Sunday, February 3, 2013

Horseback Riding in Cambodia

Alexis and I spent the first part of today lounging. We ate breakfast at the hotel then sat by the pool for a short time.

Basically this sums up our day: We ate snacks for lunch. Watched the Lion King on my iPad. Played various card games and swam in the pool. Well, we swam in the pool until some Russians took it over and we felt the need to get out. (Also the old women were wearing sketchy bikinis and the guys were in speedos. Gross.)
My Cambodian Horse L.A.
After the pool it was time for my favorite activity! Horseback riding!! I was so excited and Cambodia didn't disappoint. I rode a brown horse named LA, after the city Los Angles. Alexis rode Popeye. It seems to be that Cambodian horses are similar to American horses but very narrow and about medium height. But not skinny - just narrowly built.

Our guide, Kong, was very nice and explained Cambodian Khmar lifestyle to us. We rode through the countryside and through some local (small) villages. It was really awesome to see the rice fields and a more relaxed Cambodia.

Halfway through our ride we stopped at a very secluded temple called Wat Atvea. There weren't hardly any tourists there and it was really beautiful! I read online that Wat Atvea was built in the 12th century around the same time the Angkor Wat temples were built.
At Wat Atvea in a doorway/window
Wat Atvea

After taking a short break to hop off and see the temple, and of course take photos, we got back on our horses and made a loop back to the ranch were we started. We got to trot some which was really awesome! We could have done more, and cantered, but Alexis isn't an experience horse person so I was content to do whatever she felt comfortable doing.

Alexis on Popeye and Katlin on L.A.
The sunset over the rice fields was one of the most beautiful things I've seen. The countryside image of Cambodia that I had in my mind became reality.

Sunset over Cambodian Rice Fields

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