Siem Reap was great; it had loads of bars and I met some cool people, ate some stir fried Aligator and got to see Angkor Wat. Straight after Angkor Wat, I got on the bus and headed to the capitol, Phnom Penh.
Some man with a minibus full of loud Chinese picked me up and I was expecting that to be going all the way there. 6 hours with old Chinese people shouting at each other and waving selfie sticks in a confined space isn’t ideal. Luckily the minivan pulled off the main road, past the University with cows stood outside and into the bus station. 6 hours on an air conditioned coach in a comfy recliner seat is a million times better.
One night in Siem Reap, I met an American who has lived here for a few years. He laughed when I said I will be in Phnom Penh for a week. Siem Reap was chilled out and just nice place. It’s completely different in the busy capitol.
Before coming to Cambodia I was thinking Phnom Penh would be like a smaller Bangkok. Now i’m thinking this is what Bangkok used to look like when it was the same size. Walking around the city is slightly weird and I get a lot of locals staring at me, almost as many as in China. I assume all the locals say how tall I am. They say something and make some sort of “your so tall” hand gesture above their head.
It’s hectic here. It feels completely different to Thailand; not as much streetfood, no 7eleven, not that many western shops. It’s cool, I like it, but a week here is long enough for me.
Phnom Penh is an under developed city in a third world country so don’t expect any amazing sights. There are temples and pagodas and they are similar Thai temples, i’ve seen enough so missed out on temples. It’s a good city for street photography with loads constantly going on. People riding motorbikes with ladders, 5 people on a motorbike, that sort of thing. I seem to get stared at a lot here so it’s funny walking the streets taking photos.
From Siem Reap, the idea was to head onto Saigon so it just made sense to come to Phnom Penh. It has been a good week, but now I am ready to leave. I would come again but only for a quick visit.
The hostel sorted out my Vietnamese passport and the bus journey onto Saigon. Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Minh city cost $19 for the 8 hour luxury bus and then the Visa service was $36. I could have gone into the bus station and embassy to do these things myself but it’s cheap enough already.