All of our tours are in private basic.
PHNOM PENH – SIEM REAP
From the great rulers of the Angkorian Empire, to the French occupation of Indochina, and on to the devastating Khmer Rouge reign of the 1970s, modern Cambodia has been shaped by the experiences and events of its past. This five day takes you from the epicenter of the country’s recent tragedy to the glorious crumbling temples of its ancient empire.
Arrive in Phnom Penh where French colonial architecture shines through in fleeting glimpses as you drive along the wide boulevards of the capital city. Overlooking the Tonle River stands the grandiose Royal Palace, home to the country’s royal family and the stunning Silver Pagoda. Next door is the city’s National Museum which contains hundreds of relics and artifacts from ancient times. Your guided tour will be the perfect introduction to the Angkorian era and a preview of what awaits you in Siem Reap.
Travel west to Siem Reap where you will have plenty of time to explore the Temples of Angkor. With hundreds of temples within a 40 square-kilometer area, your DirecTravelAsia guide will show you all of the highlights, along with some hidden gems rarely seen by other tourists. From the massive Angkor Wat to the petite Banteay Srei, your days will be filled with wonder as you marvel at the sheer scope of the temple complex and at the intricate details of their carvings.
From the country’s modern capital to its ancient one, experience the rich cultural heritage of Cambodia.
Day 01 – Phnom Penh
Arrive in Phnom Penh airport, welcome by your DirecTravelAsia guide and transfer to hotel. This city was once considered one of the most beautiful in the Orient, and despite its recent turbulent history it still retains a colonial charm. A city tour by pedal-powered cyclo includes the National Museum, the Royal Palace, Tuol Sleng Prison and Wat Phnom.
Overnight in Phnom Penh.
A short morning flight takes you to Siem Reap, the base for exploring the fabled temples of Angkor and the ancient capital of the Khmer empire. After freshening up, travel to the outskirts of town where the 9th century temples of Rolous are located. Visit the anceint ruins and travel through the countryside by local ox cart enjoying the peaceful rural scenery and meeting friendly locals along the way.Overnight in Siem Reap.
Day 3: Siem Reap (B)
Breakfast at hotel. Today we visit some of the most beautiful temples on the small circuit, including the huge pyramid of Takeo, built in the 10th century. We continue to jungle-clad Ta Prohm. This temple was a monastery built by Jayavarman VII as a residence for his mother. Ta Prohm has been controversially left to the destructive power of the jungle by French archaeologists to demonstrate the awesome power of nature. It has been largely consumed by the jungle and as you climb through the dilapidated stone structures you see many giant trees growing out of the top of the temple itself. We continue to visit Sras Srang, the royal pool situated opposite the East Gate of Banteay Kdei. It is known as the King[chr:39]s bathing pond. Finally we take in Prasat Kravan, an elegant brick temple from the 10th century with some fine brick carvings in the interior.
We continue our Angkor encounter with a visit to the spectacular temples of the grand circuit. We first explore Preah Khan or Sacred Sword, one of the largest temples at Angkor with huge corridors extending in every direction. Built by Jayavarman VII in the 12th century, this is a highlight of Angkor. We continue to Neak Poan, a delicate temple set in a square pool and surrounded on all sides by fountains and ponds. Next is Ta Som and its famous strangler fig tree smothering the eastern gate. We wind up at Pre Rup, built in the 10th Century by Rajendravarman. Pre Rup means turning the body and the Khmer people believe this temple was used for cremations. This is the perfect place for sunset over the beautiful Cambodian rice fields. Overnight in Siem Reap.
Day 4: Siem Reap (B)
We rise early today to catch the sunrise over the mother of all temples, the world’s largest religious building, Angkor Wat. We return to the hotel for breakfast and later in the morning explore Angkor Wat in more detail to view its architecture and bas reliefs. This temple is the largest religious buildings ever constructed and is truly one of the wonders of the world. Believed to have been undertaken as a temple and mausoleum for King Suryavarman II at the peak of the Khmer empire in the first half of the 12th century, Angkor Wat is the best-preserved of the Angkorian temples.
We visit the sites of Angkor Thom. This Royal city was first built under the reign of Udayadityavarman II in the 11th Century. It was destroyed when the Chams from Vietnam rose up against the Khmers and invaded, sacking the city, and was subsequently renovated by King Jayavarman VII at the end of the 12th Century. Its vast walls, some 6m wide, 8m high and 13km in length contain many monuments. We begin by visiting the South Gate, flanked by demons and gods engaged in a tug of war to obtain the elixir of immortality. We continue to the Bayon, a temple mountain built by Jayavarman VII. It is situated in the center of the city of Angkor Thom. It is a three-tiered pyramid with its entrance facing east. The central shrine is surrounded by 54 towers all crowned by gigantic faces, representing Avalokiteshvara but with the features of Jayavarman VII. We also visit other important sites in this immense walled city, including the pyramid of Baphuon, Phimean Akas, and the royal viewing stands known as the Terrace of the Elephants and the Terrace of the Leper King. Overnight in Siem Reap.
DAY 5: Siem Reap departure (B)
After breakfast transfer to the airport for your onward flight.
Rates vary frequently. Please contact us to get the best possible price based upon your travel period and specific touring needs.
Our Cambodia Heritage Tour includes:
- Accommodation at selected hotels
- Full board meals as mentioned (B= Breakfast, L= Lunch, D= Dinner)
- English-speaking local guide
- Tours and transfers as mentioned by private air-conditioned vehicles
- Domestic flight Phnom Penh-Siem Reap
- Entrance fees for mentioned visits
- Boat rides mentioned
Our Cambodia Heritage Tour excludes:
- Visa for Cambodia (Visa issued on arrival, USD 20 + 1 photo per person)
- International Airport departure tax Siem Reap USD 25 / passenger
- Meals other than mentioned
- Camera/video entrance fees
- Laundry, telephone calls and expenditure of a personal nature
- Any services other than mentioned