Cambodia

03.12.2018 From Bangkok, we took the bus for Cambodia and our tickets were purchased the night before. We have decided to do the visa procedure ourselves instead of paying an additional fee. We were told to wait by 8h in front of the travel agency and someone would take us to the bus but it was almost 9h before someone showed up.

It should be easy in the border, so I thought. Using my Philippine passport, I was not to pay anything. But the officer asked for my date of entry which was of course posted in my CH passport. To make the long story short, I went back to pay for my visa using the CH passport. I apologized to the other passengers for waiting and they were all understanding.

We made few stops before reaching our destination and in one of those stops we were told to buy first before using the toilet. No, we didn’t need the sim card, yes, some water please. 😉

SIEM REAP

We arrived in Siem Reap early evening. At the station, tuk tuk drivers were waiting for the passengers to be taken to the center. We have negotiated for two tuk tuks to take us to our guesthouse. We stayed in Thngay Soben Guesthouse , a family run guesthouse, where the owner organized our rides and most of our tours.

WHERE TO GO

Art Box:

Good for children. Not for husbands. 🙂 We haven’t been to any 3d paintings and murals so it was a good occasion to visit this museum. We came early and luckily we were able to avoid the other tourists who came in buses. The tour took us less than an hour and at the end of the visit one can get free ice cream once a Trip advisor comment was done.

Sunset in Angkot Wat: After purchasing our pass for the next day tour, we went to Angkor Wat as people were exiting the temple.

Meet Up:

We have met some people in Siem Reap thru this Facebook group, some with children who were also traveling for a year and we were able to do things together on the duration of our stay in town.

Temple tour: With our hired tuk tuk, we left our guesthouse around 8h and started the tour from the last temple, we were hoping to avoid the influx of visitors. But that could not happen here. On to our 2nd temple, we have crossed path with fellow Asians who arrived in buses. However, it didn’t really matter. We entered the temple in awe and wonder while music floated on the air. For me, visiting the temples was about one’s communion with the sacred place, the nature and one’s inner peace.

We skipped some of the temples, thinking that we have seen those we wanted to visit.

Dine for a cause
On our second night, we had dinner with two french families at a french restaurant called Chili Pepper where students of Krousar Thmey performed.

Floating village tour We were picked up from our guesthouse then the driver continued picking up some more guests. Arriving in our destination, we were then driven to another area coz the first one did not have enough water. It was exciting at first, sailing by the houses painted with vibrant colors but as we reached the dry land, we were greeted by hawkers. And I wonder why do they sell pens and notebooks. Then as we moved along with our guide, showing us a small class underneath the houses, I understood then. But it felt uneasy walking in the area. I felt like an intruder. There was no interaction with the locals or any leader of the community.

We didn’t join the others in the mangrove visit. Instead, we stayed in the boat while waiting for the rest of the group to arrive and then watched the sunset.

BATTAMBANG

From Siem Reap, we have shared a ride with les Macax in their camper van. We stayed in Por Chey for 3 nights .

Phare Ponleu Selpak – The one not to miss here. There are performances every night and we were able to watch the “Village Market”.

We arrived early and had some drinks. There were some students who could create a caricature for anyone who were interested. My girls, of course had a tour of their souvenir shop.

Battambang bat cave A 45 min spectacle. The street was lined with tables and chair ready for the spectators. A girl pointed us an empty table when we arrived. She later told us that she was glad to be able to practice her english. We had some drinks while watching the bats went out of the cave and flew together.

Night market

We had a quick stop here after watching the circus and tasted some balut with the local sauce.

FOOD TRIP

Aside from eating at the Battambang Town restaurant with the whole family, I went to Jaan Bai with my daughters,
one afternoon while husband was resting. It was really good though a bit expensive.

Bamboo train We we’re driven to the station by Rith who was a nice fellow and explained us a bit about the bamboo train.

That afternoon we experienced riding the norry. It was an hour to and fro ride where one cruise along a green scenery. When another norry came in our direction, we stopped and our driver would lift the whole thing at the side of the track with the help of the other norry driver. And of course at the end of the trip, there were souvenir shops. My husband purchased a krama. I guess, no knitting this winter for me.

PHNOM PENH

Independence Monument

We hired a taxi for our trip to Phnom Penh. The staff of our guest house has given me a post-it where he wrote the english and khmer translation of toilet, stop and restaurant. The driver, incidentally, has already filled his trunk with some merchandise to be taken to the city. Luckily, we were able to fit our luggage inside.


Booking.com fiasco– arriving in our guesthouse, we found out that though we received Booking.com‘s confirmation, it was not the case for the owner. So we didn’t have any room. They found us a room for the night and then we came back to stay one more night with them.

What to do:

Musée du Genocide de Tuol Sleng A visit not to miss.

We were both moved by this. I would sometimes go out and just cry. How about the girls? I would ask if they would like to go on or tell them the the images would be shocking and there were some rooms where we didn’t let them visit. When we finished the visit, both of them had a fervent hope that this would not occur anymore.

Food trip in images

Miss Universe 2018

To celebrate Ms. Catriona‘s winning, we went out to eat at this restaurant with wall covered with clients’ drawings. My daughter, Karen, did the one above.

We were at VS Sweet Home,
(our guesthouse, a bit far from the center but our host went his way to make our stay comfortable) when the telecast for Miss Universe was going on.

then it was time to go…

So long, Cambodia!

From Phnom Penh, we took a plane for Bangkok where we’d stay for a night then fly to Manila with my sister-in-law, Zem. Really excited to finally see our relatives.

Thailand

Our ride to Noi Bai International airport was scheduled at 6h and I wondered if the driver would arrive on time. My apprehension came to a halt when the car arrived 5 minutes before. Then, there was traffic but fortunately our driver carefully and easily maneuvered us on the road.

Our plane for Bangkok was at 10h35 and we arrived in Suvarnabhumi Airport after 1h50 hours. From the arrival area,we went down the ground floor where we bought our tickets for  a shuttle bus for Khao San Road. The staff provided us with bottled water and then dropped us off by the road near our accommodation.

We stayed two nights in La Rivetta  before heading to Ko Pha-ngan and on the first night we bought our tickets (train, bus & boat combined).  Our train for Surat Thani was at 19h30.

Night time in Khao San road is so busy and animated. Walking around gave me an exciting vibe plus the fact that we’re few hours away from my country. We’d be seeing more of this, having Bangkok as our stop during our stay in Asia.

Our family met with James, my friend’s son and who is currently staying near Khao San road. We had dinner near our guesthouse, by the street where we were welcomed by an enthusiastic man. Their food was so good and really affordable.

Are we ready?

Our things are always arranged the night before our departure. I make sure that everything’s pack but sometimes there were little things left behind like a cap and this time it was my phone.

I charged it while waiting for our time to take a taxi and kept telling myself that my phone was charging.

Then it was time to go, fortunately there was no traffic and we arrived at  the Hua Lamphong station before 19h. 5 minutes later I have realized that my phone was still charging in the hostel. Panicked then Karen and I took a taxi (150 bht) to get my phone. I asked the taxi to wait for us and would pay him later but he kept telling me “money, money”. After paying him and making sure he understood to wait for us, we hurried out the taxi and recuperate my phone. Then we went back to the station. All along, praying that there would be no traffic. 15 minutes before our train departs, we arrived at the station. Grateful.

Trip to Ko Pha-ngan

Ours were combined tickets (bought from an agency in Khao San road) to Koh Phangan. The train from Hua Lamphong station in Bangkok left at 19h30. After a few minutes the staff started converting our seats to beds. Our girls were excited of the transformation. We had dinner in the train’s dining area, where the windows were all open and bringing in some breeze with the night scenery of the life outside.Then we found out that my husband had made an error on the reservation date for our bungalow in Ko Pha-ngan . He reserved for the following week.


The night in the train was fine though it was so chilly. I have asked the staff if he could lower the AC’s temperature but he might have forgotten about it. Luckily, we have our malong with us and leggings in our backpack, except of course for Carlo.

We arrived early morning in Surat Thani, someone asked we if needed help, our destination and pointed the bus we should take to the pier. It was almost 2 hours of bus ride and at the pier there was a restaurant where they served pad thai and fried rice. (Don’t hesitate to ask for some nam pla pric). Then,we were told to walk up to where the ferry boat for Ko Pha-ngan was docked.

Arriving at Ko Pha-ngan , we were approached by a guy and showed us some flyers. As my husband made an error on our reservation(remember, he made the reservation for the following week), we agreed to see the guesthouse and our taxi cost us 300 bht from the pier to Baan Haad Yao guesthouse. We stayed there for a week and have enjoyed the beach which  is only away from us. The mistake turned out to be a blessing.

A week later, we transferred to our new bungalow in Haad Gruad. There would be intermittent rain during the week,nevertheless, we have enjoyed our stay.

While in Haad Gruad, we went to a nearby beach resort called Salad Beach where we had massage, swam and relaxed. I was able also to exchange one book and we ate in Prung Tip restaurant which is not far from the beach just behind Jack’s bar.

27.11.18  7 minutes before 10h and the car has not arrived yet.  It should be here at 9h and we were supposed to be out and exploring the island. The moral of the story is: Do the business with the main man.

Anyway, after an hour the car arrived and we were able to drive around. We did not take lots of pictures though we had a great time going to a bookshop and eating in the market.

28.11.18 It rained last night. The waves are making their presence felt in front of our bungalow. Erin is reading her book found in a 2nd hand book shop yesterday while Carlo and Karen went to get the laundry. They might pass by 7-11, I was told. Lucie is in her post. Lazily lounging, seems to enjoy the cool morning breeze.

30.11.2018 The car came at 10h45 which left us ample time for our 12h30 departure from Ko Pha-ngan . By 17h30 we were at the pier where a bus would take us to Surat Thani train station.

While the others were boarding the bus, I have told the driver that we’d go to the toilet and he answered: “hurry, hurry.” So with my daughter Karen, we hurried to the toilet but when we get back our bus was nowhere in sight. They left us….We were told to go to the other waiting area, we ran then I hailed the other bus coming our way. Once in the waiting area, a lady told us to take another bus. This one took us and drove for 5 minutes where our bus was waiting for us by the roadside.

While in Bangkok, we stayed again in La Rivetta for two nights and there was a meet up with some families who are also travelling like us. We had a lovely time with the families of Poly,Celine (we met them in Bolivia) and Maxime.

The following day, we decided to go to Lumphini park with Celine and family but taxis would not take us with our proposed fare. Finally one came and our family took it. At the park while waiting for them, we walked around and came upon an activity called “Knowledge in the Park” in the Lumphini Youth Center.

Afterwards, we took the MRT and went to Siam.

Celine’s family was not able to join us that Sunday afternoon, we later found out that they were not able to get any taxi.

03.12.2018 We took the bus for Cambodia.

Hasta la vista,Pérou pt. 2

Notre voyage au Pérou en trois semaines

dans le bus

Quand nous sommes arrivés à Lima,  la capitale du Pérou (il paraît qu’il pleut jamais à Lima) il n’était que 7h00 du matin. Il y a plus d’habitants à Lima qu’en Suisse. Nos parents sont allés prendre des tickets de bus pour le lendemain matin.

Nous sommes restés à l’hôtel España. Mon père a déjà dormi là-bas à la belle étoile vu qu’il n’y avait pas de toit et qu’il ne pleut jamais à Lima. C’était un peu énervant de porter la valise en haut car  il n’y avait pas d’ascenseur 😭.


Il y avait beaucoup de peintures imprimées. Notre chambre avait quand même un toit. A midi, nous sommes allés nous promener, nous avons fait du lèche-vitrines et nous avons mangé au KFC, 5mn après, plein d’élèves sont venus en vitesse dans le fast-food. On était impressionné: Plein d’élèves comme ça 😕😬.

Nous étions en train de rentrer quand … nous avons vu un choco muséum, nous sommes rentrés dedans et nous avons commandé du chocolat chaud tout de suite. Nous avons acheté du chocolat 😋. Le soir nous sommes allés à un restaurant coréen. Quand nous étions en train de marcher nous avons vu les signes chinois. Je suis du signe du cochon et Erin est taureau. Quand nous sommes rentrés il n’était que 20h00, le soleil s’est couché et nous aussi.

Le lendemain matin nous sommes allés à la station de Oltursa et nous sommes partis en direction Arequipa. Nous sommes restés au Flying Dog. Vu que c’était dimanche, on voyait pas grand chose où aller, Nous sommes allés à un restaurant colombien. J’avait pas très faim et j’avais un peu mal au ventre donc j’ai pris un coca et j’ai très peu mangé. Nous sommes rentrés et j’ai un peu dormi 😅. Papa et Erin sont allés faire des courses, après nous avons fait une partie de billard et c’était déjà l’heure de manger. Nous avons mangé peu et on s’est endormi.

C’était que 8h du matin et on m’a réveillé😡. Le petit déjeuner était bon 👍🏻. Après nous sommes parti pour Cusco avec Cruz Del Sur. C’est le voyage que j’ai moins aimé car la dame devant moi a complétement baissé son siège à 150 degrés. Donc j’ai très mal dormi 😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡
Nous étions arrivés à la station j’ai pris un chocolat chaud et un empanada.
Nous sommes allés à l’hôtel Sami House.  On a réservé une chambre pour cinq vu qu’on savait que la chambre pour quatre allait être petite.  On a pas eu la chambre pour cinq car il y avait déjà des gens. Alors on a pris celle à quatre 😢.

Nous avons un peu visité la ville et nous avons mangé à Todos Chicken (on mange du alpaca). Après nous avons mangé une glace. On est rentré, nous nous sommes reposés et nous sommes allés à un marché où nous avons acheté des aliments et des habits chaud pour les autres endroits ou il allait faire froid. Nous sommes rentrés et on a fait à mangé de la purée de patate et des boulettes de viande (j’ai galeré pour faire ces boulettes), c’était  très bon 😋. Nous sommes allés nous coucher. Mes parents ont réservé un autre hôtel. Le Bright hôtel,

Après nous sommes allées au Machu Picchu (Erin a écrit dessus). Quand nous sommes rentrés du Machu Picchu c’était 3h00 du matin. Ce matin là nous nous sommes réveillés à 13h00 environ. Après le soir,  nous avons rencontré une autre famille (la famille 10 pieds:  http://10piedsautourdumonde.com ) qui faisait le tour du monde 🤗 . Nous avons pris un apéro et nous sommes allés manger de la pizza 😆😆. Nous sommes rentrés et nous nous sommes couchés.

Le lendemain matin nous sommes partis pour Puno. Jai remarqué qu’il y avait beaucoup de dentistes (c’est parce que ces personnes mangent que des cochonneries). Nous avons mangé à Chifa Yunod et nous nous sommes couchés. Le petit déjeuner était trop bon. Il y avait des céréales, des fruits, des boissons chaudes et froides.

Après nous avons visité le lac Titicaca et les îles flottantes. Nous avons rencontré la présidente de l’île qui s’appelle Marta, nous avons aussi visité leur maison et nous avons fait un tour avec leur bateau.

On pouvait faire des tampons sur les passports. On a pas pu manger à midi parce qu’on avait pas de temps, moi je suis allé sur le toit du bateau on avait une plus belle vue que de en bas. Quand nous sommes rentré on devait vite se dépêcher car notre bus partait à 14h. Nous sommes arrivé à temps le bus est parti  à 14h pile 😱. Nous avons aussi rencontré une autre famille qui faisait aussi le tour du monde😄. Maintenant nous sommes en Bolivie à Copacabbana nous sommes à l’hôtel MIRADOR. J’aime pas trop le petit déjeuner ici pas varié.                                 

Karen💖

Hasta la vista,Pérou pt.1

Notre voyage au Pérou en trois semaines

Le voyage pour aller au Pérou était assez long car nous avons pris un bus de Guayaquil à Mancora. La  compagnie était Cruz Del Sur. Elle était assez bien parce qu’il y avait un écran personnel, comme dans les avions. Nous avons reçu de quoi manger le soir. Il y avait plein de films à choisir, ils étaient tous en espagnol mais au moins il y avait des sous-titres en anglais. Nous n’avons pas trop bien dormi mais sinon ça allait. Quand nous sommes arrivés c’était 21h.

Devant notre chambre

Nous sommes restés  à l’hostal Geko,ils avaient un chien qui s’appelait Mia. Le p’tit déjeuner était trop bon 😋😋😋. Nous avons reçu un jus de fraise mélangé de banane et de melon, miam! Après nous nous sommes promenés un peu dans la ville.

On devait chercher un bus pour aller à Trujillo. De Trujillo on a pris un taxi pour Huanchaco.

coucher de soleil à Huanchaco

Nous sommes restés au café Otra Cosa et avons demandé l’avis du patron pour un hôtel sympa dans lequel on pouvait rester. Il nous a conseillé l’hôtel Atma.

Nous sommes allés à l’hôtel et nous avons demandé s’ils avait une chambre pour 4 personnes. Ils ont dit “non , désolé” et il nous ont conseillé l’hôtel Naylamp. Alors nous sommes allés là-bas on leur a demandé et ils on dit oui😆😆😆. Nous avons regardé la chambre, elle était bien et espacée (j’arrivais même à faire la roue!!!!). Alors après, nous avons repris nos bagages à Otra Cosa (on les avait laissés là-bas parce que si on faisait tout le tour avec nos bagages ça allait être la galère 😅😅😅) .

la promenade

Moi et Erin nous sommes restées dans la chambre parce qu’on avait trop la flemme😂😂😂. Quand on s’est un peu reposé nous sommes allés manger. Vu qu’on était près de l’océan (Pacifique) nous avons mangé du poisson😬(j’aime pas le poisson 😬😬😬). Après on a continué comme ça pendant ces 3 jours. Nous sommes partis avec Oltursa (un bus). J’ai mieux dormi dans ce bus que dans Cruz Del Sur 😅.

pt. 2 ici

Karen💖