Aside from majestic temples, Cambodia’s more recent history is less beautiful. Ravaged by war and mindless cruelties, the Cambodian people have come a long way to today. Yet, remnants of this recent past still remain, and continue to endanger the locals’ lives. The CLMMRF chronicles this in their museum just a stone’s throw away from the other favourite temple, Bantaey Srei.
Travelling in the main cities in Cambodia of today has become increasingly convenient. Tuk-tuks and taxis are available everywhere – most drivers are well versed in English, or have major tourist sites listed on a picture board where you can point at and they’ll take you there.
So, mid autumn’s weekend was spent in Hong Kong. It’s actually a first trip there for me, and for a Singaporean, that’s pretty embarrassing. But hey, I made it in the end and absolutely understood why so many have fallen in love with the city. It’s a charming mix of cultures.
On the second morning of our trip, we were picked up by our tuk tuk driver at around 5am. It’s been the earliest I’ve been up at in awhile. That itself was pretty refreshing – experiencing the early morning drive to the temples in pitch darkness. The roads had no lights, and vehicles of all sorts only had their own lights to depend on. It was a pretty chilly morning for Cambodia, and the fresh air was inviting.
So I was browsing through what’s happening in the next weeks… And I came across this. Benny Benassi, Icona Pop already sounded interesting. Then I read on and one of my personal favourite DJs (Fedde Le Grand) will be spinning as well, alongside Zedd, and Axwell. The full line up hasn’t been announced but the current line up sounds convincing enough. Afterall, we don’t get big names thrown in ours faces often enough here in Shanghai! (But that’s definitely changing).
When people talk about Siem Reap, it’s usually all about this area of ancient temples. Most simply falsely refer to this site as the “Angkor Wat”. But Angkor Wat is merely one amongst the many temples in this huge area – though it is the star of the park and sees the most number of tourists at any time of day.
ZoukOut begun exactly 13 years ago in the year 2000. The first time I’d ever been there was on their 10th anniversary. Headliners were Tiesto, and Guetta, with Afrojack, Hardwell, Dennis Ferrer, Laidback Luke, Seth Troxler…whuuut. With such great line ups, I’m not surprised they’ve managed to pull such big crowds since they started. 26,000 party goers crowded the tiny island in 2008. But that’s that, and it’s time to get excited for this year’s party.
[Update: Seems there is now a new outlet in Beijing as well. Please see thebeijinger.com for details.]
When the question is posed “What should we do this weekend?” The answer for us usually revolve around eating, drinking, exploring the city, bumming around at someone’s place. A puzzle house is not exactly the most common thing to suggest. But a new experience is always welcoming after weeks of doing the same old things.
Singapore. A conflicting place of East and West, Old Traditions and the New, Creativity and Censorship, Hawkers and Fine Dining.
It’s always a little difficult to write about a place which has shaped you, where you were born and raised in, which used to be all you ever knew. Simply because, I can never truly be completely objective of the views I have on the city, completely basing how I feel on the subjective and personal experiences I’ve had living here. But I guess that itself can be quite interesting for outsiders to have a glimpse of.
We had a week long break at the start of October due to the Chinese National Day celebrations. After all that planning, we finally set off to visit the charming land of Cambodia. We took an evening MU flight out and arrived in the night. (It was a bad flight, but that’s another story. We’re excited to see Cambodia Angkor Air will be flying direct here soon and will definitely fly with them instead next).
We quickly checked into our beautiful boutique hotel The Plantation, in a quiet street of central Phnom Penh and booked an independent tuk-tuk driver through the hotel for the next day. So, when people talk about Cambodia, it’s almost always immediately about the temples of Angkor in Siem Reap. The temples are indeed amazing but the millions of tourists yearly often overlook Cambodia’s very recent history (1975-1979) – the Khmer Rouge regime. Of which, the last surviving leaders are currently still facing trial for. Visiting the various museums that explains this, opens your eyes to the struggles of the Khmer people even today, as they continue to rebuild their nation after losing millions of their brothers.