Published by Linda on 24 Jun 2008
…….okay so I’d heard about this journey long before I took it. The road from Siam Reap to Bangkok is meant to be one of the worst journeys in South East Asia. (there will be another getting from Laos to Thailand – an eight hour ride in a power canoe sitting with your knees up to your chest!!!!!) The guide book says that a certain airline is paying the government not to resurface the road so people will choose to fly!!! Anyway our tour leader said the first leg from Siam Reap to the Thai boarder can take anywhere between 3 and 8 hours (she’s done it in both) It was raining the night before so we were prepared for the worst……..honestly, it wasn’t that bad. The road started like this……
……..which was pretty good I thought, and eventually looked more like this……………
In fairness though, it was funny more than anything else. Bit of a rollarcoaster without the g-force. Anyhoo we got to the boarder in about 4 hours – bonus. Took a couple of hours to check out of Cambodia and get into Thailand (we took tuk-tuks between the boarders) The boarder towns are weird, I had been told this but there is a kind of strange atmosphere that I don’t quite know how to describe, loads of hussle and bustle and then at the same time you expect tumble weeds to roll by. Strangeness. We jumped on our bus to Bangkok which took about 6/7 hours. Almost took a hopper in the bus loo at one stage (few bruises but I’ll live) Sounds ridiculous but going to the bathroom is a big deal here, you have to battle between drinking enough so you don’t get dehydrated and not so much that you need to go, because there’s just some places you just don’t wannna!!!! Anyway we got into Bangkok about 7pm so it was only 12 hours (seems long I know but we were braced for 16/17 hours so it seemed like we did well)
I was in Bangkok before so I knew what to expect from it. Took fairly easy because we will be back there again on our way to Koh Samui. Had a good old night out in an Irish bar (where else!!) but I prepared some skittle vodka to drink before we got to the pub. It went down pretty well, although some of my work colleagues seem to be a lot more partial to it
You can also partake in the local drink of choice which is basically any kind of cocktail in a bucket for $6. Dangerous stuff.
Also went to see the The Grand Palace which is home to the Emerald Buddha. I’ve never seen so many grossly overly decorative buildings in such a small space!
So much cash was spent on these buildings, it’s amazing. For instance each of these tiny golden tiles cost $1 and that was way when back when it was built!!
Honestly the buildings are squished in. You can’t take a photo of one without getting at least another in your view!!!! Would be much more impressive if they were separated out a little. The Emerald Buddha is in another temple (where you can’t take pictures) but lads he’s so small, what a disappointment – I was expecting great things and you can barely see him with all the other gold and glittery things in the temple!!!
I think I’ve said before that I’m getting a bit templed out and I am but at the same time I have this weird addiction to see more of them and every time I’m disappointed because they are gaudy monstrosities!! We’re moving on to Laos and then back into Chiang Mai before coming back to Bangkok again.
P.S. I think my attention span is going again, have given up reading - can’t sit still at the moment either, hoping Laos will sort me out.