Local traditions and culture in Khett Siem Reab

  • Local Customs
    by davidjo
  • mini shrines for sale
    mini shrines for sale
    by machomikemd
  • buying at the souvenir shop
    buying at the souvenir shop
    by machomikemd

Most Viewed Local Customs in Khett Siem Reab

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    Krama Scarf

    by machomikemd Written Jun 24, 2012

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    if you plan to have a multi day tour of the angkor complex and is afraid of getting sun burn or having a tan from the stiffling heat and humidity while walking among the many shrines and temples of the complex, you can buy the local cambodian scarf, the Krama as a means of protection from the sun and exposed areas of your neck and face from the elements, which my friend did due to his fair complexion hehehe.

    according to wikipedia:

    is a sturdy traditional Cambodian garment with many uses, including as a scarf, bandanna, to carry children, to cover the face, and for decorative purposes. It is worn by men, women and children, and can be fairly ornate, though most typical kramas contain a gingham pattern of some sort, and traditionally come in either red or blue. It is the national symbol too. It can be used, when folded as a hammock, worn on neck and many other uses.

    you can buy them everywhere, at souvenir shops and they cost $ 2 if you haggle.

    me with my friend in a krama pose
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    Small Coin Purses

    by machomikemd Written Jun 21, 2012

    you can buy the local Small Coin Purses all around siem reap and at the angkor complex and a caveat: if you had been to thailand and vietnam, they have the same kind of Coin purses available there and at the same designs too and i am confused on where this cute items were made?

    are they made here in cambodia or in thailand or in vietnam or only one of these countries mass produced similar items and exports them wholesale so that the vendors can sell them at the various souvenir shops and markets OR all of these countries mass produced them with the same patterns and designs?

    these kitschy small coin purses are available everywhere and you can buy them at $ 3 if you don'y know how to haggle but only $ 0.50 per piece if you are good in haggling skills hehehe.

    the small coin purse more coin purse available at benh thanh market in saigon too available at chatuchak market in bangkok too buying it at old market in siem reap
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    Messenger Bags

    by machomikemd Written Jun 21, 2012

    you can buy the local mini messenger bags all around siem reap and at the angkor complex and a caveat: if you had been to thailand and vietnam, they have the same kind of messenger bags available there and at the same designs too and i am confused on where this cute items were made?

    are they made here in cambodia or in thailand or in vietnam or only one of these countries mass produced similar items and exports them wholesale so that the vendors can sell them at the various souvenir shops and markets OR all of these countries mass produced them with the same patterns and designs?

    these cute mini messenger bags are available everywhere and you can buy them at $ 5 if you don'y know how to haggle but only $ 2 per piece if you are good in haggling skills hehehe.

    they are a nice gifts items for your friends rather than buying key chain for them.

    the cute mini messenger bag more mini messenger bag elphant designs similar to vietnam and thailand more buying
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    Ladies Bags

    by machomikemd Written Jun 21, 2012

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    These kind of ladies bags are very inexpensive gifts for your female friends and if you are an "el cheapo", for your girlfriend or fiancee or wife to0! hehehe.

    One thing I've noticed when going to the markets here at Siem Reap and at the Markets at Bangkok and Saigon is that they have many similar items on sale on these three countries and these kinds of ladies everyday bags with the same design patterns are what I've seen at the Chatuchak Market in Bangkok and at the Benh Thanh Market in Saigon and here at the Old Market of Siem Reap. All these countries must be mass producing almost the same merchandise like these Ladies Bags and the other silk bags and other merchandises or maybe they are mass produced in Thailand or here in cambodia or in vietnam and are ordered wholesale and to be sold as souvenir items for tourist in the other countries.

    These simple ladies carry on bags will cost $ 5 if you don't haggle but you can cut down the cost for just $ 2 per bag if you are good in haggling as they jack up the prices here by up to 200% !

    the inexpensive lady carry on bag for my lady friends the sellers at angkor wat haggling at old market more items
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    Angkor Wat Shot Glasses

    by machomikemd Written Jun 21, 2012

    Collecting Assorted Shot Glasses of the places that I've travelled is again one of my hobbies when going to a place and besides these shot glasses, I also collect Fridge Magnets. You can find lots and lots of souvenir items in Siem Reap, Tonle Sap and Angkor Wat and many of them are Shot Glasses and they come in assorted designs like hand painted, with stickers, with plastic encrusted at the shot glass, with bronze plaques at the shot glass and even bigger size shot glass and aluminum shot glasses. Again, you can buy them anywhere but you must haggle for the price of a regular sized shot glass will cost $ 4 without haggling and you can bring it down to $ 1.50 woth haggling.

    my shot glass more Souvenir Stands at Angkor Wat souvenir stands at Ta Prohm buying souvenirs at sivutha boulevard the shot glass
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    Tonle Sap Refrigarator Magnets

    by machomikemd Written Jun 21, 2012

    As you would know by now, I'm an avid collector of kitschy refrigerator magnets and shot glasses and while on a Siem Reap and Angkor Wat and Tonle Sap Lake, I must buy these favorite souvenir items of mine. You can buy the Assorted Tonle Sap Fridge Magnets at the Chnong Keas Floating Village or at the Boat Station to the Tonle Sap Lake. You can get them Even from the various Souvenir Shops lining the huge Angkor Complex north of Siem Reap or just buying them at the Souvenir Stalls along Sivutha Boulevard and Central Market, Old Market and Pub Street and Alleys near Pub Street or at the Airport. They are available in different designs and are either magnetized material or wood with magnets inside or Pewter with magnets or just Porcelain with magnets. Prices Start at $ 1 if you are good in Haggling or up to $ 3 if you are not.

    the tonle sap ref magnet again buying at Chnong Keas Floating Village at the boat buying souvenirs at Tonle Sap Boat Station Shop
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    Angkor Wat Refrigerator Magnets

    by machomikemd Written Jun 21, 2012

    As you would know by now, I'm an avid collector of kitschy refrigerator magnets and shot glasses and while on a Siem Reap and Angkor Wat and Angkor Complex Tour, I must buy these favorite souvenir items of mine. You can buy the Assorted Angkor Wat and other Angkor Complex Fridge Magnets at the various Souvenir Shops lining the huge Angkor Complex north of Siem Reap or just buying them at the Souvenir Stalls along Sivutha Boulevard and Central Market, Old Market and Pub Street and Alleys near Pub Street or at the Airport. They are available in different designs and are either magnetized material or wood with magnets inside or Pewter with magnets or just Porcelain with magnets. Prices Start at $ 1 if you are good in Haggling or up to $ 3 if you are not.

    more at the markets available at angkor complex souvenir shops pick one my angkor wat ref magnet
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    Mini Buddhist Shrines

    by machomikemd Updated Jun 20, 2012

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    Since Cambodia is a Majority Theravada Buddhist Country, You would see many Wats, Temples and Pagodas around the area But for the Pious Buddhists, they also have a mini shrine in front of their homes or commercial establishments where they burn aromatic insense sticks and offer things like food or money to Buddha and assorted buddhist deities and even hindu deities as their is religous syncretism of Buddhism and some Hinduism here. You can find this mini shrines everywhere in siem reap and along the countryside, even in front of homes and stores and even inside hotels too.

    they even have stores around that sells these gold colored mini shrines to people.

    a mini shrine a western buddhist monk and a mini shrine more mini shrines mini shrines for sale offerings
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    Tomb Raider

    by Ramonq Updated May 21, 2012

    Initiated by Hollywood A-lister, Angelina Jolie, this drink called "Tomb Raider" is a combination of lime juice, Cointreau, and tonic water. It's served very chilled so therefore it can be refreshing especially after touring the ruins in the jungle. This is served at the Red Piano bar/restaurant where the famous actress stayed during the shooting of the film, Tomb Raider back in the year 2000.

    Tomb Raider cocktail Red Piano bar

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    Bon om Touk - Waterfestival

    by iammon Written Apr 10, 2009

    This is an ancient 3 day festival dating back to the 12th century (times of Jayavarman VII). It marks the reversing of the water flow (water flows back from Mekong River to Tole Sap) and kicks of the fishing season. It happens on the full moon of the Buddhist month of Kadenk which is usually in November (2009 1-3 November). There are fluvial parades, boat races, fireworks and other general merriment.

    The races along the river in Siem Reap are very interesting.

    Racing boat Every spot with good views is welcome!
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    Show of respect

    by Eggboy Written Mar 20, 2009

    I noticed a strange gesture when being handed change by the clerk in a shop in Siem Reap and also when "knocking glasses" when out drinking with local Khmer. Lets say its in a shop and the guy behind the counter is handing you change after a purchase, using his free hand he will touch the forearm of the "money hand. it alsmost looks like he is using the other hand to support the hand with money (or glass if you are out drinking). Its is a show of respect to older folk and sometimes to "Barangs" as in my experiences. I felt very humbled to be treated this way.

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    Land Mine Victims

    by muratkorman Written Sep 6, 2008

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    There are so many land mine victims in Siem Reap. These people have the pride not to beg money from you. Instead they play music in front of temples or they sell souvenirs or books. You can donate some money to these musicians or you can buy some souvenirs or books from these land mine victims to help them survive.

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    Bor Bor

    by Eggboy Updated Aug 24, 2008

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    Another drinking tip with a Khmer cultural spin. In many cultures there are cetain foods eaten at 2-3 in the morning after a big night out drinking. In Australia its typically a Pizza, burger with the lot or a kebab with heaps of garlic sauce. My local contacts in Siem Reap have what they call Bor Bor which is really just Congee (rice porridge) with pork or fish. After one night out they took me to an open air "reataurant" for this very meal. I chose to have fish but at that time of noght they only had pork. I am not a fan of pork but when in Rome... It did not look great but it tasted like tender chicken. Guranteed to help make you feel great the next day.

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    Cambodian houses

    by magor65 Written Jul 22, 2008

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    Traditional Cambodian houses are built of wood and bamboo mats covered with leaf or wooden roofs. They are often raised on stillts, which can be even above two metres high. This way they are safe from flooding and below the house there is some space which is often used for storage purposes or as a kind of 'living room'. On a hot day you can see there whole families spending their time together doing some chores hidden away from the sun. The food is prepared in primitive kitchens by the house. Most Cambodian houses have no direct access to drinking water or sewage system, which is a serious health hazard.

    Cambodian houses Cambodian houses not many have such nice homes family together Lucky to have water near home

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    Lotus flowers

    by magor65 Updated Jul 15, 2008

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    Everybody who's been travelling in Asia must be familiar with a lotus flower. But you should know that it is not just a flower - it's much more than that. For buddhists ( and majority of Cambodians are the followers of Theravada buddhism) lotus is a symbol of spiritual development.
    Its seed growing in mud is like our ignorance, then the stem growing up stands for experience and finally the flower high above the water symbolizes enlightenment.
    Lotus flowers (or buds) are one of the three things most frequently used as offerings (the other two being incenses and candles).
    Lotus is also one of the motifs used in art and architecture. Look at the lotus-like towers of Angkor or Buddha images seated on a lotus in full bloom.
    The flowers come in different colours - the pink ones being supreme, associated with Buddha himself.
    So next time you come across lotus, don't pass it indifferently. Remember what significance it has for buddhists.

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