From the relaxing and peaceful vibes of the Thai islands, we enter the hectic and corrupt vibes of Cambodia. Fully prepared with the exact $60 and all the time of the world we step into the immigration office of Cambodia. We already read lots of horror stories about this border crossing but standing there yourself is something else…
Corrupt Immigration Officers
As friendly as possible we hand our immigration forms over, together with $60. Thirty seconds later we have been kicked out the office without a visa. We know the price of one visa is officially $30, but the officers ask 1600 baht (around $50) per visa. We don’t even get time to explain that’s not the right price, we’re being yelled at by six officers in a small office. They ask us ‘who’s the police here’?! They try to intimidate us, but then you are talking to the wrong blonde girls. One even slaps Maartje for having her hands in her pocket.
For almost two hours we wait outside, and see around 30 tourists pay the jackpot before we finally get our visa for the normal price. Welcome to Cambodia!
We don’t really have a plan in Cambodia but since our phone died, and we only have one, we need to get it fixed. From the border city Koh Kong, we take a bus all the way to Phnom Penh. A city that we don’t like at all. With the killing fields nearby you can feel terrible things have happened in the recent past. We bring our phone to an authorized Apple repair shop and escape the city as quick as possible.
We travel to Siem Reap where we rent an Airbnb and start a new online project. The digital nomad lifestyle is becoming more & more serious, exciting! After a week of hard work, we meet up with Gretka & Nico. After Malaysia & Thailand, we follow each other in other parts of Asia. Together we explore the magical temple city of Angkor Wat. We buy a three-day pass and before we know it three days already passed by. Time flies when you have fun – and when it’s so beautiful. We see two sunrises, so many temples and enjoy every second of it. Angkor Wat is a wonderful place, we could have stayed for a week and that wouldn’t be enough to see it all!
Contains some Dutch, but imagery is for everyone!
Our last stop in Cambodia is Battambang, an authentic city West of Siem Reap. Well, it’s not really the last stop for me. Because customer service in Cambodia is the worst I have to go back to Phnom Penh again. We got a new iPhone but they don’t want to send it to the authorized Apple shop in Siem Reap or give it to Gretka & Nico so they can bring it to us. So I travel for 8 hours by bus to Phnom Penh, get our phone, and take an 8-hour bus back to Battambang. The good news is that we have our phone back again!
We only have one day in Battambang left, so we rent two motorbikes and explore the area. We like it a lot, there are not so many tourists and there are many pretty things to see and do. Sadly, they are repairing the famous Bamboo train, there’s only a 5-minute ride (for now). Of course, we enjoy that 5-minute ride and even get a second ride for free. We also see some beautiful temples in the mountains, killing caves and some temples who make us feel like we are in Angkor Wat again.
It’s time to say bye-bye to Gretka & Nico again, for now, but we know we will see each other again in Bangkok. Time to leave Cambodia! Cambodia is not really our country, we totally love Angkor Wat but we just didn’t have the best experiences (people- and food-wise) in the rest of the country. I also went to Cambodia a few years ago and had the same feeling back then. But of course, you can’t like every country. Some people do love Cambodia!
We go back to Bangkok again where we will stay for a month. We found a housesit again and will celebrate Christmas and New years there. Exciting!