Under the Casuarina Trees
Sihanoukville Travel Blog› entry 13 of 43 › view all entries
March 7th, 2008 – by: worldcitizen
When I saw our boat several feet away from the shore, I stared at it, thinking they would move it onto the shore. No such luck, looked like we were going to have to wade to the boat. The boat crew consisted of two guys who looked no older than 16. They carried coolers onto the boat before we got on.
I sat down, soaked and grumpy until I started to think it was funny that I was in Cambodia battling six foot waves to get on a dinky boat navigated by teenagers to go to some random island. I didn't dry off because as we made our way to the island on choppy seas we were constantly splashed with water.
After couple of hours we arrived at Bamboo Island. I could see that the shady boat trip was worth it. It was not completely litter free, but it was much much cleaner than Ochheuteal and surrounded by clear blue water. We rented some beach chairs for about $1 and set up on the beach. There were just a few people on the beach when we got there. It got more crowded as boats showed up and people emerged from their huts (you can stay on the island), but it was never overcrowded. And it was always quiet, I think largely due to the fact that there were no vendors.
We stayed on the beach for a little bit and then the boat crew called us over for lunch. They had set up a picnic area underneath the casuarina trees and made a simple of meal of seasoned grilled fish, salad, a baguette, and a bottles of Coke.
We stayed until about 3 or 4pm before heading back to the mainland. We had an entertaining addition on our boat, an older hippie type guy who looked as though he'd been roaming through South East Asia for decades and never touched a bottle of sunscreen. We moved really really slowly and made it back to Ochheuteal Beach safely and dryly. We didn't wait around for a ride, we just walked back to the hotel.
After showering, the PIC and I headed down to the beach. We caught a nice sunset and saw the same cute/bratty kid from the day before. I gave him my empty water bottle. We went back to the hotel to see what people were doing for dinner.
Thankfully, the PIC was also interested in going somewhere and we tuk tuked to a restaurant called Holy Cow. It was listed in my guidebook and we had passed by it the day before and it looked interesting. Holy Cow turned out to be a cool place. After we finished dinner, a huge crazy thunderstorm came in and we decided to wait it out before we left. When the rain stopped, we went outside and there were huge puddles everywhere. We found a tuk tuk and went back to the hotel.
Even if Sihanoukville itself didn't live up to people's expectations, our day on the island was incredibly peaceful and scenic. Beach time wasn't my main goal for the trip, but I thought it was a worth it to take a bit of a detour down there while we were traveling on the Indochina circle. If you get to an island or a secluded beach, you can have a wonderful time there.
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