Friday, November 26, 2010

Off to Cambodia - Siem Reap Day 1

What could be more of luck for an unexpected trip abroad than getting another trip right away? With 3 more days before leaving Vietnam, E asked me to join her on another trip. Yes, on to where Tomb Raiders location was shoot Cambodia. Im quite skeptical on to how well be able to get there, since a friend of her informed that a bus ride to Cambodia will only take 6 hours travelOnly to know later that its actually 12 hours to reach Siem Reap and a plane ride on a less time but much pricier though. Time is running out or else well spend the rest of our stay in Saigon, we decided right away to purchased plane tickets for the first flight and found ourselves in Siem Reap in an hour.

Cambodian style airport welcoming passengers. Weather is quite hot that time.

We took a cab from the airport to the hotel we just looked in the internet forum, stayed in Thonburey hotel for a 12 USD per night double room. Its a new hotel, the room we had in spacious, clean toilet and bath, and friendly staff. We asked on an itinerary for a two day stay in Siem Reap, and they recommend this fishing village Ton Le Sap. Most of the dwellers in the lake are Vietnamese refugees during the war, but chose to stay even when the war was over and started building their own community in the lake. Basically shows how war affects people up until this day as poverty is still prevalent

With their houses literally just floating on the water, you can just imagine how they get to go through their everyday lives living in the lake. At the back of their house where their toilets are, to the front of the house to where they wash their dishes, getting their laundry done and even bathing in. But on the image on the left, villagers get access to cleaner drinking water by USAID.

A local floating church.

A local merchant selling her items on boat.

A shop that repair motor boats.

We stopped for awhile to this restaurant/souvenir shop in the some part middle of the lake.

A girl in the boat greeted us with her pet that I fear most. Shes asking for a dollar, and after I gave her some money, pleaded to move away as I really hate snakes!

Inside the souver shop that sell items made by the villagers.

Villagers also had a crocodile farms that after some time, kill the poor creatures and hang the skin to dry. They sell wallets, bags and even a coat made of their skin.

A local Cambodian beer and sorry to say Im' not a fan of beer so I didn't gave it a try.The boatman asks us to spare some money to donate to the village but were thinking they already overcharged us double for the trip. Tsk, tsk.

After the trip, we had our dinner on hawker stands outside the hotel. The night market had stalls that send everything from clothes to local souvenirs.

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