Thursday, July 2, 2015

#Cambodiaries : Siem Reap

Finally, we are down to the most awaited 'Siem Reap,' the last installment of our Vietnam-Cambodia trip 2015.

Our hotel, Secrets Pavillion Urban Botique Hotel, was our favorite among the hotels that we have stayed in. It was perfect, GREAT LOCATION (near the Pubstreet/Night Market), GREAT AESTHETICS (very clean, good beds, nice restrooms), GREAT BREAKFAST and above all GREAT SERVICE.
*Photos from
Usually hotel checkouts are at 12nn but since our flight was not until 11pm, the staff willingly allowed us to keep our rooms 'til 8pm. Other hotels would have charged us with another night. They also accommodated to our needs of six extra towels without asking what for, a packed breakfast, an extra serving of yogurt (because it was so good, we wanted more), and a last minute need of a transfer to the airport.
Our breakfast complete with fruit platter, yogurt with oats and banana or bread with egg cooked the way you like it, french toast, coffee or tea, and orange juice.

We visited the Phnom Kulen Mountains first, in here you visit three attractions:  The Reclining Buddha, the waterfall, and the 1000 Lingas.
The waterfall was freezing cooooooold.
1000 Lingas is a river with carved stone bed. I wonder how they were able to do it before?
Our lunch on a restaurant near Beng Melea. I ordered The spicy pork ribs which was really delightful (order this here!) and the stir-fried beef (on the left) was .... weird. The taste of the ginger was too strong, I could not appreciate the dish.

**all restaurants in Siem Reap do not serve service water. I heard that their water are outsourced since Siem Reap was a big swamp before hence the water is not potable. 
Beng Melea was our favorite temple in Siem Reap. Its the only temple that is 100% not restored thus you're going to need to toughen yourself up  in climbing this temple.  Its such a beautiful mess, I hope that the government keeps it that way. 
I have read alot of blogs trying the infamous Siem Reap's Cambodian Bbq, of course, tourists like us wanted to try it. The place was jam-packed during dinner time and we had to wait in line for more than an hour to get a seat. The platter comes with seven kinds of meat: Chicken, Pork, Beef, Squid, Fish, Shark and Crocodile. I enjoyed the shark and crocodile the most- the shark tasted like a fatty fish so it was flavorful and the crocodile tasted like a better version of your chicken. Along with the meat is our shabu-shabu with vegetables, noodles, and unli-rice. The waiters were also very prompt in giving us refills of our shabu-shabu throughout the dinner. I ordered a Cosmopolitan along my meal- and it was the worst one i've tasted.

Mr. Sun hid himself in the clouds so we were not able to see the world famous Angkor Wat sunrise. Its so sad that we weren't able to get the full Angkor Wat experience.
Our Next favorite temple after Beng Melea was Bayon a.k.a. "The Smiling Temple." 
Did you spot all the smiling faces on our photos? hehehe
Angkor Thom

Ta Prohm Temple was where Tomb Raider was shot.  There were a lot of entrances and exits that we were literally lost in its beauty. Unfortunately, its being restored now so we can not appreciate its beauty that much. But I heard that the best time to go to Ta Prohm is during sunrise ;)

Our last meal at Siem Reap- Burger Gourmand. The restaurant was already closed in the afternoon but the owners willingly opened their doors for us (perks of being 8 in the group). We all got a set meal for $7.25 which included your choice of burger with potato wedges and side salad, a softdrink, and a dessert. I ordered the bleu cheese pork burger and Nutella waffles. The buns were chewy and the patty was cooked medium rare. I loved the waffles too since it was crunchy on the outside but still chewy.

So thats it. Our eight months waiting was over in just a week. Time truly flies when one is having fun. I am definitely excited for our future trips together!

**For everyone planning to visit Siem Reap, I strongly suggest that you just take a one-day Angkor pass- after visiting several temples, the temples will all seem alike. Or if you have time and money to spare, get a three day or a week pass and visit a few temples a day.


I hope that through this travel journal, we got you enticed to do your own Vietnam-Cambodia trip soon. Feel free to email me for questions or if you want me to help you make your very own itinerary. :)

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