Thursday, June 28, 2012

I'm going to Cambodia. No biggie.

For those who haven't heard yet: my summer plans are official. I'm going to be flying to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) four weeks from today (woah!) and spending twelve days mostly in Cambodia before flying out of Bangkok.
Originally I was thinking I'd spend a fe days in Saigon and a couple in Bangkok, but I'm thinking now that I'll focus this trip on Cambodia, trying to get some tropical into my life.
It will be rainy season, which makes travel a bit tougher, but the jungle is supposed to be emerald green, the country's usual layer of dust traded for a lustrous shine and terrible mud pits for roads.
Eh, it happens. I think it'll be worth it. It's not like I had a choice for when my vacation time is.
In addition, monsoon season causes the Tonle Sap lake to flood a nearby forest, submerging the bottom chunks of trees, creating what is known as the flooded forest.
That'll be me in that canoe.
Photo Credit
Angkor Wat
Photo credit for Angkor Wat and Ta Prohm
Ta Prohm
And of course there's the largest religious building in the world - Angkor Wat, part of the complex of Angkor temples outside of Siem Reap,

which also contains Bayon, home of over 200 iconic giant carved smiling faces, as well as the where much of Lara Croft: Tomb Raider was filmed: tree-root covered Ta Prohm.

Planning has been crazy, as planning a huge, international trip is apt to be, but I love it. I pour over my (somewhat disappointing) Lonely Planet, scour internet forums, and spend far too much tome comparing tour companies for the few things I think would be easiest by tour (such as mt journey on the Mekong from Saigon to Phnom Penh).
I found a really excellent-looking tour agency that is doing a special at the moment for buy-one-get-one urban adventures- if you book by the 30th! They're half- and full-day tours of a city (or starting in a city and going somewhere nearby), and at buy-one-get-one, why not! I only have so much time, and so I know I will need to take a few tours to get the most out of my journey. I'll probably do one in Phnom Penh and another as a day-trip from Siem Reap. I was thinking of adding a second in either one of those cities and doing one in Bangkok, as well. When they'e two for $40-50, they're hard to resist.

As you can tell, I've gotten a bit obsessed with the whole planning thing, but that's half the fun (who am I kidding, hopefully only 1/100th of the fun)! 

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