Day 79 – 80 – Siem Reap, Cambodia
First the bus ride there. Up early to get a mini bus from Koh Chang to the border where we got herded around and had to queue up for agers at immigration where only 3 guys were stamping people’s passports. Once we finally made it through (around 2 hours later) we got onto a bigger bus that took forever to get to Siem Reap. The driver was awful, and put multiple versions of Psy – Gangnam Style on really loudly so no-one could sleep. Someone approached him to turn it off and he just turned it up louder. After a while he turned it off, but then pulled into a place to eat just a few miles out of Siem Reap for 40 minutes! When we eventually arrived at the bus stop which was up some random dirt road we were bombarded with tuk-tuk drivers who hassled us to get in their tuk-tuk. The only positive part of this was that we got to ride in the Cambodian style tuk-tuk for the first time (a motorbike with a trailer attachment… see image below). This is when Ronnie started pushing us to go to Angkor Wat with him, tired and wanting bed we just told him to come back the next day! That night we shared a beer with a nice kiwi chap who had lots of knowledge to share and I had a Khmer curry.
Thinking the next day would start better… It didn’t. I went to get some dollars out the cashpoint and after a minute of saying Please Wait… It informed me that the ATM had malfunctioned. However the transaction had come up on my statement / my available balance. So I had a stressful time on the phone to HSBC. Ronnie rolled up but we had to check out so told him to meet us the next morning at Mad Monkey where I had booked for the next two nights, Ronnie left very happy. Pleased that we had sorted out Mad Monkey hostel we went to get a beer where we meet Derek in Mikey’s Bar, where they had 75 cent beers. After a couple of games of pool we headed out across the road to play happy sack / keep me up with a strange looking shuttlecock with Derek and a bunch of security guards. This is vintage Asia. Once we’d finished we needed money and to check-in to the hostel. But when we tried to check-in they said they were full so we had to mince around with our backpacks for another couple of hours before finally finding somewhere with rooms available (Naga Guesthouse).
After finally being sorted, we headed out to get some food and explore pub street and the night markets. An early morning meant an early night under a picnic blanket.