Moto Mania in Cambodia

There’s only one way to travel in Cambodia and that’s on a “moto”, a motorbike very similar to what my local postie uses. Where other places rely on taxis, the streets of Phnom Penh, the capital, overflow with mostly young male drivers carrying their pillion passengers, usually one but sometimes two.

Motos may be small, but most drivers treat them like V8 supercars, darting between lanes, running red lights and slamming on the breaks to avoid collisions. For passengers, especially tourists, it’s a case of holding on for dear life.

The reward for enduring a dusty and chaotic ride, not to mention the seemingly optional road rules, is a fast and exceptionally cheap journey. It’s also an adventurous and eye-opening way to experience the city — you’ll see everything from mum, dad and the kids covering every inch of paintwork on a single moto to couriers carrying a side of pork or crates of live chickens on the pillion seat.

The guy on the back of this moto was obviously on his way out for a night of fun. I was one of three on another moto, trying to both focus my camera and keep balance. This is the full frame of a shot taken with a 28mm lens — I must have been close enough to put my hand on his shoulder!


Adminbandit said...

As one of three on a moto I can't believe you managed to hold on and take photos!

Kathleen Fisher said...

Yeah, not easy but I'll do anything for a photo. I once waded waist deep into a lake in chilly weather, but the shot ended up in an exhibition, so it was worth it!