Thursday, February 4, 2016

Cambodia - Battambang

Cambodia was a great country to explore. It has a lush countryside and rich culture, and there is plenty to see. My husband, Hogarth Ferguson, had heard of the 'Bamboo Train' in Battambang and we decided to travel there to see what it is all about. First we traveled by cab to the Siem Reap bus station (it pays to negotiate cab fares in advance when you're in a foreign country and no meter is present.) We got tickets to Battambang and waited for the bus to depart. 

Some views from the bus






We set off after what seemed like a long time, probably because it was pretty hot. But in the bus station, people roam around selling snacks like sliced mango (yes, it's delicious.) It was a decent ride.


The bus took a rest stop here, where you could buy snacks and pay to use a bathroom.



Once we arrived, our hotel was a short tuk tuk ride away. We liked our driver and hired him to take us out that evening to the Bamboo Train. 



We loved our incredible (affordable!) hotel, Delux Villa. I would never have expected anything so luxurious. We had a great time, and found ourselves wishing we had more time to spend there.




Of course we had to do the bamboo train ride.  We just asked our driver to take us there and of course he knew where it was. It could be considered expensive by Cambodian standards, but we were happy to pay a few bucks per person for the ride. 

Our driver was really friendly.

They assemble your ride on the spot.


My husband decided to help out, surprising our driver.


And we were off...


If oncoming traffic comes, someone has to give way. It's mostly tourists but locals do still use it. Most rail is no longer in use because of the destruction inflicted by the Khmer Rouge.



Afterwards we headed to the bat caves.
Thousands of bats fly from the cave every night at dusk. There is also a nice hike that we did instead of a motorcycle ride on offer. When you reach the top there is a great view.





There are some cool temples and monuments on the way to the top...



..and monkeys!


Down at the bottom, a crowd has gathered awaiting the arrival of the bats.


It's quite a sight...


We loved our time in Cambodia, and unfortunately had to head back to Thailand and eventually, home. Lucky for us, snacks are never far away on our travels. The Battambang bus station wasn't offering mango though, this place had cockroaches by the bag...


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