So we reluctantly left our excellent hotel after a brilliant few days in HongKong. We flew to Bangkok on Sunday afternoon and arrived at our hotel to join the tour. The hotel was basic but fine to lay our heads. We met our tour group which consisted of 2 Canadians, 1 American, 2 Scottish, a guy from Liverpool, 3 Germans, 2 New Zealand guys, 1 English and us 2. Or first impressions are they all seem much older than us :-( Anyway, we had a chat with the tour leader about our itinery etc and we headed for some dinner.
Early on Monday morning we caught a bus to the Cambodian border, filled out all the necessary documentation and crossed through "No-mans" land and into Cambodia. We caught another bus to Sien Reap. We arrived around 4pm and had time to get checjed in and a quick freshen up before dinner at New Hope Centre. Its an Non Government Organisation (NGO) which supports children for extra classes. Most peole who work there are from the Western world and volunteer here. THey also assist with health care etc. When we arrived we went to classsrooms and chatted the childern which was
good fun. Then we headed for dinner cooked by the volunteers. One of the photos show 'SNAKE' which we both tried and it was actually quite nice!! We had lots of Khmer (Cambodian) dishes.
3.30am Tuesday morning, alarm went off, time to get up. The bus was leaving at 4.15am for Angkor Wat so we would be there for sunrise. Reluctantly we got up and rolled onto the bus. When we got there we walked in the dark through puddles and God knows wha else until we got to where we had to be and we waited. I suppose about 5.30 the sun started to rise slowly and by 6am it was bright. Our tour guide brought us through the main Angkor Wat temple and then we got the bus to a few other temples and before lunch we went to the temple where Tomb Raider was filmed. The trees here are huge and strange looking! It was good but after been there from so early and it was so hot walking around, Peter and I were glad to get back to the hotel to relax.
Wednesday morning we had a free few hours before we got checked
out of hotel so we took the opportunity to catch up on some much needed rest. We then got a 6 hour coach to Penom Penh. Our tour guide warned us about safety etc here as he said it is mega corrupt. He said EVERYTHING in Cambodia is for sale. Currency here is US dollars. We arrived around 6.30 and got checked into the hotel, its just ok, im glad to be checking out tomorrow!
So Wednesday night we went to another NGO for dinner, called Friends. This organisation is for street kids. THere is a school, restaurant next door where students and teachers work in, a nail bar and a trinket shop. The restaurant was a Tapas place and the food was delicious.. So good, We didnt even have room for dessert!!
This morning we had a few free hours so we done a group walking tour of Penom Penh which was nice but by 11am the heat was unreal. We headed for Friends again as people wanted to buy cook books etc so I decided to do my bit and got my nails painted!!haha... We had lunch and the bus picked us up to head for
our afternoon activity.
This time we had a local Khmer guide and he was great. We headed for the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum. It was very sad to think this tragedy only stopped in 1979. So many people were killed, some pictures were up in the museum of people who were killed and people who worked in these places. Before we got off the bus, the guide told us at any stage if someone asks a question and he doesnt answer then he will answer on the bus. He was afraid incase there would be spies around!! Once we walked around the museum, we went to the Killing Fields and again had an opportunity to walk around and chat about the goings on. It was very sad to hear of some of the things they done to women and children etc. Tonight we went to this tour guides house for a family feast. He also runs an after schools club for children who want to elp themselves. They had a fantastic spread of food, most normal stuff but one dish with Frog in it. It wasnt great, too many bones in it!! Followed by fruit for dessert. We had
a great night and the children were lovely when we were chatting them. 5 families live in his 5 bedroom house! Its crazy!!
Anyway, we head away early tomorrow to our beach resort.
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