Expect the unexpected at Phnom Penh

In between Siem Reap and Phnom Penh

20 January 2008

We went to Phnom Penh on our fourth day. We took the 1230 PM bus from Siem Reap. We used Mekhong Express and it cost us US$10 per person. They have two scheduled bus, you can choose to take the earlier bus which departs at 730 AM but we decided to re-lek’ jek’ first at the hotel. The ride took around 6 hours. It was really an enjoyable bus ride no hurdle at all, I fell asleep most of the time… surprise surprise 😉  A little bit of advice… when you book the bus, request for A&B seats Ok, don’t take ours which were C&D cos the sun shines at C&D side! Seriously I should have known that it was a sign that I can’t escape from the sun… later I’ll tell you why!

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We reached Phnom Penh slightly after 6 just in time for the sunset…

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The moment you see lots of run down houses stacking side by side, you know you’re reaching the capital city of a third-world country… The same scenery can be seen in rural Jakarta as well.

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On our first night, we stayed at Hope and Anchor, a guest house at Sisowath Quay facing the Tonle Sap river. It’s actually quite a cozy place, with a balcony overlooking the river, but it’s overpriced for the facilities and the owner is a burly old Brit dude who was rather nasty. He charged us US$40 per room, but we asked for a discount and he finally gave in and gave it to us for US$30 per room. Mel and Mr Lee were really good at doing this! I kept quite, am useless at this cos I know we were on the losing end… We had made reservation already and agreed upon the price… oh well… Mel & Jeff went around to look for other rooms earlier and they had found a nice guest house with a lot friendlier service and better price as well! It’s mekhong guest house and it’s still facing the river… minus the balcony… . So we moved out on the second day. Mr Lee and I shared a US$20 on the highest floor – the 5th floor, Jefissa shared a US$15 room on the ground floor. I guess the Hope & Anchor owner charged the balcony separately, like US$20!

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Hope & Anchor

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After all the drama in our lives, we went down to check out where we can eat, and we were cravings for food other than Khmer foods=) We went to this nice little cozy place call Veiyo Tonle (Number 237 Sisowath Quay) that serves Italian food, burgers, fish n chips and also some Khmer food. The Small size Pizza cost around US$5 and it tastes really good. They have plenty of pizzas for you to choose from! No… they don’t have any special ingredients that will make you feel ECSTATIC cos this restaurant is actually a day centre that helps and train orphanage and disadvantage kids. They have dance performance there on selected days (Mondays, but you have to check with them for other days). Too bad we didn’t manage to catch it.

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Sorry no pizza pics… way too famish to take pics cos we skipped lunch!

Afterwards we walked around the area to check out the scenery. We walked towards this shady alley where there were zero angmohs and plenty of locals… and let me tell you Cambodian are big on Karaoke man! hahaha… We saw this little cafe somewhere in the dark alley It’s call  Sakhanda Cafe. It was so nice and cozy and we only saw one old angmoh couple and they charge in real! The coffee is good and you should deffo check it out. It’s at No. 77 Oknha Inn (St 136)

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My personal agenda tom… to make use of the US$20 balcony and catch the sunrise!!!

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