Road to Saigon 2018

4 February - 2 March 2018


FEBRUARY 24, 2018

Siem Reap to Phnom Penh

Creepy crawlies

Following last nights temple dinner extravaganza the Rally needed an easy day and by and large it got one with a straightforward run down to Phnom Penh.

Today was described as a ‘liaison day’, so at 9.00am sharp we fired up our engines and began liaising. Much of the route ran along a busy two lane highway and almost all of the rally managed this in around four hours, which meant they were back in the pool (or the bar) by mid afternoon.

The long straight road ran through many towns and settlements past houses built on stilts with families sheltering beneath them from the fierce sun, swinging lazily on netted hammocks. 

The first Passage Control was at Kampong Svay in a busy lakeside restaurant which sold a wide selection of conventional snacks and drinks but no-one dared to eat too much for fear of spoiling their appetite for the main event which was yet to come.

The second Passage Control, the lunch time slot if you will, was at Cheung Prey and was set amongst dozens of market stalls selling delicious plates of edible insects. Deep fried spicy locust was popular as was the less fiery option, sautéed arachnid. Of course if entomological eating - entomophagy if you prefer - wasn’t your thing there was always the fall back of a dried fillet of fish to nibble on.

Whether they went for sirloin of cicada, or carpaccio of cricket, everyone who tried them agreed that they were the best insects they’d ever had the pleasure to dine on.

After lunch it was straightforward drive into Phnom Penh and on the way we caught or first glance of the mighty Mekong River.

Tonight we’re in more Sofitel luxury but after parking their cars and checking in one or two crews tore themselves away from the French colonial grandeur and braved the crazy Cambodian traffic once again to visit the Killing Fields and the memorial to the millions who lost their lives under Pol Pot and his Khmer Rouge regime. This was a sobering place to say the least.

Syd Stelvio



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