The kids around the temples will try to sell you anything, postcards, cold, water, scarf, boolegged-tour guides, you name it. They are very persistent, to the point of annoying. Or pest? I'd a pretty good time taking pictures of them, talked to them, in their pretty limited vocabulary. I find them amusing. A lotta them, walked to you and said to me.
"Sir, if I tell you the capital of your country, would you buy from me?"
Nice try. I don't think they ever get it wrong. So, if you have no intention of buying from them, don't go there.
Most beautiful Apsaras are found on the wall at 2nd floor of Angkor Wat Tower.
Please remind that during noon, hugh groups of tourist lining up to take photo infront of the beautiful Apsaras, I rather suggesting you better visit Angkor Wat early in the morning.
Some gifted young tourist practiced their talented art work on the wall inside Angkor Wat.
They added a huge human mushroom (50x300cm) and a 'play-boy' trademark rabbit on the wall.
Please understand that destroying the origin and the beauty of this piece of ancient world are strictly prohibited.
The Khmers penchant for craft is nowhere more apparent than in the intricate carvings found throughout the Angkor temples and Banteay Srei is often sited as the best example of Angkorian art bar none. Etched into a pinkish stone and viewed in the early hours of the sun’s likewise red hues, the temple has a bit of a fairy tale feel.
Trucks with dozens of people on it is not uncommon in Siem Reap. Travelling around Siem Reap, you can see 3 or even 4 people on a bike. Horse carts and bicycles with loads that are more appropriately put on a truck; motorbike with 2 passengers, stick between them and 20 or more live chickens hanging upside down from the stick on both sides. I just wish I was fast enough to capture them all on my camera, but with the speed we were travelling at, I try not to blame myself.
You can see a lotta Toyota Camry in Siem Reap, 2002/2003 model. The funny thing is, almost all of them don't have any plate number on them.
The custom of adorning Buddha figures in saffron robes is widespread in Cambodia but the practice adds particular color here at the ruins as they are otherwise in a natural state. In some of the corridors of Angkor Wat itself, there are rows of such representations with their flowing robes bringing the timeless hallways back to life.
After about 4 hours in Angkor, the sweet, cute little kids, were becoming the little annoying bastards! If you think I am insensitive, you haven't experienced the wrath of 20 little Cambodian kids all wanting your money! Of course, I never acted any way other than immensely nice and patient, for I realize that this is how they live. This is how the make a living for their family. Many of these 8 year-old-or-younger kids could hold a conversation with me in English. I was traveling with an Australian, and they knew the capital of Australia was...
Canberra! I bet YOU didn't know that! The only reason I did, was because I was in Australia two weeks prior, and had been caught there by a local! Anyway, these kids will use their charm to woo you for whatever their purpose is; selling jewelry, food, drinks, etc.
They are EXTREMELY persistent, and will try to get you to say that you will only buy from them, not their friends. It’s quite amusing for the first day, but after that....
You can see locals using their bikes for different purposes on a day. I'm sure on other day, this bike can be Tuk tuk. The loads they manage to put on a bike amazes me sometimes. It's not uncommon for you to see 3/4 ppl on a bike in the streets, without helmets!
You often find young children, six to ten years old, of course they could be older but appeared young, selling anything from postcards to scarf or cans of Coke to tourists coming down from their air con buses.
I was impressed with their mastery of "Please buy from me" in fluent American English and Japanese. I believe others will quickly learn them in Chinese, Spanish or French depending on the tour groups.
Did not hesitate to buy from these children as their parents are probably busy cooking in the restaurants or driving the taxis to make ends meet. Some how tourists like to snap their photos of their cute faces and then buy something in return.
My opinion: Better buy from the children than see them begging in the streets.
I did say the saleskids are very persistent, didn't I? Well, you get the idea. This little girl just wouldn't leave us alone. We sat there, enjoying the beautiful sunset on Angkor Wat. (In a way feeling bad writting about it now, we ignored her) Minutes later, she ran off to play with other kids. Thank god. I was just about to give in!
Since Angkor Wat is a sacred place, we can find so many monks walking around of the temple. Please do not talk too loud whenever seeing them in meditation or praying. And I found they're very friendly. Say "solsthey' [hello] to them at the tower of Angkor Wat.
I was pretty lucky to catch this; according to my driver becoming a monk is a fairly uncommon practice in Cambodia these days. This surprised me a little, as it's quite common in neighbouring Thailand. Anyway, I was walking around Bakong temple, which has a modern Buddhist temple next to it when I heard this noise; it turned out to be a procession being led by a guy on a horse! Anyway my driver explained that this was part of the ritual for this young man to become a monk. Quite amazing.......
Inside Angkor Wat there is a buddhist monastery and school, so you will find some monks in orange wandering around. They are cool and friendly, go talk to them, they are curious about western life... and don't ask for money when photographed, like in many other places!!
During out visit in 1997, there was still a village in Angkor Thom with houses on stilts, sugar and beer making activity, ox carts, and hair being cut. The villagers were very friendly and happy to have us visit them. I declined a taste of the beer though.
Although similar to Thai classical dancers, the Cambodian or Khmer Traditional Classic dance is re-emerging with the wake of tourism after it was almost eliminated during the Pol Pot regime.
Fortunately surviving dancers are able to teach the younger generations. So it is amazing to take time to see these dancing at dinner tables at hotels or restaurants as they have appeared in court and carved in the images of temples in the Angkor Wat complex.
Colorful, graceful moves with traditional Khmer music will etch in your mind.