Where We Be
The most common currency used in Cambodia isn't the riel but the U.S.
dollar, so there's no need to change money ahead of time. Most prices
are listed in U.S. dollars, making things easy for American travelers. Bring
bills that are "clean" and not written on or torn in any way. Bring lots of
ones and fives since you'll use them the most.
Buses: Mekong Express and Giant Ibis have good safety records. Avoid
night buses due to increased accidents and poor road conditions. Seats
in the middle of the bus are best to avoid scary views of oncoming traffic.
Minivans can be crowded, but we would still recommend a minivan over a
bus for border crossings into Laos since you'll likely get through
immigration and customs faster due to the fewer number of people.
Ask at your hotel what a tuk-tuk ride should cost and settle on that with
the driver before the trip. Sunglasses are a good idea to avoid dust in
your eyes during the journey.
Shoes that slip on and off easily are helpful because you remove them for
entering temples, many restaurants, homes, and guesthouses. If you are
concerned about leaving them outside at busy tourist sites like temples,
you may want to bring a day bag to slip them in.
Avoid "happy pizza" or any pizza with "special herbs" unless you
specifically want a pizza sprinkled with pot!
Earplugs are helpful for airport hotels, international flights, barking dogs,
and crowing roosters -- sometimes at 2-3 am.
Busiest times at Angkor temples are between 9 am and 11 am. If possible,
go early in the morning for the best lighting for photos. At lunchtime it is
very hot but there are far fewer people touring at the temples. Late
afternoon can also be less crowded.
Even if you bring insect repellent, bring a product like "After Bite" or other
anti-itch product just in case. You'll probably need it.
When touring temples, be prepared to cover your upper arms and legs
and take off your hat if you're wearing one.
Bring a lightweight fleece or sweater for buses, etc., in case there's too
much AC, or at night when sometimes only a sheet is provided. A
lightweight sarong is another option.
It's always a good idea to have toilet paper handy.