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Old 20th December 2011, 12:05   #106
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Default Re: Footloose in VAMBODIA (Vietnam + Cambodia)

Quote:
Originally Posted by ramkya1 View Post
From now on it would be mostly happy stories, some of the best photos of the whole trip are coming up soon.
ya, ya, we know it,
Bangkok, pattaya is on way.
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Old 20th December 2011, 12:10   #107
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0900 AM - 05-11-2011: Phnom Penh city tour: The Royal Palace was 10 minute walk from Eureka Villas, we tell our Tuk Tuk friend to take another fare for the day, today would be a walking tour, something we wanted to do more. Not a hot day, just humid, having lived in Cochin for 12 years we were not too worried about humidity. Read about it here:

Royal Palace, Phnom Penh - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Admission fee of Rs.300/- INR is high, no choice. As you exit through the narrow corridor you are stuck by the vast expanse of landscaped buildings inside, very well done and maintained. The King lives here, he is a highly respected person in Cambodia, something on lines of Uncle Ho in Vietnam or Mahatma Gandhi in India. The structures inside are in 3 compounds, The Silver Pagoda, The Khemarin Palace and Throne Hall, all of which are beautiful, some structures dates back to 14th century, visitors can go everywhere except where the King lives. Photography is restricted inside the buildings, ask somebody or check with guards before clicking. We saw a guard gesturing angrily at an overenthusiastic Japanese tourist who was cutting corners by zooming from outside, the guard’s posture was aggressive with intent to strike, fortunately the tourist stopped on time, the guards checked pictures to ensure Emerald Buddha was not clicked.

The throne halls is a big, decorated one for big gatherings, ceremonies etc., the land around is landscaped, lighting is best in the morning, faces east and comes out in vibrant colours with the flowers, grass and pathways. The Moonlight Pavilion is another open air hall for classical dance performances, another lovely structure. The Silver Pagoda is perhaps the most valuable of temples in Cambodia, many full gold Buddha statues, priceless crystal Emerala Buddha, a huge Buddha with 9500 diamonds and the tiles on the ground made of pure silver each weighing about 1 KG!! It is best to go inside after reading up on the history and specifics of the Palace to appreciate what you are seeing, those who go blank would probably not understand the value of what they see.


All 30 of them, more in next.


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Last edited by ramkya1 : 20th December 2011 at 12:11.
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Old 20th December 2011, 12:22   #108
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Arrow Re: Footloose in VAMBODIA (Vietnam + Cambodia)

Quote:
Originally Posted by ASHISHPALLOD View Post
ya, ya, we know it,
Bangkok, pattaya is on way.
Ashish: We could not go to Pattaya, crowds there due to floods in North, we aborted Bankok stay to just transit, next time.

We got best shots from Siem Reap and Phnom Penh. Some more........

===========

Miniature of Angkor Wat

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A local boy enjoying the day

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A/C inside the bathrooms!! Was a relief to do it in air conditioned comfort on a humid day

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The famous White Elephant

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Cambodian Kings Indian connections

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Walk back to the Hotel

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A flower that caught the eyes of Sony.

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Another boy was happy to pose, on the way back home from school


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Last edited by ramkya1 : 20th December 2011 at 12:34.
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Old 20th December 2011, 14:52   #109
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Default Re: Footloose in VAMBODIA (Vietnam + Cambodia)

I think ramkya1 has borrowed my pen drive Or he will probably say the same thing when he sees our pictures!

As anyone can see from the pictures, the capital city is so clean that it needs to be seen to be believed. Which is strange, as their culture is quite similar to ours, but how come they dont litter on streets?

Last edited by dot : 20th December 2011 at 15:18.
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Old 20th December 2011, 15:04   #110
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dot View Post
I think ramkya1 has stolen my pen drive Or he will probably say the same thing when he sees ours!

As anyone can see from the pictures, the capital city is so clean that it needs to be seen to be believed. Which is strange, as their culture is quite similar to ours, but how come they dont litter on streets?
Sorry if I stole some rumbles off your sky. In fact I am searching for my thumb drive for the past 3 days Reminds me to check with my son.

They do not have population pressure. Yes, their civic sense is better, they wear helmets, mostly observe traffic rules and even people in poor fishing villages in Tonle Sap were more disciplined than many places we see in India. Don't know if this is cultural.

--Ramky
=====
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Old 20th December 2011, 15:28   #111
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Default Re: Footloose in VAMBODIA (Vietnam + Cambodia)

I hope you dont mind my light hearted banter. We are still having the hangover of the trip, even after 3 months now. Everytime I see the pictures, our immediate response is, lets go there again and have some fish amok. Your pictures just pressed that button again!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ramkya1 View Post
They do not have population pressure. Yes, their civic sense is better, they wear helmets, mostly observe traffic rules and even people in poor fishing villages in Tonle Sap were more disciplined than many places we see in India. Don't know if this is cultural.

--Ramky
=====
I get a feeling that it is cultural. Yes, population is less, but they dont have the state enabled disciplinary pressures like Singapore. Yet civic sense is particularly good in Cambodia. Did you see anyone spitting in public?
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Old 20th December 2011, 15:39   #112
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Arrow Re: Footloose in VAMBODIA (Vietnam + Cambodia)

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Originally Posted by dot View Post
I hope you dont mind my light hearted banter. We are still having the hangover of the trip, even after 3 months now. Everytime I see the pictures, our immediate response is, lets go there again and have some fish amok. Your pictures just pressed that button again!!


I get a feeling that it is cultural. Yes, population is less, but they dont have the state enabled disciplinary pressures like Singapore. Yet civic sense is particularly good in Cambodia. Did you see anyone spitting in public?
Love your banter, keep going. Want to go again, there are many more places to see.

I did not see anyone spitting or shitting in public, they don't even piss openly though there is abject poverty in villages and areas affected by floods. I've found even Tuk Tuk drivers do not use bushes or lonely stretches to piss, they use public designated places or use hotel toilets. In India drivers would do ANYTHING out in the open at the droop of a hat. I also feel the discipline is self imposed.

===

Last edited by ramkya1 : 20th December 2011 at 16:07.
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Old 21st December 2011, 15:40   #113
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Default Re: Footloose in VAMBODIA" PMPN CITY

0100 PM - 05-11-2011: Phnom Penh City Tour: We reach back to hotel around 1 PM, Wanna the Tuk Tuk driver was available and said he would take us to a South Indian restaurant. We were more than happy to see what’s there on offer, what we found was surprising and good. He took us to Dosa Corner, the board said “South Indian Halal Food”, can’t imagine a board like this anywhere in South India.

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The Thali food turned out to be great, rice, sambar, papad, curries, pickles, curd, a full fare. What’s more for sweets he made typical “Kesari”, loved the food and the owner from Pondicherry was liberal with food but miserely with words, he answered to most questions in monosyllables, probably he wanted the Firangi crowd. The dosa Anu ordered was equally good, we never expected such near-home dosa in Cambodia. This lunch was one of the happiest and fullest we had in the last one week, don’t remember the bill, but I think it was under 13 USD, well worth the money.

0200 PM: On the way back Wanna took us to Central Market, huge sprawling complex, about 1 sq. KM, this is a must go place for souvenir shopping, bargaining is the way of the world here, we bought T shirts, a multi tool Leatherman and many more things and also an Adidas bag, prices were half of that in India. A huge complex has fake jewellery, ladies can spend half / full day here, most of the jewellery are fake. The thumb rule to start the bargain is not be ashamed to start at 20% of what they ask, some of them were shocked when we did, most of them came half way down in price, you’re a winner either way.

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0300 PM
: Wanna dropped us in the hotel, 4 USD for the round trip and wait and buzzed off. We rested for one hour and set off again for a walk to the National museum, another reliable Tuk Tuk driver was waiting for us, we wanted to cover 2-3 spots and bargained for a 10 USD package with him. National Museum, Wat Ounalom, Wat Moha Montri, the Cambodian-Japan Friendship Bridge and ride back to hotel, should take all of 3-4 hours. He dropped us at the gate of the museum.

The entrance fee of 3 USD would have been OK if they had allowed cameras, you can click only outside, which is a drip. There’s a treasure out there in ceramics, bronzes and other kinds, 14,000 items from various periods in history. The sculptures transition form Indian / Hindu Gods to Buddha ones, we can easily identify many of the Gods, you’d enjoy it if you read up on the back ground a bit. The central court yard with the Buddha statue was also nice for clicks, you’d love it if you’re the history / museum type.


National Museum of Cambodia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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The last two towers are of Independence Monument, a land Mark of Phnom Penh.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indepen...nt,_Phnom_Penh


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Last edited by ramkya1 : 21st December 2011 at 15:54.
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Old 21st December 2011, 16:54   #114
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Default Re: Footloose in VAMBODIA (Vietnam + Cambodia)

The central market looks clean and nice, reminded chaotic petaling street and central market of kualalumpur.
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Old 22nd December 2011, 12:15   #115
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Arrow Re: Footloose in VAMBODIA: OLYMPIC STADIIUM

Quote:
Originally Posted by ASHISHPALLOD View Post
The central market looks clean and nice, reminded chaotic petaling street and central market of kualalumpur.
Ashish: Most places were clean, tourist spots were extra clean. I was there in KL, most places were very clean. KL was cleaner than Cambodia.

========

Video of Silvar Pagoda Area inside Royal Palace, Phnom Penh, Cambodia.




0400 PM - 05-11-2011: Phnom Penh City Tour:
Built to honour a minister Chakrue Ponn Another Wat, Wat Moha Montrey (Maha Manthri in Hindi) was on the way, he initiated founding of the apagoda nearby, has a tower of about 35 meter in height. Later it was used by the Khmer Rouge as storage for rice and corn. This place is opposite the Olympic Stadium. Not many tourists go here said our Tuk Tuk driver, I insisted to see it as I read about it from a guide book. There was a Buddhist religious ceremony going on, not much to see.

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We moved to the Olympic stadium next, not on the tourist map, hardly any tourist go. I would strongly recommend to see after 5 PM, the scene is electric.

Olympic Stadium (Phnom Penh) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


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There are 100’s of people exercising to the music on top of the stadia, looked like people are health conscious, there were people running, playing, food ball games in progress and all around the air was dynamic with energy. Worth watching in the evening, sunset would have been great, the clouds marred ours.

0530 PM: The ride from there to the Friendship bridge was slow, heavy peak hour traffic was chaotic. We went through the famous road in front of Calmete hospital, took a right turn to the bridge from the big circle. The bridge was like any other one, the scene from the bridge into the river was good, lots of colourful lights on the river side.

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http://www.tourismcambodia.com/trave...var-bridge.htm

By the time we were done with ride and came back to the hotel it was 0700 PM and dark. We went for a walk into the riverside, a long walk and crashed around 0900 PM, was a hectic day, lots of things done, our walk would have been anything around 8-10 KMs for the day.


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Last edited by ramkya1 : 22nd December 2011 at 12:21.
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Old 22nd December 2011, 14:16   #116
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Arrow Re: Footloose in VAMBODIA/ MEAKONG EXPRESS BUS

Veg noodles the Savior of our trip

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Lovely Coffee that saved the mornings, best buys of the whole trip.



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0700 AM - 05-11-2011: Phnom Penh to Siem Reap by Road:

We had purchased tickets to Siem Reap by Mekong Express Bus, the most reliable and best for the sector as per research. Tickets are available from most hotels, we got outs from Eureka Villas for 11 $ on a A/C push back seat bus, they pick you up and take you to their central station from where their buses leave. Very well organized and as professional as our Volvos can get. You dump your baggage on the boot of the bus, they give you a baggage tag like the airliners (also check it strictly when you finish the ride and take the bags out, so preserve it). It has a toilet in the back, a lady announces in English and Khamer important points, roads, history and other travel related news, you get a bottle of water, a non-veg snack box and some MTV music videos, we were in the middle of the bus, the ride was comfortable as bus rides can go.

Mekong Express

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We selected the bus day trip, night buses are available but not safe that Cambodia considering the lonely stretches the route would cover. There’s also boat which takes 10 hours, 2-3 times the cost, runs only in the wet season when the Tonle Sap is full. If you have the time and inclination, boat ride would give lovely photo ops and a different adventure. Whatever you do, before you reach Siem Reap ensure your pick up by a Tuk Tuk is arrange there for a smooth ride and check in to your hotel.

Natiional Route No6 is the main artery between Phnom Penh and Sieam Reap, double track without dividers most of the way, distance of about 6 hours to do 300 KMs with a lunch stop at Kampong Thom.

Lunch Stop at Kampong Thom

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Road was OK, traffic thick in town sections, lorries, tractors, cattle on the road and sundry traffic makes progress slow. You can see the extent of the flooding Cambodia and these districts have taken, they had one of the heaviest rains in a decade, even house on stilts were not enough.

Cambodia: Worst Flooding in a Decade Global Voices

All along the route you can see the devastation flooding has caused, the houses on stills hit you as it’s not something you have even seen. People live on the upper deck, the lower ones are for cattle. Since the lower parts are flooded, cattle were everywhere on both sides of the road, slowing progress. Farming, fishing communities living basic life, hard life many the edges of poverty. What I noticed throughout was the civic sense in people, they were more disciplined than many Asians, they cared for the community and environment and were very Tourist friendly. We need to learn from them.

Rural Khmer house - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Watch the clip on the ride, bus was smooth and the camera pretty good in HD





========

Last edited by ramkya1 : 22nd December 2011 at 14:25.
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Old 23rd December 2011, 10:46   #117
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Clips of Bus ride:





0200 PM - 06-11-2011 - Siem Reap:
We had fixed up pick up with Tanei Guest House and Tuk Tuk for 4 days, starting with pick up, temple tour and drop to Airport on 10th, all for 50 USD. My correspondence with Tanei guest house had started last year, they are excellent as per reviews and the experience was no less. The service, pool, cafeteria and overall amenities cannot be matched for the price. We got a room for 18 USD.

From here on I cut my story short as it’s turning out to be a monologue. I'd hit the highlights and load a few photos:

Here I go:

06-11-2011 - Siem Reap: Visit the Apsara Dance.

Clips of the Dance



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Last edited by ramkya1 : 23rd December 2011 at 10:55.
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Old 23rd December 2011, 15:50   #118
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ramkya1 View Post
My 100th post, still more to go. I guess people are reading as there are views to this thread, I want to finish it with as much details as I can so that it would become a reference to people visiting. Is this too much commentary for comfort? Do people have time to read through the descriptive account?

I am tempted to just give a short story, few photos and a photo link. Wonder what others think?

========================
Discovered this travelogue today. Amazing details and like you said, it will be a reference to people visiting these countries. Please keep it coming.
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Old 25th December 2011, 23:03   #119
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Default Re: Footloose in VAMBODIA (Vietnam + Cambodia)

Not only ramkya1 took the same road, he took photos of the same cows.

Where exactly is Tanei guest house? We stayed just next to old market/ pub street.
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Old 26th December 2011, 00:42   #120
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Not only ramkya1 took the same road, he took photos of the same cows.

Where exactly is Tanei guest house? We stayed just next to old market/ pub street.
Hai, Did you take the same road, same bus and shoot the same cows!!! Talk about coincidence!!

Photo of location of map of Tania Guest House, very near to Pub Street. We gave it a walking tour, pulsing place, alive all the time.

Guesthouse Siem Reap Hotel Rooms with WiFi and Pool | Tanei Guesthouse

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Channa, the manager there was service personified, very prompt in mails, answering even small queries and was in touch with me for about 12 months, last year I was to go but was not to be. Channa gave minute details about border crossing from Bangkok, I was planning to do it by land earlier.

I doubt if you'd find any better cost effective deals in Siem Reap, cost us only 18 USD a day with full breakfast and exemplary service. Awesome is the word!!


@Hondadude
: Thaks. That's good to hear, gives energy to those typing fingers
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