Hey all! I’m currently writing from my flight to Laos. This post will probably be pretty short since I haven’t done too much in my last few days in Cambodia. I spent my last few days in Battambang, which is another city that’s a bit off the beaten track, though not nearly as much as Kampong Cham was. There are actually a lot of touristy things to do there but I really didn’t end up doing any. The main reason for that was that while I was there it was the Khmer new year, but we’ll get to that in a bit.
The first day I arrived at 2:30pm after an 8 hour bus ride from Phnom Penh, which should have been 5 or 6 hours but we stopped twice for food and a whole bunch of times to pick up and drop off people on the side of the road. Anyways, once I arrived in Battambang I went to explore the city with some people from the hostel. We decided to check out an abandoned train station which was pretty cool. All along the tracks there’s now a village, which is an interesting site to see. After the train station we got some dinner and walked around the night market for a bit.
The next day one of the guys from my hostel and I decided that we wanted to check out the Khmer New Years celebration and maybe some other temples in the north. After struggling to find a cheap tuk-tuk we decided just to walk to the street where we had been told the celebration would be. Now the tradition for the Khmer new year is that there is basically a huge water fight in the middle of the street to cleanse everyone for the new year. We’re talking hoses, water guns, water balloons, buckets, the whole 9 yards. It’s essentially a game to try to drench the people passing by, whether by motor bike, foot, car, etc. they also throw baby powder and rub it on people’s faces. While we were walking through the streets a Cambodian family that was celebrating invited us to join them. So we got to dance to Cambodian music and join in on the water fight, which was so much fun! By the end I was completely drenched and covered with baby powder.
That evening, after drying off, we went to the night market again and then called it a night. The next day I got a bus back to Siem Reap since I was flying out the following day. This time I booked a more touristy bus that goes pretty much directly to the destination, but naturally it broke down part of the way there. We had to wait for around an hour or so for a van to come pick us up since the driver couldn’t manage to fix the bus. When the van finally arrived we had to squeeze 15 of us in, which meant we had to get quite close with each other. The picture below will show most of it but there were also two people sitting on the floor in front of me and two people plus the driver in the front seat (there were 3 seats in the very front).
That’s pretty much it for Cambodia. Once I got back to Siem reap I just relaxed most of the day since I had already been there. I’m looking forward to starting my adventure in Laos! Stay tuned for my next post!