Siem Reap, Cambodia 3rd Feb - 10th Feb

Trip Start Dec 13, 2012
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14
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Trip End Apr 02, 2014


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Sunday, February 3, 2013

Introduction

Siem Reap is a town about a 6 hour bus ride north of Phnom Penh. It is the gateway to Angkor Wat where there are dozens of Buddhist and Hindu temples built between the 9th and 13th century, covering 97 square kilometres. Angkor Wat the main temple is the largest religious building in the world. We spent 7 days there exploring the temples and the Siem Reap town.

Highlights

Angkor Wat Temples

We spent 2 days being driven around on a Tuk Tuk visiting all of the temples. The driver took us around and stopped and waited outside each time, some of them we could walk from one side of the temple to the other and the driver would be at the other side waiting for us. It was a great way to see them. Outside each temple were stands selling food & drink, also children were all around selling postcards, books and crafts. We saw the sunset one day and then got up early to see the sunrise as well. By the end of the second day we were all templed out though as we had seen over 20 temples!

Meeting the Locals

Our driver took us to meet some of his friends. We went to a Pagoda which is a Buddhist temple where monks live. There were two monks there and three local boys. They all wanted to practice their English so we spent some time with them making conversation, trying our best to teach. English school is $20 per month and French school, $50 so not all of them could afford it. They had a text book to learn from, no TV. The electricity was provided from a generator.

Pub Street

In the heart of Siem Reap, it's quite built up with restaurants, markets and bars. One of the streets is called Pub Street which is lined with bars. We had some drinks down the street and finished the night off by buying some beers from the shop and getting a tuk-tuk driver to take us on the scenic route home, a moving bar :-)

Bike Ride

As we bought a three day pass for the temples we decided to use the third day to hire a bike and ride around the loop of temples & have a picnic along the way. We ended up doing about a 40km ride!

Food & Drink

Favourite Local Dish: Amok Curry – chicken with creamy coconut base.

New Tastes: 

-       Beef Lok Lak – Beef Cubes in sauce with lettuce and a fried egg with lime & pepper dip

-       Happy Pizza – Pizza with a Ganja base – just ask for "extra happy" when ordering

-       Happy Shake – Ganja in a milkshake – just ask for “extra happy” when ordering

International McDonalds Meal: No McDonalds

Local Beer: Cambodia Beer, Angkor


Lessons Learned

The Milk Scam – We fell for it! A young girl about 10 holding a small baby came up to us in the street asking for milk for the baby, eyes of desperation. How can you say no to that? She took us to a small convenience store where we bought her a tin of expensive milk powder. About 10 minutes later we saw her on the street again, no milk in her hand, asking another tourist for milk. Later we read about the scam and to watch out for it – the girl takes the milk back to the shop and splits the money with the shop owner. Clever, yes – but then the really poor people miss out as you think everyone is scamming you!

Accommodation

Sapphire Guesthouse – This hotel was a little bit out of the town but was a bargain at $16 for a large air con room with brekkie provided every day. There was a tour office at the reception making it easy for us to book transport etc.





Expenses

                Meals: $3-$5 – Again, we ate in nicer restaurants to avoid food poisoning.

                Water: $0.60c

                Alcohol: $1.50-$3 Cocktails, $0.50-$1.50 Pints

                Transport: Tuk-Tuk $15-$30 for the day

                Temples: $40 per person for a 3 day pass

                Bike Hire: Bicycle $2, Mountain Bike $5


Average Daily Spend per person: $40

Transport there for both of us: $10

Total Spend for both of us inc. Transport: $580

Note: there are not pics of ALL of the temples we visited as there were just too many. We have tried hard to remember the names of all of them too! Hopefully they are all correct!

Slideshow Report as Spam

Comments

G/Dad Gordon on

Makes me want to go / wonderful diary, its like we are there (nearly )Stay safe XXX

Joan in Perth on

I gotta go back to page 1 of this blog.... Hope I dont drown in the drool I will be making :)

Hugs and stay safe
Joan & Bill

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