24 Mar 2013

DAY 62: CAMBODIA / SIEM REAP: Angkor Wat temples and departure to Vietnam

Morning. 5am. Alarm....
I couldn't sleep last night 'cause I had a coffee. Probably I will never learn.. Caffeine is bad for sleep. I slept just 3 hours. I was already packed. I will check out from my room and we'll keep the other one for shower, stuff and maybe afternoon nap.
Knocking on the lover birds door... Knocking again... "Are you f**cking kidding me? You two better be ready to leave or I am about to break the door." I was freaking out. Of course, they just woke up. At least, they were quick. We have booked tuk tuk for 5:30am in front of our hotel. 
It was a fresh morning, still dark and we were all sleepy..
Angkor Wat in front of us and thousands people sitting, standing and walking around the lake. "I told ya it's gonna be like this" - Jon said. This was his 3rd time here.
It was one of the best sunrises in Asia so far. I could not stop making photos and I was so lucky to catch the right spot :) 


Here comes the sun.. 

In a few minutes sun was up and we decided to stay a bit longer near the lake enjoying our coffee and breakfast. Picnic at Angkor Wat :) Anyway, we have the whole day.





Near the lake with my favorite flowers

After half an hour we finally moved. That was really hard decision cause we almost fall asleep. Maria was "crying" all the time that she wants to sleep and Jon as well. I was really excited about this, and I felt pretty good. 
Angkor Wat temple is amazing. The architecture is so unique and I loved all wall crafts and details. 
The temple was built in 12th century by king Suryavarman the second and it is a biggest Hindu complex and religious monument in the globe. In the beginning it was Hindu (dedicated to God Vishnu) then Buddhist (late 13th century). The temple is part of the Angkor World Heritage Site, established in 1992.

 Angkor temple


 A bit of break-dance :)

More details


After one hour or so, we went to see another temple. It was my favorite and and perhaps one of the most picturesque - Ta Prohm temple, nicknamed "Tomb Raider temple". Jon decided to stay in tuk tuk and to try to catch some sleep. 
The temple was built in late 12th century by king Jayavarman VII. It was Buddhist monastery and university. It is one of the most visited complexes in Cambodia’s Angkor region. We had lucky, it wasn't that busy so we could walk and make photos without being in rush. 

Ta Prohm temple

 One of my favorite pictures

Like Lara Croft :)

 Like a tourist

Ta Prohm temple complex


When we got back to the parking Jon wasn't in a tuk tuk. We saw him near some souvenir shop. He said he couldn't sleep. We took a seat in a shadow just to relax and refresh with some cold drinks. It was really hot. 

Fresh coconut

The last temple on our "must" list was Bayon. Built in late 12th century as well by the king Jayavarman VII as his official state temple and the last state temple built at Angkor. It is also richly decorated Khmer temple with massive stone faces on the many towers. 

Bayon temple


Towers detail

Tourists aswell

Bayon temple

Later we saw few smaller temples, not so important so I will not write about it. 

 Jon and Maria

We got back to room in the late afternoon. Jon and Maria wanted to sleep so I gave them an extra hour and I went for a walk to the downtown. My boyfriend Canon decided to join me. 

Local Buddhist Temple in Siem Reap

Local girl

Bar street during the day

Fly with Batman travel  :)


23 Mar 2013

DAY 61: CAMBODIA - Siem Reap - The decision

I had a quiet night on my own when we got back from Pub street so I took a long shower, internet surfing etc. Steve did not come all night and I had room just for myself :)
Morning.. Heat! We were all lazy even to move so we didn't :) Day by the pool... food, beer and that was pretty much all we have done.
It was a lunch time when we decided to not go to Laos. I was thinking, we spent many days in Cambodia, more than we planed to, and we have just one month before our flight back home. It is better to see one country without rush then to move every 2nd day from place to another place. Plus we already made our Vietnamese visas and I really looked forward to see that country since we arrived in Bangkok in December. Maria was more for Lao but, she changed her opinion in a second 'cause Jon is leaving to Ho Chi Minh in a 2days and she could stay with him for his birthday. Everyones happy. Oh, forgot to mention, our lover-bro showed up with his girlfriend in the afternoon. He said he is going to her place and in a two days he is going back to Otres beach with her. Officially, Steve is leaving us after one month. This means, again I will have room for myself :) fancy!
We bought bus tickets to Ho Chi Minh (southern Vietnam) for tomorrow night (midnight bus again). Plan for the morning is to visit Angkor Wat and temples.
In the afternoon, we went with tuk tuk to see sunset over the Angkor temple. And god damn, we were late 5 minutes. The security guy did not wanted to let us in. He totally flipped my bitch switch .. I took few photos and they were not bad at all, but if I could just get in the temple! We also tried with our press pass cards. No lucky...

Me, Steve and Melissa

Crazy in love


My ticket 


Cambodian woman: "Special price for you, my friend"

After we saw the sunset, we returned to our hotel for a dinner.
Catching the sunrise at Angkor Wat tomorrow 5am is a challenge. Is it worth? I hope it is.

Sunset over the Angkor Wat


CAMBODIA (DAY 60): Siem Reap and Kompong Pluk floating village

Leaving Sihanoukville wasn't just the part of the plan but the right thing to do after two weeks of real holiday. Time to move on. Cambodia so far is a real highlight of SE Asia.
I felt kind a lonely since Maria is now with her new boyfriend Jon, a British guy she met on Koh Rong island where we were on "full moon party". Also, Steve is going to meet up with a girl he met, where else, on Koh Rong island. I was so like, man, am I going to hang out with couples there or what? The worst thing was that there were no music for the next 5 days because Cambodian king died.
We were all together in a midnight bus to Siem Reap. Maria and Jon in front of the bus, Steve and I on the back. It was a super clean sleeper bus with Wi Fi all the way to Phnom Penh. Ticket coast - 12 dollars.
We arrived in the early morning, it was not dawned yet. Dusty, old bus station of Siem Reap. Near the bus,  big gate. Tuk tuk drivers were behind the gate screaming and waiting for the "main in charge" to open the gate so they can jump on all of us like hyenas on dry bones. Steve already arranged tuk tuk and hotel for all of us. 
Room was really nice, maybe one of the best we stayed in Cambodia, for 12 dollars (2 single beds).
Siem Reap temple villa had average food, nice swimming pool and very bad internet connection (we did not have good connection in the room, at the reception was perfect). Anyway, we'll stay here 2 days only, just to see the Angkor temples and we are off to Lao.

When I woke up, Steve was gone. We shared the room. I don't think he is coming back anyway 'cause he was so excited to see that girl. I was happy for him anyway.
Same day, I called my friend Dana. She is living with her husband Stanko in Siem Reap as he is director of some company for cleaning the land of mines. Plus her friend from Belgrade Tatjana is in Siem Reap at the moment so, lets do something today. She asked me if I would like to join them, they are going to visit Kompong Pluk floating village. They picked me up after 30 minutes and we left. We gonna meet up with Maria and Jon there, at the ticket counter. Maria and Jon went to the doctor one hour ago. Jon had some ear pain. After about 30 km we arrived at the port but we couldn't find Maria and Jon. I called Jon and we realized that they are at the other port. They couldn't manage to come quick so we left. We arranged good ticket price of 10 dollars for the boat (each).
It was a long tail boat, nice and I could say safe. The ride started and we could see how local people live on the river, the way they are fishing, houses they built to live, local kids.. It is a poor life with very hard conditions but even with that, they were all smiling and waving to us. I was really wondering how people live there when it's a rainy season.

 Local house and kids

The other one with camera - Dana

Local woman 


Time for play 

Friends (Tatjana, Dana and Stanko)

Local kids


After 40 minutes of ride we stopped at some small, lets called "port" for a break. From there you can rent canoe and visit the lagoon. We decided not to go. During the dry season lagoon looked really bad so just we went for a drink. I took coconut. There were not many tourists which I liked it and this floating village is much better than the one near Bangkok. Here you can really see true beauty and on the other side not feel like someone wants to rip you off for some stupid souvenirs. 

waiting for the work 

 Lady in charge

We took the same way back.
I returned to hotel around 6:30pm. We agreed to meet at night in Pub street (where all bars and clubs are) but we all know, no music and parties.. Anyway, Simon is in Siem Reap so we will see him again hehe..

Simon and I in tuk tuk