Kingdom of Cambodia

December 24, 2017

Yeap. This trip happened a year ago. I went to Cambodia last December. Meaning to say that, I went there in December 2016. Totally overdue 😑 lol. Few days left before 2017 ends, I hope to finish my overdue-recent-travel. I know a lot of you don't wanna know how lazy or how I love to procrastinate just because it's always been my excuses in every start of my post after I came back from the so called  hiatus. But honestly, I am not that EXTREMELY busy, not experiencing major life adjustment and things like that. Somehow, the urge to blog or to write is suppressed ya know what I'm saying. It's not that I don't want to keep this blog stay alive but life happens you know. I went through shit and then I got busy with college. When I finally have the time to write, I'd get distracted and then I go binge my TV shows. Keeping up with yourself can be hard too. When I decide to make this blog back to its old looks, I realise how have I grown to some extent. I've been exploring and trying new stuff with this Legit Talks. And it's time to maybe finally return to your nest. Not to make this any longer, we shall go back to the main gist of the post!

This is gonna be a long post as I am compressing a 6D5N trip in a single post. But I will try to make it short as I can.

We were planning to do Russia-Finland-Russia initially but I only had 1 week break so we went to Cambodia instead. We managed to cover both Phnom Penh and Siem Reap. You know what that means? 

Um, no?

Welp, it means there's no chance we're going to Cambodia again. I'd only consider going there again only for Sihanoukville but chances are; I won't and I don't want to. First, I'm not a beach bum. Second, island bores me. Third, for a country like Cambodia, it is expensive since they use USD. Fourth, back to reason no 1; not a beach bum. I sure do once in a while go to island but mostly for holiday. So yeap. Anyhoots, let's get onto the post!

Day 1 : Phnom Penh
Day 2 : Siem Reap
Day 3 : Siem Reap (Angkor Wat)
Day 4 : Phnom Penh (Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum & Russian Market)
Day 5 : Phnom Penh (Killing Field & Central Market)
Day 6 : Kuala Lumpur

Upon arrival, I got a sim card for USD 6 that came with 5GB data. They definitely beat Malaysia though. Haha. For a cheaper option of travelling from the airport to your place, make sure to get your Tuk Tuk outside airport radius. Bargain till you get it but be reasonable. There were no Uber and Grab by the time so we didn't have much option huhu. Fret not, there are Uber and Grab in Cambodia now.

I had our receptionist to get our ticket bus to Siem Reap and each cost $10. The next morning, we head to the bus station. And to tell you, for 300+ KM journey, the bus took us 6 hours 🙂. I mean it's just Alor Setar - Ipoh...... Fikir-fikirkan kay ahahahah.

First stop;  Siem Reap Art Centre Night Market

Second stop; Angkor Wat

What's a trip to Cambodia if you don't visit Angkor Wat? We opt for sunrise tour that started at 0400 haha and the Tuk Tuk cost about $15 for the whole day. The Angkor Wat entrance cost about $20 and how lucky we were though, starting January 2017 the entrance ticket for Angkor Wat would be increased to $37! More reason why I won't go back.

#9 Sunrise at Angkor Wat

I finally got to see Angkor Wat right before my eyes. It was really amazing and I was in total awe. How? I mean, how did they do it? How did they build something so amazing with limited technology? 

and this is the tree that is potrayed in Tomb Raider

After sunbathing for quite some time, we then finished the tour and went for lunch at Muslim Family Kitchen Restaurant and had the Kaw Leng Phnom aka Lembu Naik Bukit in Malay. It's a traditional Khmer dish. It's nice and you should try it if you have the chance.

it's the way how the dish is cooked made its called as 'Climbing Mountain Beef'. 
My verdict : 7/10

The day was hot and really dry that after lunch, I parted with my dad since he wanted to go to the mosque whilst I had the tuk-tuk to send me back to our accommodation. It was close though. Later that evening, we just went around once again at the night market and onto Pub Street. Little did I know, Wil Dasovich was at Pub Street too..... Gosh. So anyway, I had the chance to try this roti canai-taste like pancake. It was $1 and it's really delicious.

With all those working and climbing that we did the whole day, dad suggested me to try Dr Fish spa/massage. It was cute and cheap???????? For $2, I could have my feet eaten (read : massage) by fish for 30 minutes. Or was it 45 haha not so sure but it was fun trying it.

dr fish spa

After having a quite thoughtful conversation with this local Cambodian, we head back to our hotel to pick up our things as we're leaving tonight for Phnom Penh. And oh the fare was $13/person. It was called Hotel Bus since there are actually 'bed' for you to lie in. It wasn't comfortable but bearable. Definitely a new experience!

After what felt like eternal, we were back in Phnom Penh. It was 0500 and I was so sleepy. My body wanted to just lie in bed and sleep for the rest of the day. But I realised that that's not what I came for and I have yet places to go. So around 0900 we walked to the Genocide Museum. It was NOT that close but we managed to walk there.

Third stop; Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum
Entrance fee = $3/adult and if you're a student, bring your ID for discount!

This used to be a school before it was transformed to place prisoners before moving and killing them at Killing Field. This was where the torturing the prisoners happened. There was this one place where the prisoner was held, and at the cells, the traces of dry real blood were still there. I had goosebump when I walked through it.

Fourth stop; Russian Market
courtesy of Google

If you want to get souvenir, Russian market offers cheaper option for the same product. Just a heads up anyway. The key is to bargain at its best.

Fifth stop; Killing Field

I had our hostel to book us Tuk Tuk for Killing Field as it's located on the outskirts of Phnom Penh. The Tuk Tuk cost us $13 for a return trip. I was amused for most of the time on the Tuk Tuk that I kept laughing silently because the roads were so bumpy. I mean, Phnom Penh is the capital city kot so macam proper sikit aa kot. So anyways, after that torturing 1 hour journey, we got to Killing Field or Cheung Ek Genocide Centre. The entrance fee cost about $6 that came with guided audio headphones. Every single time I listen to a particular point, I couldn't help myself to keep thinking; man, how ruthless Pol Pot was? I couldn't fathom the fact that he would do such thing to his own people. It was really horrible. I won't tell you everything aha so do your own reading.

memorial stupa

Sixth stop; Central Market
courtesy of Google

It's just another market really, reminds me of Ben Thanh Market. It's slightly expensive here but do whatchu gotta man!

So the next day, it was just us two hailing the Tuk Tuk for $7 to the airport. I left Cambodia with mixed feelings to be honest. I was grateful. I was amazed. I was amused. I was sad. I was bewildered with people that I met. It was an eye-opening experience. It was really a conscious trip. I had all these constant stream of consciousness inside me. You see, this is why I adore travelling so much. In a way, it keeps me sane. Be it from my life perspectives or country politics. Let's be real here, we all want a BETTER Malaysia that doesn't run by bigots. It's when we think we have it worst, somebody, somewhere, always has it worse than us.

I'm sorry if I, by any chance have yet to offend you with my commentary of Cambodia's 'well-being' and development. I had these conversations with this local guy and a fellow Brit traveller. The local guy was saying stuff like corruption and all. And when I had the chance to have a real talk with the Brit uncle, he was very unhappy with Cambodia because he felt like most ASEAN countries are really moving forward yet Cambodia has a lot more to improve. And he was very unhappy with Brexit though. I mean like honestly, for a country that runs their government with USD and their own currency, you sure have lots of duit for improvement kot. For Angkor Wat saja, they earn millions kot. I have a lot more to say but I guess I'll just keep my mouth shut.

Thank you for reading.

Write soon.

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