Temples of Angkor, Battambang and Phnom Penh

Experience 7: Irresistible Cambodia

Cambodja is irresistible. As for now, Cambodia belongs to our favourite Asian countries. We only have been there 17 days, but the impressions we have are very intense. Cambodia has very high peaks, but it also has very dark pages in its history. After our three day trekking in the jungle, we visited the astonishing Temples of Angkor.

Like real die hard temple lovers, we wandered around the ancient city Angkor, once the beating heart of the big Khmer Kingdom. Four days we have been on the road from 5 am until sometimes 7.30 pm with our bikes. One day we explored some remote jungle temples using a tuktuk.

Every Bas-Relief drawing, even every stone has been investigated by Marlous, with the guide book in her hand, puzzling the hidden messages of each Khmer King. We discovered that Marlous would be a perfect Archaeologist. A good idea for her next study?

The Christmas breakfast was used during a picturesque sunrise in front of the most important temple: Angkor Wat. A party for all our senses. On Boxing Day we sailed over the Tonlé Sap lake and river to Battambang. We saw a lot of floting villages with its playing kids everywhere. They all returned a big smile after we greated them, not realizing yet the poverty they are in.

In Battambang we travelled 30 minutes with the Bamboo train and we went to a circus performance. Phare Ponleu Selpak is the organisation behind these world class artists. Read more about this interesting organisation on: http://phareps.wordpress.com/about.

In Phnom Penh we visited the inheritance of the regime of the Khmer Rouge. We find it unbelievable that our schools pay just little attention about this rage of Pol Pot.

We visited one of the 300 killing fields in Cambodia and we also visited a prison where people were tortured to confess things they did not do. At the end, all prisoners ended up killed in an awful way, because the regime wanted to save bullets.

We met one of the seven survivors of the prison and we saw the tree where little babies have been killed by smashing their little heads to the tree. The Khmer Rouge killed 3 million people out of a population of 7 million in between 1976 and 1979. Unbelievable!

We celebrated New Years Eve in Ho Chi Minh City. The next four weeks we will be traveling to the North of Vietnam, where we will take a plane to continue our trip to Myanmar.

We wish everyone a very healthy, happy and above all a loving 2013!


Marlous and Rob