Second time in Ankor Wat
To me, 2005 is my remarkable year. It is a quite a milestone I must say. I did all sort of adventures and visiting Cambodia was one of them. That time, this is what I remember. I came with my other 2 friends. We flew in at Phanom Penh because we had some friends there and took the bus ride to Siem Reap. 6 hrs ride on that bumpy road was torture enough. I promised myself I would never do it again ;) We arrived the bus terminal with no hotel reservation. Once we set our feet off a bus, all the peddlers with tuk tuk from every corner came all over us… trying to persuade us to go with them (literally yelling and screaming). Well, I was in shocked so I let my friends dealt with them.
5 years later, I got to come back. This time, I cut all the crap… Just go right into the Ankor area lol Angkor is such a big area, there is no way you can go to every corner unless you have time at least a week. I don’t know if it’s me (crazy me) that when you watch the movies for the second time, you think or feel differently? Right, it feels different this time. I appreciate more, I think. But boy has it changed. The place is tourist central with tons of hotels, massage parlors, restaurants, bars and the like. The sad part is that it all seems very cut-throat with everyone out to get a piece (or several bucks at least) out of you. For all the apparent prosperity, there are still plenty of beggars, plus unscrupulous adults sending their kiddies to target unwary tourists.
When it comes down to a photo comparison 2005 VS 2010… This 2010 photo collection is way better than 2005 photo collection. I think I’ve been practicing my photography skill since then too. Or my interest has changed over the years :) If you are lucky you may get some quality shooting time in, but do not be surprised if buses with loads of Japanese or Chinese (or Thais) start taking pictures of each other in the middle of your shot. It is an amazing place and I would never discourage anyone from seeing it, but the overall experience is not that great if you do not like crowds and hassle from souvenir peddlers.