a while. After lunch and a chill we headed down to the boat for the mangrove tour, we had a young lad and an older man as our guides but as we got round the corner out of Hans's view the old guy got out of the boat and another young lad got in! So now we had two lads as our guides. It soon came apparent that they didn't know what they were doing as they kept grounding the boat on shallow parts of the river and stalling the engine. We were under the impression that we would be switching off the engine and rowing through the back streams of the mangroves but we just stayed on the main river getting stuck! They were revving the engine that much if there was any wildlife to see it was scared off. After 3hrs of getting stuck and not seeing anything we decided enough was enough and said we wanted to go home, two minutes later we were stuck in a fishing net that wrapped it's self round the propeller, luckily we had brought a first aid kit with some scissors in it so they used them to cut the net free. We set off again and straight away they ran over another net!! By this time a extremely mad fisherman was speeding over shouting at us, we managed to get free before he got to us and rushed back to Hans. Feeling glad to be back on dry land Hans took us home apologizing all the way, we thought we may get a refund but no such luck! That night we needed to relax a little so went for a nice belated valentines meal at a French restaurant. We found Cambodia to be a very nice place and the people were a lot more friendly than in Vietnam, you can certainly tell Cambodia is still feeling the effects of the terrible thing Paul Pots did and due to the lack of teachers people are very poorly educated. Koh Chang was the next stop and we were meeting up with Dave again later that week.