From Cambodia with love

Trip Start Sep 05, 2011
Trip End Nov 23, 2011

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Where I stayed
Thunborey Hotel/ Baca Villa

Flag of Cambodia  ,
Saturday, October 1, 2011

Well well well! Here we are in Cambodia! First things first, the dreaded border crossing went ok, we did get dragged into some shop by a bunch of scammers trying to get us to buy something/do something before we needed to. When the guy began shouting at us that what he was doing was 'for his country' we knew something wasn’t quite right. So we made good our escape and pushed on to the actual crossing.

We got through Thai immigration ok, but not without being treated to the sight of hundreds of pigs (live) crammed onto the back of a lorry. Really not nice.

When you leave Thailand via it’s eastern border with Cambodia the first place you see is ‘Popiet. To say that Popiet manages to make you wish you were back in Bangkok gives you some idea of how truly unpleasant this place was. It was full of cheap, seedy hotels and casinos (it’s where Thais go to gamble as it’s illegal in their country). But oh my word the place was awful. It’s very difficult to put into words how bad it was but lets just say the best thing about it was leaving!

We then drove for another two hours after the four hour bus journey we had already made. We were in a taxi for the second half of the journey and the first similarity we noticed with Thailand was the driving. There were at least two very close calls- not that surprising when you also know that the guy spent as much time on the right side of the road as the wrong side.

On our approach to Siem Reap we started to drive through a few sections of road that were a bit flooded. We didn’t think too much of it as it is still rainy season here, and we had seen similar flooding in Thailand. Oh how wrong we were!

Next thing we knew, our driver had pulled down some dirt track and gestured for us to get out. It soon became clear that our taxi ride was over and we needed to transfer to a tuk tuk. The reason? The floods are too bad and cars can’t get to our hotel, so they would take us to another hotel. The cynical side of us suspected this may be a scam, so we insisted on being taken to the hotel to see for ourselves. It was no scam. Our tuk tuk driver took us as close to the hotel as possible, then we had to wade through the flood to reach it. See the video! Finally arrived at the hotel only to find it completely closed – no lights no sign of life at all (and locked doors!). We had to stay at the ‘No Problem’villa instead, which was not very nice and we left after one night. We are now staying in ‘Baca Villa’ which is far nicer and most importantly on dry land! Hurrah!

Because of all the watery drama we are a bit behind with our blog, so horse riding and the roughest massage ever comes in the next entry!

Lots of love to everyone

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