Cambodia - the Khmer empire
I visited Cambodia end of 2015 for about a week. As usual I joined a group of people and this time I was lucky as it turned out they were a funny bunch and made the trip even more interesting.
Apart from obvious sightseeing sights one of the more amazing experiences was a Khmer massage in one of the parlours in Siem Riep. I did find it through a recommendation on TravelAdvisor. Guys do need to be weary though that although it’s officially illegal, they might get offered a little bit of an extra with their massage, as it happened to some of the male members of the group. I, luckily, wasn’t running that risk. And it was divine. I was welcomed with a drink and a foot massage and the following hour met all the expectations. I was walking on clouds back to the hotel.
As we took public transport in Cambodia quite few times I have observed something interesting. Nobody would sit next to the girls in the group, even Cambodian women would do it with a dose of hesitation. However, no one seemed to mind to sit next to the guys in our group. So they were the ones sustaining international communication.
Before you start clicking away to read about the sights, friendly warning. If you get offered to see some traditional dances in one of the touristy places. Skip it. There are crowds of probably more than 500 people trying to get as much as they can from the “All you can eat” buffet. The music drowns in the noise of conversations, cutlery clinging and general mastication. The dances are ok, if you actually can see the stage. However, there is a lot of “glitter and plastic”. You get a glimpse of the culture but it’s far from a real experience.