I know a little place, but Kep it to yourself…

Tuesday 15th and Wednesday 16th March

Sorry about the title. 

Kep is a beautiful, sleepy beach resort with a tiny little beach.  Kep beach 

The sand on this beach is imported from nearby Kampot, and has to be dragged up the beach every single morning to prevent it from washing away.

This is what actual Kep sand looks like.  Kep's natural sand 

Artificiality aside, Kep beach is great. It’s very quiet and it has a tonne of convenience for tourists. Whilst we were not being immersed in Cambodian culture by any stretch of the imagination, it is really nice to have a wide variety of clean-looking restaurants and an ATM round the corner. In some touristy areas you get a feeling that the local people are sick of your type (I’ve worked in customer services, I get it). But Kep’s locals are lovely, friendly and helpful. 

There is another side to Kep: back in the French Colonial days it was full of fancy houses, which are now derelict, and apparently quite eerie. But we were staying right by the beach, and were blissfully unaware of the “creepy, run-down” bits!

Some pictures of the beach. A view of Rabbit Island  

Kep's coastline 

The famous white lady statue, known as “the woman who waits for her man” in Khmer.  The White Lady, Kep  

The White Lady, Kep 
She’s meant to be naked, but apparently local conservatives have covered her in clothes. All of South East Asia that we’ve encountered is pretty conservative when it comes to female dress, so it isn’t too surprising that her nakedness is controversial. 

The even more famous Kep crab statue (type “Kep” into Google and this is what you will see).  Kep crab statue 

Kep is well known for its crab market, and we headed there one evening for dinner. Here it is. Kep crab market 

We went to a place called The Crab Shack. Guess what we had? 

Fish. We had fish. (One beast of a red snapper, in fact.) Red snapper at The Crab Shack 

I had read that the crab fishing here has become unsustainable, and that red snapper is one of the eco-friendly alternatives. Plus, I’m not all that bothered about crab. 

The food was excellent, but even better was the view.  View from The Crab Shack, Kep 

I’ve never been to a restaurant in such a cool location. We could hear the waves crashing and watch the sun set over the water… should we be holding hands across the table? I thought. HAH! 

Sunset.  Sunset in Kep  

Sunset in Kep 

Just twenty minutes by boat from Kep is Rabbit Island (called Koh Tonsai in Khmer). It is meant to look like a rabbit. It really, really doesn’t. It’s more of a blob.  On the way to Rabbit Island  

Rabbit Island, Cambodia 

This place is gorgeous. We visited for the afternoon, and both thought we would have loved to stay a whole day here. There are huts for hire and a few nice restaurants on the main beach. But getting the tandem across on boats with no gangplanks would have been a hassle. 

 Rabbit Island, Cambodia  
Rabbit Island, Cambodia 

A tiny, empty beach – a great spot for some swimming in the sea. Rabbit Island, Cambodia  

Rabbit Island, Cambodia 

An hour before our boat was due to leave, we trundled our way back to the main beach, got ourselves a coconut and admired the view (which included a lot of dreadlocks and at least one acoustic guitar, though none are featured here). Rabbit Island, Cambodia  

Rabbit Island, Cambodia  Rabbit Island, Cambodia 

We will very soon be heading inland towards the dust and the heat, so it was lovely to finish off seeing the coast in style. 


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