How to Spend 36 Hours Travelling from Laos to Cambodia.

Start in Vientiane.

Walk to the bus stop.

Take the bus to the Friendship Bridge (border with Thailand).

Go through passport control.

Take another bus across the bridge and clear Thai passport control.

Take a tuk-tuk to the train station in Nong Khai.

Enjoy delicious Thai food while waiting two hours before boarding night-train to Bangkok.

Sleep restlessly thanks to man across the aisle who is snoring after drinking too much Chang Beer and hope he suffers a mighty Chang-over tomorrow.

Stumble out of train in Bangkok station at 5.48am, run to ticket office, purchase ticket for connecting train leaving at 5.50am and jump aboard said train as it pulls out of the station.

Sleep for next few hours while getting to Aranyaprathet.

Eat final Pad Thai for this trip to Southeast Asia, take a tuk-tuk to the border of Thailand and Cambodia and go through Thai passport control.


Avoid visa scammers and pickpockets while you wait for Cambodian visa.

Wait 2 hours in queue to enter Cambodia once you have your visa.

Take a bus to the Poipet bus station and finally purchase tickets to Phnom Penh.


Remain awake for the duration of your 8 hour journey (which was meant to last 6), hoping you don’t die as you are jolted by potholes and a driver who thinks the white line in the middle of the road is where you position the middle of the bus.

Arrive in Phnom Penh.

Avoid all tuk-tuk drivers because you’re sure you’re just around the corner from the guesthouse you might want to stay in.

Walk around for an hour, because you’re not near the guesthouse you thought you might like to stay in.

Get accosted by a drunk policeman with a big gun slung across his chest and a near-empty glass of beer.

Wonder why you didn’t just fly to Phnom Penh.

Finally find any guesthouse, fall into bed and sleep 12 hours straight.

Wake up, realise that your guesthouse looks out over the Royal Palace and smile because it was all worthwhile.


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