Tag Archives: Siem Reap

Angkor Wat and Siem Reap

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We arrived in Siem Reap mid aftrnoon. It’s about a three hour taxi journey from the border town of Poipet. We were dropped off as promise at our hotel the la Tradition D’Angkor, and what a place it was. We were warmly greeted on arrival and shown to our room. After settling in it was unanimously decided thet we needed a cold beer (I know, yes another drink) so we settled down by the pool. After a few drinks, and as it turned out very expensive ones at that, we thought that as we were only here for three nights we should hit the town, so we arranged a Tuk Tuk and headed off. Now it must have been our luck which we always seems to get when travelling our Tuk Tuk driver was very nice chap indeed, so we seized the opportunity to ask him if he would pick us up in the morning and take us to the temples, not only did he agree he sorted out an itinerary for us as well, excellent so our trip to Angkor Wat was arranged. We were dropped of in the aptley named bar street which along with many bars also had lots of nice restaurants. We decided to eat at Khmer kitchen which was highly recommended in the guide books. So we settled down had a lovely meal and a thoroughly enjoyable evening.
Angkor Wat. Our Tuk Tuk driver duly turned up as arranged and drove us to the temple complex. Our first stop was Angkor Thom, this particular complex covers an area of some 10 sq km. A truly magnificent site, the main temple in Angkor Thom was also the film location for the movie Tomb Raider. Next it was onto Banyon, this temple has a collection of 54 towers which represented the 54 former states of Cambodia, now their are only 24, and each tower has four faces 216 in total. The huge heads glare down on you from above exuding power and control. The remainder of the day was spent visiting the many other temples on the complex. One of these temples Ta Prohm which in fact turned out to be my favourite. Now althought most of the structure is in ruins the most impressive part is that their are many trees which have grown around, up, and through the temple itself, and there root structure has intertwined with a large part of the temple, some of the trees even look like they are wrapping there roots around the various parts to protect it, just an amazing sight. It was just like walking onto the set of an Indiana Jones movie.
Day 2
It was up at 4am, “I know your thinking I thought they were supposed to be on holiday” but after reading all the info and guide books on the temple complex, the must see was the sunrise over the temple of Angkor Wat. We arrived at the temple and made our way along the long road up to the temple gates, and waited along with many others for the sun to rise. At about 5:30am it arrived, but unfortunatly it was a very hazy morning so the sunrise was not as spectacular as we would have liked, but nevertheless I still managed to get some good photo’s, also its one for my travel cv “I have seen the sunrise over Angkor Wat”. Once the sun had risen it was off to explore the temple itself, it is quite remarkable how well preserved it is after standing for more than a 1000 years. A truly spectaular and exhausting way to spend 2 day’s. One last thing I urge anyone who is interested to take the time to read about the temples of Angkor Wat its facinating reading.
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Vietnam 2013

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Well its holiday planning time again,and this trip is a big one, you see its my dear wife’s let say milestone birthday next year and also we have been together for forty years so we decided that we would do something special. Now from previous posts you can see we love travelling and have always been ones to do lets say not your average holiday, we have always booked our holidays independently and not with tour or holiday company, now for many people having the comfort of leaving it all to a travel agent is the way they like it but personally the planning of the holiday is just as enjoyable as the holiday itself.

We have travelled a great deal but mainly to the USA and throughout Europe and we have only been on the eastern side of the world  a couple of times both these times to India with a stop overnight in Qatar but our experience of the east has left us wanting more. Now the idea of going to Vietnam was conceived after watching an episode of Top Gear where they travelled to Vietnam and travelled from Ho Chi Minh (Saigon) in the south, travelling north along the coast and ending up in a place called Halong Bay a Unesco world Heritage site which I instantly fell in love with as it looks a truly magnificent place.

Another reason for booking independently is that you can change your plans along the way the more information about the country you are visiting to you gain, so here is the itinerary so far

  • Fly to Bangkok with Emirates airlines, where we have three nights at the hotel Boonsiri Palace.
  • We then have the option of either taxi, coach or train to the border town of aranyaprathet
  • Cross the border into Cambodia then travel onwards to Siem Reap by coach or taxi (no trains in Cambodia)
  • We have three nights at the Hotel La Tradition d’Angkor it’s from here will be visiting the temples of Angkor
  • Then our next leg is an onward journey by river speed boat , (looking forward to this part) to Phnom Penh for two nights where we are staying at the Aqua Boutique Guesthouse.
  • Next it’s onto Ho Chi Minh City formerly Saigon. We are staying here for four nights and are staying at the Nhat Ha 3 Hotel it’s from here will be visiting the various sights that Saigon has to offer, the Mekong Delta, Cu Chi Tunnels (not all the 200km of them I might add) and the Killing Fields etc, although the killing fields will be a rather sobering and distressing place to visit I feel its a must if you are in Saigon
  • Next it’s an overnight sleeper train to Nha Trang where its time to chill for a couple of days. We staying at the Fairy Bay Hotel in a luxury sea view suite, I might add all for £60 per night bargain
  • Then its on the train again to Hoi An a Unesco World Heritage site for three nights at the Vinh Hung Hotel & Spa
  • Next it’s off to Hue  (pronounced hway) where we are staying in the Orchid Hotel for two nights
  • Then it’s an overnight sleeper train to Hanoi where we are staying for three nights at the Ha Noi Eternity Hotel with a day visiting Halong Bay

Finally here are some of the websites that I have used to put this trip together just click on the highlighted links

You can find more of the sites that I have used by checking out my Pearl Trees account, just click here Bob Rouse@ Pearl Trees . Keep a check on this from time to time for more additions and useful information for anyone planning a trip to Vietnam.

Finally please follow my blog if you are interested so you can keep up with the regular updates