Camp it up!
Get campy on the beach in one of Crusoe Island’s tents, set on secure platforms if you wish, with mattresses and pillows for maximum comfort among the pine trees. Those on a tighter budget could choose one of the hammocks, or if your preference is for a more solid environment, there are four wooden bungalows to hole up in.
Perched right on top of the beach, the two-person tents actually have the best sea views. We saw many that were already pitched, so there’s no need to get tied up with guy ropes. But if you do need a hand, then it is available.
Individually-styled and secluded double bungalows are also available. Two are ‘ensuite’ and cost the same: ‘The View’, which has a toilet hidden behind a curtain away from the bed platform and ‘The Explorer’, with a bathroom lacking any privacy at all. Open to the elements — no window or shutter — all bungalows come with a bed and mosquito net and are not suited to those with serious privacy issues, since it’s easy for anyone walking past along the path to the beach / camping sites to have a peek in. ‘The Explorer’ has a tree branch walkway to a small wonky-looking private deck over the beach, while ‘The View’ has a view of its own patch of beach.
We stayed in the latter on a former foray, and found it to be attractively built and decorated, with colourful orange drapes and patterned floor mats. These touches make these premium bungalows easily the best decorated on the island and one of the most memorable across Cambodia’s islands, though a little at odds with the simplicity and basic level of the dark adjoining bathroom, which was decked out with only a shelf, toilet with no lid, bucket shower and minimal privacy. We also walked past ‘The Hut’ but it looked so basic from the outside you may be better off saving the money and camping instead.
At the centre of it all, the communal area has hammocks and a huge campfire pit surrounded by benches creating a fun social hub. The menu is comprehensive, though the restaurant doesn’t stay open late. Popular breakfast items include affordable build-your-own baguettes. Water refills are available at 50 cents a pop.
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By Nicky Sullivan
Last updated on 21st June, 2016.