This guided tour covers all of the main destinations in Cambodia as well as wide variety of off the beaten track highlights.
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
- Visit Kep cave pagodas
- Rabbit Island visit by boat and enjoy white-sand beaches
- Bird-watching at Perk Total Biosphere
- Temple Visit at Siem Reap
Itinerary in Brief
- DAY 1: Arrival – Phnom Penh
- DAY 2: Phnom Penh
- DAY 3: Phnom Penh – Koh Kong
- DAY 4: Excursion to Tatai Waterfall
- DAY 5: Free Time at 4 Rivers
- DAY 6: Koh Kong – Kep
- DAY 7: Kep – Rabbit Island – Kep
- DAY 8: Birdwatching at Prek Toal Biosphere
- Day 9: Siem Reap
- Day 10: 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 Theatre 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 colourful 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 Toul Sleng and Killing Field: 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.
Evening CLA On Stage Shows at National Museum: It is a series of 3 rotating shows at the National Museum of Phnom Penh, featuring a wide range of traditional performing arts. With more than Apsara dances, we offer you the chance to discover the diversity of Cambodian culture and traditional arts through original and enjoyable pieces, set in the splendid gardens of the National Museum. In addition to giving a unique opportunity to experience Cambodian culture and arts, CLA (Cambodian Living Art) aims at creating regular, well-paid work for emerging arts professionals in the arts sector. Time: 7-8pm, doors open at 6.30pm. Days: Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday.
Journey from Phnom Penh to Koh Kong via Sre Ambel: We leave Phnom Penh and travel south on National Highway 4 towards the south coast. As we leave behind the suburbs of Phnom Penh, the scenery gets more interesting. We pause to pay our respects to Yeay Peau, a protective spirit who looks after travellers on the road. The Pich Nil Pass is where the road cuts through Bokor and Kirirom National Parks to the east and west and is lined with shrines and incense. We swing west on new National Highway 48 towards Koh Kong, passing through the small port of Sre Ambel. The road soon passes through some beautiful stretches of Cambodian jungle, offering some expansive views over the Cardamom Mountains.
Shared boat transfer service: You will then take a boat transfer to the 4 Rivers ecolodge. The boat journey to 4 Rivers takes from 15 to 25 minutes and departs from Tatai Bridge at 2pm.
Remainder of time is free at own leisure (kayaking, swimming…etc).
Dinner is included
Nature’s Spa – Tatai Waterfall by boat (Shared tour with 4 Rivers’ local guide)
One of the must-sees of the region, Tatai Waterfall is offered every second day on regular basis. In addition, it can be organized on a private basis for 4 guests or more (subject to boat and guide availability). Some degree of fitness is necessary for enjoying this trip to the full. Away from the tranquility of 4 Rivers Floating Lodge, the thunder of the majestic Tatai Falls reveals the river’s true power as it drops 6 meters to the rocks below.
Your day, depending on the tide, starts at around 10am for the 45-minute boat ride past Tatai village to the falls. Turning on to a tributary you head into the heart of the Cardamom jungle to the far-off sounds of exotic birds and its secretive wildlife.
Within minutes you are at journey’s end, gazing down into the turbulent waters of the falls.
Soon it’s time for lunch, maybe a few moments hydro-massage and a refreshing drink as you find some shade for a picnic and open your senses to the sights and sounds of the jungle. We will also arrange to transport some kayaks for your added fun and adventure.
After leaving the falls, we stop at the mouth of a small river where you can paddle your kayak to a traditional Cambodian farm; you will see rice fields and some fruit trees depending of the season.
You should bring: sun block, a hat or a cap, slippers and swimming costume, your camera How long: departure at 10am, 5-6 hours or as long as you are enjoying yourselves Includes: cruise aboard a local boat, your guide, picnic lunch, mineral water
Limitations: the tour can be taken all-year-around except in very heavy rain
Dinner is included
Meal: Breakfast, Picnic lunch box, Dinner
Day free at own leisure (no guide neither driver at disposal). However, you may have different activity option at disposal and pay directly on spot if you wish to join one of those activities.
Lunch & Dinner is arranged
Accommodation: 4 Rivers Floating Lodge – Floating Tent
Meal: Breakfast, Lunch and dinner
Shared boat transfer service (08 AM): Check-out and Departure by boat from 4 River Eco-lodge.
Koh Kong to Kep via Kampot: We leave 4 River and We travel east on new National Highway 48 towards Sre Ambel, passing through some beautiful stretches of Cambodian jungle, offering some expansive views over the Cardamom Mountains. We swing south on National Highway 4 towards the small town of Veal Renh and then turn east towards Kampot. This 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 graceful riverside town of Kampot. Take your pick from one of the many charming riverside restaurants and bars for a meal or refreshing drink.
Afternoon visit Kep cave pagodas: We then journey to Phnom Chhnork, a large cave that contains a 7th century brick temple in remarkable condition. This hidden temple is a very sacred place for local Khmers. On the way we pass though beautiful countryside. Depending on the time of year we may come across lots of local activity in the fields. 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 Ricefields, where locals claim the limestone looks like terraces.
After visiting the pagoda you may like to have a late afternoon sundowner at one of the many riverside bars or restaurants before we return to Kep, our base of the night.
Meal: Breakfast at 4 Rivers
Morning tour of Kep town: you set off with your guide to explore the old French seaside resort of Kep, including its famous crab market & pepper plantation farm.
Afternoon Kep Island Excursion: 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 fisherfolk and farmers. We leave some time free to enjoy the white-sand beaches that ring the island. Later afternoon, there is more time to enjoy the sun, sea and sand before we travel back to Kep by boat.
Note: Pick-up time from hotel lobby is at 5:30 AM
Full day tour to Prek Toal Biosphere (private tour arranged by Sam Veasna Center): You’ll have an excursion to Prek Toal Biosphere, home to some of the world’s most endangered birdlife. Located on the northwestern shore of the Tonle Sap Lake, it is one of the most productive bodies of water in the world where millions of fish spawn, making it an ideal spot for waterbirds to feed. Prek Toal is a vast area of natural flooded forest that draws thousands of birds annually to breed during the dry season (Oct-Mar) and is one of the premier places in Southeast Asia to see rare birds such as storks, adjutants, pelicans and ibis. Birdwatchers will drift through their habitat to observe large flocks of birds feeding on the lake shore, perched in the trees or soaring above the forest.
Leaving Siem Reap in the morning you will be transferred by boat from Phnom Krom to Prek Toal whilst enjoying breakfast en route. The morning is spent bird-watching on a traditional wooden boat as you glide through the flooded forest with local specialists. After a local lunch, experience local life at the nearby floating village, learning about different fishing techniques and traditional water hyacinth weaving. Return to Siem Reap in the late afternoon.
Meal: Picnic lunch at Prek Toal floating village
Full Day Visit Beng Mealea and Koh Ker temples: We travel to the lost temple of Beng Mealea, the titanic of temples, a slumbering giant lost for centuries in the forests of Cambodia. It is the most accessible of Angkor’s lost temples, a mirror image of Angkor Wat, but utterly consumed by the voracious appetite of nature. Constructed by Suryavarman II (1113-1150), the builder of Angkor Wat, the forest has run riot here and it is hard to get a sense of the monument’s shape amid the daunting ruins. Here it is possible to enjoy an Indiana Jones experience clambering about the vast ruin. For those who want a more gentle adventure, there is also a sturdy wooden walkway running right into the heart of the temple. It is also possible to visit a nearby Angkor-era quarry from where stone was cut to build these massive monuments.
We then head into the bush to the remote Angkor capital of Koh Ker. The history of Cambodia is riven with dynastic spats and political intrigue and one of the most memorable came in the 10th century when Jayavarman IV (928-942) fell out with his family, stormed off to the northwest and established the rival capital of Koh Ker. Although the capital for just 15 years, Jayavarman IV was determined to legitimise his rule through a prolific building programme that left a legacy of 30 major temples and some gargantuan sculpture that is on display in the National Museum in Phnom Penh. We climb to the summit of Prasat Thom, a seven-storey step pyramid, more Mayan than Khmer, with commanding views over the surrounding forest. Nearby is Prasat Krahom or Red Temple, named after the pinkish Banteay Srei-style stone from which it is built. There are many more temples in the area, including the five towers of Prasat Ling, each enclosing a giant linga or fertility symbol, the biggest and best found in situ anywhere in Cambodia. We then return to Siem Reap
Morning is free: This morning is free at your own leisure.
Private Transfer: Our guide and chaffeure will pick us up from hotel to airport for our departure flight from Siem Reap.
International Flight: Departure flight is your own arrangement (not included)
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 included
- English speaking guide (local guide, one guide one place)
- 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
- Ferry transfer sharing
- Boat trip on Tonle Sap
- Sunset cyclo tour in Phnom Penh
- CLA shows on stage ticket
- Additional air ticket Phnom Penh – Siem Reap by Cambodia Angkor Air (K6 / class economy): USD 127 /way/pers. (Note: Airfare are subject to change without prior notice by airline company)
- Bird watching tour with Sam Veasna birding English-speaking guide
- Bike for cycling tour
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 @ 1400pm and check-out is before 1200pm
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