Taking the Long Way travel blog

Heading off to Siem Reap




Getting pried out of the mud AGAIN..




Refreshment stop

Arriving in Siem Reap

In town

Spice stalls

Barbecue degustation dinner with Boris

5 meats: Crocodile, squid, chicken, beef and snake

The torrential downpour yesterday turned into a violent storm that caused a complete blackout and wiped most of the photos I was uploading so I'll go back back and re-add them soon.

I was stuck at the internet cafe for about an hour then decided to brave the rain to get back to the hotel. The streets had flooded so quickly that the water was up to my knees in places. I looked (and felt) like a drowned rat within seconds.

Seeing as we were pretty much flooded in from that point, Fran and I settled in with a few beers from the hotel and tried to ignore our rumbling stomachs as neither of us wanted to swim to a restaurant for food.

This morning we headed to Ssiem Reap by the slowest speed boat in history. The trip is supposed to take 3 hours in the wet season, but in the dry season its a different story. It took about 8.5hours to travel up north east along Cambodia's most scenic stretch of water. It was a gorgeous, if uncomfortable, journey. The seats were hard planks of wood that were best utilised by sitting on the lifejacket instead of wearing it.

The arrival at the Siem Reap boat dock was really something. As we pulled in all these guys (drivers) who had been standing on the dock waving signs for customers suddenly all jumped on the boat, it was like being invaded by pirates! There were probably 15 to 20 of them, greatly outnumbering the amount of people on the boat and were very aggressive in trying to get people to agree to go with them into the town centre. It was pretty funny, I've never seen anything quite like it.

Fortunately we had already had a driver arranged by the owner of the last guesthouse we were at in Battambang so there was Mr Bean waving a sign for 'Mrs Jade' and off we went. I found a fantastic hotel that not only has aircon, a balcony and a shower with a door; it also has a pool! Its roastingly hot here in Siem Reap so a pool is just sublime.

I really like it here, the city is pretty small and easy to negotiate. The people are so friendly and there is FAR less of the hassling that you get elsewhere in Asia. In a laid back country, Siem Reap is so laid back its incredible.

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