Friday January 15th We got checked in at the border around 7:00am when the border opend, then drove in to Phenom Pen. We arrived at 12:30, and were allowed to grab food before we went on another bus to Sinokville at 2:30pm. I decided to eat with Ramona and do some charging and editing. At 1:55pm, the bus was leaving early, and after boarding my backpack, and getting the rest of my belongings, the bus driver almost left without me. The whole bus was yelling at him to please stop. He was very unfriendly. Later in the ride, when people needed to go to use the toilet, he laughed and did not pull over. It took a little bit of firm attitude and polite asking to have him pull over for the group of people. We arrived in Sinokville that night around 7:00. I was ecstatic to reunite with friends. I saw Chris, Yarden, Kena, Pocket, and Tess. We did some Acro, at some food, and then got some good rest. Saturday January 16th We got up at 9:00, packed and had a breakfast and got aboard a boat to go to Koh Ta Kiev Island to stay on Corral Beach.
Picture of Kena, me, and Tess was taken by Pocket.
We immediately found ourselves in paradise. We even had a chance to go cliff jumping along the way to our stay.
Picture of me is taken on Kena's Camera by Ramona.
The second jump I did I did a gaynor backflip off the 7 meter jump. All I did not want to do was to land on my back, and this is the hgihest point I have attempted a Gaynor from. So I did it very reserved and almost nailed it. What I did nail was my nuts with my legs open. Ouch! 25 minutes of breathing heavily.
Chris jumping in (taken by me)
Kena took a picture of me doggy paddleling back after get my balls were impaled into my stomach.
Kena doing the jump, but as a morph sequence that I put together.
Tess jumping in.
Chris giving "the look" taken by Kena on her camera.
We got off the boat and were welcomed by Sandro and Mel. Two extremely nice people that were running coral beach. I mentioned in passing to Sandro while I was slacklining that I did photography, and if they needed images of their piece of paradise for marketing that I would be happy if we could help eachother. He saw some of my work and was happy to have me work for them.
El capitan :-) He drove the boat to and from the island to the mainland for supplies and to pick up and drop people off.
One of the cooks. The food was so tasty!
Such a cute cat!
Kena got a few pictures of me walking the slackline that they had there.
Dancing to the music :-)
I was able to get free accommodation for myself, and meals, and for my friends. I was able to get four of them a nice room for $20.00 USD. Which was a great deal for my friends and myself. I did some shooting and a bunch of acro with Kena. It was so good to get back on track with learning new things again. Sunday January 17th We woke up and Kena, pocket and I were offered a ride to go into town to go pick up my laptop to do the edits for coral beach. Along the way, we were able to meet with Adam and Lynn and pick them up and take them back to the island with us. We worked quickly to get everything we needed, and then got back on he boat and came back to paradise. I did some more photo work. After getting my laptop, I was able to render some creative HDR shots and panoramas.
They were so thrilled with this HDR panorama of the Coral Beach Resort land.
Sea Urchins all over the place. Watch your step.
These were good hammocks with mosquito netting. They were so good and insulated, that at one point I got fairly hot, and had to take a skinny dip in the water at night under the stars with the phytoplankton. I know.... Life can suck at times ;-) I had a wonderful time cooling off in the middle of the night.
Afterwards we decided to teach and acro yoga class with Kena in the afternoon. It was another hit. Good people and a good turnout.
Pictures of us teaching were taken by Pocket (Devin Rivard)
Here are a few fun ones from kena's camera of our acro group gettig silly.
Here is a littel video clip of Lynn and I playing around doingn acro on Corral Beach
In the evening I edited images and enjoyed dinner family style with a large group of friends and travelers.
Afterwards I went off to sleep in the hammocks. Monday January 18th I woke up around 6:30am with Kena, and we did some partner stretching on the dock overlooking the clouds changing colors while the sun rose. We had some breakfast and freshly brewed Cambodian coffee. I then continued to finish editing the images from the day before and get a few more shits of what Sandro was in need for. We then did a lot of acro yoga, and even filmed a few clips around corral beach.
Photos of Lynn and Me doing Acro on the Dock were taken by Kena Noel.
Afterwards playing I went for a snorkle. Photo taken by Kena Noel.
In the afternoon, we decided to go to the other side of the island called plankton beach. It is called plankton beach because at night, when you move in the water, the plankton lights up green. We did a really nice hike through the jungle to get there.
Chris slipped on the coral and had a fall. Apparently the infections on Koh Ta Kiev are supposed to be quite bad, so early treatment is the best solution to avoid futher issues.
Simon going through barefoot.
Chris and Yorden did the hike back at night and said that there were spiders and all sorts of creepy crawlers on the floor and in the walk path.
We decided to stay the night at Kactus Beach Resort. We walked over and noticed a good amount of trash that had been washed ashore on long beach. It was unfortunate to see. We were welcomed by Mico the owner of Kacus and Corral Beach. He had seen the images I had done at Corral Beach and was ecstatic to have me come to the other side to provide my services. I was able to get all my friends accommodation for $5.00 USD, Kena was painting signs artistically, so she and I had free accommodation and food. The friends we went with were Lynn, Chris, Yorden, Ramona, Adam, Kena, and Simon. We met Simon the day before in our acro yoga class, he had great vibes and was traveling from South Africa. I started shooting and editing for Mico and everyone else, just hung out and enjoyed the view. We had some lunch and I edited the images and shot a few shots that Mico specific calls wanted.
The property is still coming together, and the next day, all the paths were oulined with stones.
I stumbled upon a bungalo and found this lovely woman in this pose meditating. I told her to just stay doing what she was doing and that I wouldbe wuite and just capture some pictures for the Resort.
The rooftop area was a great hang out zone with a wonderful view of the ocean.
By the second day of staying here, all the walkway paths were outlined with stones.
A view of the Long Beach on the other side of Koh Ta Kiev.
Kena, Simon, Adam, Lynn and I practiced a good amount of Acro yoga in the afternoon. At night we went in the water to go see the plankton. I went skinny dipping with a few others from our group, the water was warm, clear, and when you were deep enough, the plankton was very noticeable when moving in the water. We all crashed out in really nice accommodation. Tuesday January 19th Kena and I woke up at 6:30am again and got Adam and Simon up. We all did partner stretching until Adam and Lynn took off to go back to the mainland to hop to another island. I did some more shooting and editing after breakfast, and Mico was so happy with the turn out and my work that he offered us all free accommodation and food and drink for the day. Most of us decided to go back to Corral Beach resort, but Chris and Yorden stayed at Kactus. We left after lunch and some drinks and went to the Last Point Beach, which was a nice spot, but the water had a very salty taste to it, and there was a good amount of trash in the water.
Kena set her camera to tke some pictures of our group before we left the Last Point back to Carral Beach.
We then hiked back through the jungle and back to Corral Beach Resort. The sunset was just going to happen and I decided to go snorkeling out. I put some flippers and a mask on, and went out. I realized I had to swim out to the side to see the sunset, I swam to a fishing boat, and was welcomed aboard. They spoke no English, and I had a perfect view of the sunset. I asked what type of fish they caught, and hey pulled out a bottle of Mekong (hard alcohol). We shared some drinks back and forth and enjoyed the sunset. They sent me off with the bottle to go back to land. On my way back, I came across another boat and was welcomed on board. I showed him the bottle and asked if he wanted some. I hopped on board and we both had another drink. Ok... At this point, I am feeling like the alcohol will hit me soon and I will be drunk. I hen swim back to shore and give the bottle away to the captains at Corral Beach whom love Mekong with Coke. I met with friends and share my sunset story and had a wonderful BBQ Pork Dinner. I at this point was too drunk to comfortably be around everyone at dinner. I felt I should have gone to sleep. My group insisted that I stay and eat more food. I felt like I blinked my eyes and when I open them, the table I was at was all rearranged. They just informed me that I had fallen asleep for an hour. How in embarrassing for me. I was that guy that fell asleep during dinner for too much alcohol. I am never that guy, so I felt a little embarrassed.
These are pictures from Kena and Ramona messing with me while I was black out drunk. I didn't believe them till I saw the images myself.
I then went off to the hammock and crashed out till around 2 am. It was so hot, and I was very itchy from bug bites. I decided to skinny dip in the water and cool off. I was able to see he plankton again , and this time it was so late in the evening that the moon had tucked away. I was in the water with the stars above and the glowing plankton underneath me. It was a great way to cool off. I then rinsed off with fresh water and hopped back in the hammock. I did not sleep very well because my ear was beginning to hurt. Wednesday January 20th
I woke up very early and just hung out and had breakfast. We then got into another great acro sesssion with some of the people staying there, and with some of the locals. It was a blast.
When the sun became strong, we went snorkeling and had lunch and packed up our things to leave.
We had such a wonderful time on the island of Koh Ta Kiev and staying at Coral Beach Resort and at Kactus Beach Resort. Here is a picture of the staff at Coral Beach who made our stay on paradise so nice.
(Photo by Kena)
Photo of all of us :-)
And a few fun one with Ken's camera with the crew getting silly.
We then came back and stayed at Otres 2 Beach in Sinokville at Footprints.
Here are a few pictures of the sunset just over some of the cambodian islands.
A view of the beach from the Pier.
Thursday January 21st
We scheduled a ride to Kampot and went through the company Champa Mekong Cambodia. They told us that they would pick us up from our Hostel Footprints at 1:00pm. We were going to save a few bucks each by going with this company.
At 1:22pm, they had not come for us to pick us up. We called the company and they explained that they had bus issues and that we should find ourselves a ride to their bus station to get taken from there.
We quickly hopped on a bus to get there and find about 12 upset travellers who were in the same situation as us. They complained that the company did not do their part in contacting them, and when they asked questions they felt the staff was being quite rude.
They told us 5 minutes every 10 minutes for about 25 minutes before people started asking for their money back. The woman working for the company said that if the bus did not come in the next 5 minutes that the money would be refunded. About 4 minutes and 30 seconds later, the shuttle comes rushing thrugh to load up and pick us up. She came through n her promis. We all loaded up and took off.
We quickly realized that we were going much much slower than everyone else. People were passing us left and right, and we were travelling at a whoping 15 km/hr. The engine problem had not been fixed. He pulled over twice to fill his coolant with water, and the second time he pulled over, he was using the people who were travelling in the bus's water. The situtuation went from bad to worse. We ended up pulling over at a mechanic shop up the way and got the engine repaired there for another hour and a half.
Kena and I made the best from the situation and we decided to play around and do someacro yoga. It quickly became a thing to the locals there and people started getting called out and brought out from their homes to come and see us "perform". The crowd grew.
Just before the bus had finished getting fixed, Kena and I walked out to the street to try and hitch a ride the rest of the way to Kampot. Soon after it was fixed and we were on our way.
We arrived in the evening around 6:30 and went over to Bohemias hostel. It was a very nice a places with cute cottage like bungalos and a pool. We had some food at our place that night, it was very delicious food.
Friday January 22nd
Today we decidede to get motor bikes and go adventure around town. We got motor bikes rented to us through our Hostel from Giant Ibizza Kampot. We had some breakfast in town at a place called Epic Art Cafe which was a lovely place that sold foor to help benifit people with disabilities.
We decided that we would go explor Bakor National Park and go up the mountain to see the old Casino and the old Church, and possibly the waterfall.
As we were passing by our hostel, my bike started acting up and was not running properly. We went back to the hostel and called the company. they sent someone out and 20 mintes later they arrived and nearly an hour and a half later it had been fixed.
The three of us took the two bike and rode off. The entrance fee to the national park per vehicle was $0.25 cents. About 40 minutes later travelling up the mountain, Kena's bike starts to break and will not turn back on. We are in an area that does not have any service, so we cannot contact the company. We ditched the bike on the side of the road and the then traveled three of us on the bike I was on. We made our way up to the New Casino on top of Bakor Mountain. This place felt so wierd. I fet like we should be pulling up to a wonderful temple, but instead we were at this grand casino straight out of Las Vegas. We went inside and the staff was so hepful to help contact the company and our hostel to let them now of our issues with the second bike.
We continued onward to the Old Palace / Old Casino. It was a huge old estate that was being preserved because of it's history.
Picture of me coming down with my gear is taken by Kena.
We were so high, we were above the clouds.
Photo of me is taken by Ramona Davilla.
I did a timelapse with my phone of the clouds
This is an HDR of the clouds that I captured.
After exploring the old cascino and playing aorund we decided to check out the church. We get back onto my bike and it is broken again. Mechanica issues with the two bike 3 times in one day. DO NOT RENT YOUR MOTOR BIKE FROM GIANT IBIZZA IN KAMPOT for anything outside general city use.
We ended up having to miss out on seeing the other sites we had hoped to see and were pushing the motor bike up a hill back to the New Casino.
We got there around dusk and called the company again. We demanded that they send for a car fr us, there was no way we would ride thesefaulty bikes down a large mountain that had road construction on it at night in the middle of no where.They told us that they would pick us up in an hour and a half. We had a good time at the casino and had plenty of laughs about our situation.
About 2 hours later they came by in one car with three people.
After fixing both the bikes we went down the mountain following the riders with the high beams on. On our way down the mountain the person who was riding kena's motorbike had a fall and injured his wrist and scraped his foot and knee. IT did not look llike a comfortable situation.
We got back to our hostel around 10:30pm and then got a little bite to eat and then straight to bed.
Saturday January 23rd
Today we woke up around 7:30 am and packed up our things and headed out to Epic Arts Cafe for breakfast. Afterwards we went to Arcadia Hostel which is located just on the river and had great reviews about it. When we got checked into out place at arcadia,we all signed a waiver for liability in case one of us got injured at the hostel. There were so many fun things to do around the place. There was a floating dock with hammocks strung up on it with a high dive, there was a water swing, and a blobber. You could rent stand up paddle boards, or kayaks, or do boating tours down the river. It was had a great social setting by the river with a nice lookout. It had a pool table, darts, ping pong, and a couch sitting tv area.
We immediately put our things down and went out to the river to play in the water. We ended up doing acro yoga for a few hours on the floating dock till just before sundown.
Kena took a video of me doing a flip off the diving area.
Here is a picture of the river as the full moon rises behind it
In the evening we played darts and ping pong and had a bite to eat and some drinks.
Sunday January 24th
We woke up around 7:00am and got our things gathered and headed out on a tuk tuk to Kep (40 minute ride for about $20.00). We were going to go to Rabbit island for the night. Our boat ride to rabbit island was $10.00 per person round trip and took us about 30 minutes. When we arrived we got a nice little bungalow with two beds for $10.00. We immediately paid for he next night as well and cancelled our booking back at Arcadia. After checking in , we decided to go on a little hike around the island. We heard it would take us about 3-3.5 hours to walk around the whole island.
Towards the end of our hike we met ith a fishing village, He told us there was not a path to continue back to the bungalos (we did not believe him, because we had heard that there was). He told us it would be $2.00 per person to go to the bungalos by boat. We asked how much to go to the closest island and then to the bungalos, He told us $15.00 I found 4 other French travellers who I mentioned this to and they all seemed to be interested. Just like that we had 7 people to go to Mango Island (a fishermans island) and then to the bugalos making it just more than $2.00 a person.
We got there and I couldn't do too much without shoes because it was a rocky beach. But we went for a little swim and I took a few photos.
Here is a little time lapse of the afternoon hike, boat ride to mango island and then over to the bungalos for sunset. The music is by Parov Stellar. (Make sure to make the quality a bit better, so it does not look so blurry :-))
After Mango Island we went back and had some food and an ealry night.
Monday January 25th
We woke up around 3:00am because of a rooster who would yell nice and load about every 30-40seconds for several hours. I got out of bed around 7:00am to do some partner stretching and yoga with Kena. Then around 8 tried to get some more sleep. Got some breakfast around 10:30 or so, and then did acro yoga for the rest of the afternoon. We did a little more filming and tried a few new moves. We were able to do a pancake flip which for us was a bit accomplishment because it is a fairly advanced pop.
In the evening we all walked along the beach and I took a few pictures.
Here is a selfie I took with my tripod of Kena and I at sunset.
In the evening, we got some nice dinner and I got an early night because I was in fear of the roosters cock-adoo-da-doing in the night.
Tuesday January 26th
I woke up at 2:30 am with the Rosster. This time he was communicating to another rooster about 200 meters down it sounded like. He would make loud sounds about every minute or so.
We all finally rolled out of bed around 7:30am and got on the first boat backe to the mainland. It was muchmore windy and it was a bumpy ride back.
When we arrived we scored a Tuk Tuk at a good price to bring us back to Kampot for 10 dollars. He then brought us to Arcadia to pick up out stuff, then to Mad Monkey which we decided to spend another few nights there. For all the ectra driving, we ended up paying him around $18.00 USD for the 3 of us.
There were wonderful statues in the roundabouts of Kep and Kampot. This is one of the statues in one of the roundabouts.
We got checked into Mad Monkey hostel and there was a form at the reception we had to sign stating that this would be a party hostel and we had to sign an agreement to be ok with it and acknowlege that there would be a decent amount of noise and roudyness.
It was Austrailia Day today and everyone was celebrating. We came in to get some breakfast and were greeted with free shots. They were doing free shots every hour on the hour. Kena and Ramona both do not drink, so in 2 hours I had 7 shots with breakfast. What a way to start the late morning..... After a nap, I did some acro with Kena and when we were finished a woman in the pool watching us named Jerica mentioned she would be interested in learning and joining us. She mentioned that she was dating the boss of Mad Monkey, so we encouraged a class to be taught the following day.
In the evening, we went out to explore the night market in Kampot. There was a lttle carval for children with some rides, shops, and clothing and merchandise stores.
In the evening we took some showers and got to bed. Our room was very nice, and spacious.
Wednesday January 27th
I woke up around 9:00am and had a bite to eat. The hotel was fairly quite compared to the day before (I think everyone had partied pretty hard and was hung over or still sleeping). We ended up teaching a private lesson to Jerica and to Greg, the boss of Mad Monkey. It was a little private lesson on the rooftop. They were naturals and were able to progress very quickly in the hour and a half we taught them.
They were both very pleased and wanted another class to be taught the following day. They were oing to give us a nice meal for doing so.
We agreed, and all of us tried getting more people to join the next day.
In the afternoon, Kena and I trained and learned some new moves using acropedia.org.
And finally completed a little acro yoga video we were working on with video clips from throughout our travels. I do not do much video or editing. But that is one of Kena's passions, and we are both passionate about doing acro and playing, so we ended up creating an acro yoga video South East Asia.
In the evening, we ate some dinner at Om cafe in town which was really nice. We played some card games over dinner and then got another early night.
Thursday January 28th
We got up around 8:30-9:00 and ate some fruit and went down and trained for a bit before class. We were hoping that if we practiced in front of people, it would spark interest in others to join our class.
We had more people join, but it was still a small class with about 8 people
We taught a few beginer moves to the people who were just trying it for their first time, and got into some other new moves for Jericca and Greg since they were pciking it up so well.
After class and playing around for a bit, we all had lunch together. I had a fantastic Chicken Kmer Curry from the hostel. We had mentioned that Ramona was going to take off a day before us t Phnom Penh and that we would have to pay more for a similar room. We asked if there would be a way to get a discount and were pleasanly suprised with a wonderful offer to stay at their home for the night. We were thrilled at the offer and accepted.
After lunch we got our tickets to leave Kampot to Phnom Penh in the morning the following day. Kena was going to fly out to Vietnam from Phnom Penh and I just cared to spend the day and visit a few things so I just asked for a sleeper bus to Siem Reap that night at 11:30pm.
We had rented a motorbike so we decided to go to this temple that was inside a cave. One of the girls that was in our Acro class decided to join us on her motor bike.
We rode about 20 km (10 of which were off road) and ended up at this awesome cave with a temple that had been created 700 AC.
We had to get one of the local oys to be our tour guide because it was dark, and we would have never been able to navigate by ourselves. He was 14 years old and spoke great english and had a great sense of humor for only $2.00 USD for the three of us.
This temple inside the cave dates back to 700 AC
When we were finished we went back into town in Kampot and bought some fruit and vegetables to assist with dinner at Jericca and Gregs place.
We went over to their place around 6:30 and made a variety of spring rolls to eat. Yum Yum Yum. Around 8:00 or so we left to go watch Jericca perform with her ukelali at another hostel with another musiscian. She had a lovely voice and was a delight to see perform. We got back a little after midnight and crashed out.
Friday January 29th
We woke up around 6:30 to get over to Mad Mokey Hostel to take a shower, have breakfast and get on the bus at 8:00am to go to Phnom Penh. Around noon we arrived. I dropped my main pack off at Giant Ibis bus company so I could explore for the day (I would later get a ride from their company for the evening sleeper bus). We then went out and had some lunch at a meditareanean restaurant. After lunch Kana went to the airport to fly out to Vietnam and I found a Tuk Tuk driver to give me a ride to the Russian Market.
You can nearly get anything you would want or need at the Russian Market in Phnom Penh. From clothing, to linens, food, produce, merchandise, electronics. and hadncrafts, you name it and it can most likely be found there.
Then I went to the Killing Fileds. The Kiling fields was a heavy eye opener of some horrific genecide that happened in the late 70's in Cambodia that I had never heard about.
The Memorial Stupa was made 1988 in memory of those who died. 17 levels. Skulls and bones have been layed here. The first 10 levels house has over 9,000 skulls.
After the killing fields, my Tul Tuk driver gave me a ride to the Royal Palce, which the gates had just closed. Shucks! I took a few pictures from the outside. (There were so so many pigeons around)
Then we went to Wat Phnom and finally one more temple. before he took me back to Giant Ibis for a total of $20.00 5 hours and 40 kilometers.
I decided to go out around dusk for a lookout view and found out about the Eclipse Sky Bar in Phnom Penh. It had a bar and restaurant that was very expensie but it was on the rooftop on the 23rd floor and had a reat view of Phnom Penh. I took some photos and then got back on my Tuk Tuk for a round trip of $5.00 USD.
I then worked on my laptop for several hours editing photos before my bus was going to leave.
At 11:00pm I checked in to only find out that the people at Mad Monkeyhad scred up my bus reservation. They had booked it for the day before and I wasn informed that the bus I was supppoed to be on is full and that I could pay for another bus the following day. i was so bummed, because I had not had accomodation for Phnom Penh and I did have accomodation in Siem Reap. The man at the Giant Ibis counter was very unhelpful for my situation.
I was luckily able to get a ride through another bus company (Virak- Buntham Express Travel & Tour) that was supposed to leave at 12:30am and arrived at 1:00am. I fell asleep next to a larger Cambodian fellawho smooshed me agaisnt the wall. I luckily was able to sleep. I would recommend this bus ride to people who are a couple. It is a bed where you share with one person, and it might be nice snuggling next to your partner, and it is $3.00 cheaper than Giant Ibis.
Saturday January 30th
I woke up around 6:15am in Siem Reap and got on tuk tuk to my hostel One Stop. It ws really nice! First off, there are two locations of One Stop hostel, and I was staying at the newer one. It had a really cool hang out area in the lobby, a roof top pool, and 10 person dorm room for aout $7.00 USD. It was as if I was staying at a Hotel even though it was a hostel.
I did some computer work throught the day, Went for a swim in the afternoon, and then met with Sarah, a friend from Tailand for dinner.
I got an early night.
Sumday January 31st.
Today I slept in till about 9:30am and got some brunch with Sara. I then went over to Mad Monkey in Siem Reap and explained my bus mixup situation with him and was able to get refunded from the manager Luke there. He was so nice.
For the rest of the afternoon, I got caught up on some computer work and went to the pool for an evening dip.
In the evening I rented a push bike and had a happy pizza from down the street and then crashed out.
Monday February 1st
Today I woke up around 9:30 am. Got some food from down the street and then did some computer work for the afternoon and research on going to Ankor Wat. In the afternoon I went and hung out at the pool. Afterwards I got some food and rented a bycle for 24 hours from down the street for $2.00 USD.
Tuesday February 2nd
Today I woke up around 4:30am, grabbed my camera and my day bag and got on my push bike. It really was a short ride to Angkor Wat. It took about 15-20 minutes by push bike, and it is all on flat ground. The bike only cost me $2.00 USD for the day.
I bought a 3 day pass for $40.00 USD. The one day pass is $20.00 USD.
It was great getting to Angkor wat in the early morning as it was still dark out and the light was just begining to creep in. I found Angkor Wat to be very touristy place for sunrise, and decided that the next time I go at sunrise I will visit another temple on the the outskirts or Angkor Wat.