With only three weeks to spend in Cambodia, I was having a hard time deciding what to do after leaving Siem Reap and exploring Angkor Wat. Then I came across Here Be Dragons, a Game of Thrones-inspired hostel. My decision was made immediately.
Battambang was a nice change a pace from Siem Reap. It’s not particularly off the beaten path but not as busy as Siem Reap or Phnom Penh. It was the first time I felt like I was in the “real” Cambodia. Battambang has no shortage of activities. Here are some of the major things to do there:
1. Bamboo Train
At 50 km/hour this “norry” (commonly known as the Bamboo Train ) was originally built by the French but was abandoned when the Khmer Rouge shut it down. It’s now a popular tourist attraction. 50 kilometers might sound slow but it sure doesn’t feel tame when you’re sitting cross-legged on a piece of wood with no seatbelt. The train costs $5 USD to ride and is open daily.
I was debating whether or not I should check out Battambang, Cambodia when I saw this hostel pop up in my search. A Game of Thrones inspired hostel? Ummm yes! I had to check it out. I left Phnom Penh the following morning and about three hours later I was dropped off at the hostel.
This guide was written after my time spent in Thailand & Cambodia but is generally useful for most of South-East Asia. This one is more for the ladies as men don’t have much to worry about but I have included some notes for men.
What to wear?
One of my friends who frequents Thailand annually had advised me not to pack anything at all and to purchase all of my clothing and luggage when I arrived. Being a tall and curvy North American chick I panicked at the thought of not being able to find any clothing that fit. I was also on a strict budget and clothing was not something I planned to spend on. In hindsight I wish I had followed that advice. I ended up having to ditch a lot of my stuff in favor of thinner and in some cases more respectable clothing.
A Guide to South-east Asia: Part Three! In which I attempt to answer general health questions and provide advice based on my personal experiences.
Sun Safety is not to be downplayed. “Melanoma is the least common but the most deadly skin cancer, accounting for only about 1% of all cases, but the vast majority of skin cancer death.” (https://www.aimatmelanoma.org/about-melanoma/melanoma-stats-facts-and-figures/)
Put on sunscreen, wear a hat, and be especially cautious if you’re on antibiotics or anti-malaria medication. And as I’ll cover in part four always check for skin lightening agents in your sunscreen lotion. Keep hydrated and keep a bottle of water on hand whenever possible. If you become dizzy, disoriented, or otherwise symptomatic of heat stroke get out of the sun asap. That’s about it folks.
Worrying about getting around a new place can be stressful. Read this guide to alleviate your transportation anxiety and learn some tips.
Depending on where you are there are endless options to get around. I found Bangkok, Thailand to be a transit friendly city. The bus, ferry, BTS Skyline, and MRT Subway all have set fares while other cities may take a little bit more negotiating.