alvin.teo

Siem Reap

Posted in Diary, Photography, Travel by Alvin on January 9, 2010

7 December 2009 – 10 December 2009

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My first impression of the town was dust, tourist buses and hotels. The tuk-tuk I took to my hostel cruises through streets with rows of luxury and upscale hotels. It made a few turns into smaller streets and dropped me right in front of my hostel. I lugged my rucksacks up to the 2nd floor of Siem Reap Hostel, locked my laptop in the bunk bed locker and went hunting for ATM machine. USD is still the de facto currency in Cambodia and thankfully the machine regurgitates USD.

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It was near evening then. I walked into the old market reek of fish, raw meat, and wet market stench hoping for some rare encounter for dinner, but to no avail. By the way, there was  a salon right next to the vegetable stall with some lady getting their hair perm-ed. It was no different from a groceries stall except with a crooked mirror, combs, scissors and aluminum cans filled with gels, waxes and chemicals. It was quite a sight but I timidly kept my camera away when they gave me a stare. No sneak shot because it was too dark to not use flash.

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Cambodia amok for dinner on the first night, Indian curry for the second and I love the roadside food stalls best because its a dollar and a half for a decent fried rice and an orange shake.

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The cheap draft beer was tempting enough at Pub Street but I gave it all a skip. Browsed through some souvenir shops and book stores instead. The French pastry store was probably the best place to hangout with reasonably priced coffee and bread. I spent some time making necessary travel plans and bookings there after dinner before calling it a day.

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For once, my multi-nation wallet. From left: Cambodia Riel, US Dollar, Thai Baht, Singapore Dollar, Malaysian Ringgit.

Breakfast at the hostel was good. Milk, cereals, bread toast, fruits, juice, pancakes and random travel stories from random people who shared the table that morning, all for a dollar.

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Siem Reap is a little too commercialized for my liking. Probably its the weak Ringgit  and the annoying tuk-tuk driver along the streets in the town. Nonetheless, I did enjoy the walk around the town, the food and definitely Angkor Wat.

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2 Responses

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  1. Ian said, on January 12, 2010 at 11:09 am

    hi alvin. i’m afraid i won’t be of any help! never took the ferry as plans did not materialise. sorry!

    • Alvin said, on January 12, 2010 at 1:10 pm

      oh! alright then. thanks anyway!


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