Our second guest post for FamiliesGo! is called Siem Reap with a Toddler: Beyond the Temples. Even after ten nights in Siem Reap, we had trouble saying good-bye. Cambodia is a beautiful country with lovely, friendly, and welcoming people. We encourage everyone to visit, and hope this post helps with some of the logistics, especially if you’re bringing a child. If you enjoy the post or find it helpful, please “like” or tweet it. Thank you!
We were delighted when FamiliesGo! asked us to write a guest post, and jumped on the opportunity to write about one of our favorite places: Cambodia. The first of our two posts is called Angkor Management: Touring Angkor Wat With a Toddler. We hope it encourages other parents to bring their kids to Angkor Wat and the beautiful surrounding Temples of Angkor. If you enjoy the post or find it helpful, please “like” or tweet it. FamiliesGo! is a great resource for families who love to travel and explore!
The dashboard digital clock on our rental Volkswagen Polo showed 12:05 a.m. as we exited the mountain-pass tunnel in rural Iceland. The stars lit up the midnight-blue sky and the snowcapped mountain peaks loomed off to the west, our left. We were looking for the Northern Lights and had already been driving around for the past several hours, so far to no avail.
Cambodians (actually, people from all of the countries we visited in South-East Asia) love children. “Hi, baby!” and “Hi, boy!” were near constant refrains during our stay. One night, when we ate dinner at a do-it-yourself barbecue place on the street in Siem Reap, a waitress took Jude out of his chair and brought him dancing (in our full view) across the street to a French funk band that was playing on a small stage next to a giant gaudy Christmas tree and a tank full of those ubiquitous massage fish. He loved it. “More dancing,” he told us for the rest of the night.
One of the many pleasures of Hanoi is waking up at 5 a.m., walking (or running) to Hoan Kiem Lake, and seeing the city come alive—with hundreds of people of all ages, but more in the 60-80 year-old range, exercising together. (The average age seems to drop later in the morning, with more people in their 20s and 30s exercising by 6:30 or so.) Seeing so many people come together before dawn to move around and stay healthy and limber is an incredible and inspiring sight.
“See you next time when it’s drier.” That was the message we received from Poom, a Bangkok resident and family friend who had graciously agreed to host us, gently telling us that—in the face of Bangkok’s “worst floods in fifty years”—it probably wasn’t the best time to come for a visit.
We recently completed 22.5 hours of door-to-door travel. This marathon featured a six-hour drive, an international red eye, a short domestic flight, and a lot of sitting around at airports. This was not in the original itinerary, but with the flooding in Bangkok, we made some changes (more on that in a later post). I thought I’d share some tips we’ve picked up about surviving situations like this:
Jaipur, capital of the Indian state of Rajasthan, and the third major city that we visited in India, is known as the “Pink City,” as much of the city center is painted a distinctive pink color (I thought it looked more peach, but no matter).
The Taj Mahal is one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Crossing through the Main Gateway and approaching the Taj on foot (Jude in backpack), we gazed up at the magnificent palace—resplendent in the North-Indian sunshine, a shining white beacon visible from miles around, the crowning achievement of the Mughal Empire—and it was easy to see how it made the list.