Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Angkor Sunset

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Saturday, November 21, 2009

The land of smiling people, Buddhas, Stupas, Tuk Tuks & Mobile phone towers

We are almost at the end of our holiday after three weeks. Now in PP for a few days of site seeing and shopping in this interesting city that seems to be in a boom at present. You could say it is just another Asian city but we have found it very friendly and easy to get around, the restaurants are great value and the quality is very good. I was expecting a much less developed city, not the bustling city we found with trendy shops & restaurants.
Our hotel,The Boddhi Tree Arman is a very small place next door to the British Embassy residence in a 1950's building close to the Royal Palace.We can pop in for a cuppa anytime we feel like it.
The hotel has been trendily decorated a few years ago but now in need of a touch up. Our room overlooks a rusted steel roof of the food street vendors who operate in the laneway off the street approaching our hotel.
I woke up early this morning and went for a walk around the Royal Palace and the surrounding streets.
Many people were waking up from their beds on the footpaths, others were doing aerobics near the Democracy Monument to the sound of disco music or walking their dogs.
Tonight we meet our friends Bert & Lyn from Australia for sunset and dinner at the Foreign Correspondents Club.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

From Malibu Cambodia

Our stay in the sea side town of Kep in the south of Cambodia is at a very quiet resort with quite luxurious rooms and a huge swimming pool costing $50 a double including breakfast.
It looks like this town is undergoing a revival boom at present but it is still a sleepy little back water which was once the Riviera of Cambodia. The royal family have a residence here although most of the grand villas built from the thirties into the sixties are now ruins destroyed by the Khmer Rouge army.
Before cominmg to The Malibu estate we had two very pleasant days at The Beach House overlooking Kep Beach.
Unfortunately we had to move as there was a previous booking for our room but our new place The Malibu although not overlooking the beach is really very nice.
The food in this town is very good, we try a different hotel / guest house/ restaurant every night.
Seafood is a specialty of Kep, there is a Crab Market not far from here, with restaurants along the sea front.
Yesterday we went on a Tuk Tuk tour of the closest big town, Kampot. We remembered that not so many years ago two young tourists were kidnapped and killed by Khmer Rouge here. It is all so hard to imagine these things could happen in this country of pleasant smiling people.The lush countryside was quite magnificent and we were glad to do the trip in a bouncing took-took which seemed to take hours.
Some restaurants to try out were, Le Flamboyant in a lovely garden setting.By Cambodian standards expensive but there was a great chef here. The menu was in  French.

The Beach House Hotel

The boat builders of Kampot

Fishing boats at Kep

Crab Market at Kep

We have the Big Banana they have the Big CRAB !!!

The Malibu Estate Gardens where we stayed

Inside one of the many ruins in Kep

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Kep is a lovely quiet town

After an arduous mini bus trip from PP we are now in the lovely sea side town of Kep, renowned for it's sea food, quietness, sunsets over the South China Sea and famous for Pepper trees.
We have had a few meals utilising the fresh peppers seeds, the squid fried with peppers was yummy last night here where we are staying at the Beach House Hotel with lovely views.
We had a bit of trouble getting a room in this town, there seems to be a shortage. Tomorrow we have to move to The Malibu Resort, (a most peculiar name for a town in Cambodia) which we looked at yesterday and it looks fabulous with a most superb looking pool in a quiet rural setting (cows, rice etc).
This town is also infamous.... known as the ghost town, where the Khmer Rouge killed many people and destroyed a once popular resort town which thrived in the thirties where the French colonialists built villas for their holidays. There are many ruins about town of the large villas that I have photographed.
Kep also boasts a Crab Market not far from our hotel where there are some popular restaurants which we will try out.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Phnom Phen

After a very uncomfortable and crushed bus trip fom Siem Reap we are now in Phnom Phen, the capitol city of Cambodia.
The very attractive and helpful young woman who was our bus conductor / commentator gave us a talk about what we were looking at as we were driven to our destination. Firstly, she spoke in her Cambodian language then she translated this into English. It was meant to be informative but unfortunately we didn't understand a word !
She was so sweet and had the loveliest smile, how could we possibly complain.

Sunset at the Foreign Correspondents Club ( FCC) in Phnom Pehn.
Famous events happened here during the Vietnam war.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


We are still in Seam Reap staying at the Golden Banana Boutique Hotel, about 5 minutes from town attractions of restaurants, shops & bars.
Last time we stayed in the GB Resort Hotel but no room this time, not quite as good but still very good value and very comfortable rooms. Our room is on two levels with sitting room downstairs and bedroom upstairs. Unfortunately the TV isn't in bedroom like the resort hotel where all on one level for most rooms. Damn it, but ya can't have everything in life that ya want....... So they say, but will keep trying anyway !

The Food Is Yummy Here As Well.
The Cambodian cuisine is similar to Thai food but there seems to be more use of lemon grass and other aromatic spices. YUM YUM !!!
We've tried a different restaurant each day, there must be hundreds to choose from and the main eat street is closed to traffic at night, making it easier to find a place to suit.

Many look beautifully decorated, we particularly like the Red Piano where she with the lips used to hang out when they were filming that tomb raiding movie.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Monks in the temple

A senior monk and these young ones were keen for photo opportunities, happily posing for all the tourists.