We used the Sorya bus to Kep, quite a few potholes the nearer we got to Kep but they are working on the road. The bus driver said he would let us off at Kep Lodge which is a bit further on than the town itself but perhaps he didnt know that once he let us off we had 700 metres of rough dirt road to walk in the heat so luckily we only had a cabin case with us.. On getting there, the girl behind the reception/bar said she would get us some tea whereupon my husband said no thanks a beer would go down a treat after that walk, Enjoyed that nice cold beer!!!. We had 2 nights in Kep, enjoyed Kep Lodge, lovely pool, but needed a tuktuk to get into Kep itself. Its a lovely little town, long pavement snaking along the foreshore just made for walking and if we had been a bit more central, we could have walked down anytime we wished.. We had a look round the back streets where the abandoned villas had fallen into decay and ruin after the Khmer Rouge and could see why it had been called the Cambodian Riviera, it must have been a lovely little place in its day and possibly will again as new goverrnment buildings have gone up, new statues and a large crab statue sitting in the water "Welcome to Kep" which they tell us has been put up recently. We also met a young couple who are building a resort "Samanea Garden Villas"just outside Kep and hope to have it ready shortly so obviously tourism is expected to come in a larger scale..
Had a look at the crab market, bought some crab and ate them sitting on the foreshore wall, A bit disappointed as they are only small but still enjoyable. Met a lovely New Zealand family so joined forces and had a lovely meal at Kim Lys overlooking the water with a magnificent sunset. Travelling is all about meeting people and already we have met some really nice people. For a quiet few days, we thought Kep lovely.
On to Kampot by tuktuk via a Pepper farm, bought some pepper to take home - no problems with customs also bought Amok Spice in SR and no problems with that either. We had 2 nights at Mea Culpa, the girls there were lovely and one gave me a lift on her motorbike to Jolie Jolie which was recommended on T/A and well deserved. 3 nights were spent at Rikitikitavi, both hotels we would recommend. Staff at the Riki, especially Borey, were excellent. We had a sunset cruise on the river, two young Cambodian children laid out the meal on the plates, and were a delight to see, just so happy but we really enjoyed our days out in the countryside. Borey organised a tuktuk driver for us and he took us out to the villages and to the caves in which there is a Hindu temple. Great view from the top whilst down below they are digging irrigation channels to enable the farmers to have more than one crop of rice.. Had a look around Fish Island and the pagoda. Just so peaceful to sit on the river there and watch the view. We ate at Mea Culpa, (They make a mean pizza) at Riki's, Oms (a fairly new place nicely decorated) afternoon drink and a cake at the Kampot Icecream and Pie Palace and at Veronica's on the main street. The manageress Rumdial at Veronica's is a lovely bubbly lady with a great sense of humour and we had a few meals there, Although we ate mostly Khmer food, American people we met at Veronica's recommended the Cordon Bleu and taking their advice one night, recommend it too.
We got up at 5.45 one morning and went down to see the boats come in and off load their catch. Loads of fish, little ones, big ones all being sorted out on deck. Certainly a sight to see. We had thought of going to Bokor but most people we spoke to said it was not worth it now so we gave it a miss. We really enjoyed Kampot, its villages and its countryside. Took the Giant Ibis bus back to PP for an overnight stay and to collect our luggage before heading for Battambang. It is a coaster bus seating maybe about 22 people and very quick. But we still like the local bus that stops here and there, letting people off and on but if time is the essence, then the Giant Ibis is the one.