To accomplish the itinerary ahead, we hired a Tuk Tuk for the day. Bouncing along the dusty roads, it was hard not to be overwhelmed by our surroundings. The sights, smells and sounds of Cambodia will be hard to forget. Everywhere we looked were scenes straight from National Geographic.
Nearing Choeung Ek or more commonly known as The Killing Fields, we were nervous to learn about this brutal part of Cambodia's history. Guided through what could have been overlooked as a picturesque orchard, we discovered that a mere 40 years ago, 3 out of 8 million people were killed in attempt to further the leaders extreme beliefs. Our visit was gut wrenching and heartbreaking. Shocked that we knew so little about this event, we encourage you to also learn about the genocide in Cambodia.
The Russian Market provided the retail therapy we needed. Wishing we had more time, we left to change into appropriate attire for The Royal Palace. The Khmer architecture and gardens were well worth the visit. Our experience here was greatly enriched when to our surprise a group of Buddhist Monks wanted to snap photos and chat with us. Admiring these brightly dressed Monks for the duration of our time in Phnom Penh, this new friendship left us smiling and feeling quite lucky.
Stopping briefly at the Hill Temple, Wat Phnom, we headed to have dinner at Friends. This good-cause tapas restaurant provides training and the tools necessary to pave the way to a better future for native youth. Our meal, service and setting was exceptional! To further support Friends' mission we purchased handmade goods and received foot massages by the trainees.