Siem Reap

Vlog Entry #15: Ziem Reap

For part of my winter vacation this year I traveled to Cambodia. Exploring the ancient ruins throughout Siem Reap made me feel like I was walking through a post apocalyptic world! So to bring out that zombie-like quality, I’ve used Imagine Dragons’ song “Radioactive” as the theme music here! Enjoy the video!

Siem Reap in Photos

The Pros and Cons of Hiring A Tour Guide in Siem Reap

Picturesque Pedaling and Pleasant Paddling

IMG_2765As an avid cyclist and aspiring adventurist, I was really looking forward to my full-day “Pedals and Paddles” tour with Grasshopper Adventures. Starting at 7:30 on a bright Thursday morning, I set off to do some awesome countryside biking and then kayak through the floating villages of the Tonle Sap til sunset. I had pretty high expectations, and they were TOTALLY exceeded!

Know Before You Go

Reading for pleasure has never been a consistent thing for me. In fact, it usually takes a lot to get me to pick up a book, and then quite a bit more to finish it. But, while preparing for my solo trip to Cambodia, I kept coming across a few titles that people were recommending. So I thought, ‘What the heck. I’ll bite.’

The Cambodia Vacation Blog: There Are Many Like It, But This One Is Mine

I was reminded this winter vacation why teaching abroad is such a cool, and great thing. Very few jobs or “careers” permit the time or prompt one to travel to another country on their vacation. It’s strange; there’s no reason why I couldn’t have traveled to other countries for vacation during all those years of working in another career. I just didn’t.

Teaching English in a place like Korea makes it easy to travel for a couple reasons.

Pondering the Infinate: Angkor Pixelated

Maybe it was the fact that everyone who ever built any of this stuff was well and truly dead, but after wandering around Angkor for while, I couldn’t help thinking that this will inevitably happen to to us too.

It’s 2014 and humanity continues to grief each other over irrelevant shit like skin colour, birthplace, gender, where we stick our genitals, and which invisible man-in-the-sky we believe or don’t. For all the technological advances we have made in the 900 years since the Khmer empire fell, humanity hasn’t really changed much.

Many faces of Siem Reap- Bayon Temple

Our trip to Siem Reap started with my favorite Temple of the lot, The Bayon Temple after a sumptuous breakfast at the resort. We needed every bit of that energy to walk through the beautiful Temple. I had booked a taxi and a guide for the trip through the Temples all through the internet. And they were there at the hotel right on time! Always. They spoke good English and were quite helpful and informative.

The Cambodians or Khmer kings were Hindus and seem to have enjoyed the Indian epics very much. What connection the country had, with the Indians is not very clear. But Mahabharata, Ramayana, Dasa Avatars have special place in their culture. Especially churning of the ocean for the nectar. The entrance to the Bayon temple is decorated by the huge sculptures of Vasuki and the Devas and Asuras pulling.

Angkor Wat - The gem in Cambodia

As one of the most corrupt developing nations in Asia, engulfed in a turbulent war until 1991, Siem Reap in Cambodia does seem like an odd choice for a vacation destination. But the gems it holds beneath the rough exterior is just too precious to miss.

  Siem Reap, Cambodia houses the largest religious monument in the world. The Ankor Wat Temple. The Temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and then later became a Buddhist Temple. Though i had read the dimensions , imagined it quite a lot, nothing ever prepares you for the size and grandeur of the building. The moat itself threw me off with its 109m width which took me quite sometime to cross in the hot sun. The water in the moat plays an important role in holding the Temple in place. If the moat water recedes, the Temple will collapse. They had some clever architecture in the older times!

The Weekend Warrior’s Guide to… Siem Reap

With the city’s innumerable temples, overeager moto drivers, unofficial tour guides, flocks of one-dollar kids, and absurd humidity, 48 hours in Siem Reap can be a rather beguiling experience for the unprepared. This weekend warrior’s guide will set you straight.

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