The white city and the carnival mecca

Just three hours away from Potosí is Sucre, our next stop in Bolivia. We spent three lovely days in what is the constitutional capital of the country – walking along the white streets, tasting new flavours at the market, visiting a museum and enjoying the lively atmosphere of the city’s main square.

Sucre is probably the most colonial of the Bolivian towns we have visited. Known as La Ciudad Blanca (the white city), Sucre is a beautiful place full of historical buildings. All the white houses with their old wooden balconies, the white universities with their cosy interior courtyards and the white Spanish churches shine even whiter on a sunny day. There are strict controls on development, so if you own a house in Sucre, don’t even think about painting it black! If it wasn’t for the features of the people, the clothing of the cholitas and the accent of the locals I would have said we were in the heart of Andalucia.

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Tuk tuk, tuk tuk!

Phnom Penh, la capital de Camboya, es una ciudad que quiere parecerse a Bangkok pero que todavía está a años luz. Centros comerciales que intentan imitar a los de Siam en Bangkok, pero que no son más que mercados locales con aire acondicionado; locales que quieren vestir a la moda, pero con ropa de imitación barata; semáforos y pasos de cebra en las calles, pero que nadie respeta; tuk tuks gritando incansablemente tuk tuk, tuk tuk! a todos los turistas… todo esto y más sin olvidar el caos de motos, tuk tuks y todoterrenos sobre la jungla de alfasto.

Phnom Penh se encuentra en la orilla del Mekong, justo donde se junta con el río Tonle Sap, y tiene un paseo a lo largo del río muy agradable. Todas las tardes se congregan aquí cientos de locales jugando al futbol, corriendo, andando, haciendo aerobic… parece que por aquí están bastante concienciados con el deporte y la vida sana. Por supuesto, Marta no quiso perder la ocasión de hacer aerobic rodeada de locales y con música Camboyana!

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A bit of Thailand served on a plate

Thai cuisine is well known all over the world. These days, with Thai restaurants everywhere, most of us have probably tried or heard of Pad Thai and Green Thai Curry even before visiting this tasty country.

Over the years, Thai food has been influenced by neighbor countries such as India, China, Lao… And while fried rice, beef in oyster sauce… can be found in most of the menus, Thailand still preserves its own unique identity with signature dishes like Pad See Ew or Tom Yum soup.

Every town big or small has at least one fresh food market where locals do the day to day shopping. Meet, fish, vegetables, fruit, rice, noodles, tea, spices, clothes, cooking utensils, fried insects… you name it and you find it! We both love to wonder around the crowded Thai food markets, discovering new types of fruits, being amazed by the variety of rice and noodles, being surprised with new smells (not all of them pleasant I have to say!) and the best of all looking for new flavours to taste.

Fish and rice are the staple of the Thai diet. Fish sauce, oyster sauce and shrimp paste are added to the wok (almost everything is cooked in the wok!) to prepare most of the dishes (even of meat dishes). And rice, both in grain or noodle form, is part of every meal. In addition to fish and rice, fresh herbs and spices are core to the Thai flavours and aromas, galangal, kaffir lime leaves, coriander, lemongrass, ginger… are just some of them.

I’m going to let the pictures do all the talking this time!

Pad Thai - Thai style stir fried noodles with eggs, fish and oyster sauce, shrimps, tofu... served with green onions, lime and peanuts. A classic!!

Pad See Ew – Stir fried fresh thick noodles with soy sauce, sugar, broccoli, egg and meat. While simple, one of our top dishes worldwide!

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