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Published: August 2nd 2019
New pagoda on one of the old killing sites.
In Hanoi it was the bicycle taxis that you needed to keep saying “no” to. In Phenom Penh it’s the tuk tuks. “You want tuk tuk?” “You want one hour city tour?”
When I eventually felt up to it, we set-off on our own two hour walking city tour.
We walked along the river front, which is clearly the backpackers area, with all the little hostels, travel shops, mini markets and the like. Then past the stunning and huge Royal Palace (which we will be visiting tomorrow as part of our tour) and then back to that area I walked to yesterday near the Independence Monument.
Just as we got back to the hotel, down came the rain.
A bit of a tangent, but Cambodia seems to use the UK plug sockets. Great - no need for any adapters.
Later in the afternoon, we had arranged to go on a short tour to Oudong, which is the old Cambodian capital. It was stunning, but made all the better by the fact that we were literally the only tourists there, partially due to the weather probably.
We started off at a huge pagoda, which was apparently
The view from the hill pagodas in Oudong.
built to cover up some of the killing fields late last century. The monks were going about their business and we also got to see some of the little houses that the monks live in and there was a huge reclining Buddha. We then went up into the nearby hills where there were various old and new stupas, some with stunning intricacies in their designs.
One of the stupas contained a bone from the Buddha, so there were a couple of security guards. It was also being guarded by a monkey who was sat a few feet up and followed us round, eyeballing us as we looked around.
On the way back there was a stop at a craft village, where apparently a lot of the crafts in the Central Market are made, Some children promptly started work as we arrived and then there was a bit of moral blackmail at the silver shop.
Our guide could talk for Cambodia and was telling us all about Cambodian history and Cambodian life. Interestingly the monks wear orange because it is the colour of leaves that have fallen off the trees, hence indicating detachment.
The history seems to
Watching us as we walked around.
be a succession of other counties using it as a pawn in bigger power-plays and regional conflicts. One of the monuments we saw earlier in the day was the Cambodia Vietnam Friendship Monument, but that seems to have been a chequered relationship in the past.
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