We land in the Kingdom of Cambodia, Land of the Khmers. We arrive by Siem Reap, gate to the mysterious Angkor region. We are not the only ones who had this bright idea and our first experience consists in going through the very long lines at the customs. About an hour later, we get a really nice arrival card.


We get a good night’s sleep and the next day, we get up and go explore the first temples. Our hotel lends us a couple of bicycles. It’s very flat so it is pretty easy to get around. The heat is very intense, with temperatures above 32C (90 F).

Baksei Chamkrong

The first temple we visit is out-of-the-way and we see no one, which is quite surprising as there are crowds of tourists everywhere else. We climb up the stairs and see a statue of Buddha and a monk who gives us a little string bracelet.



The walls of the temple are showing stories written in Sanskrit.


Angkor Thom

Afterwards, we reach the gate of Angkor Thom, which used to be the capital of the Khmer empire. It is enclosed by a moat and has several stunning monuments.



The first monument is Bayon. It is richly decorated with murals. It was built during the 12th and 13th century as a State Buddhist temple.


There are many street vendors around it, and we saw a wedding party getting refreshments such as coconuts and mangos.



After lunch we continue our journey and visit the temple of Baphuon. Originally a Hindu temple dedicated to the God Shiva. Built in 11th century. During the 15th century it was converted to a Buddhist temple.


We saw Buddhist monks visiting the temple.



This a reclining Buddha on the other side of the temple.


As we explore the area, we saw many ruins where nature was taking over the buildings.


The trees were magnificient.


This is the terrace of the Elephants.


Ta Prohm

Ta Prohm is the ultimate Indiana Jones fantasy. The temple has been taken over by the jungle.


After a long day, we go back to Siem Reap and explore the town a bit. We eat wonderful food and explore night markets. That’s fun!


Preah Khan

The next day, as we have a larger loop to do, we decide to rent these really nice electric bikes. If you ever go visit Angkor, you should totally check out this company, Green e-bike.

Preah Khan

We start by the beautiful temple of Preah Khan.

It’s so hot but there is no shortage of coconuts.



We continue with a temple in the middle of a huge pool of water.


Prae Roup

This temple is older than the other ones, dating back to the 10th century.



Banteay Kdei

Banteay Kdei means Citadel of Chambers. It was an active Buddhist temple until the 1960s.


Bat Chum

A smaller temple but with some beautiful murals.



Angkor Wat

Last not but not least, we reserved the best for the last, the jewel of the crown, the unique Angkor Wat. It is truly the most impressive temple of the complex, but also the most crowded and least secret. It is said to be the largest religious building in the world. It was dedicated to Vishnu and has remained an active religious site continuously since it was built in the early 12th century.


There are some wonderful murals all over the main building.


After a long day of exploration, another great meal. Siem reap and in Phnom Penh have many “training” restaurants which are run by NGOs and non-profits with the aim of training the new generation. It is a wonderful cause and you get a great service.


As one day is not enough, we decide to go back the next morning to catch the sunrise at Angkor Wat.


After exploring the temples for 2 full days, I think we caught our fix.

Phnom Penh

After a long, bumpy ride from Siem Reap, we arrive in the city of Phnom Penh, the capital city of Cambodia. There is a strange atmosphere in Phnom Penh. It is a city of wide disparities, between the rich and the poor. You’ve got big SUVs with super wealthy people, and lots of people barely making it. Still it is a great place to visit.


The city has a lot of official buildings paved in gold.



Maybe because of the heat, you see many people taking a nap, in various positions and ways.


There is also great food here, from various places.


We try this Taiwanese desert places where they give you a mountain of shaved ice with various fruits and vegetables. They asked if they could take a picture of us eating the deserts, maybe we looked exotic.


Another type of Cambodian food are insects! We were not adventurous enough to try it.

R0001074.jpgImpromptu cinema.


This concludes our journey in Asia for this time. After going through Vietnam and Cambodia, we bring back so many great memories. It was truly a life changing experience. We are happy to go back home but sad to leave. Until next time!