This guided tour will introduce you to the cultural highlights and most famous temples in the Ancient city of Angkor. From must see attractions like the Angkor Wat to off the beaten path discoveries further afield, you’ll get the full experience of this stunning ancient marvel.
Join us a tour of the highlights of Angkor and discover the magnificence of this ancient kingdom.
At a glance
- Sunset Cyclo Tour in Phnom Penh
- Silver Pagoda at the Royal Palace, Phnom Penh.
- Rabbit Island visit by boat and enjoy white-sand beaches
- Experience Cambodia’s undiscovered islands
- Angkor Wat sunrise and temples exploration
Itinerary in Brief
- DAY 1: Arrival Phnom Penh
- DAY 2: Phnom Penh
- DAY 3: Phnom Penh – Kep
- DAY 4: Kep
- DAY 5: Kep – Sihanoukville
- DAY 6: Sihanoukville
- DAY 7: Sihanoukville
- DAY 8: Sihanoukville
- DAY 9: Sihanoukville – Siem Reap
- DAY 10: Siem Reap
- DAY 11: Siem Reap
- DAY 12: Siem Reap – Departure
International Flight: Arrival flight is your own arrangement (not included)
Visa information: Cambodian Visa can be applied on arrival Siem Reap International Airport at $30. Be sure to bring two passport photos and your valid passport at least 6 months before departure Cambodia and has at least 2 blank pages available for stamp the visa. Note that some nationalities are required to get visa in advance at Royal Embassy of Kingdom of Cambodia in their country like Afghanistan, Algeria, Arab Saudi, Bangladesh, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Nigeria.
Private Transfer: Upon arrival Phnom Penh Airport, you will meet and greet by your Cambodian English speaking tour guide with a chauffeur transfer you to hotel for check in.
Sunset Cyclo Tour in Phnom Penh: We take to the streets of Phnom Penh with a cyclo tour of the city riverfront area in late afternoon, as the sun begins to set and the city comes alive with locals exercising to popular music, families out for a stroll or taking advantage of the food vendors to eat their snacks on the lawns in front of the King’s residence. We begin at the corner of Koh Pich Island where the recent addition of a funfair has brought the area alive with parents and children as we then head past the Hotel Cambodiana and Chaktomuk Theater and take a break on the riverbank, looking west towards the glittering Royal Palace with the last rays of the sun lighting up the sky behind it. We continue along bustling Sisowath Quay, in front of myriad restaurants, bars and cafes and venture into the side streets before ending our journey with the exercising work-out groups and colorful fountain lights at the Cambodia-Vietnam Friendship Park.
Morning Visit Royal Palace and National Museum: This morning we explore the stunning Royal Palace complex, home to the Cambodian royal family and a symbol of the nation. We begin amid the beautiful royal gardens, landscaped with tropical plants and studded with gleaming spires. We enter the Throne Hall where the royal receptions are held and the Cambodian king’s coronation took place. We then pass the Napoleon III Pavilion made from iron, a gift from the French emperor in the 19th century. We continue to the Silver Pagoda, named after the 5000 silver tiles covering the floor, each weighing 1kg. Inside are some of the country’s most cherished treasures, including a life-size gold Buddha studded with 9584 diamonds, the largest weighing 25 carats. There is also a delicate emerald Buddha made of baccarat crystal, which gives the temple its Khmer name of Wat Preah Keo (Temple of the Emerald Buddha). We leave the Royal Palace and continue to the nearby National Museum, home to the world’s finest collection of sculpture from the Angkor period. The exquisite building was completed between 1917 and 1920 and features a lush courtyard garden surrounded by collections from the pre-Angkor, Angkor and post-Angkor periods. We concentrate on the incredible sandstone sculpture from Angkor, as well as the intricate bronzes.
Afternoon Visit Tuol Sleng and the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek: We come face to face with the horrific crimes of the Khmer Rouge. Tuol Sleng was a former high school that the Khmer Rouge turned into a centre for interrogation, torture and death. Today it is a museum of torture and serves to remind visitors of the terrible atrocities that came to pass in Cambodia. 17,000 people passed through the gates of this prison and only seven lived to tell the tale. The Khmer Rouge were meticulous in their record keeping, photographing all the prisoners and many of these haunting black and white images are on display in the cells. Enemies of the revolution were killed here, as well as many Khmer Rouge loyalists, denounced by an ever more paranoid political party. It became a production line for killing, as those that worked within its walls were unwaveringly loyal to Pol Pot. The party did not make mistakes, so those sent here had to be guilty. The role of the prison was not to prove innocence but to confirm guilt. Tuol Sleng is a profoundly moving experience and not everyone will want to visit. However, it is key to understanding the hell into which Cambodia descended and how far it has come in the years since. We then travel out of town to the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek. Prisoners from Tuol Sleng followed this same route to their fate. An old Chinese cemetery, Choeung Ek was turned into an extermination camp for political prisoners. The remains of 8985 people were exhumed from mass graves and are kept in a memorial stupa here. Despite the horrors of the past, it is a peaceful place to go and a tranquil spot to reflect on the tragic events that engulfed Cambodia and its people.
Phnom Penh Sunset Boat Cruise with Kanika: In the late afternoon, we board a local boat for a sunset cruise on the river. We set off on the Tonle Sap River, which famously reverses direction each year, acting as the world’s largest natural flood barrier for the Mekong River. We cruise past the Royal Palace compound and around the Chrouy Changvar Peninsular on to the mighty Mekong River. We cruise past small villages and see fishing boats preparing their catch. We return to Phnom Penh after dark.
We leave Phnom Penh and travel south on National Highway 3 towards the south coast. We stop at Tonle Bati to visit the beautiful 12th century temple of Ta Prohm. Built by King Jayavarman VII, this temple is surrounded by flourishing flowers and is a tranquil sanctuary.
We continue to Takeo where we enjoy a local lunch on our expense overlooking the water. We then travel by speedboat along an ancient canal to Phnom Da, a beautiful 8th century temple atop a small mount. An island in the wet season, when this area is inundated with water, it is surrounded by a sea of green rice fields in the dry season. We explore the brick temple on top of the hill and take in the magnificent views. We then follow a forest path to Asram Moha Russei, a curious hermit’s shelter carved from sandstone. Later we return by speedboat to Takeo and travel to the little town of Kompong Trach. For a long time, this place was forgotten, as the civil war kept it off the map, but the new border crossing with Vietnam has seen a bit of a boom. We stop to visit the interesting cave temple of Wat Kirisan, built into the base of Phnom Sor. We travel through a small cave to a hidden chamber open to the elements, the sheer walls dripping with foliage. There are several hidden shrines here, as well as the Cave of a Thousand Rice fields, where locals claim the limestone looks like terraces. We journey to the old French-era seaside resort of Kep and check into a comfortable hotel for the night.
After having breakfast, we travel to visit the Crap market and Peper farm.
In the afternoon, we travel to the boat pier to board a local boat for the journey to Koh Tonsay or Rabbit Island. We journey across calm waters to this beautiful palm-fringed island, home to a small community of fisher-folk and farmers. We leave some time free to enjoy the white-sand beaches that ring the island. After a lunch of fresh seafood, there is more time to enjoy the sun, sea and sand before we travel back to Kep by boat.
Journey from Kep to Sihanoukville: We leave behind the beaches of Kep and head west towards the popular resort of Sihanoukville, home to Cambodia’s finest beaches. We pass through the charming riverside town of Kampot where we may stop for some refreshments. From here, the pretty road passes under the shadow of Bokor Mountain and hugs the coastline for much of its length. We pass through some pretty fishing villages before we arrive in the small town of Veal Renh on National Highway 4. We head south to Sihanoukville, check into our hotel and leave the rest of the day free to enjoy the beautiful beaches and warm waters.
Visit Ream National Park with boat to see mangrove forest: We leave Sihanoukville and travel to Ream National Park ranger post to board our boat. We cruise up the river, passing through pristine mangrove forests and may have the chance to see monkeys, fish eagles and porpoise. We leave the river behind and make for the open sea, our destination the beautiful white sand beaches that flank the park. We leave the boat and walk through an area of natural forest to emerge on an empty tropical beach. We leave some time free to swim or relax in this lovely spot, while our team prepares a fresh seafood barbecue for lunch. Later we return to Sihanoukville.
Meal: BBQ lunch
Full day shared speedboat trip to Koh Rong & Rong Saloem: We leave Sihanoukville and board our speedboat to experience Cambodia’s undiscovered islands. We travel out to Koh Rong and Koh Rong Saloem, stopping along the way for the chance to snorkel around some of the smaller islands. We reach Koh Rong and anchor off the west coast, where there is an incredible white sand beach stretching for almost 10km. We leave some time free to swim or relax in this lovely spot, while our team prepares a fresh seafood barbecue for lunch. After some more time to relax, we return to Sihanoukville.
Meal: BBQ Lunch
Free day ( No guide and no car )
Private Transfer driver only: You will meet and transfer from hotel to Sihanoukville Airport for your flight to Siem Reap.
Domestic Flight: Flight from Sihanoukville to Siem Reap by Cambodia Angkor Air.Private Transfer: On arrival Siem Reap, you will be welcomed by your English speaking guide and transfer you to hotel for overnight stay.
Evening Circus Shows Visit: In the evening we head out to the home of the innovative circus performers from Phare Ponleu Selpak. Their regular modern circus show under the Big Top is proving very popular in Siem Reap and in each show they display a variety of disciplines including acrobatics, choreography, juggling, clowning, live music and much more. A pre-show dinner can also be arranged.
Angkor Wat sunrise and exploration: Rising at the crack of dawn, we journey out to the Mother of all temples, Angkor Wat. Believed to be the world’s largest religious building, this temple is the perfect fusion of symbolism and symmetry and a source of pride and strength to all Khmers. Built in the 12th century by King Suryavarman II, this is most famous temple at Angkor. We stay at Angkor Wat to enjoy a picnic breakfast. As the crowds return to their hotels, we venture into Angkor Wat to enjoy its magnificence in peace and quiet. We begin by unraveling the mysteries of the bas-reliefs that tell of tales from Hindu mythology and of the glories of the Khmer empire. Stretching for almost one kilometre, these intricate carvings are a candidate for the world’s longest unbroken piece of art.
Following in the footsteps of the devout and the destructive before us, we then continue to the upper levels of the inner sanctuary. The final steps to the upper terrace of Angkor are the steepest of all, as pilgrims of old were to stoop on their pilgrimage to encounter the Gods. Finally the pinnacle, the sacred heart of Angkor Wat, a blend of spirituality and symmetry so perfect that few moments will measure up.
Shared Helicopter rider over Angkor Wat 14mn: You will take a short scenic flight over Angkor Wat by Helicopter. You will see amazing view on top of temple and surrounded area.
Preah Khan, Neak Poan and Pre Rup: This afternoon, we travel to the mighty temple of Preah Khan or ‘Sacred Sword’, built by King Jayavarman VII in the late 12th century. Sister temple to Ta Prohm, the cruciform corridors here are impressive and there are some wonderful carvings adorning the walls, including the spectacular hall of dancers. Look out for the curious two-storey structure that is almost Grecian in inspiration. This is one of the few temples originally dedicated to Buddhism and Hinduism. The original eastern entrance was for Mahayana Buddhists, while the other cardinal points represented the Hindu trinity of Shiva, Vishnu and Brahma.
We then continue on to the elegant curves of Neak Poan. This petite temple is the ultimate ornamental fountain, its series of elaborate spouts including the heads of lions and elephants. Originally Neak Poan was on an island at the centre of vast baray (reservoir), known as Jayatataka or reservoir of Jaya.
We finish by experiencing sunset over the rice fields from the royal crematorium of Pre Rup, a classic view of the Cambodian countryside
Early Morning Visit Ta Prohm (07:00am): We rise early morning to travel to Ta Prohm temple. Ta Prohm has been abandoned to the elements, a reminder that while empires rise and fall, the riotous power of nature marches on, oblivious to the dramas of human history. Left as it was ‘discovered’ by French explorer Henri Mouhot in 1860, the tentacle-like tree roots here are slowly strangling the surviving stones, man first conquering nature to create, nature later conquering man to destroy.
We visit the immense walled city of Angkor Thom that was the masterpiece of King Jayavarman VII. Following the occupation of Angkor by the Chams from 1177 to 1181, the new king decided to build an impregnable fortress at the heart of his empire. The scale is simply staggering and we are immediately overwhelmed by the audacity of Jayavarman on arrival at the city’s gates. The causeway is lined by an intricate bridge depicting the Churning of the Ocean of Milk from Hindu mythology in which the devas (gods) and asuras (devils) play tug of war with a naga (seven-headed serpent) to obtain the elixir of immortality.
We begin our visit at the Terrace of the Leper King. This intricately carved platform was the royal crematorium and the statue that was originally thought to be the leper king is now believed to be Yama, the god of death. We continue along the Terrace of Elephants, originally used as a viewing gallery for the king to preside over parades, performances and traditional sports. The Royal Palace complex, which was once home to the God-kings of Angkor; Preah Palilay, a Buddhist temple overshadowed by huge capok trees; Phimean Akas, a petite pyramid temple; At the southern end lies the Baphuon, once of the most beautiful temples at Angkor, dating from the reign of Uditayavarman in the 11th century. It has undergone a massive renovation by the French and is now once again open for viewing.
Our climax is the enigmatic and enchanting temple of the Bayon. At the exact centre of Angkor Thom, this is an eccentric expression of the creative genius and inflated ego of Cambodia’s most celebrated king. Its 54 towers are each topped off with the four faces of Avalokiteshvara (Buddha of Compassion), which bear more than a passing resemblance to the king himself. These colossal Our climax is the enigmatic and enchanting temple of the Bayon. At the exact centre of Angkor Thom, this is an eccentric expression of the creative genius and inflated ego of Cambodia’s most celebrated king. Its 54 towers are each topped off with the four faces of Avalokiteshvara (Buddha of Compassion), which bear more than a passing resemblance to the king himself. These colossal heads stare down from every side, exuding power and control with a hint of compassion, just the mix required to keep a hold on such a vast empire. Before clambering upwards, we unravel the mysteries of the bas-reliefs, with their intricate scenes of ancient battles against the Chams and their snapshot of daily life during the Angkor period.
Lunch at Sala Kdei Khmer House: Enjoy a traditional Khmer lunch menu at Sala Kdei, an intimate location to eat and rest in the middle of the day while exploring the temples. Breakfast, sunset cocktails or a Khmer cooking class are also available at this gorgeous traditional wooden home on the banks of the Royal bathing pool at Sra Srang.
In the afternoon, we travel continue south to one of the largest and least-visited villages on the Tonle Sap Lake, Kompong Khleang, which has a population of about 10,000 people, all of whom make a living from the fishing industry. We explore the canals (wet season) or streets (dry season) of this incredible town. In the wet season, the houses appear to be floating, as water laps at the verandas, but in the dry season towering stilts are revealed, the houses almost like wooden skyscrapers. We visit one of the pagodas here, built on the site of an ancient temple, and see the wall paintings. We then travel return to Siem Reap by road.
Meal: Lunch at Sala Kdei Khmer House
Private Transfer: At the convenience time, your guide will pick you up and transfer you the Siem Reap International Airport for your departure flight back hotel.
END OF SERVICES
Modern city hotel in Yangon with excellent location. Jasmine Palace Hotel presents good value and high standards is the perfect base for exploring the city’s highlights.
- All sightseeing and transfer services as detailed in our itinerary
- Meals as indicated in itinerary as: B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner, drinks not include
- English speaking guide (local guide, one guide one place)
- Circus Shows
- All entrance fees as detailed in our itinerary Ground transportation in private A/C vehicle
- 2 bottles of water and 2 refreshing towels per person on full day excursions
- All permissions and local taxes
- Arrival and departure gifts
- Public liability insurance
- Flight from Sihanoukville to REP
What's Not Included
- Tour services not detailed in our itinerary
- All meals not specified and no drinks except complimentary water
- Visa for Cambodia (Visa issued on arrival, USD30/pax, please bring 1 passport photo)
- Overweight luggage
- Arrival/Departure flight to Cambodia
- Banking fees
- Early Hotel check-in
- Expenditure of a personal nature
- Tips and gratuities
- Other services not listed in ‘What’s In’
- Travel insurance (cover against all cancellation costs, medical expense, including repatriation in the event of accident or illness).
- Not including any additional charges from hotel during its peak season, the additional charge is to be advised up on the request of booking during peak season.
- Accommodation in double/twin shared room basis with daily breakfast as specified
- NOTE: The regular hotel check-in time is @ 1400 pm and check-out is before 1200 pm
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