Posted on

Ta Prohm – Cambodia

Ta Prohm, I would have to say, was one of my favourite temples to visit at Siem Reip.   Although all of the temples have undergone some sort of rebuilding, Ta Prohm  has been allowed to stay in a similar state to how it was found  – in that the jungle that has grown in and around it and has continued to do so. Having said this though, there was quite a lot of scaffolded work going on.  The problem with the jungle doing what it does is that as it grows it causes more and more instability in the ground underneath the structures and growing branches putting more and more pressure on already collapsing blocks.  So that these areas can still be visited and viewed by tourists, support poles have been erected underneath various window and door openings. To be honest I don’t know how else they can do it –  it’s certainly not appealing to the eye but would imagine it’s either that or let it collapse and close it to the public.  Fig, Banyon and Kapok trees grow in around and amongst the ruins and if you are lucky to visit when there aren’t too many people around there is a magical feeling to it. It was built about mid-12th century to early 13th century (1186) by the King Jayavarman VII, dedicated to the mother of the king (Buddhist) .  It is carved and decorated in the Bayon style.

 

Rather than visit Angor Wat first to see the sunrise and therefore travel around with the bulk of the tourists throughout the day, we visited Ta Prohm first which besides it being a lot quieter, chronologically fitted in better. Normally when we travel, we tend to get to places on our own steam by organizing various modes of transport and then visit without a guide. As we had a very limited time in Cambodia, a huge list of temples that I wanted to visit (to feed my archeological lust) and two teenage boys travelling like this for the first time, we decided to use a taxi guide. Basically Mickey would drive us from temple to temple giving us a run down of each temples history and leave us there to spend as long as we wanted and would wait for us in order to take us to the next. He had a rough idea of how long long each temple took and he was pretty much right on the ball. While we still had the freedom to visit at our own pace, it was great to get the rundown on each temple. I am positive that I would have needed to give in to tired and slightly templed out sons much, much earlier had we not enlisted the taxi guide. Beside the history lessons we received, Mickey was always full of local news, Cambodian lifestyle information and the latest on what was going on in the rest of the world. $30 for the day was money well spent and Mickey was a gem of a guide.

 

 

 

Posted on

Vietnam and Cambodia

Having just returned from Vietnam and Cambodia with my two sons and boyfriend Cam, I thought I would put up a couple of pics.  I will be adding posts about my travels in the ensuing weeks.  This was the first time I travelled to Cambodia – Siem Riep and the second time I have been to Vietnam.  Whilst my travels the first time in Vietnam was from North down to the South from Hanoi to Saigon, this time I headed further up to the border of China, to Sapa and then travelled to Halong Bay, Monkey Island and back to Hanoi for a bit of crazy hectic life.

ta prohm

 

colours of ta prohm
My two sons and I at Halong Bay - very mystical and otherwordly
Posted on

Curious Echidna

Thought I’d post this short echidna video. This was Karen’s first ever video using her tiny Canon Ixus 65 camera during a day walk at Cradle Mountain in Tasmania. She was so new to the camera that she didn’t even know how to turn it off at the end! The result isn’t too bad though and shows how even without any experience you can shoot some pretty interesting stuff as long as you have the right subject. This echidna really didn’t care about us and Karen reckons he was showing off.