Angkor Wat (Day 3)

My last day in Cambodia started the same way as yesterday. I was down at breakfast by 7am and pickup was again at 7:30. Today we would go to a temple a bit further away called Banteay Srei. It was 25km away from the town and it took a while to get there. On the way to the temple I could see how the Cambodian people lived and worked.

  
  

At the temple I had the good fortune to have a bus load of Chinese tourists in front of me. Pictures therefore were difficult since the Chinese liked to pose with everything. Nonetheless the temple was beautiful, especially the carvings and reliefs, and it had a small section on the building architecture of the different temples at Angkor Wat. Very interesting and it highlighted the style evolution through the years. This would have been great to see on the first day actually, it would have made such a difference to the trip.

  
  
  
  

And here’s an aerial shot that I found in the instructions section.

Next up was the Cambodian Landmine Museum, a private initiative from a former child soldier. On the way there we stopped at a ‘gas station’.

In the museum all the shells and mines displayed have been deactivated by the Aki Ra, the founder of the museum and the relief facility next door. He started deactivating the mines with his bare hands but a couple of years ago he got the proper certificate to go on searching for mines and now he destroys them according to the international standards (which is blowing them up).

  

After the museum we did one last temple, the Bantay Samre. By then I was quite tired of all the temples and ready for a change of scenery.


We drove back to the hotel where I had the time to go for lunch before I needed to finish packing. This time I ordered a glass noodle salad and it was very good. Maybe the secret to good food in Cambodia is to order Thai instead? I know this sounds unfair and I will have to give Cambodia a second chance.

At the hotel I took one last look around and then it was already time to go to the airport.

  

Mara drove me with his tuk-tuk to the airport and a little while later I was already off to Laos. Yours, Pollybert

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Leaving Vietnam

My last morning started with the usual soup at the hotel and then Willemeijn and I walked to a nearby indoor market. Here is the street on which our hotel was, right in the middle of the backpacker district.

  

The indoor market was not very exciting but there was not much else to do for the last couple of hours. At the market everything imaginable was sold. We strolled around for a while, looking at all the stalls and trying on clothes but ended up buying nothing.

  
  
  
What I did end up buying though was a small ice cream at Baskin Robbins that was about three times as expensive as the lunch we had after. Because while sitting in the air conditioned shop we were watching the street and noticed a lot of people going for lunch into the corner shop. And this is exactly what we did. A last soup with all kinds of sausages and meat inside and a local ice tea. Life can’t get much better.

  

After lunch it was time for me to walk back to the hotel and catch my shuttle. The shuttle was again a private car and in no time was I at the airport. Due to the international flight I had to be there two hours earlier so I spent my time wandering around.

Finally we boarded and after a little over an hour I landed in Siem Reap, Cambodia. Immigration was quick and efficient and I was happy I had the necessary picture with me. I was also happy that I hadn’t done the online application which would have been more expensive and wouldn’t have saved any time at all.

  

The Rose Apple Guesthouse I had booked for my three night stay had a free pickup service and Mara (I really hope this is the way he spells his name) was already waiting for me with his tuk-tuk.


At the hotel Tim, the Belgian owner welcomed me and helped me plan my next three days touring Angkor Wat with Mara. I decided on starting with a sunrise tour so the next day pickup would be very early. I therefore stayed in that evening and went to bed early. Yours, Pollybert