Experience the highlights of Cambodia with a custom 10 day itinerary enabling you to see as much as you can during your stay. Your adventure begins with a visit to the bustling city of Phnom Penh. Next, it’s off to Siem Reap. Here, you'll have the opportunity to visit the vast array of ruins and temples around Angkor Wat. End your trip with a few days of relaxation in Sihanoukville.
Welcome to Cambodia! Upon arrival in Phnom Penh by, obtain your Cambodian visa, if you haven't already. Clear Immigration and Customs and proceed into the arrival area. You will meet your private guide and driver, who will transfer you to the hotel for check in.
Phnom Penh, once lauded as the Pearl of Asia, is making its comeback known. Restaurants, businesses, and hotels are opening daily, and the buzz of excitement can be palpably felt. The unbelievable spirit of the Cambodian people lives here, short miles away from evidence of a 20th century marred by extreme violence. Orange robed monks seem to be everywhere, motorbikes won't stop brushing by you, the foreign aroma of spice markets will assault your senses, and it's all part of the beautiful experience.
Today, you will depart on a traditional cyclo tour through the heart of Phnom Penh. Cycle to the holy site of Wat Phnom where a 14th century stupa and a small pagoda stands. It is the tallest religious structure in the city. Continue along the riverside promenade, stopping at the Royal Palace and the Silver Pagoda. This is one of the best places in all of Cambodia where objects embodying the brilliance of the Khmer civilization can still be viewed; continue to visit the National Museum with its huge collection of Khmer sculpture and artifacts recovered from Angkor. Lunch will be at the Friends Restaurant, which provides under privileged street children with the opportunity to gain first-hand experience of the hospitality business.
This afternoon make a trip to visit the Tuol Sleng Prison, housed in a high school, to glimpse the devastating horrors that prevailed during Cambodia's ultra-radical Marxist movement. This excursion may prove distressing for some; it is however an important piece of Cambodia’s recent past. Afterwards, take an excursion to Choeng Ek, also known as the "killing fields" located just outside the city.
Afterwards return to your hotel to spend the evening free at your leisure.
Today, you will be picked up at your accommodations in Phnom Penh and transferred to the airport for your domestic flight to Siem Reap. On arrival, you will be met and transferred to your accommodations in Siem Reap. (This service is on a private basis.)
This afternoon, you will start to explore Angkor Wat, the largest and most breathtaking monument at Angkor. Built as the funerary temple for Suryavarman II, who ruled from 1112 to 1152, Angkor never fails to reward the first time or repeat visitor with its grand scale, surreal bas reliefs and unbelievable attention to detail. Here, you will spend the afternoon exploring one of man's most magnificent creations. (This service is on a private basis.)
Siem Reap is the best option for an international traveler's base from which to explore the Angkor temples. If not for the tourism boom brought on by the awesome sites around the city, Siem Reap might have been another sleepy Khmer village. Instead we find a bustling tourist town, complete with a well-named Pub Street, food vendors, luxury hotels, backpacking hostels, and the international travelers that drive it all. Sure, you'll probably want to spend most of your time outside the city, but don't underestimate the awesome opportunity to hit the town and mingle, bargain, eat, and drink your way through Siem Reap.
This morning at 8:00 AM, you will depart on your tour beginning with Beng Mealea, a seldom-visited ruin and a spectacular jungle temple. Almost no restoration of the area has been undertaken so the jungle has become one with the carved sandstone. Roots of kapok trees twist and wind their way around the carvings and gray galleries. Intricately carved depictions have been well preserved, including scenes from the sacred Hindu Vedas, such as the bird-god Garuda giving birth to Vishnu, the god who preserves all things.
Enjoy lunch at local restaurant before heading to your afternoon sites.
In the afternoon visit to the South Gate of Angkor Thom where you can take a quiet optional 1km walk along the wall and through the jungle to a hidden temple. Then visit the temples of Bayon, Baphoun and Terrace of Elephants and Leper King. From there, you will explore Ta Phrom. This jungle-clad temple with overgrown trees exudes a haunting and exotic atmosphere. The magnificent roots of a tree push between the temple's huge stone blocks in a strange embrace.
After breakfast today, your private guide and driver will take you on a journey through the stunning countryside, to visit to the mysterious waterfall at Phnom Kulen. Phnom Kulen (or Kulen Mountain) translates as "Mountain of Lychees". Phnom Kulen is widely regarded as the birthplace of the ancient Khmer Empire. We will also visit Preah Ang Thom that houses a large statue of Buddha. It was built in the 16th century and is eight meters high. Preah Ang Thom is the sacred and worshiping god for Ku Len Mountain.
Next, you will visit the Terrace of Sdach Kum Ling, with a small brick-built ruined temple in its center. It was covered by lava for hundreds of years. After a cool refreshing swim in the waterfall you will have a local Khmer lunch local lunch and relax before continuing. There are two distinct life-size stone elephants that you will see at Kulen.
On the return to Siem Reap, you will take a scenic drive to Banteay Srei, loosely translated as "Citadel of Women." It houses some of the finest and best-preserved examples of classical Khmer bas-relief. Continue on to the Cambodia Land Mine Museum afterwards. A child soldier named Aki Ra was forced by the Khmer Rouge to lay thousands of mines as a child, and has now devoted his life to clearing them and has so far removed over 50,000. The facility he runs is part museum, but also an orphanage, school and clinic to victims. You will be back at your hotel in Siem Reap early this evening after a very memorable day. (This service is on a private basis.)
Today, you will be picked up at your accommodations in Siem Reap and transferred to the airport for your flight to Sihanoukville. On arrival, you will be driven to your accommodations in Sihanoukville to check in and enjoy the rest of the day at leisure. (This service is on a private basis.)
This is Cambodia's take on the tropical beach getaway locale. Cambodia's dense jungles make it difficult to live on the coast, which is why it took until the 1950's to found this port-town-turned-backpacker-hot-spot. Spending a few days on Sihanoukville's beaches is a chance to get off the grid. The large hotels haven't arrived quite yet, but they will in the next few years. For now, private beaches can still be found, and small boutique hotels are easier to find. Mixed in, of course, is the Cambodian spirit of hospitality and friendliness that make this country stand out over neighboring nations.
Enjoy this free time at your leisure.
Sadly, your journey must come to an end today. However, you will be leaving with new and unforgettable memories and experiences!
After breakfast at the hotel your private driver will pick you up from the hotel and transfer you directly to Phnom Penh International Airport for your departure flight home. (This service is on a private basis.)
La Rose Suites is a luxurious 5-star boutique hotel in the heart of Cambodia's bustling capital. Nestled on a quiet street near Independence Monument, the Royal Palace and National Museum, La Rose Suites is the perfect location for a walk in the local park or a stroll along the riverside promenade. Equally inspired by the charming architecture of French Indochina and the grandeur of Angkor Wat, La Rose Suites aims to please aesthetically while tempting your other senses.
The Shinta Mani Shack is a boutique resort set in a relaxing garden oasis. The property is centrally located in the leafy French Quarter of Siem Reap, between The Royal Gardens and the Old Market area, just 15 minutes from the famous Angkor Wat. The courtyard-style resort features 62 guest rooms that have either direct access, or first floor balcony views over the stunning swimming pool and flourishing tropical gardens. Four additional suites on property boast views over the leafy street side. Whether you stay in a poolside garden room, pool view room, junior suite or executive suite, you will be rewarded with high quality service and attention to detail from the accommodating staff.
Tamu Hotel is designed to be a chic haven with style and sophistication to enjoy the end of Otres redefining the "barefoot chic" spirit. Tamu offers an affordable luxury and a charming retreat on Otres. On top of a private beach with restaurant, the hotel has its 17-meter long swimming pool with sea-view, designed to fit the architectural harmony of the hotel with daybeds along to chill out. All the rooms feature modern comfort with A/C, fan, king size bed with duvet and four pillows, TV and DVD player (upon request), safety box fitted for computer, tea and coffee facilities. A large choice of rooms is offered: sea view, with gardens, pool view, with Balinese outdoor bathroom or indoor bathroom.
*Pricing is based on two persons traveling together, based on availability, subject to change.