A Travellerspoint blog

Cambodia

Kompong Khleang

Floating Village

sunny 90 °F

http://www.tourismcambodia.com/travelguides/provinces/siem-reap/what-to-see/76_the-great-lake-tonle-sap-floating-village.htm

Visiting the floating village was another highlight of the trip to Cambodia! One of the interesting things I experienced before the village was sampling frogs. One way to make some money is by catching the frogs from the rice fields and cooking them up to sell by the side of the road. We stopped by once such roadside stand. A woman and her baby were busily preparing the frogs. They are so fat that there is room to stuff them with a tasty filling of chopped frog and spices. Then they are placed on skewers and BBQ'd. Yes, I tried it. It tasted a little like chicken. I honestly couldn't eat more than a bite, but the tour guide was happy to take the rest home for a feast later. 1$ treat!

BBQ Frogs

BBQ Frogs

BBQ Frogs

BBQ Frogs

BBQ Frogs

BBQ Frogs

BBQ Frogs

BBQ Frogs

BBQ Frogs

BBQ Frogs

BBQ Frogs

BBQ Frogs

BBQ Frogs

BBQ Frogs

We drove to the river and boarded a boat to take us to the floating village. The two boys, who looked to be ages 12 and 13 were actually 16 and 17. Cute kids who were clearly good friends.
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Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

It took about 45 minutes traveling down the river before we got to the village. I can't even describe how amazing this village was. There was a floating school, church, police station and many homes. Children swimming in the river, fishing everywhere, parents holding small babies, cooking, cleaning, seemed like life just happening, just in an unique place.

We continued out to the lake where we were to watch the sunset, however with the cloud cover we weren't able to see much. But it was still beautiful. While waiting another "Snack" boat came and sold us water, fresh cut mangos and Pringles Potato Chips. The boys loved the chips.

Then it was back through the village and back down the river. What a fantastic experience.
Floating village

Floating village

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Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

Floating River Cruise

Posted by dianeski4 04:08 Archived in Cambodia Comments (0)

Siem Reap, Cambodia

Angkor Wat and many more temples

Fo some reason I never had Cambodia on my list as a place to visit. But I have changed my mind! It's a fabulous place to see. This is a country that has had major political challenges. I would recommend reading this brief history. I found it helpful.

http://www.localhistories.org/cambodia.html
"In 1975 a horrific and tragic era of Cambodian history began in the reign of the Khmer Rouge. They were led by Pol Pot (or Saloth Sar) also known as 'Brother Number One'. How many people were killed by Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge is not known for certain but it was probably at least 1.5 million and it may have been as many as 3 million."

Everyone I talked to knew a family member or friend that had been killed during reign of Khmer Rouge. Tragic. It was interested to see mostly young people in the city working. The aftermath of killings.

It was so green and beautiful, and hot! Very humid and hot. Water everywhere. Beautiful rice fields. The city was so vibrant and busy. As a foreigner I was treated like a princess. From the moment I was picked up by the hotel until I was dropped off, I was treated so kindly and taken care of so well. And after eating chicken and rice for months, it was nice to have some pork. And the fresh fruits were plentiful. All kinds of wonderful fruits. What a nice change. I loved the massages in my room at night for 8$ an hour. The hotel was right near the Night Market where shopping was plentiful and cheap. I'm good at bargaining, so I came out with some really good deals on some clothes and jewelry. I didn't even bargain for the pair of Ray Ban sunglasses that one guy offered for 3$. In the countryside it was amazing to see the houses on stilts and cows being led to pasture. I found out from Saven that teachers are paid 80$ a month. I'm rambling...but this is truly a fascinating place to see.

Angkor Wat (Khmer: អង្គរវត្ត or "Capital Temple") is a temple complex in Cambodia and the largest religious monument in the world, with the site measuring 162.6 hectares (1,626,000 m2; 402 acres).[1] It was originally constructed as a Hindu temple of god Vishnu for the Khmer Empire, gradually transforming into a Buddhist temple toward the end of the 12th century.[2] It was built by the Khmer King Suryavarman II[3] in the early 12th century in Yaśodharapura (Khmer: យសោធរបុរៈ, present-day Angkor), the capital of the Khmer Empire, as his state temple and eventual mausoleum. Breaking from the Shaiva tradition of previous kings, Angkor Wat was instead dedicated to Vishnu. As the best-preserved temple at the site, it is the only one to have remained a significant religious center since its foundation. The temple is at the top of the high classical style of Khmer architecture. It has become a symbol of Cambodia,[4] appearing on its national flag, and it is the country's prime attraction for visitors. (wikipedia)

I was able to spend 2 days touring several temples, including the most famous Angkor Wat. My favorite was actually the Banyan Temple where the movie The Tomb Raider was filmed. Our tour guide was the best. She took excellent photos and was great at explaining things.

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Posted by dianeski4 06:27 Archived in Cambodia Comments (0)

Cambodian Orphanage

Count your blessings

https://www.facebook.com/cambodiankidsCIO/

On my last day in Cambodia I was able to spend some time at an orphanage. I had read in the brochure at the hotel that you could do this, but I was skeptical. I had read that many of them were abusing children and you would do more harm in visiting. I talked to my tour guide, Saven, about it, and she said she had a friend that died and the husband ran off to Thailand and left the twins, and they were in an orphanage nearby. I told her I wanted to visit and she volunteered to take me, without pay. She wanted to see how the kids were doing there.

She picked me up on her motorbike and we set off. I remember riding on the back of Kevin's motorcycle and being scared to death, but even with the crazy traffic I felt like I would be ok. The traffic in Siem Reap is crazy. Tok Tok's are one of the rides of choice, besides motorcycles and cars. What an adventure.
Seven and I

Seven and I

With a helmet

With a helmet

We drove out of the city for a bit and stopped at a small market and I bought 25$ worth of rice for the orphanage. Seven called and 2 boys came out on a motorcycle and picked up the rice.
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They just moved into a new building recently. There are 39 kids and they are taken care of by a man and his wife who have 4 children of their own. They were getting ready for lunch and all the kids looked like they had little jobs to do to help. The meal consisted of rice and a soup with a small amount of meat and vegetables. There are 39 kids residing there. From age 3-18. Once they turn 18 they help the kids find a job and they can live on their own.

I met a lady from Australia who has been volunteering on her holidays for several years. She teaches the kids English lessons. After the kids ate lunch they all washed their own tray and helped clean up. I asked how I could help and they said I could sponsor a child, so I have decided to sponsor a girl named Sokleng. She is 15 years old. I am so blessed. I was adopted as an infant...and count my blessings everyday. I don't understand why it is so hard in this world. Such sadness and such hardships for so many people. I wish I could do more to help.
Sokleng

Sokleng

They insisted on feeding us lunch after. I didn't want to take food from the kids, but they insisted. I felt even worse when they gave us a plate with meat and vegetables in addition to the rice and soup. I took a little tour around the home, talked with the kids, and even taught them The Hokey Pokey. Then we said goodby and left. What a great experience, and one I would love to repeat.
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On the way back to the hotel Saven had me try fried bananas and sugar cane drink. We also stopped to see some people making silver and silk things to sell.
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Posted by dianeski4 05:47 Archived in Cambodia Comments (0)

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