Exit Planet Dust

Trip Start Jan 02, 2011
1
12
58
Trip End Ongoing


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Where I stayed
Tree Top Ecolodge

Flag of Cambodia  , Khétt Rôtânăh Kiri,
Thursday, January 27, 2011

After a 4.45am wake up from our 5 alarms, and only 3 hours sleep, we were on our way to Ban Lung, in the Ratanakiri Province. Upon reaching Kratie, the landscape rapidly changed and we found ourselves driving through an orange dust cloud which dribbled through the air con. 

After a draining 12 hours we arrived in Ban Lung to a young Cambodian holding up a piece of paper with the letter 'J' on it. We hopped on two motorcycles and 5 minutes later we approached 'Treetop Ecolodge Guest House'. Ran by Mr.T, his beautiful wife, two little girls and a mischievous jack russell puppy, we were instantly reminded of Kabak, in Turkey. Our room was spotless with shutter windows that opened onto the valley and the balcony restaurant was composed of natural wood, plants and handmade lamps. For $5 a night we were overjoyed. The food was also great and we soon realised that one portion was more than enough for two. After a long trip and a full stomach we had an early night in our lovely new room.

28/1/11
We woke around 9am and had breakfast on the balcony. We walked into the town to rent bicycles to cycle 4km to Yeak Loam Lake. The water was crystal clear and a beautiful temperature to swim in. From an aerial perspective the lake and surrounding jungle form a perfect circle, thought to be made from a meteor 700,000 years ago. Towards the hottest part of the day we were bombarded with Chinese tourists, which changed the atmosphere somewhat. Two of them even jumped in the lake without warning, fully clothed and still wearing hats and sunglasses. We walked further around the forest which has a series of openings with quieter piers. A few hours later we cycled back to Treetop for a relaxing evening and some dinner.

29/1/11
A few cups of fresh ginger tea later, we were awake and ready to cycle 8km to Chaa Ong Waterfall. The last 4km consisted mainly of old dirt orange tracks through small villages and fields. It felt good to be in the heart of Cambodia. Entrance to the waterfall was $1 each. Being the dry season, the water was pretty low but the main attraction was the power shower effect of standing under the waterfall. We had the area to ourselves for most of the day, sitting amongst the butterflies.

After a lot of sweat and dust we made it back to the guest house around 4pm and jumped straight in the shower. We sat in the balcony restaurant where we met Lee and Michelle from Newcastle. Within 1 hour we realised that we were almost looking in a mirror, by having so many things in common. A few drinks later we had come to the conclusion that we would make the journey back to Phnom Penh together, as they needed money from an ATM.

30/1/11
Had a pretty bad nights sleep, mainly due to the loud music and chanting coming from across the valley from 4am onwards. But another big breakfast later we decided to cycle to the lake for another relaxing day. Lee and Michelle joined us in the afternoon. Some young monks were sharing the pier with us and by no time all of us were swimming and jumping in the lake together from the steps and off the trees. We were joined by a few more children who soon became mesmerised at the sight of an Ipod and were crowded around Jamie watching him use it; a contrast to Mr.T's daughter who thought our camera was a touchscreen.

Our last evening in Ban Lung, so the four of us had a lovely candlelit meal in the guest house as the electricity had gone out, and prepared ourselves for the 5.30am start to Phnom Penh.

Total
27/01/2011 13 quid
28/01/2011 22 quid
29/01/2011 24 quid
30/01/2011 21 quid     
 
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Comments

norma on

Oh my goodness, this is so beautiful, and your blog is so good. I love the way you describe everything in such detail.......it really feels like we are all travelling with you. Hope you dont mind our whole church knowing about your blog, as its good to have prayers for your safety and health on your travels. So glad you are enjoying the company of the monks......you will have a very natural spiritual imput without being aware of it. Great start to the day reading this at 6am. You are two amazing young people x

Rachelle on

Oh my gosh guys, I love this blog, I love you. I agree with Norma, it's like we're travelling around with you and it's great to have peace of mind that you're both well. I wish this was a book instead of a blog. More more more!

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