Ko Ta Kiev Island

Posted By Hayley | 11 comments

We’re in Sihanoukville (Cambodia) and loving it! Yesterday we went on a trip to Ko Ta Kiev Island. It’s a 30 minute boat ride from the mainland. The trip cost $15 each and included breakfast, lunch and a tuk tuk to the boat.

The tuk tuk picked us up at 8am and took us to a bar on Otres beach where breakfast was provided, fried egg sandwiches and coffee – lovely! Hayley used the toilet and returned almost traumatised warning me not to use it (a muddy hole in the floor with no running water…haha!) so it’s just one coffee then!

The boat is a bit of a ramshackle fishing boat, the engine sounds like a world war 2 fighter plane, there are a few loose planks on the deck and crawling around are what I can only describe as mutant sized woodlice. No worries though, it all adds to the sense of adventure! 🙂

We stop off near an island on the way to Ko Ta Kiev for an hours snorkeling. I manage to get a mask that fills up with water, so I get half the ocean up my nose and manage to scrape my knee on a rock. Time to get back on the boat for a beer, Hayley stays on the boat taking more awesome pictures…. it’s rare to see her without the camera in her hand.

Snorkeling was awesome! I saw tropical looking fish and the coral is amazing. I remember not to touch the coral as it damages it (I saw that on the discovery channel) 🙂

We get to Ko Ta Kiev and our Cambodian captain tells us that we’re staying for 3 hours. There’s a lovely white sandy beach and clear warm water. We lay on the beach and chat to some of our fellow day trippers… it turns out that two of the lads on the trip live about 30 minutes drive from me back in England, small world.

After an hour on the beach, we go back to the boat for lunch. Some local kids from the other tourist boats got together and caught a load of fish for us to eat. They cook it on an improvised b.b.q, it’s a clay pot with a grill on top. We have toasted baguette with fish, salad and another beer each – lovely jubbly!

After lunch it’s back to the beach for a couple of hours, someone’s found an absinthe distillery and bar so we go to investigate.

It’s easy to find, from the boat we take a right and walk along the beach. We see the distillery sign and follow the path until we come to a wooden hut, inside it looks a bit like a crazy d.i.y science experiment.


The fella who greets us knows a lot about the process, he explains how absinthe is made, and tells us about the various concoctions that are for sale by the bottle and  the glass, they range from 69-85%  abv and contain various herbs

I ask if it’s true that absinthe causes you to hallucinate, he assures me that’s a myth… oh well I’ll just have to get drunk instead 🙂 On second thoughts, I’ve just seen the entrance to the bar, we have to climb up a big wooden ladder (what was I expecting it is a tree house after all).

The bar girl Elise shows us the menu we go for red absinthe, this is a shot of red absinthe with fire, sugar water and ice. We’ll be ok to climb back down it’s only 69% proof!!!

I’m sat in a tree house drinking absinthe, on a near deserted island off Cambodia, it’s funny how things work out 🙂

We get talking to Elise and she tells us that she’s only worked here for a week, she works in exchange for her food and accommodation.

 The accommodation is a tent, isn’t it free to pitch a tent on the beach anyway? apparently not the military control the island and they have to be paid. 

I get the impression Elise is a real hippy, she lives on a beach in the middle of nowhere, has hairy armpits and a mono-brow, she doesn’t wear shoes either, she’s a very nice girl. We have our drinks and leave, we’re only having one as we don’t fancy getting down from the tree house half pissed.

It’s easier than it looks to get down but I still wouldn’t fancy it after a few absinthe’s. So we go for a swim near the boat and sit on the beach for a bit.

Our captain calls us back to the boat and we set off for Sihanoukville. We stop near Otres beach for a swim and then it’s all aboard and back to the mainland.

If you’re in Sihanoukville Ko Ta Kiev is definitely worth a visit. We would recommend a day trip as it is remote and while  we enjoyed an afternoon on the Island, I reckon I could go stir crazy after a couple of days.

There is some accommodation on the island but not a lot and it is quiet. Apart from the beach and the few holiday bungalows the Island is mainly jungle.

Have a great day,



  1. Great post, sounds like you guys are having lot of fun on your trip, I especially like that bar on a tree but not convenient to come out when you have a few drinks too much. Anyways keep up the good work on your website and enjoy your travel, someday I will be traveling all around the world too.

    Cheers, Ante

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    • Thanks Ante, that is a cool bar, you will get to travel mate, and sometimes you don’t need as much money as you think. We’ve spoken to a few people who are
      on work xchange programmes.They work a few hours a day in exchange for food and accommodation, I’m gonna do some research, and write about it over the next couple of weeks. Good luck mate!!

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  2. Team Awesome! Sure would like to be in your shoes!! You are providing great information on your site and I am sure enticing lots of people to do what you are doing. It’s great to be able to work from ANYWHERE in the world. Good job! Danielle

    Post a Reply
    • Thanks Danielle that was the idea when we started, to be able to earn money from anywhere with an internet connection, and inspire others to do the same

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  3. Hi! Andy,
    Nice place to travel. You are a good trip Advisor. You provided enough information about the place and through out your trip. Keep it up. I enjoyed reading.

    All the Best!

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  4. Nice piece. The pictures lend colour to it. Nice site. Keep it up!

    Post a Reply
    • Thanks Akoli, Hayley takes the pictures with her iphone, she’ll be adding lot’s more.

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  5. Hello,

    Thanks for all the great info, sounds and looks like you are both having a wonderful time. Can’t wait to read your next update, have fun you lovely people xx

    Post a Reply

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