Other Places and the Crazy Thing We Did in Phnom Penh

While we're packing like there's no tomorrow with a massive sandstorm outside this weekend, I'm posting more things to do and places to visit in Cambodia's capital. 

Wat Phnom

A Mountain Pagoda.  A Buddhist temple stands on top of a hill. Legend has it that a rich widow named Penh found three bronze statues of Buddha inside a large koki tree. She had this shrine constructed in 1373 to house and protect the statues and was then transformed into a sacred sanctuary. 

I'm glad I was wearing pants. It's a must when visiting temples and shrine.  Oh, beware of people collecting entrance fees handing out tickets as soon as you reach the top of the stairs.  There's no entrance fee here.  If you'll read closely, the funds collected were for a lady's resort project. 

Statues at the Main Stupa of Wat Phnom
Central Market, Phnom Penh, Cambodia
The Central Market
Great place to shop for souvenirs. A friend of mine once told me that the best way to immerse yourself in the culture is to visit the public market. If you're brave enough, you can sit at the stalls' benches and try the local food. (I wasn't that brave though). There were tarot card fortune tellers and mani-pedi stations at the side corridors.  It briefly reminded me of Quiapo in Manila. From electronic gadgets to clothes and food, you'll find them all here.
Central Market Entrance
Calling all veggie lovers, such yummy treats
Inside Central Market
Fresh Seafood anyone?
Tuk-tuk ride with our favorite driver
Wat Ounalom
Located along Sisowath Quay, it's the headquarters of Cambodian Buddhism. It was quiet and free from tourists when we visited apart from two ladies we chatted with who are founders of a charitable organization just resting on a bench under a tree. If you're looking for a peaceful place, this would be it. 

The Russian Market
We were just curious to see it but is it really worth visiting? Well, if you have a lot of time to spare, why not? Personally, once you've been to the Central Market then this one won't be that impressive. It's a labyrinth of shops. We were just wanted to be sure to keep valuables secured while shopping. So far, we didn't have any problem, but always be alert.

A Lunch at Romdeng
Romdeng is a highly recommended place to try authentic Cambodian Cuisine with Khmer hospitality. Set in a colonial building serving almost forgotten recipes from the provinces and contemporary Cambodian dishes. Staff were friendly and it is not too expensive. It is run by former street youth in training. 
Welcome to Romdeng
Chilled baby coconut juice
We enjoyed dining at the courtyard
Swallowing my fear, literally. Their popular appetizer, deep-fried Tarantulas 
The crazy thing we did was to share a hair raising appetizer of deep fried tarantulas. We each had two servings. If you have been following me on instagram, you must have seen this post. My husband and I dared each other. He knew I'm crazy scared of spiders. I can never be close to them! So we pretended we were in Survivor.  It was definitely an unforgettable starter. What does it taste like?  It tasted oil for sure, much like between chicken and the texture like dried squid, slightly hairy though. :)

Main Course : Stir Fried Red Tree Ants with Beef and Basil
Chicken Amok with Baguette
After our meal, the waiter brought us a live tarantula. Thank goodness, it was after the meal and not before.  I still couldn't bring myself to hold it. It still sends shivers down my spine. 

Bon appetit!
Love & light,

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  1. such colourful market and such beautiful veggies

  2. That photo of the cooked tarantulas still haunts me from instagram! You are one brave lady.

  3. I'm scared of spiders too! Oh my god, I know I can be a bit adventurous but I'm not sure if I can actually eat a tarantula. You guys are brave! Thanks for sharing your Cambodia experience Arni, my friends and I are planning to go backpacking there in December. If things push through, I will use your post as reference.

  4. Interesting post and you were so brave trying that starter! I don't think I could have done that,