In Cambodia

March 28th, 2007

I made it to Cambodia. My 5th Country on my RTW tour, after Fiji, New Zealand, Australia, and Thailand. So far we’ve only checked out western Cambodia, Siam Reap, and Angkor Wat – the largest religous structure in the world. Angkor Wat is actually one of many temples in the region, but also the name of the park housing all the temples. One of the others, Ta Prohm, was used in the filming of Tomb Raider. I definitely like Angkor Wat the best, its columns, hundreds of door frames, carvings, and sheer size – big enough to get lost in. But Ta Prohm was more interesting due to the jungle immediately surrounding it – trees are literally gorwing out and on the walls. At moments the tourists become overwhelming, you can barely walk, and at other moments you might not see any. Shayna was here in 2003 and would see only 30 people in all of Angkor Wat, whereas now you’re lukcy if you see less than 300 at any given time of day.

The town of Siam Reap is quite nice and more modern than expected – 10 years ago it was nothing more than huts and dirt roads, and now has dozens of high-end hotels, plenty more of the cheaper guest houses, western and cambodian bars and restaraunts, 24-hr ATMs, internet, at least 2 free wi-fi cafes (i’m at one called Figo right now), and markets where you can buy everything from mopends to rice, fish, shirts, and jewelry.

After Siam Reap we plan to head to Battambang and then the capital, Phnom Penh. Perhaps a detour to some Cambodian beaches, then its to the land of Vietnam for a month, then Laos, then back to Thailand.

BTW, I updated my Round the World Itinerary to arrive back in the USA at the end of July, instead of end of June.

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