Meet our local guide in Cambodia, Bun
My name is Lim Bunthang (Bun) I am one of the local guides for Insider Journeys in Siem Reap, Cambodia. I normally lead our tours through the town of Siem Reap, Tonle Sap Lake and the temples of Angkor. I am honoured to have this opportunity to share my ideas and respond to the following questions:
1. How long have you been a guide for Insider Journeys?
I have been working for Insider Journeys for about ten years, since Insider Journeys opened our first office in Siem Reap.
2. Where do you live in Cambodia?
I live in Siem Reap town, the famous tourist destination in Cambodia [and gateway to the temples of Angkor].
3. How did you become a Insider Journeys guide?
To become a Insider Journeys local guide, I had to sit for a test with the Insider Journeys Siem Reap office manager. The test was mainly focused on the fluency of my English, my knowledge of Cambodia and my experience as a tour guide.
A monk at Bayon temple
4. What is your favourite part of the job?
My favourite part of the job is meeting our travellers and sharing what I have learned about Cambodia and all my life experiences with my clients. Being a local guide works two ways: our clients learn from us and we also learn from them. This is one of the reasons that I love my job!
5. Where in Cambodia do you like to visit? Do you have any secret spots?
There are many places in Cambodia where I would like to go to visit but there is one place where I would like to go again and again! It is Preah Vihear temple located on the top of Dang Reak Mountain and built in the 11th century, where we can enjoy the fantastic surrounding views.
Preah Vihear Temple
This temple is still very nice and quiet, it is like Boeng Mealea was [near the temples of Angkor] fifteen years ago. Preah Vihear is now peace and quiet and is known for being off the beaten track and free of tourists.
If i had a chance to visit Preah Vihear, I would like to stay there overnight and get up early in the morning to catch sunrise. It would be magic to see sunrise alone at the secret old temple on the top of the mountain which is sandwiched between Cambodia and Thailand.
6. What is the most interesting thing to have happened on one of your journeys?
The most interesting thing happened on one of my journeys was the day of equinox, 23rd March when I took my clients to visit sunrise at Angkor Wat. That day the sky was clear and the sunrise was awesome, the best I had ever seen it. The sun rose from behind the main tower of Angkor Wat and my clients were delighted to be able to see this amazing event. They said to me that this could be once in their lifetime and they would remember it for their lifetime. The event (equinox) happens twice a year, 23rd March and 23rd September. During this period, day and night are of equal length. If we are very lucky we can see it, but sometimes we cannot see it if it is cloudy or raining.
8. What do you love about Cambodia?
My favourite fact about Cambodia is the friendliness of our people and our rich culture. It is the key factor to attract foreign visitors to this country.
9. What do your travellers like most about Cambodia?
Most of my travellers are very interested in Cambodia’s recent history, especially the Khmer Rouge Regime and my personal experience in and after Khmer Rouge period that I have gone through the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s.
10. Khmer cuisine is exceptional. If you had to name one, what would be your favourite meal and drink?
Yes, almost all of my travellers admires Cambodia for its delicious food. My favourite meal is sweet and sour fried fish with pineapple and my favourite drink is a mixed fruit shake!
11. And finally, what do you like to do when not leading tours?
When I am not leading tours, I do some readings or visit some places where I have never been to. I sometimes listen to the news on the radio or watch sports. I also look for some training course to improve my knowledge and spend some time with my family!
Thank you to Bun for talking to us today. We are immensely proud of our local guides teams across Cambodia. Experience their passion and professionalism on one of our small group tours or tailor-made holidays to Cambodia.