The Robinson Crusoe island of Koh Ta Kiev
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After visiting Koh Rong and Koh Rong Sanloem islands (https://www.marsontheroad.com/en/destinazioni/93/i-due-gioielli-della-cambogia-koh-rong-e), I reach Sihanoukville by fast boat in 45 minutes paying around10 $. From here I take a tuk-tuk with other guys to go to Otres Beach (6 km away - 6 $ tuk-tuk price).
I stay at Vacation Bungalow (Otres 2) paying $ 12 for a room with bathroom inside ( $ 4 each because I am with two more persons). Basic but efficient accommodation.
Otres Beach was once famous for its hippie atmosphere. Otres 1 is the area where many hostels and bars are concentrated. Every Wednesday evening, for example, there is a "Jungle party" with techno music (just ask the tuk-tuk drivers to get there, it is about half an hour from the beach). While Otres 2 is more quiet and there is also a village with various travel agencies, restaurants, shops and accommodation.
Unfortunately, Otres Beach in recent years is losing its appeal as there are many buildings on the seafront; it is indeed evolving in a negative way, as every tourist destination in Cambodia. The Chinese are buying lots of land including some islands to build housing and casinos. This is also the case on the island of Koh Ta Kiev.
My friend Luis and I, however, decide to visit it. What drives us to visit this island is its still natural and undeveloped state: there are no vehicles on the island and electricity is only found in the bars of the lodgings, so bring a flashlight with you (and obviously, there are not even ATMs). To visit the island you have to cross the jungle or you can do it by boat.
We buy the boat ticket at an agency in Otres paying 8 $ round trip. The pick-up from our accommodation is at 8 am. But we immediately realize that together with us there are other people who have bought a daily tour to explore various islands. We leave at 9 am and reach Koh Ta Kiev at 11 am because during the way we make a stop for snorkelling, an activity that we do therefore for free considering that the other people with us paid for it.
Once we arrive on the island we start a trek in the forest in the direction of our "Kactus" hostel (the structure also offers a private boat from Otres Beach for $ 13).
The boat leaves us on "Long Beach" and the next place we reach by walking is the "Tent 103" accommodation. There we ask information to a French guy who works at the bar, who shows us the map and so the road begins to be clearer. We pass the "Rocky Beach" and reach "Plankton beach" which is the beach near the Kactus (it takes about 40 min.).
The Kactus is really a wonderful accommodation situated in a perfect location. It has a bar overlooking the sea from where you can see a beautiful sunset. It offers several bungalows for $ 20 a night. We stay in a bungalow with 12 beds for the price of $ 5. Being an island not yet developed, there are no restaurants. The only ones you can find are those of the lodgings so the prices are higher than the rest of Cambodia.
Here everybody usually has lunch/dinner together (lunch price: $ 6.50; dinner price $ 7.50). The price is higher than the average but the quality of the food is really good. The cuisine here is western and the cooked dishes are delicious.
The next morning after having breakfast with a delicious pancake and coffee with milk ($4.25), we walk towards the "White Beach" which is 5 min. from the Kactus.
After taking a bath we walk towards the Long Beach where at 1 pm the boat waits for us to return to Otres Beach.
Once again we are on the boat with other people doing the tour. So we stop off at Jumping Hill (where you can jump from an 8-meter high rock) and snorkel stop at an island near Otres Beach. We arrive at Otres Beach around 3 pm.
So it was a very nice experience, perfect for those who are willing to adapt to any circumstances and want to switch off from tourist destinations to isolate themselves from the world and technology for a few days (here there is no Wi-Fi and no mobile phone signal - only Metfone simcard works in some points of the island). Here I have also met several guys who volunteer in various accommodations in exchange for accommodation and food. If this is what you are looking for, be aware that there is also this opportunity!