Our first full day in Siem Reap started early with a 4:30 am wake up so we could get to Angor Wat in time to see the sunrise. Sadly, this came just at the point in the trip where we were learning to sleep past 4:00 in the morning.
Everything went according to plan and we were in prime seats on one of the smaller buildings long before the sun came up, watching the crowds gather. It was very civilized as were able to buy coffee and tea while we waited. The only flaw in the plan proved to be our inability to control the weather. The cloudy morning made the sunrise a bit of a non-event, but a good experience nonetheless.
Angora Wat in the early morning cloud. Shame about the scaffolding.
After the sun was up, we started our temple marathon with a tour of Angor Wat. Our local guide, Kerry, was good, if a bit excitable for a group of people that had woken up at 4:30 in the morning. She did provide a couple of numbers that I find a bit hard to believe, i.e. that 1 million people worked on the construction and that 300 hundred billion tons of stone were used. I just might need to double check these through the magic of Google some day.
The second temple, Banyon, with hundreds of faces on the stone towers, was probably my favourite. After a few more temple sites including Ta Prohm, of Tomb Raider and Indiana Jones fame, the early morning was starting to catch up with us impacting our ability to pay attention, so it was back to the hotel for some pool time.
Katy coming face to face with a Ta Banyon statue.
As an aside, after Ta Prohm on this trip (Temple of Doom) and Petra (Last Crusade) in Jordan in the fall we’re on an Indiana Jones run. If you know of a famous location from the Lost Arc, let me know so we can plan our next trip around it.
In the evening we took another tuk tuk into town for dinner and some shopping. Katy and I were joined by Eddie, another traveller from our group from England. We ate at Temple Restaurant. The food was good and the restaurant had traditional Aspara dancing.
As we walked around the night market after dinner, we decided to visit Dr. Fish for a foot massage. Now, this was not just a $1 foot massage like the many others on offer. No, this was $3, included a drink and consisted of sticking your feet in a small pool of fish who then eat the dead flesh off your feet. It’s every bit as strange as it sounds.
Now, Eddie is lovely company so it was great to have him join us for dinner, but I was particularly happy when we stuck our feet in with the fish. Eddie’s reaction was priceless. You can almost tell in the picture below, but I’ll have a video linked here shortly so you can see what I mean.
Our appointment with Dr. Fish.
How do you top having fish pleasantly eat away at your feet? You don’t. So, after a little more shopping we got some ice cream and went back to the hotel for a much deserved rest.
Ok – so once again I enjoy these adventures on a vicarious basis!