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Back to Phnom Penh

Posted by | Evil Kristos | March 2, 2010 | No Comments

Kep was a bit of a disappointment I must say. It as at the sea but that’s about it. It doesn’t have decent beach and the hike is rubbish.

I actually went. First you walk up the hill and then the way is sign posted. The sunset rock was a bit further than I had expected but there were a couple of viewpoints sign posted and even a waterfall. I went for it.

Along the way you get some spectacular views but I had trouble enjoying it. The path lead uphill and there wasn’t the slightest breeze. When I finally arrived at the first “viewpoint” I got slightly disappointed. There wasn’t much of a view. The panorama along the way was actually better.

Only a couple of hundred meters away was supposed to be a waterfall. The next thing I saw was the summit. No waterfall anywhere. I got a bit suspicious about this hike; the least to say.

There was another viewpoint only on or two kilometres away. I though screw this and went anyways. I began to realize that I don’t actually have to walk all the way back. The path obviously lead around the entire hill. I decided I might as well go for the entire thing. The only worry was, that I had very little water left. On the other hand; summit by my definition meant it goes downhill from here. Piece of cake.

I kept walking but quite frankly the hike was rubbish. After about 6 kilometres I was more or less back in the village and no sunset rock to be seen. While initially there was a sign every few hundred meters they suddenly stopped. A hint?

I was suddenly on a road behind the main village and slightly pissed off. I mean a hike? I have seen worse roads than this path. The sunset was getting closer. Suddenly there was another sign saying sunset rock. It was at a crossroad and the sign wasn’t clear. I asked some old woman. She sent me straight.

The sign said one kilometre. Looking at the sun it was doable.

I was walking for at least one kilometre and I as almost at sea level. What kind of scam was this? Suddenly a small sign pointed right. It said stairway to heave and sunset rock; 1.2 kilometres. These little c***.

The path lead right into the jungle; proper hiking style it was barely visible. And it was steep. I was pretty exhausted anyways and had literally no water left. I’m no quitter so I kept walking. My legs hurt, I was soaking wet and I kept cursing the idiot who set up the signs.

After about 10 minutes climbing I reached a construction site. Another sign; 80 metres. At least I was getting closer but so was the sun. I raced. I could not fail at this stage. I reached the nuns house that had been sign posted a long time ago. Behind a communications tower a small path lead into dense woods. 590 metres.

Again it went uphill and I was not happy. This stupid sunset rock should better be good. I had to climb over trees, steep parts and the path was barely visible. Suddenly a rock. I made and about 10 minutes to sunset. I rock; but I was exhausted and I had no water left. I was soaking wet and still there was no breeze. I sat down and enjoyed the show. It was OK; but this is as far as I’d go.

The walk back was painful. First I had to walk the narrow path back and it was getting dark. I reached the y-junction. I had come from the right but the according to the sign I could as well keep left. I did.

At first the path was steep. The last bit I traveled on my arse. At first I didn’t want but since I had slipped … as they say: If you can’t fight them, join them. It was rather harmless anyways. From there I followed a road. Soon I stood at the cross road where I had asked the old lady. Fair play. She had send me the wrong way. I’ll remember that. Should I ever meet an old Cambodian lady I will return the favour.

The rest was a boring walk on the road towards the village and from there to the guest house. All in all I was unimpressed with the walk but rather proud of myself. Tough boy!

I also decided not to stay in Kep. I got slightly sunburned so snorkeling was out of question. After what I had seen on this hike it is probably rubbish anyways. Looks like one cannot trust Cambodians when i comes to “sights”.

Kep Sunset Rock

Kep Sunset Rock

Since there was no way to get to Krati directly I booked the bus to Phnom Penh. I doesn’t look far on the map but it took over 5 hours. That’s mainly due to the road conditions in this part of Cambodia. The south west allegedly is the poorest part of Cambodia. I glimpse of that I got during the journey.

Last time when I stayed in Phnom Penh I wasn’t entirely happy with my accommodation. This time I went for a better place with air condition. I stayed in the Dara Raeng Sey which is close to pretty much everything. It’s no beauty but the rooms are OK.

Time to explore the capital.

Kep Sunset Rock

Kep Sunset Rock


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