Grab your sick buckets now because I warn you, this might get a wee bit mushy as my love for the Golden Mango knows no bounds. I am about to heap praise on one of the best guesthouses I’ve ever had the pleasure of staying at. I think I am in love!
The Golden Mango Guesthouse in located just off of Highway 6, just a short tuk tuk ride from central Siem Reap. Its fare to say that up until reaching Siem Reap, and despite staying at some amazing places in both Sihanoukville and Phnom Penh, Cambodia just hadn’t set my word alight like how Laos had. Maybe it was the heat, or maybe Laos had set the bar too high. Either way things were about to change as Siem Reap almost instantly became my favourite place in Cambodia, and with the Golden Mango playing a rather large role.
Check-in @ The Golden Mango
Half asleep after a slightly broken nights sleep aboard an overnight coach from Sihanoukville, a $2 tuk tuk delivered us to the front door of the Golden Mango. Through the front garden we walked, taking note of the cute little outdoor restaurant where we would in future spend many a morning eating eggs and drinking tea. Once at the front door to the main building it was time to de-shoe and enter.
Inside the reception area bought a welcome cool. Impressive wooden sculptures, fresh flowers and warm smiles greeted us and within minutes we were checked in, a full 4 hours before the usual check in time. Whatever wizzardry allow for such an early check in, I wish I was able to bottle it. Taking note of items deemed contraban we made our way to our room.
Key in door and turned it was time to see where we would be sleeping for the next few nights. I cannot tell you how pleased we were when this came into view …
The room was huge, had a large double bed, fresh towels, cold water, a TV with an insane amount of channels, and most importantly at this point, a shower!!
In strong agreement with my girlfriend, we had deemed our first day in Siem Reap to be a rest day. Well step forward the Golden Mango’s pool. Surrounded my 6 or 7 sun loungers, it was the perfect way to spend a rest day. The water was cooling but not too cold, a cold beer was only a few steps away in the reception area, we’d found a small piece of paradise amongst the beautiful chaos of highway 6.
I like to ride my bicycle
Later in the week and once feeling a little more energetic it was time to get on my bike. Well not mine exactly, but the Golden Mango allowed free use of their bikes. Before leaving for South East Asia I had been tasked by a friend (@backpackerbecki) to pick up a few of her bits that she’d left in a guesthouse just down the road from the Golden Mango, so of I set, peddling head on into major track as seems to be the way in Siem Reap. Hours of fun!
The kindness of others
Now there is one (or two) photos I’m lacking in this review which would have further highlighted why you should choose to stay at the Golden Mango if ever you visit Siem Reap. Aside from the afore mentioned rooms, pool, free bikes, free internet, free bottles of water, free tuk tuks into town of an evening, aside from all of that there is the staff. Never have I felt so welcome by a group of staff, almost to a point of embarrasment, these kind soles just couldn’t do enough for us and on one particular night they just couldn’t buy enough beer for us. On this night we did not do the norm and visit Pub Street, instead we were pretty much accosted by a bubbly supervisor named Pagna. He had taken it upon himself to show us a ‘real’ restaurant in Siem Reap, and as luck would have it said it restaurant, the Golden Mengo, was just across the road from the Golden Mengo. Result!
We hadn’t conversed with Pagna too much before that particular evening, but upon sitting down to what we thought would be a small meal, we found him to be both funny and charming. He told us that we were now in a proper Cambodian restaurant. A place to eat that is both new and attracting many of the local people from the surrounding area. For a start the menu was in Riel as apposed to the usual US dollars, add to that we were the only westerners in the place and I felt truly blessed to have been invited to such a place by a man who had gone above and beyond to help me enjoy my stay in Siem Reap over the past few days. What ensued over the next few hours of a food and beer fulled evening, culminating in an almighty hangover come morning. We chatted, ate, drank and laughed with Payna throughout the eve, and were later joined in our evenings festivities by another member of staff from the Mango named Wann, and a friend of Pagna named Sok. Each taught Esther and I a little of Cambodian meal time custom, it affected us in only the way that 8 beers can. My favourite night out in Cambodia by far.
Room for improvement?
I really dont know what to write here. This place was ney on perfect. The only thing you should probably be made aware of is that the guest house is not within walking distance of Pub Street etc, and whilst the staff at the Golden Mango will arrange and sort payment for a tuk tuk into town, you’re on your own when it comes to the return leg. However said return journey costs a mere $2 so its hardly a biggie.
… nope cant think of anything else.
Nothing but love for the Golden Mango.
Rates at The Golden Mango Guesthouse start from just £12 per night for a single room and £16 for a double room. Visit Hostelbookers.com for more information and to book.