Temples Of Angkor - Day Three
Siem Reap Travel Blog› entry 53 of 117 › view all entries
Relieved to set off at a normal hour, we went to one of the furthest away temples - Banteay Srei - to see a pink sandstone temple that was heavily under refurbishment, with bricks layed out all around like someone starting a jigsaw. Then it was back to the main collection of temples to see a couple we hadn't already seen - Banteay Kdei, then after detouring to see Bayon again, Phnom Bakheng.
While stopping for a break at the picturesque lake that is Sras Srang, we had the regular ambush of people proclaiming, "Sir! You want cold drink?" or whatever it was they were trying to sell. Up to now, we had been really good at saying no to unwanted souvenirs, ranging from books and bracelets to scarves, to the more peculiar flutes and nodding dogs.
Then, later, while eating, we were pestered by some more kids. One girl tried the usual, "Where you from?" conversation, which usually ends up with them trying to force a sale on you based on them telling you that the capital of England is London, sometimes following with, "Lovely jubbly," or, "Top banana!" This time I thought I would be clever and say New Zealand, stating that if she got it right, I would buy the postcards she was selling.
Phnom Bakheng, the final temple we visited on our three-day pass, is supposed to be a good place to watch the sun set over the Tonle Sap, even if it is so popular nowadays that it's a bit like a circus. But, again, we had cloud cover - this time from one cloud that seemed to pick its spot over the sun and nowhere else. If you're feeling particularly lazy - which is understandable in the heat - an elephant can take you the 20-minute walk up the hill. It was rammed with people at the top, all sweating as much as we were - not only is the sun still hot, but the stone gets so roasting that you can't sit on it without putting a cover down. You could probably cook on it.
We said an emotional fairwell to our tuk-tuk driver who had given us the grand tour over the past few days and hit the air-con in our room into overdrive - which actually still only makes the room cooler, not quite cool - followed by a nice hot Khmer curry from a restaurant in town.