The grim history behind Phnom Penh and Cambodia is disheartening to take in and despite only staying in the capital city for only two days, we managed to learn a lot from our local guides.
Being in a city with a population of over 2 million people, arriving in the city centre was a chaotic experience. Streets were filled with cars, mopeds, tuktuks, bikes and people, all trying to share the small roads.
It was another fulfilling two days in Phnom Penh. We visited the Central Market, Wat Phnom, Independence Monument and the Royal Palace via a cyclo tour! Cambodia was bidding farewell to their former king Norodom Sihanouk which passed away two years ago and the city was filled with monks and government officials. So the Royal Palace was closed for tourists, which was quite a shame as I really wanted to see inside.
We explored the S21 Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum which was originally a high school but under the Khmer Rouge, it was used as a torture facility and jail. Our guide gave us some background history about the museum and we met two of the survivors. We then headed over to the Killing Fields which was a sobering experience.
As for the food, my sister and I decided to be brave and tried some red tree ants cooked with beef! Surprisingly tasty with an interesting crunch. We went to the Russian Market to have some stir-fry noodles and visited a local family in the village to enjoy a traditional Cambodian feast and some home brew tarantula rice wine!