I took some time to publish posts on the Angkor Archeological Complex which is the most amazing part of our visit to Cambodia. But, there are other aspects worth noting.
You’ll recall that the illustrious Mr Tay brought us into Cambodia as a clandestine border crossing from Vietnam (here). Ok, so it was a little bit dramatic, but as Colleen noted, ‘It definitely felt like a human smuggling operation or something equally shady. In truth, it was just a more expensive logistics arrangement commonly used by dozens of people daily.’
With a three day pass to the Angkor Complex you have 10 days to use it or lose it. We went on the 25th, 28th and the 30th of September. To avoid being over ‘Wat’ I recommend taking breaks in-between visits. A ‘wat’ is a temple so for us Western / Christian types just think Churches.
Our Tuk-tuk driver, Mr Davudthny Vun <firstname.lastname@example.org> helped shape our final route which includes a visit to the Cambodian Landmine Museum, and a visit to Banteay Srey which is approximately 37km from Siam Reap. The return trip includes a stop at Banteay Saimre. We had the option to carry on to see the Rolous Group to the South East of Siam Reap but declined…Too many temples makes Rob a dull boy.
The Landmine Museum provides a stark reminder of the horrors that Cambodia faced from the Vietnam War and also the brutal regime of Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge.
We did the twenty-six kilometre Grand Circuit on our second day into the ancient Khmer temples.
The main lesson from the visit was that although Hindu and Buddhist beliefs lived in harmony, particularly under Jayavarman VII, the reality is that subsequent Kings had differing views and many religious artefacts were destroyed.