With all this talk about ASEAN integration and the AEC (ASEAN Economic Community), you’d think that driving a Thai vehicle into Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar or Malaysia would be easy – but it isn’t. As we approached the Cambodia border down a narrow finger of Thai territory, we still weren’t sure if we had all the necessary documents. Google didn’t know. Lonely Planet’s “Thorn Tree” had more questions than answers. And even if we DID have everything, there was still no guarantee that Cambodian Customs & Immigration officials would let us drive our right hand-drive vehicle all the way to Sihanoukville without greasing a few palms.
“Is this your car?” he asked. Yes.
“Is it registered in your name?” Yes.
“Do you have an international driver’s license?” Yes.
The boat ride back to Sihanoukville the next morning was very rough. Some passengers were shrieking; others were vomiting. Sigh. I had an eight-drive ahead of me, assuming Black Bull was still where I had parked it. It had been a very inefficient trip: two days on Koh Rong and two days of driving. It would have been much easier to fly to Phnom Penh and arrange transport to Sihanoukville. But where’s the adventure in that? We had proven that it could be done. We had seen parts of Thailand and Cambodia that most people would never see. And the beauty of Koh Rong and Coconut Beach far surpassed our expectations