Also known as Rabbit Island, this small island off the coast of Kep, southern Cambodia, is far removed from the bustling cities we’ve recently found ourselves in. A small motored boat chugs into clear blue waters and you’re left to wade, backpacks aloft, onto a white beach under shady palms. Ten restaurants line the beach, which covers one side of the island, and each restaurant owner rents 10-20 bungalows lining the sand. We found one for $10 a night and settled in for a few days of quiet rest.
During the day we relaxed on sunbeds or lounged in hammocks (free if you buy something from the restaurant they belong to), swam in the bath-like waters less than ten meters from our front door, and explored bits of the island covered by trees or quieter stretches of beach and rocks.
At night, unfortunately, we were frequently woken by the resident rats in our bungalow, which by day shyly scuttle around behind the bamboo walls, but by night seemingly fight to near-death on our bedroom floor. I also lost a piece of clothing to them, finding holes chewed in an lucky piece I’d forgotten to put away on our last day. If you’ve never heard a rat scream, thank your stars, I wish I never had; but at the same time it reinforced how far from reality and our usual notions of civilisation we were and how lucky to be experiencing nature (of all kinds) for a few special days.