02 Jun - 05 Jun 2010 Phnom Penh

Kingdom of Cambodia
Street 13 45 cnr. Psar Chas 118
Comfortable twin room for only US$ 8.- per night. Friendly Chinese staff.

Click below for an interactive road map of the Dara Reang Sey Hotel in Phnom Penh, which we would recommend, and for directions:

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Hiring Chang’s remorque-moto (KHR 16,000.- for the one-hour ride) and cruising central Phnom Penh (a load test for our visual, auditory and olfactory senses) between (i) her leafy French quartier N of Wat Phnom, (ii) her lively Chinatown which stretches from S of Wat Phnom to the striking Royal Palace and (iii) her just recently rejuvenated river front on the W bank of the Tonlé Sap River.



Discovering several highlights of the Khmer cuisine: (i) for breakfast, Khmer noodles aka num banh hok, rice noodles topped with cold fish gravy, flavoured with spicy prahoc (fermented fish paste) and served with crisp raw veggies including cucumbers, banana flower, water-lily stems, bean sprouts and fresh herbs, such as basil and mint, (ii) delicious amoc (baked freshwater fish with coconut, lemon grass and chilli in banana leaf), and (iii) grilled eel with tamarind sauce from the Tonlé Sap Lake, all this washed down with draft Angkor Beer (KHR 2,000.- or US$ -.50 per pint) and the ubiquitous black coffee (KHR 1,000.- or US$ -.25 per glass), both always “on the rocks”.



Exploring the tourist sights of Phnom Penh thus (i) being dazzled by the 5,000 real-silver (!) floor tiles of the Silver Pagoda, part of the Royal Palace, checking out (ii) the huge dome of Psar Thmei, the Art Deco masterpiece that is Phnom Penh’s central market, and (iii) Wat Phnom, the 14th-century CE Buddhist temple which sits on a 30m-high tree-covered knoll (…and taking a look SW at the fortress that is the new US embassy […and wondering to ourselves how it is that the security-conscious US State Department managed to find the only site in Phnom Penh tactically overshadowed by a hill?]).



Taking Mekong Tours’ private pick-up van from our hotel in Phnom Penh’s Chinatown to the jetty at Neak Loeung and continuing from here by means of a rugged river boat (US$ 10.- per person, including the pick-up from our hotel) from Neak Loeung on the mighty Mekong River and its scenic side canals to Chao Doc in Vietnam thus bidding farewell to the hospitable Kingdom of Cambodia and entering uneventfully 'Nam aka the post-communist Socialist Republic of Vietnam at the convenient Kaam Samnor-Vinh Xuong border crossing.



Click below for more blog entries about Cambodia
07 May - 13 May 2010 Sihanoukville (Otres Beach)

Click below for a summary of this year's travels
2010 Map Konni & Matt

Click below and see more Konni & Matt Pictures
Photos 2010-10 South Vietnam
Photos 2010-09 Cambodia II
Photos 2010-08 Cambodia I


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