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Old 25th September 2019, 22:54   #31
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles

Day 8: 06-July-2019 : Around Phuket Ctd

Big Buddha statue

Location

This is a statue of Buddha on top of a big hill. You can drive up to the top of the hill.

There are many quadbike centers on way to the hill. We saw them conducting ride events enroute.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1197.jpg


Toyota Yaris in a different avatar

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1198.jpg

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1211.jpg


Dress code

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1217.jpg

Timing

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1218.jpg



Next to Big Buddha statue is this statue

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1216.jpg

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1215.jpg


There were lots of monkeys around

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1208.jpg


Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1206.jpg

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Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1202.jpg



View from top of the hill

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1204.jpg

Last edited by mpksuhas : 25th September 2019 at 22:56.
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Old 25th September 2019, 23:05   #32
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles

Day 8: 06-July-2019 : Around Phuket Ctd

Rawai Beach

Location

From Big Buddha, we asked our cab driver to drop us at Rawai beach. We just wanted to visit this place since it was the southernmost part of Phuket.

Cabs hourly package was getting over and we let go off the cab, once we were dropped at Rawai.

Our cab heading off after dropping us, notice the wheels of the cab and the car following it. Saw lots of cars which has chunky tyres and upsized alloys.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1219.jpg


Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1220.jpg

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1223.jpg


Restaurant at beachfront

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1230.jpg


After roaming around here for a while, we take the bus using pass we purchased yesterday and head to Kata beach.

Here we head to Kataturk Turkish restaurant for late lunch.


Location



I came to know of this place based on online reviews, however do note that there are two restaurants next to each other. Hence I am not sure which one is better rated than other.

In any case, the place we went to was good and food and service great.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190706_164148.jpg

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190706_162739.jpg


Turkish tea to finish the meal

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190706_162805.jpg


A blast from the past

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190706_153521.jpg


Shuttle bus arrives, we take it to Patong

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190706_155416.jpg



Suzukis seemed to be popular among commercial operators

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190706_170600.jpg


We head to beachfront for watching sunset.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn1235.jpg

Last edited by mpksuhas : 6th October 2019 at 16:20.
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Old 6th October 2019, 17:02   #33
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles

Day 9: 07-July-2019 : Phuket to Bangalore

We checkout from our hotel and head to shuttle bus pickup point, bus takes around 45 mins to reach airport.

We are early for our flight, however we need to claim refund of VAT paid during our shopping at Thailand, so we head to for that.


Claiming VAT refund at Phuket airport


It was mentioned that the counter is near check-in counters, however it seems to be shifted inside.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190707_100439.jpg

PP10 form was filled by the shopkeeper, along with the required fields. They had stapled that along with the bill and mentioned the amount we were supposed to receive back.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190707_100450.jpg

As per guideline, you are supposed to show the customs department purchased goods in case they ask. Hence we had kept all the purchases in our check in bags. However, they didn't ask the same and hand over the amount without any fuss.

Refund counter

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190707_105014.jpg

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190707_100505.jpg


Filled forms and bill

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190707_104706.jpg


Similarly, many shops give an option to bill the purchase amount in INR. This helps in avoiding bank conversion charges.

That is the reason above bill is displayed in INR.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190707_113522.jpg

Last edited by mpksuhas : 6th October 2019 at 17:05.
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Old 6th October 2019, 17:25   #34
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles

Day 9: 07-July-2019 : Phuket to Bangalore Ctd


Indigo airlines

Flight was on time and took off before time as with case of many Indigo airlines flight. I have noticed it may times that Indigo mentions flight duration longer than actual, hence they are always on time.


Good-bye to Phuket

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190707_131521.jpg


Indianized version of safety booklet

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190707_130333.jpg



Even after pre-booking flight meals, one is served with ready to eat meals. That too for biryani.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190707_124715.jpg



And a menu card in USD doesn't help either.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190707_124823.jpg


Its not just car seats, aircraft seats too have become thinner

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190707_121203.jpg


Flight route

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-indigoairroute.jpg



We cross over Chennai beach

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190707_141531.jpg


And land at Bangalore international airport. Notice the second terminal under construction.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190707_144542.jpg
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Old 6th October 2019, 17:31   #35
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Default Cambodia - What locals drive

What locals drive in Cambodia?


Cambodia is a big market for second hand left hand drive Toyotas imported. Mostly the imports are from US. Talking with locals, I understand that a pre-owned SUVs seen here are mostly available for approximately INR 3~ 5 lakh.

Hence you find lots of Lexus on road here

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn0311.jpg

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn0858.jpg

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn0914.jpg




Number plates have the province name and are available in two different size based on the vehicle.Should add that the quality looks much better than those provided in India after HSRP rule came in place past 01 April 2019.


Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn0906.jpg

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn0908.jpg


Fuel rates are less compared to India, as in case with many other places. However, considering rates of other items in Cambodia, I feel the rates are high.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-suh_5534.jpg


There are lots of two wheelers used and Honda seems to be the favorite brand.

One interesting thing noticed is that, even when riding triple everyone one wears helmet.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190703_123435.jpg


Also, saw more Alturas / Ssangyong Rexton in Cambodia than in India, which is not a big feat though.


Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn0872.jpg


Road conditions are good throughout the places we travelled and road manners are leagues ahead of those in India.

However, with many two wheelers on road, westerners may feel bit overwhelmed. That could be the reason of many negative reviews you will find online about traffic in Cambodia.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn0308.jpg

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190703_105924.jpg


Auto Rickshaws are immensely popular in Phnom Penh.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn0307.jpg

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn0312.jpg

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn0868.jpg


TVS & Bajaj rules

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn0309.jpg

Last edited by mpksuhas : 6th October 2019 at 20:37.
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Old 6th October 2019, 17:59   #36
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles

What locals drive in Cambodia? Ctd

Non Japanese brands are also seen, though less in numbers.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn0341.jpg

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn0857.jpg


Police vehicles

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-suh_4934.jpg

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-suh_5582.jpg



However, the most popular vehicle around here is Tuk tuk.

Its a bike mated on a two wheeled seat carrier.


Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-suh_5057.jpg


Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-img_20190704_103616.jpg


You can find them all around Cambodia, ferrying cargo of all sizes to tourists.


Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-suh_5167.jpg

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-suh_4853.jpg

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-suh_5538.jpg



Our Tuktuk driver, Solky. Would recommend him for anyone visiting Siem Reap. You can contact him through details mentioned here

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-suh_5054.jpg

Last edited by mpksuhas : 6th October 2019 at 18:10.
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Old 6th October 2019, 18:25   #37
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Default Grab taxi service

Grab taxi service

Grab taxi is the local equivalent of Uber / Ola in Thailand & Cambodia.

You can rent taxi, auto or tuktuk using the app for both point to point and time based format.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-screenshot_20190707092228520_com.grabtaxi.passenger.png

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-screenshot_20190707093035552_com.multibrains.taxi.passenger.passapptaxis.png



Taxi and tuktuk are displayed in different icons

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-screenshot_20190707092252545_com.grabtaxi.passenger.png

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-screenshot_20190707092516903_com.grabtaxi.passenger.png



And per hour rates

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-screenshot_20190707092528705_com.grabtaxi.passenger.png

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-screenshot_20190707092303068_com.grabtaxi.passenger.png

Payment can be done via card too. However, when I tried with both Visa & MasterCard, I got notification that the cards are not supported even though a test transaction of Rs 1 was debited from my account through Google payment.

I am not sure what the reason for the same is, however since it was not resolved, I went ahead and paid using cash.

Do note that once you install the app for the first time, you will receive an OTP as SMS which is required for authentication. Hence, if you are not having a Thai/ Cambodian SIM and if your home country SIM is not activated with international SIM, it will not be possible to access the service.

Easier way to avoid this issue is by installing and activating the application before your travel.

Last edited by mpksuhas : 6th October 2019 at 21:36.
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Old 6th October 2019, 21:15   #38
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Default Epilogue

Epilogue
  • USD is accepted currency in Cambodia. You can withdraw USD and Riel from any ATM using your debit card. We noticed few currency exchangers accepting INR too.
  • Safety concern around Cambodia is not unwarranted for. However, the same is related to mostly bag snatching incidents at Phnom Penh. Take care of your belongings as you would in any city and you should be fine.
  • Tap water is not potable in Cambodia and hence be careful with drinking water and also with any juice you have from outside.
  • Do not opt for any international roaming packs if there is no dependency on getting call / SMS to your number. It is cheaper to get a tourist SIM on landing at Cambodia.
  • Not all USD notes are accepted in Cambodia, details in pic below.
  • Carry mosquito repellants when visiting killing fields and temples.
  • Cambodia is mostly cash economy, not many restaurants accept cards.

Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles-dscn0345.jpg

Last edited by mpksuhas : 6th October 2019 at 21:52.
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Old 6th October 2019, 22:38   #39
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles

Thread moved out from the Assembly Line. Thanks for sharing!

Thanks Suhas! This one has a LOT of useful information. Definitely going to read this in detail and take notes.
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Old 8th October 2019, 13:54   #40
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles

Great one Suhas - In-fact by reading in depth it helps people like me (who take truckloads of questions) answer a lot of questions before travelling, and sure would save this for future reference if any.

I wish all the travelogues had this details over - but what I appreciate is your first-hand research to help others in planning future trips. Cheers
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Old 8th October 2019, 20:34   #41
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles

Awesome as usual. Quite exhaustive too

Would have been a depressing experience at the Killing Fields museum
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Old 9th October 2019, 02:19   #42
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles

Hey great travelogue Suhas. I loved Cambodia - I travelled directly from Bangalore to Phnom Penh and back. I took a bus to Siem Reap - nice journey too.

I loved the Cambodian people - so very nice and respectful and always helpful. The food was awesome too.

Good you visited Angkor Wat for the sunrise. Banteay Srei - probably the temple I loved the most.
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Old 10th October 2019, 12:35   #43
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveler: Cambodia - Land of smiles

That was a very crisp and detailed travelogue with all information a person would need to travel to what seems to be a great country to visit.

In these historical places two things never fail to amaze me - one, ancient India's soft power influence in south-east Asia and two, how they managed to build such beautiful and grand structures without so called modern industrial equipments and motorised tools.

I will mark this travelogue and keep this as a reference, for the near future, when planning a trip to Cambodia.

Thanks a lot for sharing it with us.

Cheerio!
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