You Know You’re in Cambodia When…

Cambodian quirksAngkor Wat is the impetus for nearly every visit to Cambodia, but stray a bit off the track and you will find the rest of the country equally mesmerizing. When entering by train, traveling by boat, and hitchhiking in anything that moves, we saw so much more to love. The country is rough around the edges to be certain, but the warmth and resilience of the people make it a place like no other.


You know you’re in Cambodia when…

little kids on big bikes– Bicycles are one size fits all.


temple turned into tunnel– Your GPS might say something like “Turn left, then head straight underneath the 1000 year-old temple.”


southeast asian gas stations– If you have a few bottles of Coke, a shoe rack, old Absolut bottles filled with petrol, and some cigarettes…well…you’ve got yourself a gas station.


land mine warning– Hiking out of bounds is seriously at your own risk.


mob of souvenir salesman– If you aren’t careful, you will be sold a Khmer scarf, a sleeve of Angkor Wat postcards, and marble Buddha before you even know what hit you.


temple turned pharmacy– There are so many temples you make pharmacies out of the leftovers.


tree-covered temples– Tree hugging takes on a whole new meaning.


tuk tuk school bus– Your school bus is a motorcycle and the bus driver operates it in his flip-flops.


amazingly cheap massages– A $1 foot massage comes with a complimentary back and shoulder massage.


bad menu translation– Depending on your mood, you can order your “Egg Children” deep-fried or simple boiled.


Siem Cement handbags– Nothing goes to waste, including the left over cement bags which are turned into fashion accessories.


outside pajama outfits– Women wear patterned pajamas at all times of day, anywhere in town, and for all types of activities.


Cambodian river communities– Boat captains are looking younger and younger these days!


Have you ever been to Cambodia, did any of these bring you back or make you chuckle? Post your comments below!


24 thoughts on “You Know You’re in Cambodia When…

  • December 13, 2013 at 9:23 pm

    I love this format as you know. The girls wearing pajamas at all times… really cool. $1 foot massage ++ , geez, that is awesome. did you partake? The “gas station” just reminds me that local economies at any level are driven by those who see opportunity and not dead ends. Thanks for the write-up and pictures, truly a place that would never have crossed my “doorstep” had you not gone there and posted this. Looking forward to the next ” you know you’re in …”

  • December 14, 2013 at 5:27 pm

    “Deep fried egg children” Price “1 slug”…I don’t know where to start with that one. Also, hipsters would be obsessed with those cement bag purses!

    • December 14, 2013 at 7:55 pm

      Good catch on the 1 slug! I was so busy being disturbed by the egg children that I didn’t even notice that! Anne bought one of the those cement bag purses, they are awesome!

    • December 15, 2013 at 3:29 am

      Yeah, I could see those bags going over real well in Silverlake

  • December 16, 2013 at 7:52 am

    What a great list!! Some of them made me smile, especially the ‘gas station’ one. I agree with the children being persistent with trying to sell you things!!

    • December 16, 2013 at 12:58 pm

      Gas stations are actually like that through most of southeast Asia but that one was too good not to call out! So glad you enjoyed our “You Know We’re In” list!

  • December 16, 2013 at 7:16 pm

    Fun post! Cambodia is certainly an interesting country… I wonder what egg children taste like?

    • March 11, 2014 at 7:39 am

      so do we, never tried them….we were too weirded out by the furry feathers sticking out from the egg shell (at least we think those were egg children)….icckkkk @cam_wears:disqus

  • December 17, 2013 at 3:01 pm

    Hilarious! My fave is the black-market gas…so true. So true!

  • January 6, 2014 at 3:40 pm

    Hi Mike and Anne,

    We loved Cambodia! Thanks for taking us down memory lane…..I remember walking in front of that tree by Tomb Raider temple, I believe….amazing. LOL on the pajamas too….anywhere, anytime, we saw them….during our 2 month stay there.


  • January 6, 2014 at 10:26 pm

    We’re in Siem Reap right now and have been in Cambodia for 3 weeks, so definitely made me smile. What is up with the pajamas?? 🙂

    • January 7, 2014 at 10:38 pm

      that’s awesome you are there now, love it! Re: pajamas, i say do as the locals do and wear your pjs all day tomorrow! Sweet dreams!

  • January 7, 2014 at 9:43 pm

    Can’t wait to be here in a few months!

  • January 11, 2014 at 4:01 pm

    Loved it, the familiar sights definitely made me laugh. Don’t forget “who needs a minivan when you can fit a family of four on one scooter”. Thanks for that.

    • March 11, 2014 at 7:37 am

      we still talk about 4 or 5 people on one scooter anytime our friends tell us they need a bigger car when they get one kid….hahaahaha

  • April 24, 2014 at 9:06 am

    Awww this made me laugh and miss Cambodia! I especially remember who weird the make shift gas stations and the pyjamas were at first. The funny thing is that after a while these things become normal. I loved Cambodia so much!

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  • September 11, 2016 at 3:47 pm

    Loved the “don’t wander off the main trail” we saw the results of landmines everywhere we visited in Cambodia. I’d return there in a heartbeat. Really enjoyed all your highlights too funny and just right on target.

  • September 19, 2016 at 8:24 am

    My wife and I were in Cambodia for 2 weeks: Phnom Phen, Battambang and Siem Reap. What a beautiful country and people. It was part of our 14 month trip around the world and we had a fantastic time!!

  • October 27, 2016 at 6:23 am

    saw you recently on the tv , on your site for a quick look , been on here for hours , amazing , good luck for all your future adventures , Lancashire England .

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