Thursday, September 15, 2016

The Many Moods Of Angkor Wat...



Early this morning, we scrambled to get to the Angkor Wat just in time to view the amazing sunrise. Visiting the Angkor Wat isn't cheap - access to the archaeological site is ticketed, a three day pass costs USD 40 per person. This pass covers all the locations within the archaeological zone.
Frankly, yo can even buy a day pass, but visiting all the sites within the zone is infeasible. One would have to buy a three day pass to make the most of the visit here. And the it is going to get even more expensive - our guide told us that from February 2017, the prices will go up to USD 62 for a three day pass, which is quite steep.
But, with these amazing and breathtaking views, it is indeed worth it...
And honestly, there is not much to write about in this post than to enjoy the wondrous interplay of nature and history!




















The South Library...








And some retro shots - this one in sepia tone...


Black white shots are so cool...

 




Ripples in the southern Reflecting Pond...


And we've got to have an early breakfast before we enter the Angkor Wat...
Call it a breakfast with a view...




Wednesday, September 14, 2016

At Home, In Siem Reap...



About an hour back we checked in, into our hotel in the heart of Siem Reap. And we were instantly overwhelmed with the value for money we got here. For less than USD 100 a night, we got a massive room, almost like a suite with an all inclusive breakfast, complimentary minibar, laundry, poolside drinks and a free tuk-tuk ride...
We were impressed...


What a warm welcome!


I loved the decor of the room...


Very few destinations provide this kind of value. It's obvious that Cambodia is a lot underdeveloped as compared to neighbouring Vietnam and is desperately trying to attract tourists in...



Lord Buddha smiles and blesses us...


A statue of Avalokiteshvara...


A local musical instrument...


The legendary Angkor Wat...


A traditional Khmer village...



I loved these windows and the four poster bed...


And now we got to rest, we wake up at 4 AM to get to Angkor Wat to witness the sunrise...


ជំរាបសួរកម្ពុជា - Chomreabsuor Kampouchea!

On this IndoChina trip of ours, its now time to say ជំរាបសួរកម្ពុជា - Chomreabsuor Kampouchea or Hello Cambodia...
We landed a few moments back here in Siem Reap and were absolutely thrilled to be here. Siem Reap is home to the ancient and mysterious Angkor Wat temple complex, the largest known and surviving Hindu temple complex in the world. And visiting Siem Reap was a lot like a pilgrimage for us, a tribute to the proud heritage of Hinduism that has survived thousands of years of a peaceful existence on planet Earth...


The terminal building is built along the lines of traditional Khmer architecture...


And yes, I was pleased to do a bit of Plane Spotting here, which is indeed a charm of visiting an airport for the first time...


Siem Reap welcomes us...

Visiting Cambodia is a breeze. For most nationalities (excluding nationals of certain high risk countries, the names of which are obvious), e-visas can be applied for, right from your desktop. It is a simple process, costs USD 37 and you get your visa within 3 business days, by email. For those aren't able to apply for an e-visa, can queue up for a visa on arrival, which may be a bit time consuming.
Immigration processing was quick, as we had got our e-visas in advance. And the staff was extremely friendly. Next we collected our bags and tried to get money exchanged into the Cambodian Riel, but we were advised against it - the economy here is completely dollarized!




The airport itself was quite well done with intricate sculptures and carvings. But we have a lot to - our day tomorrow begins at 4 AM, we've got to catch the sunrise at Angkor Wat, so we'd better rush to the hotel!


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