After several days of pretending to be Indiana Jones at the Angkor Archaeological Park we decided to while away a day in the streets and markets of Siem Reap. Even this far away the US dollar is accepted as the main currency. Cambodia does have its own currency, the riel, but most people prefer not to use it and ask you to pay in USD if possible. It was early afternoon when we decided to head into town and see how far we could get with $20. We took a tuk-tuk ride from our hotel into town which took about 10 minutes and was free. We spent the next several hours lazily browsing through the Central Market as well as a smaller market down by the riverfront. Nug got a new North Face backpack for $5 and I got a sick Bayon Temple t-shirt for $2.
After walking along the river a bit more our feet were feeling the pain so we stopped for a 30 minute foot massage and decided to go big with a 15 minute back/ neck massage as well. This set us back $4 in total. We had worked up an amazing appetite so we found a comfy café with lounge chairs set back in a tropical garden to have some dinner. Nug opted for the green mango salad with chicken breast and I got some delicious, fresh spring rolls wrapped with local rice paper. We had 4 beers between the 2 of us over the next hour and a half as well and gladly paid the $5.25 tab upon leaving.
We visited the Night Market which was pumping. I got a huge bag of assorted fruit including dragon fruit, lychee, and durian for 50 cents. Ever the fat kid I had to throw in a donut (which was one of the most amazing, greasy things I have ever had) and some type of pastry with powdered sugar and mystery filling for another 25 cents.
We decided to wander down to Pub Street to watch the ruckus. This is the main backpacker area of town where people go to get zero culture but to drink the 35 cent beers until they are blind and dancing in the street. We found a bar with couches overlooking the melee and had 3 beers at 35 cents a pop which led us to a total of $1.05. It was around 130 am by this point and we were heading to Battambang in the morning so we went about trying to find a tuk-tuk back to Golden Mango Inn. We found a ride for $2 but this put us over our $20 budget by a nickel. However, sometimes you just have to splurge.