We are staying in a nice hotel in the bustling town of Siem Rep. A tourist mecca to the great Angkor Wat. Over the past 2 days we cycled all over the vast, park-like area of Angkor. We spent time wondering around the Hindu and Buddhist, sandstone built temples of Banteay Srei, Angkor Thom, including the Terrace of the Leper Kings and even the one made famous in the movie 'Tomb Raider', the jungle covered Ta Prohm, also known widely by the Cambodians as 'Angelina Jolie's temple'. It was very cool as these enormous trees and roots have intertwined with the ancient temple. You almost felt like you walked into a Universal Studio's movie the layout had such a presence.
Known as the worlds largest religious structure, Angkor Wat was equally impressive. Its HUGE! The 2.2 squared miles shaped complex is surrounded by an enormous moat. The lawns are green with many trees boarding the massive, decorative carved temple and surrounding Khmer buildings. It everything you would expect when looking at pictures of it in books. The name itself is a combination of the Sanskrit and Khmer languages and means 'the temple city'.
We are taking the next 2 days off from cycling and I am quite psyched about it. Don't get me wrong...I love the exercise, but I took a bit of a spill in a Thai village negotiating the dirt roads and pot holes a few days ago. I am now the owner of some sweet, sporty battle wounds up and down the right side of my body. The abrasions on my shoulder and elbow are my favorite. One of the British girls suggested I tell people I was attacked by a tiger as it sounds way cooler. No worries, I've always been accident prone...so why stop now?
We leave Siem Rep tomorrow and are driving 6 hours to Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia. I hear we are stopping at a town on the way called Skuon to try one of their local delicacies, fried spider. Ewwwww! I have a better chance of eating it if they dip it in chocolate!