Well where did Jess leave off... Ah, go to bed or have a quiet few drinks down koahsan road... The answer might surprise you. As much as we love a good sleep we decided to catch the bus and head to koahsan road with Pierre, our new French friend. We intended not to stay for too long and so we could visit the grand palace in the morning. After 2 buckets of god knows what kind of cocktails all that went out the window. We found the bar that we went to last time (we don't check ID!) where one of the waiters seemed to remember us from last year, which was nice, and promptly lost track of time as we ventured from bar to bar, eventually catching a taxi back to the hostel at 5am.
At 4pm the next day we woke up and realised the grand palace closes at 4 (I don't think we're ever going to get to that damn palace!) and we had to be up again in 13hours to catch a coach into Siam Reap so we decided to take it easy and take the metro into Siam square for something to eat and then chill at the hostel for the evening.
We awoke at the next morning realising we had an eventful journey ahead of us, how right we were. We'd booked the tickets a couple of days before and were assured that we'd be taken all the way to Siem Reap and that the coach would wait for us at the border while we got our visas, LIES!!!
First of all, after a four hour journey, we were dropped off near the border at a restaurant/ friendly family visa service. When we got off the bus we were surrounded by many friendly people asking us how we were and where we were from, which made us instantly suspicious! We were told we could get our visas here, just fill out some forms and they would sort it all for us, only $35. A few of us knew this was too much and asked that we be taken to the border to get our visas there. They did not seem too happy about this. Reluctantly we were taken to the border where we got our visas with no problem. On the other side, take a guess, shock of all shocks, our coach was no where to be seen. We were then swarmed by people, saying 'I take you Siem Reap'. As a group and left with no choice we decided we had to take a coach and pay again (only about £2 each but it still annoyed us). Before we got on we were assured we'd be dropped off downtown, again LIES!!! We were dropped off about 5km from downtown, at what we presumed was the drivers cousins tuk tuk company and surprise, surprise we had to pay again. Again left with no choice we agreed on a dollar each and we're taken down town. In total the journey from Bangkok to Siam Reap was only about £7 each but we weren't happy about trying to be scammed at every turn.
We jumped off the tuk tuk before the driver could take us to a very nice hotel that he knew about and, which of course, he had no affiliation with, and had a wonder around to find a hostel. This isn't too hard apparently as every tuk tuk driver you pass knows a great hostel he can take you to. Eventually we found some Brits who recommended a couple of places and we're now staying at the 'popular guest house'. It's not too bad, a bit smelly, but the people are friendly, it's less than a fiver a night for our own room and there's free wifi, hurray!
I think we might go and explore the town tomorrow and on Friday visit Angkor wat at sunrise.
Jess is currently asleep, so I though I'd give this blogging thing a try. Don't worry normal service will be resumed shortly.
Love to you all, Chris and Jess xxx