CULTURAL TOUR OF CAMBODIA

Length

8 DAYS

Type of tour

CULTURAL

Type of Service

PRIVATE

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TRIP OVERVIEW

  A cultural journey discovering the most exciting treasures of the Kingdom of Wonder.

Retrace the history of the glorious Khmer Empire with our expert historians at the Angkor archaeological site.

Board a traditional wooden boat and sail past wooden stilts and houseboats at Kompong Kleang village on Tonle Sap Lake, one of the most untouched and off the beaten track villages in Cambodia.

Explore Preah Vihear Temple, one of the most incredible Khmer architectures off the beaten track, listed as UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2008, sitting on the edge of a plateau atop 525 mt. cliff that dominates the plain of Cambodia.

Explore the capital city of Phnom Penh, once known as the ‘Pearl of Asia’, one of the most beautiful cities built in Indochina in the 1920s that retains its colonial and traditional Khmer charm.

This itinerary can be customised based on your actual travel needs and can be extended to the beach or combined to other tours.

Cultural tour of Cambodia. - map © In Asia Travel

DOWNLOAD ITINERARY

Length : 8D 7N
From : SIEM REAP
To : PHNOM PENH
Destinations  : Siem Reap, Preah Vihear, Battambang, Phnom Penh

ITINERARY

01. ANGKOR ARCHEOLOGICAL SITE

Banteay Srei, Cambogia (In Asia Travel © Gabriele Stoia)Stone carvings at Banteay Srei

Welcome meeting with our staff upon arrival at the airport and transfer to the hotel.

We begin our journey in the afternoon with the visit to Angkor archaeological site, starting with Prasad Kravan, the complex dedicated to the Hindu cult known for the impressive and unique brick sculpture of the deity Vishnu.

We then visit Pre Rup, the “temple mountain” dedicated to the God Shiva and Banteay Srei temple, also known as the “citadel of women”. It is considered the “jewel of Angkor” for the artistic refinement of the bas-reliefs carved on pink sandstone.

Included : Private pick up at the airport, tickets, tour guide and accommodation

02. ANGKOR ARCHEOLOGICAL SITE

Angkor Wat, Siem ReapEast gate Angkor Wat

After breakfast we continue the journey to Angkor Wat temple, the largest religious building in the world built on an area of 2 million square meters.

Then there is Ta Prohm temple, one of the most enchanting and popular tourist sights, surrounded by huge roots of hundred-year-old banyan trees.

During the afternoon we visit the temples complex of “The Great City” Angkor Thom, where Bayon temple stands out for his distinctive feature: 216 giant stone faces which jut out from the 54 towers.

The day ends with a visit to the Terrace of the Elephants, the Terrace of the Leper King and the Phimeanakas temple.

Included : Accommodation, breakfast, tour guide, tickets and private transportation

03. ANGKOR - TRANSFER TO PREAH VIHEAR

Preah Khan © Gabriele StoiaPreah Khan Temple

In the morning we visit the Buddhist Ta Sam temple, small yet extremely charming, Neak Pean temple a representation of the mythical Himalayan Lake Anavatapta whose waters are thought to cure all illnesses, and Preah Khan temple, “The Great Sword”, built by Jayavarman VII on the battlefield for the reconquest of the kingdom invaded by the Champa Empire.

In the afternoon we travel north to the Thai border. After approximately 1h30 we reach the town of Anlong Veng, the last stronghold of the Khmer Rouge and hideout of leader Pol Pot. Time permitting, we visit the area and the cremation site of the dictator.

Arriving in Sra Em town in the late afternoon.

Included : Accommodation, breakfast, tour guide, tickets and private transportation

04. PREAH VIHEAR TEMPLE

Preah VihearPreah Vihear temple

After breakfast we travel north to the Preah Vihear temple. At the base of the Dangrek Mountains we board a private pickup truck to drive up the steep slope to the top of the plateau.

The temple stretches along 800 m of a causeway and steps rising up the hill towards the sanctuary, which sits on the clifftop, throughout several “gopuras” (gateway) and courtyards built with different styles and decorations.

At the end of the visit, we go back by truck at the base of the mountain, we then drive back to Siem Reap in our private vehicle (about 3h).

Included : Accommodation, breakfast, tour guide, tickets and private transportation

05. FLOATING VILLAGE AND BEANG MELEA TEMPLE

Villaggio galleggiante Kompong Kleang, Siem ReapKompong Kleang floating village

Today an extraordinary visit awaits us to one of the most untouched and non-touristy floating villages in Cambodia, giving us a taste of the local fishermen’s lifestyle on Lake Tonle Sap.

We head in the morning to Dom Dek village. Time permitting, we stop at the colourful and authentic local market.

We make a detour to experience the surreal atmosphere of Kompong Kleang village: a long dirt path lined with houses built over stilts up to 10 meters high to survive the flooding of the rainy season. Uncover the daily life of the villagers. The locals here make their living fishing, as it once was.

We then sail along the canal into Tonle Sap Lake on a private and traditional wooden boat. Further on we reach the floating village: a large community that has lived and worked on the water for centuries. In the village there are schools, shops, workshops and floating restaurants besides houses.

In the afternoon we continue to Beang Melea temple, one of the last Hindu shrines built before the introduction of the Buddhist religion. This is one of the most fascinating visit as no major conservation or restoration work has been done. Furthermore, this site is surrounded by the jungle.

Included : Accommodation, breakfast, tour guide, private boat, tickets and private transportation

06. TRANSFER TO BATTAMBANG

Banteay Chhmar temple (© Gabriele Stoia)Banteay Chhmar temple

Early in the morning we leave Siem Reap towards Battambang, the second largest city in Cambodia.

On the way, we visit another must-see Khmer architectural masterpiece, the Banteay Chhmar temple, built in the late 12th century which is still surrounded by vegetation and off the beaten track.

Once in Battambang, we take the thrilling ‘bamboo train‘ ride on board of a motorized bamboo platform on the old railway line to venture into the Cambodian countryside.

We end the day with an extraordinary visit to the cave on Phnom Sampeu Hill to watch the incredible spectacle of millions of bats that swarm daily at 5.30pm towards Tonle Sap Lake to eat.

Included : Accommodation, breakfast, tour guide, tickets and private transportation

07. TRANSFER TO PHNOM PENH

Oudong MonasteryOudong Monastery

Let’s carry on our journey to the capital Phnom Penh. The long transfer from Battambang gives us the chance to see the Khmer people’s lifestyle as they carry out their daily activities.

We stop at Pursat town for a visit to the steatite, or soapstone, workshop, where religious statues and a variety of different artifacts are produced. We then visit the terracotta workshops at Kompong Chhnang village.

In the afternoon we reach Oudong, former capital of the Kingdom of Cambodia from 1818 to 1866. Visit the Oudong Monastery, the largest in Cambodia, and the nearby hill where we can admire the sacred stupas that preserve some relics of the Buddha and from where we can enjoy an incredible panorama.

Included : Accommodation, breakfast, tour guide, tickets and private transportation

08. VISIT PHNOM PENH - DEPARTURE

Throne Hall - Royal Palace © Gabriele StoiaThrone Hall – Royal Palace

Explore the charming capital city of Phnom Penh, once known as the ‘Pearl of Asia’, one of the most beautiful cities built in Indochina in the 1920s that retains its colonial and traditional Khmer charm.

We visit the Royal Palace, today home of the King, where the Throne Room and the Silver Pagoda stand out. Next up is the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum (or ‘S-21 School’), which bears witness to the dramatic period during the Khmer Rouge regime.

We end the day at the suggestive and colourful local market before heading to the airport in time for your departure flight.

Included : Breakfast, tickets, tour guide and private transportation

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Angkor, Battambang and Phnom Penh

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