This blog post is a continuation of my series on Siem Reap. You can read the previous post, The Beginning, here.
Day 2 – Temple Touring
4:30am the alarm rings, it is time to visit Angkor Way for Sunrise! Every day thousands of tourists rise early to get to Angkor Wat. Luckily our guide Bun knew the perfect spot to watch the sunrise with few tourists. It was so peaceful and was like stepping back through time as the morning mist was burnt away by the rising sun. If you ever go to Siem Reap, the sunrise at Angkor is a must, but try and avoid the large crowds if you can by using local knowledge.
As we avoided the crowds it meant at 6:15am we left quickly to get over to Ta Prohm(Tomb Raider) temple before it got busy. Rather than take the usual trail to the temple we parked up at the edge of the jungle and trekked through. The number of spiders in the trees and what looked like snake tracks in the sand was quite daunting! After 20mins we arrived at Ta Prohm. With only a handful of tourists in the temple it meant we could easily enjoy the temple sights and take some awesome photos. This temple is famous for the trees that have taken over the temple and it’s use in the Tomb Raider film.
After Ta Prohm we trekked through the jungle again to another deserted temple, we were the only people there. Also taken over by the Jungle we climbed over collapsed walls to get into the centre of the temple.
By 10am we had already been out 5hrs so headed back for breakfast and a snooze.
Silk Farm and Tonlé Sap Lake
In the afternoon we headed to something different to the temples. We made a short visit to the Silk Farm to see how traditional methods are still being used to produce some of the worlds best silk.
Then we headed to Tonlé Sap Lake which has people living on the lake in floating villages. The usual tourist track is to go to the Vietnamese village but instead we headed a little bit further away to the Cambodian Floating village which is on a different part of the lake. Again, this allowed us to experience the real Cambodia far away from the large tourist groups.
The boat journey was rather hilarious. The water levels were quite low leading to the lake so a number of times the boat required a push. Our driver must of only been 14 but he seemed at home at the wheel.
In the evening we stopped by Pub St to meet some friends for food at Cafe Central and drinks at Cheers, Red Piano and the Sun Inn.
Nearly 24 hours after waking up for sunrise we headed back to Bunyong Homestay.
The final part of my blog on Siem Reap will cover the Pink Temple, Banteay Srei, and the Cambodian Pub Street.