The first weekend of my three-week trip to Cambodia was spent in Kep. This was much more of a vacation spot that our other activities had been. This article is going to focus on our day at Rabbit Island.
If you haven’t read Part 1: Preparing for My 3-Week Trip to Cambodia or Part 2: On My Way to Cambodia, head on over to my Series Overview to check them out! If you’d like to read about the other places I went while I was in Cambodia, check those out here.
For our weekend trip to Kep, we stayed in a very nice hotel! The hotel had an amazing view, was within walking distance of mountain paths, a waterside pool, and had wonderful continental breakfasts.
For breakfasts, the hotel offered eggs, toast, bread, noodles, fruit, and an amazing variety of juices. But, the biggest takeaway for me was the pineapple jam. I had never tried pineapple jam before and I was blown away by it. So, I had some each morning and snagged some to bring home to share with my family.
Boating to the Island
While we were in Kep, we spent a day on Rabbit Island. Since Rabbit Island is, of course, an island, we could only get there by boat. The Cambodian boats were really cool! growing up alongside one of Michigan’s great lakes, I had been boating a million times before. But, the Cambodian boats were far cooler!
The boats were beautiful. Perhaps I found them so amazing because I love boating because not everyone enjoyed it like I did. Some people were terrified that it would tip over or sink. The boat seemed sturdy enough to me!
When we got on the island we immediately set up camp around some hammocks and beach chairs under a beautiful tree. Here we unloaded our things and ate our lunch.
Lunch on Rabbit Island was AMAZING. We had fresh mango, pineapple, watermelon, and dragon fruit that was to-die-for. Honestly, I don’t remember most of the actual food. All I remember is the addictive fresh fruit. I’m sure we had a chicken dish and a meal that involved fish or seafood, and I am sure they were good. But, the fruit made such a huge impact that I forgot everything else.
I’m nearly 100% sure I learned how to use chopsticks on Rabbit Island, I am making this assumption because I kept a pair of their chopsticks as a souvenir. Why would I take chopstick if I didn’t know how to use them, right?
After eating, we put on sunscreen and played volleyball. The sun in Cambodia, and particularly on Rabbit Island, burned far hotter and brighter than back home in Michigan. Because of this, we were warned to keep up on our sunscreen applications. Nearly everyone burned—like lobster-red level sunburns. Oddly enough, I did not, I must have been paranoid enough to avoid it, because I put on A LOT of sunscreen.
As I mentioned we also played a lot of volleyball. I talk about volleyball later in the series (it’s what my group did in our free time). But on the beach and in the water, it was a ton of fun! However, I did leave injured…
A group of people (including several large males) and I were playing beach volleyball and I was up at the net. I had been teased for not jumping to block at the net, so when the ball came close I jumped up. But, so did the three guys across the net from me. And they landed on my foot. Thankfully, I was only bruised, but man was it a deep bruise. Sandals were uncomfortable to wear for about a week. Despite my bruised foot, I had a ton of fun!
There are stray dogs all over Cambodia, roaming around and scavenging for food scraps and Rabbit Island was no different. Most of the dogs were in rough condition. Two specific dogs hung around us, and they were CUTE! One was scraggly, we threw the poor thing food at lunch. The second dog was white and looked somewhat healthy. Both of the dogs would come right up to us for attention and food. The dogs liked us so much that they hung out under our beach chairs when we were sitting in them. I fell in love with these dogs, and so did a few other group members.
Near the end of our beach island excursion, a few of us decided to explore the trail. At the far end of the beach, there was a trail that extended to a few small rocky beaches and a field that previewed the island mountain. This sight was breathtaking!
I was exhausted and my foot was throbbing after strolling through the trails (and having a million photo-shoots of course). Because of my exhaustion, I decided to take a break on a Hammock.
Our set up was under a large tree that held two or three hammocks, which we took turns laying in. I patiently waited my turn and finally got it. After a few moments on the hammock, I was nearly asleep. This was truly a great day.
Five Dollar Beach-Side Massage
Just to the left of our tree, a couple of massage tables were set up. The massages were selling for as little as five dollars! That’s crazy! Naturally, I had to get one. These massages were the best massages that I have ever gotten and for so cheap! I will never regret spending that money, the massage was beyond relaxing! What a great way to end my day on Rabbit Island.