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To the Kingdom of Cambodia – Poipet to Siem Reap Road

CAMBODIA IS CALLING

It had been a long night for me. I had to wake up really early.

5:00 a.m. – Woke up. Took a shower. Packed my stuff. Door opened. One of my roommates just arrived from a night out. Half-drunk.

5:45 a.m. – Went out of the hostel. Left the key outside the door. Nobody was in the reception.

6:00 a.m. – On the subway to Morchit Mai (Northern Bus Terminal).

6:20 a.m. – Off the subway. Took a taxi to the bus station.

6:35 a.m. – Arrived at the bus station. Looked for the ticket counter. Saw Dunkin Donuts. Stopped by and bought some, of course, doughnuts. It’s been 4 years I’ve never eaten Dunkin. 😉

6:55 a.m. – Got a ticket. Looked for my bus. Occupied the seat right behind the driver.

7:25 a.m. The bus left Bangkok.

12:10 p.m. – Arrived in Arranyaprathet, the border between Thailand and Cambodia.

12:12 p.m. – Started lining up at the Thailand exit border customs. The queue was unbelievably long and slow. Custom officers were stamping passports, inspecting visas and watching TV at the same time.

1:20 p.m. – Good thing was, another counter opened. I broke the line and smartly moved to the newly-opened counter as fast as I could. Huh, I got first! I don’t need a visa. So, it was breezy for me when I faced the custom officer.

1:30 p.m. – Talked to and gathered some foreign backpackers to share the cab with me. It would be cheaper. Some Cambodians who worked with the Transportation Department helped us get a taxi and told us some basic stuff about Cambodia. We paid 18 dollars each (4 people) in a taxi. Lonely Planet Book IS WRONG about paying $50 each.

1:51 p.m. – While waiting for the government bus to take us to the taxi stand, a guy told us to put our backpacks in his cartwheel.

1:55 p.m. – We were on the bus. It’s sooooo hot inside. I felt like I was roasted. The heat was really unforgiving. And yes, the bus was filthy, too.

1:57 p.m. – The bus dropped us at the local bank where we exchanged our money and where the taxis were waiting for us.

Poipet to Siem Reap Camboadia 1

Can you spot my backpack?

2:16 p.m. – We were on the road. The first few kilometers were really bumpy, butt-cracking ride.

Poipet to Siem Reap Camboadia 2

2:21 p.m. – We were on the asphalted road. But only for a while. :((

Poipet to Siem Reap Camboadia 3

3:23 p.m. – This is a common rural transport we passed by but were only very few. Most of the time, we navigated on this orange, clay-like road. It was dusty so being on the front seat, I had to remind the driver to overtake this and that car so I can open the window for fresh air. The bumpy ride was a really character-building experience.

Poipet to Siem Reap Camboadia 4

3:51 p.m. – We stopped by at the store for “toilet”purposes. It was actually a “technique” for the driver to bring us to his favorite store where can get a commission if we’ll buy something for it. Beside the shop, I saw these colorful outdoor altars.

Poipet to Siem Reap Camboadia 5

4:58 p.m. – Still on the road.

Poipet to Siem Reap Camboadia 6

5:03 p.m. – We passed by a charming, little town.

Poipet to Siem Reap Camboadia 7

5:04 p.m. – Group of men ready to end the day’s labour.

Poipet to Siem Reap Camboadia 8

5:10 p.m. – Not bumpy road anymore but covered with gravel and pebbles.

Poipet to Siem Reap Camboadia 9

5:22 p.m. – Obviously, we arrived at Siem Reap. The concrete road will tell you.

Poipet to Siem Reap Camboadia 10

5:49 p.m. – I finally saw my bed. I’m dead tired. And yes, my butt hurts.

(Blogger’s note: This is a reblog entry from my old photo blog. I travelled to the Kingdom of Cambodia on September 2008. The road situation now is surely much better than in 2008.) 

CAMBODIA IS CALLING

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