Published: May 3rd 2012May 3rd 2012
After a pretty good nights kip last night at my hotel in Bangkok I was woken by the phone at 530am ready for my 6 oclock pick up back to the Bus Station and Day 2 of the tour. The bus station was 10 minutes away so when i got there I grabbed a coffee in a cafe and asked directions for buying a ticket, thankfully the lady that served me spoke pretty good english and after walking past it a couple of times I finally managed to get myself a coach ticket to the border at Aran for less than 4 quid. Air conditioning and free drink of water and Taro bun thrown in ....excellent no issue here.
Roughly 4 hours later Im dropped off at a bustling market along side the Thai side border at Aran and from here on in its pretty much a free for all ....haranged and harrassed followed by people trying to earn a few more Bhat or dollars than the goverment will charge you. Anyhow I pretty much managed to fob anyone that got close enough off and followed some Canadian guys direction ( who had done it before or so he said
so) , through Thai Immigration no problem at all and bang you enter no mans land where all the scamming begins again, at this point i lost the canadian and ended up with a Cambodian wearing a company shirt assuring me he would look after me and not lie and that I would not have to give him any money. After insisting several times that i didnt need any help without swearing ( now thats a bonus for him in my book ) and I was lieing I did need help - he finally buggered off. So now I have the issue of getting the Cambodian visa which should cost $20 offically, trouble is there are a few official looking people and offices before you get to the proper visa place !! I notice 3 Police officers sat with some european tourists and walk over before I can say a word I notice the guy give the officer 2200 Thai bhat for the visa which is a little bit more than it should be, so i decide to be smart and say oh Police point at myself and say English Police I would never normally do it but it fucking
working I paid 2000 baht my passport was stamped card filled in and I was taken to the official point thank you Mr Officer !! It was at this point Mr Canadian resurfaces and asks me where I got my visa as he had been scammed....oh dear well i didnt stick around to be of any assistance once was enough and next time Im fucking flying. Photo taken passport scanned and im finally through the Immigration at Poipet and in the Kingdom of Cambodia and who should be there to greet me the little Cambodian guy from earlier URGHHHHHHH.
From here on it was pretty much hassle free a free shuttle to the Transport station where I managed to arrange to share a taxi with 3 other people - all english and from Yorkshire phewwww thats going to make the 2 hour taxi ride more bareable :O) They too had been scammed but worse than the canadian guy and ended up paying a fine. So $12 later we arrive in Siem Reap and I take a tuk tuk to my guesthouse I pretty much guzzled a can of beer firstly with relief and secondly because its 40 bloody degrees
and I must have lost about half stone in sweat today so I quite happy to say I have arrived pretty unscathed and unscammed in Siem Reap.
Happy with my Guesthouse i had a quick shower look around and tuk tuk back into the main drag and Pub Street. Where there was an internet cafe yay. Even though I am tempted to meet up with the guys from the Taxi I have another early start sunrise tour at Anghor Wat so its going to be an early night for me and a far less stressful day tomo hopefully !
There are more photos below