Saturday, May 21, 2016

Siem Reap: Ta Prohm Temple & Tonle Sap Lake (floating village)


Siem Reap is the capital city of Siem Reap Province in Cambodia and it's a popular tourist destination to Angkor temples. As we about to touch down at Siem Reap International Airport, we are able to see most of the lands are covered with green fields and trees from bird's eye view. This is something rare to see and experience the lifestyle in the countryside when majority of cities in the world are cluttered with high-rise buildings, vehicles and crowded people. 

We decide to follow the tour group which covers most of the attraction sites in Angkor province. All the temples in Angkor province are situated quite a distance from each other. On top of that, you can't find subways except their public buses and taxis. Tourists are usually the victims to be cheated by taxi drivers who don't use meter. Language is also a barrier to us as the locals don't speak and understand English well. The locals depend on their calculators to show you their final prices after bargaining. Tourists aren't advisable to consume food from street vendors, fearing the vendors don't maintain hygiene when dealing with food. 

We are lucky to have a small tour group for this trip. It is just four of us with a tour guide who will be taking us around the temples in Angkor province for two days. All the registered tour guides in Siem Reap are required to wear uniforms with their name tags when they take tourists to the attraction sites. This is a mandatory by the law in Siem Reap. The locals in Siem Reap are very poor as they depend on tourism industry for their incomes. Don't be surprised when the locals or even young children keep persuading you to buy their products or insist to take photos for you as part of their service fees.

Enjoying the fields with clear blue sky which reminds me of the simple lifestyle in a countryside at Siem Reap in Cambodia
Enjoying the fields with clear blue sky which reminds me of the simple lifestyle in a countryside at Siem Reap in Cambodia


Day 1: Tonle Sap Lake is a floating village where the locals depend on fishing

Boat ride to a floating village that comprise of Church, Schools, Groceries shops, fishing boats and their houses on the lake at Tonle Sap Great Lake in Siem Reap, Cambodia
Boat ride to a floating village that comprise of Church, Schools, Groceries shops, fishing boats and their houses on the lake at Tonle Sap Great Lake in Siem Reap, Cambodia


Day 2: Ta Prohm Temple is popular attraction site where Angelina Jolie acted in Tomb Rider movie

Walking towards to the entrance of Tra-Prohm Temple where Angelina Jolie had her scenes in Tom Rider movie at Siem Reap in Cambodia
Walking towards to the entrance of Tra-Prohm Temple where Angelina Jolie had her scenes in Tom Rider movie at Siem Reap in Cambodia

Popular photo spot of the Spung on a temple at Ta Prohm Temple in Siem Reap, Cambodia
Popular photo spot of the Spung on a temple at Ta Prohm Temple in Siem Reap, Cambodia

An on-going conservation and restoration of Ta-Prohm Temple, a partnership project of the Archaeological Survey of India and the APSARA (Authority for the Protection and Management of Angkor and the Region of Siem Reap) in Siem Reap, Cambodia
An on-going conservation and restoration of Ta-Prohm Temple, a partnership project of the Archaeological Survey of India and the APSARA (Authority for the Protection and Management of Angkor and the Region of Siem Reap) in Siem Reap, Cambodia

Tra-Prohm Temple is famous with roots grow on the roofs and over the temple at Siem Reap in Cambodia
Tra-Prohm Temple is famous with roots grow on the roofs and over the temple at Siem Reap in Cambodia

I am amazed with the details of the wall design and figures between late 12th and early 13th centuries at Tra-Prohm Temple in Siem Reap, Cambodia
I am amazed with the details of the wall design and figures between late 12th and early 13th centuries at Tra-Prohm Temple in Siem Reap, Cambodia

The perfect location to capture the beauty natural landscape scene where trees are growing out of the ruins in the jungle within the temples at Ta Prohm in Siem Reap, Cambodia
The perfect location to capture the beauty natural landscape scene where trees are growing out of the ruins in the jungle within the temples at Ta Prohm in Siem Reap, Cambodia

Admiring the details of crafted wall decoration and the figures at Ta Prohm Temple in Siem Reap, Cambodia
Admiring the details of crafted wall decoration and the figures at Ta Prohm Temple in Siem Reap, Cambodia

An entrance to Tra-Prohm Temple in Siem Reap, Cambodia
An entrance to Tra-Prohm Temple in Siem Reap, Cambodia

It is a long walk to the exit of Ta Prohm Temple in Siem Reap, Cambodia
It is a long walk to the exit of Ta Prohm Temple in Siem Reap, Cambodia

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Osaka: Tsutenkaku Tower & Biliken in Japan


This is my final journal trip to Osaka in Japan. To me, a trip to Osaka will not be meaningful if you don't make a trip to Tsutenkaku Tower at Osaka Shinsekai. Tsutenkaku Tower is the main landmark symbol of Osaka that has appeared in many movies. Tsutenkaku Tower was built in 1912 which resembled Eifel Tower on a building designed in the image of the Arch of Triumph. Tsutenkaku Tower was built at the amusement park, Luna Park. It was the tallest structure in the East Asia at that time but then, it was destroyed by fire before it was reconstructed at the citizens' request.

How to get to Tsutenkaku Tower?
Address             :  Ebisu-higashi, Naniwa-ku, Osaka, Japan
Opening Hours :  9am to 9pm
Admission Fee :  600 yen (adults) and 300 yen (children)
Subway           :  3 minute walk from Ebisu-cho on the Subway Sakai-suji Line from Shin-Osaka


Tsutenkaku Tower and Osaka Shinsekai town which is popular for eateries, shopping and souvenirs in Osaka, Japan
Tsutenkaku Tower and Osaka Shinsekai town which is popular for eateries, shopping and souvenirs in Osaka, Japan

The famous Biliken statue which brings good luck when you rub his soles at one of the restaurant nearby Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka Shinsekai
The famous Biliken statue which brings good luck when you rub his soles at one of the restaurant nearby Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka Shinsekai

An outstanding unique exterior decoration of a restaurant nearby Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka Shinsekai, Japan
An outstanding unique exterior decoration of a restaurant nearby Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka Shinsekai, Japan

Japanese Blowfish (Fugu) speciality restaurant nearby Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka Shinsekai, Japan
Japanese Blowfish (Fugu) speciality restaurant nearby Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka Shinsekai, Japan

Biliken is a deity statue to bring good luck if you rub the soles of his feet at Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka Shinsekai in Japan
Biliken is a deity statue to bring good luck if you rub the soles of his feet at Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka Shinsekai in Japan

Heading to Tsutenkaku Tower while walking along the eateries street of Osaka Shinsekai in Japan
Heading to Tsutenkaku Tower while walking along the eateries street of Osaka Shinsekai in Japan

Standing in front of Tsutenkaku Tower at the height of 64m which resembles Eifel Tower in Osaka Shinsekai, Japan
Standing in front of Tsutenkaku Tower at the height of 64m which resembles Eifel Tower in Osaka Shinsekai, Japan

Waiting for the lift to the observation deck at Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka Shinsekai, Japan
Waiting for the lift to the observation deck at Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka Shinsekai, Japan

Hello Kitty at observation deck of Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka Shinsekai, Japan
Hello Kitty at observation deck of Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka Shinsekai, Japan

My favourite famous brand, Pocky from Japan at Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka Shinsekai Japan
My favourite famous brand, Pocky from Japan at Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka Shinsekai Japan

Lively transformation of Tsutenkaku Tower and the amusement park, Luna Park with its aerial cable car before being destroyed by fire in 1943, Osaka, Japan
Lively transformation of Tsutenkaku Tower and the amusement park, Luna Park with its aerial cable car before being destroyed by fire in 1943, Osaka, Japan

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Osaka: Castle & Museum of History in Japan


Try getting a combination entrance tickets to Osaka Castle Museum and Osaka Museum of History at special rate in Osaka, Japan. The combination special tickets will only be available at the entrance ticket counter at Osaka Castle Museum. It is a worth while to visit both historic museum sites. You will understand more about the history of Osaka Castle and experience the miniature models of Japanese in Then and Now at Osaka Museum of History.

Osaka Museum of History is situated across Osaka Castle. You can get to Osaka Castle by getting down at Tanimachi 4-chome subway Station. Osaka Castle and Osaka Museum of History are open from 9am to 5pm daily. However, they are closed from December 28th to January 1st yearly.
 

Combo tickets to Osaka Castle and Museum of History at special price in Osaka, Japan
Combo tickets to Osaka Castle and Museum of History at special price in Osaka, Japan

Osaka Castle in Japan
Osaka Castle in Japan

Half way to Osaka Castle which is covered with some gold elements in Osaka, Japan
Half way to Osaka Castle which is covered with some gold elements in Osaka, Japan

Osaka downtown view from the top level in Osaka Castle, Japan
Osaka downtown view from the top level in Osaka Castle, Japan

Shachihoko is a combination of Tiger head and fish body which are placed at the end of the main roof ridge to protect the building in Japan
Shachihoko is a combination of Tiger head and fish body which are placed at the end of the main roof ridge to protect the building in Japan

Friendly Japanese cleaner in Samurai costume and he's very proud to take picture in front of Osaka Castle in Osaka, Japan
Friendly Japanese cleaner in Samurai costume and he's very proud to take picture in front of Osaka Castle in Osaka, Japan

We are standing on the reconstructed Daigokuden (Main Audience hall) at Namiwa palace historic site park at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan
We are standing on the reconstructed Daigokuden (Main Audience hall) at Namiwa palace historic site park at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan

It is very impressive historical setting to attract visitors to understand Japanese history better at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan
It is very impressive historical setting to attract visitors to understand Japanese history better at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan

Japanese palace model at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan
Japanese palace model at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan

Looking like real boat and ship at the port in 3D at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan
Looking like real boat and ship at the port in 3D at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan

A jetty bridge connects from the land to the ships and boats at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan
A jetty bridge connects from the land to the ships and boats at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan

Trading business at the port during the early days at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan
Trading business at the port during the early days at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan

Miniature troops are arranged to tell the historical story during the Japanese war at Osaka Castle in Japan
Miniature troops are arranged to tell the historical story during the Japanese war at Osaka Castle in Japan

Japanese stay in straw houses in the early days at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan
Japanese stay in straw houses in the early days at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan

The model of fishing and port village at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan
The model of fishing and port village at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan

Japanese town and business in the early days at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan
Japanese town and business in the early days at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan

Modern lifestyle and homes of Japanese at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan
Modern lifestyle and homes of Japanese at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan

Japanese in their traditional costumes and modern clothing along the shops and cinema in the early days at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan
Japanese in their traditional costumes and modern clothing along the shops and cinema in the early days at Museum of History in Osaka, Japan