Day 5 – Trat to Koh Kong

The route:

The photo:

A breakfast stop in a fishing village

The chat: Today was wonderfully, blissfully cool. For Cambodia. We even had rain  and grey clouds ; both of which were welcomed with open arms, as were the trucks full of monks banging drums in time to our (slowing) cadence – all these things in their own way helped to make the 105km hilly slog back to Cambodia slightly less arduous.

Given that we’re just getting started with our tour, 105km was the furthest we’ve cycled in one day, and the midday heat of 40 degrees acts as a powerful incentive to get the bulk of the riding over before then. Another 5 30 start was needed as we knew that we had to also cross the notoriously dodgy border at Hat Lek between Thailand and Cambodia – renowned for a somewhat fluid charging policy by the border police for visas, and a relentless stream of touts. Last time we crossed this border, it took at least an hour, and involved some serious negotiating/pleading in our best Khmer. This time, with the benefit of a laden tandem on which was painted “Yeurn Srolang Kampuchia”*, we breezed through both Thai and Cambodia’s borders in about 5 minutes with waves of laughter following behind us at the crazy barangs **on a kong veng ***.

We finally crawled into Koh Kong at 2pm, tired, hot and hungry. We hadn’t heard great reviews about the place, with the most common word being used to describe the town being “a dump”, so we were pleasantly surprised to find a (admittedly slightly seedy) frontier town-by-the-sea. After restorative beers,wine, thai food, pizzas and ice creams (not all in the same meal) we were even more convinced.

* We love Battambang – thanks to Soporn and Soviet (and sorry about the dreadful spelling)

** Khmer for white people

*** long bike (there is no word in Khmer for tandem)

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4 Responses to Day 5 – Trat to Koh Kong

  1. Denise Sherwood says:

    You could take a flight from Bangkok to Hanoi and cycle around Sapa which is only 21 c. Then cycle to Lijiang province, which is only 22 c.
    21 c in Lijiang province
    I knew you would appreciate my input!

  2. Tom Sherwood says:

    I think this blog is really good, and i like the maps and stuff. I feel like doing a blog myself, but i sit in the same seat in the library every day – so i don’t think my interactive map and max speed would be of much interest. Hope you are having fun

  3. Simon says:

    Your travels sound awesome, we’re loving the blog, following from the comfort of our sofa with ice cream and pop corn! Fascinating in-depth and informative riding statistics – some very impressive data collecting – Is this mostly Andy’s love child?

    Seriously guys MASSIVE achievement. MASSIVELY impressed. This is MASSIVE.

    Love and hugs (where appropriate)

    Simon and Sahel xxx

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