Saturday, April 25, 2009

Saturday 25th April 2009. Phnom Penh, Cambodia-Siem Reap, Cambodia

We had booked a bus from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap which left at 10 in the morning. There where some funny Americans on the bus who said "I just love Asian buses!" Her enthhusiams slowly wained after the 5 hour journey! The journey wasn't at all bad and was quicker than we expected. We got a Tuk Tuk to our hotel called Jasmine Lodge which seemed really nice. A room with air-con and two beds, which we defiantly appreciate!
After settling in we got a Tuk Tuk into town and looked round the markets. We went to there night market which was nice but each stall selled the same stuff. We had a drink at this lovely bar while it was raining loads. Then we headed to Bar street where all the restaurants are and went to a place called The Red Piano. Most famous for Angelina Jolie eating there, and there is a cocktail named after her. I ate an amazing prawn dish and Caroline had this beef dish called Lok Lac which was also amazing!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Monday 13th-Wednesday 15th April 2009. Bangkok, Thailand

Well, we awoke in our super squishy bed and ventured out for breakfast. We soon learnt that Songkran was in full flow and would stay that way for the next 3 days! We got in a rikshaw to try and find the S.T.A offices (which we later discovered were in the Pingpong show area!) We wanted to go and try and sort a visa out for Vietnam which we had planned to go to on the 15th but the offices were shut. It was pretty much impossible to get anything done in the city without getting soaked and as we wanted to do some (dry) sightseeing, we decided to stay a few extra days, miss out Vietnam and spend longer in Cambodia. There was one good thing about venturing all the way to the STA office and that was that there was a Boots accross the road which made us very happy. Dripping wet, we entered the shop and stocked up on facewipes, suncream and insect repellent-all vital for the travellers backpack!

The next couple of days were also spent pretty soaked and/or covered in talcum powder (which formed a lovely paste!) We went to china town one night and had some AMAZING food at this seaood restaurant on a street corner. Was so yummy. On the Khoasan one night there was also some beauty pageant/contest thing happening so we stopped to watch that for a bit and a white girl one it, which was weird considering all the other contestants were thai!
After 3 nights in our hotel, we decided to move, so on the wedesday we packed our stuff and went about 200metres down the street to a place called 'D and D' which had been reccommended to me by a friend. It was so much nicer than the other place, had a pool, breakfast included and the bed was HUGE! We had a room looking right onto the Khaosan road which was great during the day to watch all the Songkran action without getting wet, but not so great at night when the music went on till 4am....we're such old ladies who need our sleep!!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Sunday 12th April 2009. Mumbai, India-Bangkok, Thailand

Up early to catch our flight to Thailand with Thai Air who were very nice. We pre-ordered meals as a joke but they actually turned out to be quite yummy! I got a nice steamed fish dish and Sara had a stirfry pork with egg fried rice. Much nicer than any food i've had on BA!

Once we arrived in Bangkok it was around 6pm so we hopped in a taxi to our hotel on the Khaosan Road. We were aware that Songkran (thai new year) was due to start the following day, however it had already begun in some areas including the Khaosan so we had to walk to our hotel as the road was shut! Luckily we avoided the water and the talcum powder that was being chucked around! We saw some poor people later on who didn't quite manage to avoid it though!!
We made our way to our teeeeeny tiny room (literally the smallest room ever) with a super squishy bed which meant me and Sara would probably role into one another in the night and decided to venture into the madness of the Khaosan. We bought a water pistol right away but it was a bit crappy. Some people had shelled out about a tenner for theirs, mainly the men who thought it'd be funny to zap you right in the face with water! We got soaked, had a few beers and then headed to bed.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Saturday 11th April 2009. Mumbai, India

Well today was Sara's 23rd birthday and we couldn't have been waking up in a ranker place! After a little gift giving, we packed our stuff and were out the door by about 8.30am in search of a new place to stay. After a few hotels that were full, we came across Hotel White Pearl which was in Colaba near the market so that was handy!
Once we got to the room, we both had much needed showers and set out to explore Mumbai. First stop was a cafe called 'Leopolds' which was on the main Colaba market road, it served good toast so we were happy! Next we headed to India Gate via taxi which was silly as it was only a few mins walk away but we didn't realise this till after!! It wasn't the most impressive monument we've seen plus it was covered in scaffolding. Opposite was the Taj Mahal hotel but this also had scaffolding on it, most likely where the terrorist attack damaged the building. I had read there was a good market not too far away so we hopped in another taxi and went there, the traffic was so bad but we were glad when we arrived...that was until the taxi driver told us the market was shut. Er, HELLO why did you take us there then you wally! After a few more attempts to find good markets and alot of walking in the hot hot heat we decided we had tried hard enough with no luck and headed home :(
We went back to Leopolds where it was MUCH busier and hotter for some spring rolls, naan and beer. After that it was to bed, ready for our flight to Bangkok the next day.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Friday 10th April 2009 Goa-Mumbai, India

Last day in Goa-we were up about 7am to get a taxi to Madgaon train station for our 12hr train to Mumbai. When we got onto the train there was an Indian couple who were about 50 sharing our 1st class compartment. They were very sweet-the man was very funny and kept doing voice exercises in hindu, literally for like 12 hours! As it was a day train we didn't sleep loads, but did manage to get a few hours kip. Lots of men kept coming by with chai, samosas, chicken lollipops (?), coffee and all sorts of other treats but announced it very loudly so that was a bit annoying!
Other than do some reading and sleeping we didn't do much on the train, but surprisingly it went quite quickly!
Once we arrived at Mumbai CST, we hopped in a taxi to our accommodation-The Salvation Army Red Shield Hostel. BIG MISTAKE! This place was horrid! Seriosuly gross, no bed sheets, sandy matress, sickly people in the beds next to us, no loo role, shower/taps didn't work. Most rank place i have ever stayed! We just about managed to get a few hours sleep....

Thursday, April 9, 2009

5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th April, Goa India

I have put all of theses days together as we basically did the same thing every day. We sunbathed on Palolem beach. The beach itself is really pretty and beach huts and restaurants line the sand. There are a few shops and the usual people trying to sell you things. We spent our days on the beach and then at night went out to a restaurant. We really liked the fact that we could get food which was not curry in Goa. There was lots of fresh seafood and most traditional Goan dishes have some form of seafood in them. We also had pizza and some salad which was really yummy and tasted even better seeing as we had not had any in three weeks! It was also nice to see our selves getting a bit of a tan, however the last day it must have been atleast 40 degrees and it was too hot to sunbathe!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Sunday 5th April 2009, Goa, India

We got off the train in Ahmedabad at 4.30am after a lovely 8 hour journey from Udaipur! We had to find a taxi to the airport which didn't take long as sooo many people want to take you. Once we got to the airport we had an 7 1/2 hour wait for the plane to Goa!! We didn't do much as the airport was so small, we tried to sleep in uncomfy seats, did some people watching, ate some samosas...
Finally we were allowed to go through and wait for the bus to take us to the plane. The plane was pretty empty and the flight was quite short. We got off the plane in Goa after nearly 24 hours of travelling, where the temperature was a cool 36 degrees! We had already arranged an airport transfer to our beach hut, so the taxi driver was ready and waiting for us, the drive was only about an hour.

Once we arrived at Palolem Beach in the South, we headed straight for the sea! The Beach is meant to be the nicest in Goa and as it's not high season it wasn't very busy which was nice. The next 3 days were pretty much spent sunbathing! The sea was super warm, like a bath! Couldn't quite believe it! We had breakfast lunch and dinner right on the beach. The first night i wasn't feeling very well, but Sara had a Goan Fish Curry which was very tasty!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Friday 3rd April 2009. Udaipur. India.

Today we went and looked around the shops and then to the city palace. We decided to get another audio tour even though Caroline had met a guide the night before! Half way through the tour I started feeling sickly again so we headed back and felt guilty as Caroline was enjoying the audio tour so much!
Later after a rest we headed back to the shops and spent quite a lot of money but we did buy some good presents for people. My favourite purchase was my new love note necklace and Caroline bought yet more rings, an anklet and my birthday present. We got back to the lake in time for sunset and after that we headed to the roof top for some dinner. When we got bakc to the hotel room our curtain rail fell down! We were given a key to another room but we decided to stay put.....BAD IDEA. At 4.30am we were woken by drums and chants in the street, there must have been some sort of festival happening but we really wished they'd shut-up!

Thursday 2nd April 209. Jodphur to Udaipur. India.

Well I was very sick during the night and bitter that Caroline was not! We asked the driver to wait a couple of hours before we headed of to Udaipur but by half nine I was feeling ok. It was a really scary journey as our driver was driving like a phycopath! We stopped to have a drink in a little family run restaurant which was really nice and very peaceful.
We got to the hotel at lunch time and went to see our room which had the most amazingly comfortable bed ever. I stayed in bed as started to feel ill again but Caroline ventured into town. She came back about an hour later with some jewelry, which I was very jealous of. Udaipur itself is really pretty situated by lake Pichola with mountains in the background. When I was feeling a bit better we decided to sit by the lake, where there were millions of giant bats.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Wednesday 1st April 2009. Jodhpur, India

Got up and went to the Mehrangarh Fort and got the audio tour which was really interesting. Then we headed over to Jaswant Thada which is known as the Taj Mahal of Jodhpur. Once we got back into the city we decided to find a place that sold Indian sweets as Jodhpur is known for making good sweets. The ones we had were not to our taste! they tasted very strange but looked good. After the sweets episode we got a rikshaw back to the hotel were we hung out for a bit before going out for dinner at a place called 'On The Rocks'. We had a weird green curry and some Indian icecream for pudding but this did not turn out to be such a good idea as I got very sick from it. When we got back to the hotel we watched 'Step up'.

Tuesday 31st March 2009, Jaisalmer-Jodphur. India.

We got up and travelled to Jodphur but our driver was in a really bad mood. When we arrived it was very hot and dirty but we decided to venture out to the market. Bad idea! We found a grubby internet cafe and looked up places to eat, we decided on a place called Bollygood. Meal was nice but we were the only people in the restaurant.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Monday 30th March 2009. Jaisalmer Deset, India

Had an interesting nights sleep as we were in the middle of the desert with the sound of Camels munching, it was a bit hard to drop off! Once we were out of the tent, we were very achy but happy to see that breakfast was ready for us; toast, jam and our new favourite biscuits 'Parle-G' which are like malted milk biscuits!!
Once we were back on the camels we weren't happy bunnies as our bums hurt sooo much and I was grumpy the whole ride back and didn't really talk to sara! We were so happy to be back in the car and on the way to the hotel for a shower as we smelt a bit like camels!
After cleaning ourselves up, we met the camel safari boss and he invited us to his house. As it was a bit of a walk away we decided to go on his motorbike through the streets of Jaisalmer which i found quite fun but sara liked the camel ride more! Once we got there, we had some tea, met the family and he got out heaps of photos and postcards to show us the extent of his camel business throughout the years! This was all quite fun until he started talking about tips!
After the tea and the camel chat, we headed to the fort where the Maharaja was coming out to ride through the town. There were hundreds of people there all wating and some very fancy dressed camels! We heard that the Maharaja was a bit of a drinker though, so he came out late and looked like he was going to fall off his horse.
Had dinner and early eve as we were off to Jodhpur in the morning.