It's been a while since we last 'blogged' so thought I would update you what we have been up to since our last blog!
So we arrived in Siem Reap on Thursday 20th, after a a very long journey which was made even worse as we were both ill, the spicy food had finally caught up with us haha. So we relaxed that evening and the next day in our hotel which was pretty decent and only 5 mins from town. We decided to book a tuk tuk for the temples on the Saturday, and bought our three day passes to the temples. The tuk tuk picked us up at 5am ready to see the sunrise at around 5:50! It was amazing, we were so lucky to have a clear sky and the weather turned out great for the day especially as we had heard the weather was bad the day before. There were already crowds at this time of course but nothing compared to later on in the day. We had some brekkie at a nearby restaurant before returning to the temples at 7:30. As the crowds had all headed into town for breakfast we had Angkor Wat almost to ourselves, apart from some scary monkeys wandering around the place. We then went on to Angkor Thom, which is basically a ruin, then Bayon a few others and finally Ta Prohm (the temples from tomb raider). We were there for around 8 hours, hopping from temple to temple in the boiling hot. The temples themselves were amazing, but obviously the most famous ones were the most spectacular.
We spent the next 5 days in Siem Reap as we liked it so much, and the town itself was awesome. There were lots of little streets like Pub Street and the Alley, filled with restaurants of all different cuisines and classes. Pub Street has lots of bars and it just felt like a place with so much atmosphere. We saw many temples over those 5 days, too many temples by the end of it (we started to get bored!) We also watched the sunset over Angkor which was nice, but full of tourists pushing there massive SLRs camera's in your face. We went to this amazing restaurant called the 'Cambodian Soup Kitchen' for dinner one night and tried Khmer Fish Curry, Chicken Curry, Spring Rolls with a peanut sauce, it was the best meal we have eaten on our travels! All for $10! Beer was also so cheap in Cambodia a pint of Angkor was 50 cent. The people were so friendly, particularly our tuk tuk driver who spent a lot of time driving us to the temples. Unfortunately one day, a tourist walked out in front of the tuk tuk without looking and he banged into him causing a injury to his leg. He was very worried about the police, which was horrible to see because there is still so much corruption that goes on in the police over there.
We were sad to leave Siem Reap but we felt we had exhausted all temples, markets and restaurants etc and so we booked a bus to Bangkok!
The bus to Bangkok was also very long, as the bus drivers like to stop at places and try and make you buy food from their friends and family members, often we had to wait at place for up to 1 1/2 hours! We arrived at Bangkok around 6:30ish having left at 8:30am! Me and Grant were sat right on the wheel of the minibus too, so no sleep for us!! We met a girl and her Mum on the bus from England who recommended a guesthouse off of Khaoson road that was cheaper than most of the others. The guesthouse was a bit crap compared to some of the places we had stayed at for so cheap. The guesthouse in Cambodia was around $8 a night and we had a big room, tv, shower with hot water it was lovely! That night we walked down Khaoson road which is this little hub for backpackers full of stalls, bars, tattooists, eateries, martket stalls selling everything you could want (including fake IDs and degrees) and finally street food! I got a few tops for so cheap and so did Grant.
So the last few days we have spent exploring Bangkok, with the knowledge of an ever inpending doom of the floods. Which touch wood, the area we have stayed in has managed to avoid so far! Although supplies has been limited including bottled water. We walked down to the Grand Palace to find the road completely flooded, people were crossing the road and the water was up to their knees. Cars and tuk tuk's were driving down which was quite amusing, we even spotted a buddhist monk in his orange attire getting his expensive digital camera out to take a few snaps. I was quite shocked at seeing many Monks on our travels on facebook, with expensive phones, shopping in malls, and even laughing at vandalised pictures at the Genocide Museum in Phnom Penh! I always thought that Buddhist Monks live a simple life without material possessions. Apparently not!
We also went to Siam Ocean World, at the Siam Paragon Centre, the biggest aquarium in SE Asia. It was amazing! For 17 quid each we got admission, a glass bottom boat above the shark tank, fish pedicure ( nibbling our feet), drink and food, back of house tour and a 4d movie! You would never get that in London! We had such a good day there, then we wandered around the massive shopping centre, where we couldn't afford anything haha. Oh and I had Dunkin' Donuts =) Highlight of the day!!!
So anyway we have just been chilling in bars, browsing the markets for cheap clothes and essentials and eating yummy cheap street food like pad thai!
Today we went on the internet only to hear that all Qantas flights have been grounded! We were panicking massively as our flight to New Zealand is tomorrow, and is with Qantas. So after trying to ring/contact anyone that can help, we checked our flight schedule and saw that it was being operated by British Airways so ran to a local internet cafe and check my booking code by chance on the BA website, and found it worked and we are checked in on our flight to NZ tomorrow!!! Unbelivably lucky as hundreds/thousands of people are stranded because of Qantas going on industrial strike. I'm still worrying though, so we have printed off our boarding passes! Fingers crossed tomorrow runs smoothly.
Love to you all, Next stop NEW ZEALAND!!!! :) XXXX