Blogs from Phnom Penh, South, Cambodia, Asia

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Asia » Cambodia » South » Phnom Penh September 23rd 2019

1. Long day off in April 2019. I was quick to grab cheap flight ticket from Kuala Lumpur to Phnom Penh, Cambodia. 2. Never had in my mind to tour this place of famously associated with Pol Pot. 3. Flight time : 1.5hrs. 4. Left airport around 4pm. There’s a city train to city center that cost me USD4. 5. I was informed the train was actually a kind of donation to the govt. 6. While i was impressed with the new mode of transportation here, yet i wish the govt would get and replace this train with more modern one. 7. 10km ride costing me 1.5hours in the train! 8. Reached central station I decided to take a Taxi to hotel. 9. Locals ade nice and friendly. 10. Nothing much to do on the first ... read more
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Asia » Cambodia » South » Phnom Penh August 3rd 2019

We had our do-it-yourself tour of Phnom Penh yesterday, but today is the official, organised tour. We had expected it to be a group of us, however, again, it was just the two of us, along with the guide and driver who took us to Oudong yesterday. First stop was the Royal Palace. After another security barrier that bleeped for everyone and was ignored, we were shown around the main areas. It was stunning and very similar to the temple at Oudong that we visited yesterday, just a lot, lot busier. Unlike other palaces, it’s not a single building, but a site consisting of several, some of which we could go into, some of which we could not. The king lives in a completely separate building, which tourists obviously go no where near. The king was ... read more
Murals
Moped Passengers
Siem Reap Airport

Asia » Cambodia » South » Phnom Penh August 2nd 2019

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 ... read more
Oudong View
Guard Monkey
Hill Pagodas

Asia » Cambodia » South » Phnom Penh August 1st 2019

We were up early as we had a flight to catch, but breakfast opened just in time so we were able to get something to eat before we left. The same guide who took us to the port and back was waiting for us in reception and then we had to face the rush hour Hanoi traffic, not that it was much different to any other time. It had clearly been raining heavily overnight, although we had not heard any thunder. Mind you, the hotel windows are probably well sound-proofed to cut out all the moped horns. The guide told us that no boats were leaving today because of the impending typhoon, so we were very, very lucky. On the way to the airport, we drove along a a substantial part of the Hanoi Ceramic Murals. ... read more
Ceramic Mural
The Long Route
Hotel View

Asia » Cambodia » South » Phnom Penh February 6th 2019

We traveled by overnight bus to Phnom Pehn. It is pretty common for us to select overnight travel, you don’t miss a day of moving and seeing, you don’t add overnight expenses for lodging and typically the fares are cheaper. What I wasn’t expecting was for the entire bus to be bed cots instead of seats. One side of the isle was single bunk beds and the other side of the isle had two separate cots next to each other with bunk beds. Never have I been so happy to be traveling with a friend than tonight! We arrived in Phnom Pehn and caught a bus to Kampot and made it out to our hostel. Again what the hostel photos didn’t show was the domitories were not only in the house but also in 2 shipping ... read more

Asia » Cambodia » South » Phnom Penh January 1st 2019

After a late night last today was a very lazy day. We had a leisurely breakfast and then spent the morning reading and booking accommodation for the next leg of the journey. For lunch we headed out to the luxury Raffles Hotel for afternoon tea. We were sat down in the very plush elephant bar and ordered a traditional tea (they also offer a Khmer alternative). The tea is just $15 each (that’s the same price as their cheapest drinks so a good way to get a nosey at the hotel). I was very impressed with it - we had plenty of tea, little sandwiches, warm scones and tiny cakes all served on 3 tired plates. It wasn’t the most filling tea I’ve ever had but it was delicious and very well done. After tea I ... read more
Tea time!

Asia » Cambodia » South » Phnom Penh December 31st 2018

This morning we walked along the river front to the National Museum. It’s only a 2km walk from our hotel but being so hot and humid we stopped for an iced drink before going in. The museum costs $10 for entry and a further $5 for an audio guide. Personally I think it’s very overpriced. The museum itself is interesting with mostly religious items from the pre-Angkor (Buddhist and Hindu) and Angkor (Buddhist) eras. There’s very little from more recent times and not much that explains activities of daily life and how people used live. Personally I find how people lived more interesting than the religious artefacts. The museum is built around a beautiful courtyard with lily ponds containing fish and this is a calm & quiet place to relax. If you go I would give ... read more
The Royal Palace
The Throne Room
New Years Eve

Asia » Cambodia » South » Phnom Penh December 30th 2018

This morning was very interesting but upsetting and somewhat depressing. After breakfast we got a ‘grab’ taxi to the genocide museum. This museum is in the site of the old S21 prison, used by the Khmer Rouge in the 1970s. It was originally built as a high school and the plain buildings surrounded by houses in the middle of a city seem out of place with what occurred there. We chose to get an audio guide which was well worth the extra cost. The Khmer Rouge came into power by force in 1975. Initially most people were pleased the corrupt monarchy had been overthrown. Within hours the soldiers were ‘evacuating’ Phnom Penh and sending it’s inhabitants to work in the countryside instead. Families were split up and anyone who resisted killed. Once in the countryside people ... read more
Genocide museum
Genocide museum
Central market

Asia » Cambodia » South » Phnom Penh December 21st 2018

Today we flew to Phnom Phen, Cambodia. Typically it was a beautiful sunny day in Mandalay as we left. After packing and breakfast we checked out and ordered our ‘grab’ taxi. Leaving at 9am the traffic was lighter than usual and our predicted hours journey took just 40mins. Unlike in the other countries we’ve travelled to the drivers here tend to be fairly good, the cars have seatbelts that work and you don’t have a constant fear of death. Mandalay airport is the largest international airport in Myanmar. It’s also incredibly quiet. Driving down the long drive was quite surreal as we were pretty much the only car on it. We had to queue for check in (despite having checked in online first) but we were the only counter that seemed to be open. Going through ... read more

Asia » Cambodia » South » Phnom Penh November 24th 2018

In diesen Tagen findet das 3-tägige Wasserfest Bom Om Tuk statt, das vor allem in Phnom Penh, aber auch in einigen anderen Städten mit Langbootrennen gefeiert wird. Diese 3 Tage sind Nationalfeiertage, und angeblich befinden sich dann 2 Millionen Menschen mehr in der Stadt als sonst. Ja, es ist voll, und die Straße am Fluss ist für den Autoverkehr gesperrt. Aber wir haben für die Rennen einen Logenplatz, und das im wahrsten Sinne des Wortes: das Tourismus-Ministerium hat eigens für die internationalen Gäste eine Tribüne mit bequemen Polsterstühlen, kostenfreiem Wasser und Lycheesaft und Schatten aufgebaut. Das Ganze ist völlig kostenfrei und unkompliziert; man muss lediglich seine Taschen durchleuchten lassen; schließlich sitzt der König ein paar Pavillons weiter! Die Rennen sind wirklich interessant. Es gibt verschiedene Klassen: Sitzpaddler und Stehpaddler, von ca 10 Per... read more
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