11th January 2013
We have decided to take the 'fast' boat into Cambodia (roughly 7 hours). Much to our surprise, it is very clean and tidy little boat. We have paid an extra $5 to have the boatman sort out the visa's. The Vietnam border crossing is not far and before long, we are all piling off the boat to into a small room and decked area, where we wait for the boatman to return with our 'used' visa stamp in our passports. Back onto the boat for 5 minutes and up to the Cambodian border crossing. We couldn't believe it! We got off the boat on to the ricketiest, tiniest jetty we have ever seen. It was made out of bamboo and sticks (no joke!). All goes smoothly and we get our months visa with no problems.
We arrive in Phnom Penh early afternoon. We have a room booked, so walk in the midday heat. with our rucksacks, to it!! (will we never learn?) it is so hot here, compared to the Vietnam. Our time is Cambodia is going to be short, as we have arranged to meet our friends Anne & Myra in India on the 2 Feb and we need 8 days in Bangkok to sort our visa's out. So on our first full day in PP we head out to the Killings Fields. We are both so glad that we had read the book, 'Stay Alive My Son' some months ago, as what we saw and heard here, was not the shock it would have been, otherwise. The tour is a very good audio one, telling stories of the atrocities of the war in the 70's. It's really hard to believe it was so recent. In the afternoon we look at the Silver Pagoda and the Royal Palace.
Move on to Siem Reap by bus, it takes about 7 hours, so again arrive mid afternoon. There is no electricity on in our hotel when we arrive, so head in to town to explore and find out about the best way to visit Angkor Wat, this we will do tomorrow.
We decide to cycle to Angkor Wat (40 minutes) at 5 a.m. to see sunrise! Well, at least that was our plan, unfortunately there was some cloud cover, so sunrise was a disappointment for us and the 1000 or so others, who had got there at the crack of dawn!
We walk & cycle to as many sites in the area that we can manage in a day, which was quite a few, it has to be said and we finish off the day by treating ourselves to a static balloon ride, (it rises 200 metres to get a birds-eye view of Angkor for $15), which was great to watch the sunset. We get back home at 7 p.m. what a day!
Have a lazy 2nd day here, in a very smart hotel (for a change). Much to our amazement, we have no aches or pains from the previous days exercise. There are so many night markets, pubs and restaurants here, it is untrue, we are spoilt for choice as to what to do. We just go for a beer and mojito to think about it!!
16th January - time to head back to Thailand to get our visa's for India sorted.