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On our great adventure

The Tomb Raiders………

Archive for 23/2/2013

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Temples and Tourists- Part Two………

With the cable issue all sorted, we now headed off to make the most of the rest of the day, we pulled up at the Angkor ticket area, got our photos taken for our 3 day pass,which costs $40 each and so we were now set to go off and explore some temples….

’Lara Croft’ and ‘Indiana Jones’ you haven’t got anything on us…LOL…

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We showed our passes to the ‘pass’ inspectors and we were off heading into an ancient world!!
You are first greeted by the magnificent Angkor Wat Temple…

It is Simply stunning, a truly brilliant piece of architecture, we have been lucky enough to have seen it all before so we decided to by pass it, plus it was so crowded like I have never seen before…

To get to the other temples you have to go through a brilliant arch way The South Gate, which leads into the Bayon complex….

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oh my the queue to go through the gates was so long……

last time we were here there was no where near as many tourists, must be because its the dry season now and way less humid…we melted when we last came to Cambodia (November time).

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This boy talked for us for a while and was selling crappy postcards,but it looked like he was doing it tough so we bought a pack from him from him for a dollar!….

Anyway back to the archway, as we were on a motorbike we could just ride down to the front of the queue ☺ passing all the tuk tuk’s, coaches and cars.

The first temple we came to was Bayon Temple, as we rode around the temple we had to stop to let a few elephant’s cross the road…its not everyday you have to stop to let an elephant cross the road now is it?……

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As we had been to this temple before we decided we wouldn’t go back in to see it, plus it was packed with people, we did notice that there is a lot of restoration work going on at that temple: http://www.sacred-destinations.com/cambodia/angkor-thom-bayon-temple

We rode onto one of our favorite temples Ta Prohm (used in the movie ‘Tomb Raider’…..

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As we rode towards the parking area all we could see were clouds of dust everywhere…. cars, tuk tuks, coaches all ducking and ‘diving’ trying to find a spot to park!…

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Yet again being on a motorbike has its plus’s despite getting covered in dust, we managed to get a park next to the entrance, but before we go in to the temple we need to stop at one of the ‘dusty’ vendors to purchase a few bottles of water.
As we enter the Temples we had to show our passes, other wise you’re not allowed in…

We entered though the Archway and walked towards the temple, I’m sure we came in a different way last time!…
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WOW, this place is magnificent ….

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just as stunning as last time we were here…Thanks to the ‘Tomb raider’ movie this is one of the most visited temples here!…

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Its really is hard to describe how fantastic these structures are, you really have to see them for yourselves!
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Being so packed with tourists made it difficult to take photos of the temples just on their own!

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Since we were here last time there lots of maintenance is going on, way more than when we last saw this temple…lots of trees have been cut down which is sad in one way as the trees are so beautiful,
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But on the other hand the trees are leaning a lot due to old age or ‘whatever’ and in time will displace the temples if they weren’t removed.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ta_Prohm

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No time to dilly-dally we need to head of to the next Temple…..

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But not before we drink another gallon or so of water…it helps to wash the dust down as well as quench your thirst!

The motorbike was hard to spot though the dust clouds…plus it didn’t help that the bike was now a ‘nice’ shade of dirt!
Next was Ta Som but as we arrived it was so busy that we decided to by pass it and carry on to Neak Pean….

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neak_Pean which we call the temples of swimming pools- as that’s what it is really…
The path way is built up and is now surrounded by water! last time we were here it was about 2 metres lower! Further down the path there were a group of men standing around, and one in the waist high water with large chain saw cutting down trees…

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we have never seen anything quite like it before… pieces of bark, wood chips and saw dust was going everywhere…these guys had no safety goggles on or anything ‘safety’ for that matter… the men even climbed up the trees in either bare feet or in their ‘flip flops’…but this is Cambodia and this is the way they do things here!
So we left them to it and checked out the swimming pools, as we arrived we could see that there is now a fence that’s stops you from entering the ‘pool’ areas, as all the pools were full of water, last time we were here they were just grassy! And we were able to walk around and could actually climb down to the bottom of the pool, areas… we talked to a local man and he told us the pools have been full since the 2011 floods!

OK lunch time now, but it was way to hot to eat so we opted for a cold drink, sprite for me and coconut juice for Clive, all coconuts are opened upon purchase, the young girl had what looked like a machete in her hand and chopped away at the coconut, until she managed to get down to the juice…she made it look so easy! i wonder if any fingers have been chopped off by accident?…hope not! The girl gestured for us to take a seat while we had our drinks, she had a young baby with her and she proceeded to tell us how her baby son (about 1 years old) likes to dance to ‘Gangham style’ I think we all do a bit of dancing or toe tapping to that song… lol

Next stop Preah khan http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Preah_Khan
Another favorite of ours, we call this one the Library Temple….

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In places of this temple almost has a Greek feel to it… this Temple hasn’t changed hardly at all, the magnificent archways and the detailed statues and cravings on the walls…

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How have all the Temples lasted a long as they have? You can spend hours in one Temple and still miss most of it, really a 3 day pass is not enough…

As we ride pass the ‘Wall of Elephants’ we spy an ice-cream van…while eating our ice creams we notice that one of the Tuk Tuks has a batman Logo on it….

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Bat wings sewn on the back of the seats, this driver has done a great job, he even where’s a batman t-shirt…i was even allowed to eat my ice cream in his ‘Batmobile!

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Last on the list for today was Ta Som, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ta_Som
Which we by passed earlier on in the day, you have to walk down a long pathway to get to it and WOW…not sure how many wows we can have in one day!…..

Another spectacular temple and not too crowded either……

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As we walked around in ‘awe’ of our surroundings’ and taking loads of photos

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we were approached by a group of girls aged between about 5- 8 all vying for your attention hoping that you’ll buy something from them, with their big brown eyes staring at you…..
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longing for you to buy anything from them, it really makes it so hard to resist not buying something from them, one young girl followed Clive around trying hard to get him to buy some of her bangles…..

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Believe me its hard to say ‘NO’ but you have to, you are doing them no favor’s if you buy their ‘wares’, their parents keep them from school as they know ‘tourists’ find it harder to say ‘No’ to the children, than to adults…we eventually we make our way out of the temple with no less money than we came in with!
Heading out of the Angkor area was just as bad as when we arrived this morning…BUT with a bike its so much easier to jump the queues just like this morning…On the way back to the hotel we stop off at the supermarket for a few things…not sure how we managed it but we came out of the supermarket with 4 carrier bags!!!
So back at the hotel for a swim, beer, shower, dinner and sleep…..

Ready for day two……

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