We woke up early the day we were scheduled to leave Siem Reap for Phnom Penh. My partner and I wanted to make the most of our trip so we decided to book another trip to Angkor Wat to see the sunrise one last time before we leave. Mr. Rith gamely waited for us so that we can shoot more photos.
While we were in Angkor Wat, our hotel arranged for our bus tickets with the bus company. Since we have been doing a lot of traveling by air, we wanted to try something different and travel to Siem Reap via road trip. You can contact the front desk of your hotel in Siem Reap like the Borei Angkor Resort & Spa, as most hotels would be more than glad to deal directly with the bus companies for the arrangements.
Our tickets were already bought from the booking office when we got back to the hotel. We were to ride one of the buses of the Paramount Angkor Express. The earliest bus was scheduled to leave Siem Reap at 6:00 am but we decided to take the 8:00 am trip as we were coming from Angkor Wat. The great thing about this bus company was that a shuttle service from the hotel to the bus station was included in the fare of US$25 which we paid for each ticket. In our case, since we were joining the 8:00 am trip, the shuttle bus passed by for us at around 7:30am. It was just perfect timing because when we returned from Angkor Wat, we still had time to pack the rest of our things and have our breakfast while waiting for the shuttle service. The shuttle service arrived right on time and so we said our goodbyes to the wonderful hotel staff â€“ including our tour guide, Mr. Kham Sambo, and our tuk tuk driver, Mr. Rith â€“ who made our stay in Siem Reap comfortable and extremely memorable.
We did not expect the short ride on the shuttle bus to be enjoyable. Since we were the first riders in the shuttle bus, the bus moved on to other hotels to pick up other passengers. In short, we got ourselves a free city tour. We saw a public market, street vendors, a small park, and a lot of friendly Cambodian faces.
At exactly 8:00 am, we arrived at the bus station. Our seats were pre-selected so there was no need to hurry. The leg space was comfortable and we were pleased to find out that they also provide free bottled water. After a few minutes, the bus left the station and we started our five hour long journey from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh.
The long journey was made bearable with the help of the entertainment available during the bus ride. They played both local and international movies. Even if we could not understand the dialogue in the local movies, we enjoyed hearing the other passengers laugh during the movieâ€™s wacky scenes. Obviously, it was a comedy.
At around 11:00am, the bus announced that we will be having a stopover in a restaurant for our lunch break. As my partner and I had a lot of bags with us, we decided that I will just go and check out their menu. When I got to the restaurant, the waiters were very helpful in explaining the different dishes to me. Since I was ordering a take-out meal, I asked the waiter if they can prepare Seafood Fried Rice for us (I only saw Chicken Fried Rice and Pork Friend Rice in the menu). They gamely prepared my request and charged me US$ 4.00 for one order. While waiting for my take-out, I checked out the restaurantâ€™s freezer and was happy to see a lot of local ice cream! I immediately craved for some sweet ice cream most especially since it was so hot! I chose an ice cream called Atom which was being sold at US$ 1.00. One pack contains four ice cream nuggets that were coated with rich chocolate.
My partner and I enjoyed our take out lunch immensely. It was a shame that I did not get two orders of the Seafood Fried Rice. It was so yummy and the shrimps were big! Of course, we ended our meal by sharing the ice cream that I bought. Hmm, that was heaven!
The remaining two hours was not that bad. We decided to take a nap so that we can have enough energy for the Phnom Penh city tour that we plan to do the moment we check in our hotel.
When we reached the bus station, it was announced that all our bags must be claimed at the designated luggage area inside the office. A pleasant looking guy welcomed us to Phnom Penh and directed us to our bags. He asked us if we had any plans for the day. That was how we met our Phnom Penh tour guide, Giva.
He offered to bring us to our hotel for only US$ 2.00. He gave us a short brief of the different places that we can visit in Phnom Penh. Since he was only charging US 15.00 for a city tour, we agreed to hire him for the day.
We just dropped off our stuff at the hotel and grabbed our camera bags. We simply cannot wait to start our day in Phnom Penh!