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Old 02-03-2004, 12:37 AM
BobTrips BobTrips is offline
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Default Re: Angkor Wat

I generally don't like guides. Sometimes guides are making it up as they go. I've heard some incredible tales. But that doesn't matter too much. I don't have enough memory to recall what they tell me. ;O)

I'd rather wander and find my shots.

As for the heat - go early and stay late. Take a book and find a cool spot in one of the temples for the middle of the day when the light is lousy anyway.

I even took my inflatable pillow to sit on one day, found a shady place in Angkor where a breeze was stirring, and took a nap. There are also shady places to eat lunch.
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Old 02-03-2004, 01:06 AM
Luko Luko is offline
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Default Re: Angkor Wat

No need to take any guide, you're freer without and the temples are not that extended or labyrinthical that you'll get lost. Any way you never will be without seeing anybody in the distance, so if you feel lost simply come closer to the flow.

Ta Prohm Ta Prohm might be the most difficult temple to visit by your own because it's naturally "let down" in a clear forest (take good shoes for Ta Prohm whgile you can wear open sandals in others). My daughter was happy spotting some snakes between the stones (I was less...), but there's always someone in charge or a guide who you can ask your way to.

On the other hand you'll be glad a have a guide book on historic Angkor temple complex and happy to read about mighty Suryavarman or Jayavarman VII.
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Old 02-03-2004, 09:17 PM
BobTrips BobTrips is offline
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Default Location idea ...

Even if you don't take the ferry to Battambang I'd suggest you think about making a trip to the ferry dock. I saw lots and lots of interesting opportunities but didn't have enough time to really shoot much.

This would be an ideal way to spend some early morning/dawn time on your last day if you're leaving later in the day.
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Old 02-08-2004, 04:20 AM
philip_coggan philip_coggan is offline
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Default Re: Angkor Wat

Hi Thien

The must-see temples are Angkor Wat, Bayon and the Leper Terrace (both inside Wat Thom, which is the walled city, only a few minutes up the road from Angkor Wat), Ta Prohm, and Banteay Srei. All except Banteay Srei are pretty close together.

If you take a car, beware of the air conditioning - it fogs up your lenses. An alternative is an open trailer pulled by a motor-bike - hard to describe, but you'll know it when you see one. If you have lots of equipment I'd opt for this for all except Banteay Srei, for which a car is a must (turn the air-con off).

There are monasteries inside Angkor Wat (off to the left as you face the temple) and near the Leper Terrace. You can (perhaps) persuade some monks to help you out by posing - the younger ones love having their photos, but do give them copies.

Outside Angkor Wat is a group of soft-drink stalls and cafes - good place to spend the hot part of the day.

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Old 02-09-2004, 02:02 AM
thien thien is offline
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Default Re: Angkor Wat

Thank you, Philip and sorry for the late reply, I was out of circulation due to a bad flu, maybe this is good, thing preparing me for the asian bird flu :D.

I will watch out for the air-conditioning, probably a big ziplock bag for my gear. Let's hope my power of persuasion will win me some monks support :)

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Old 02-09-2004, 02:05 AM
thien thien is offline
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Default Re: Angkor Wat

Thank you Bob and Luko, I will go without a guide then. More time for me to get lost in the temples.
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Old 03-16-2004, 12:12 AM
DrorAngkor DrorAngkor is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 54
Default April in Cambodia ...

Hi Thien & everyone,
or should I be saying JOM RIEB SOO <>:)

First of all as someone who is familliar with Saigon you should know
the weather in Cambodia is pretty much the same ...

I am sorry to say as someone who has been living in Siem Reap for the past 5 years that April is an absolute torment !

Forget the guidebooks, the hot season starts with the end of January
increases in strength in February and March & April are just a total torment,any expat who can escapes in April ...

As for the green, well I guess if you're coming in from a desert Cambodia will look green even in April but its pretty dry compared to the rest of the year ...

That said you can still enjoy Angkor taking several measures:
Try not to use aircon ... it only exacerbates the heat,each time you step out of an a/c room or car you feel you parachuted into a Turkish bath,its like a punch not only to the face but a shock to the entire body...

It is imperative to start as early as you possibly can.
Sunrise is around 5:30 - 5:45 which means you should leave your hotel
at 5 at the latest,this is good both for early morning light but mainly to enjoy the fresh air that totally disappears by 9am ...

What Philip and Luko said about breaking the day is absolutely true,
Break at 11(the light is no good anyway) and start agian at 3pm.

Guides: Depending what you want to accomplish, if you're not interested in History there's no reason to take a guide,except that the complex is much larger than you'd expect and unless you prepare
and spend a week or more you will not see all the hidden magic places .
As a matter of fact I work at Angkor and I still discover magical spots
from time to time after 5 years of being there almost everyday ...
As for the guidebooks in the market I think they are really boring
and no one really reads them.
What you need is a good map. With a map you can navigate among the major ruins quite easily,basically there are only two loops of road
and the temples are along them. Yea its fun to get lost inside the compounds
and you can rest assured, all the mines have been cleared away.
I think you now have to obtain a special permit for a tripod.

The floating villages on the lake are a must for early morning or late afternoon.
You have to take a moto from town down to the "port" where th boats from Phnom Penh and Batambang land. In April the water level of the lake is very low which means the distance from town almost doubles from 8km to 14km ...

The fluctuations in the water level of the lake from month to month are incredible!
You have to see it to believe it.

Enjoy your trip.
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Old 03-20-2004, 06:07 AM
thien thien is offline
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Default Re: April in Cambodia ...

Thank you Dror for your precious info, Sorry for replying so late. I was so busy even not having time to prepare for the trip :D. I am already bracing myself for the weather assault in April.

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