How I Spent My Weekend in Kingdom of Cambodia

Friday, November 11, 2016

Hello from this side of earth! It's time again for some travel post! This time, another Southeast Asian country that is a first time in my list.

Did you already had an experience of a sudden travel plan? We all have that saying, "A sudden plan will mostly realize than a thorough planned plan." Yes, I believe in this, that's why I better choose the former than the latter. A week before this trip, a friend of mine from Abu Dhabi who was in Manila that time, contacted me if I want to go with her on a trip in Cambodia and without second thoughts, I said a big YES. Given the dates, fortunately, the 4 days trip falls on my 2 day offs from work and the other 2 days, I decided to take those days as absent (for the sake of travel...hahaha...).

Before flying to Siem Reap, Cambodia, we decided to meet at Kuala Lumpur Malaysia. The giddy me excitedly checking for cheaper flights in my go-to-app for checking flights, SkyScanner. After weighing the best flight, back-n-forth, booked and waited for the next 5 days for that trip. Almost all of our flights are cared of by AirAsia. Others are by TigerAir and JetStar. Because of the short notice, maybe, that's why the flights were a little bit pricey, but still I went for it. You know, opportunity "to travel" doesn't knock twice. My flights were as follows:
Chubu Centrair International Airport (NGO) => Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport (TPE)
via TigerAir at 8,670JPY

Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport (TPE) => Kuala Lumpur International Airport T2 (KUL)
via AirAsia at 15,383JPY
Kuala Lumpur International Airport T2 (KUL) => Siem Reap International Airport (REP)
Phnom Penh International Airport (PNH) => Kuala Lumpur International Airport T2 (KUL)
via AirAsia at 5,005JPY
Kuala Lumpur International Airport T2 (KUL) => Shin-Chitose International Airport (CTS)
via AirAsia at 17,126JPY
Shin-Chitose International Airport (CTS) => Chubu Centrair International Airport (NGO)
via JetStar at 10,930JPY

For our accommodation bookings, we used Booking.com and got a 40USD hotel room for 2 persons for a night with American breakfast in Siem Reap and an 8USD, 2 person guestroom in Phnom Penh. We stayed at Landing Gold Villa and #10 Lakeside Guesthouse, respectively. This Cambodia trip was a full schedule since we only have less than 3 days for this. It was full, that my friend wasn't able to use the swimming pool in our booked hotel in Siem Reap. Travel time also used up our time, but still not regretting it, since we talked and catching up about everything in our life during almost all the time. Siem Reap to Phnom Penh is a 6-7 hours bus ride, by the way.

GREAT TIME IN SIEM REAP 
Upon arrival in Siem Reap International Airport early in the morning, our tuk-tuk, which is a complimentary thing from our reserved hotel. I guess, the ride from the airport to our hotel was almost 30 minutes.
Upon stepping the doors of the hotel, the staff of Landing Gold Villa was so accommodating. There were welcome drinks and snacks for us while they are preparing our room. It was lucky for us that even we had an early check-in, as early as 8:30 in the morning, there was an available room for our reserved room. While waiting, the supervisor of the hotel was so accommodating that he entertained us, asking what we will do in the area, and politely answering our inquiries. After we got to our room, time for some relax, washing up and getting ready for the afternoon ahead. We had our lunch in the hotel's restaurant for 6USD. Since we only have the whole afternoon and evening in Siem Reap, we arranged the temple tour of the hotel for 15USD. We had a personal tuk-tuk driver who sent and waited for us around the Khmer architecture temples of Ta Phrom, Bayon temples/Angkor Thom and the famous Angkor Wat and sent us to the place where we can see the sunset but skipped the sunset part because it was cloudy late in the afternoon, so we assumed there will not have a visible sunset.

TA PHROM
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, is famous for photographers and tourists because of the trees growing out of the ruins that makes it photogenic. It is also famous because this is where the scenes of Tom Raider was shot. Unlike any Angkorian temples. it is said that it is the same condition as it found.

BAYON TEMPLE/ANGKOR THOM
The east gate of this Bayon temple was another location of Tom Raider film. Bayon temple is standing exactly in the center of this four-walled city. Each wall has a gateway to the center of the walled city. The best restored and the most popular to the tourists is the south gate.

 ANGKOR WAT
This is the most iconic temple in Cambodia. There are flocks of tourist in this popular temple. Also, watching the sunrise in this location is famous around the world. (Gotta do this next time...) From the entrance to the temple is a long walk along the pathway.
Before we headed back to the hotel, we went on a travel agency to book for our bus tickets to Phnom Penh the next day. For 15USD, we had our confirmed tickets for our 9:00am bus bound to Phnom Penh. For the night, we spent it in Siem Reap's Pub Street and Night Market. We had some cheap but great BBQ plus 0.75USD beer for dinner, enjoyed the fish massage, haggling and hopping around the market stalls for souvenirs before heading back to the hotel and call it night.

TO THE CAPITAL PHNOM PENH
Before our departure in Siem Reap, we had our American breakfast to make us full before our 7 hour bus ride to the capital of Cambodia, Phnom Penh.
The bus departed on time at 9:00am. It stopped in a  bus stop where the travelers can eat their lunch and had a toilet break. We ate our lunch for 2.50USD then continued the journey and stopped again one last time before its last stop in central Phnom Penh. Without any reservations, we take advantage the free wifi of the office of the travel agency and find the cheapest accommodation to stay the night before heading back to Malaysia. Didn't catch the last minute in order to enter the Royal Palace so we just wowed it outside then went to see the Mekong River and it rained. While walking along the side because of the rain and watching the busy downtown of Phnom Penh, and since it is a Friday night, we were lucky to experience again their Night Market and had another great BBQ dinner for only 5USD. The tuk-tuk driver told us they only have it on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
After feeding our tummies, had some walk around the area before going back to our accommodation and prepared for our early flight the next morning bound for KL, Malaysia. This has been a long post, so see you in Kuala Lumpur guys! Cambodia has been a great place I spent my weekend with. Your dollars can go a long way here. It's been a short stay but don't worry, will come back for you Cambodia, that's for sure. As I always say, "There's always a reason to come back.".

* 1USD = 4,000KHR
* Companies written above did not sponsored this trip. All expenses were by the author.

2 comments:

  1. will try that app!
    worth it ra ang gasto, i mean daghan ba malaagan sa cambodia? :)

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    1. kaya ra man sya mga 3-4days.dili man ing ana ka daghan pero if you're into temple hopping,gwapo sya.og daghan pa pud uban mabuhat sa cambodia.ubana ko balik puhon.hehehe.

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