Day 1 - Siem Reap - Arrival
Upon your arrival in Siem Reap, you will be welcomed by your local English speaking guide who will accompany you to your hotel for check in.
Enjoy some time at leisure.
Optional: Khmer Welcome Dinner
Take lunch/dinner at Selantra Restaurant and try a discovery menu introducing you to some of the varied tastes of fresh Khmer cuisine.
Overnight in Siem Reap.
Day 2 - Siem Reap (B)
After your breakfast, start your visit the ancient city of Angkor Thom by ‘remork’(similar to the Thai tuk tuk).. Angkor Thom was the last capital of the Great Khmer Empire under the reign of Jayavarman VII. This city is surrounded by an 8 m high wall, drawing a perfect square. Enter the city through the ancient South Gate, an impressive stone gate carved with Elephants and four giant faces. On each side of the entrance path a row of 54 gods or demons is holding the sacred Naga snake.
Then continue to Ta Prohm temple, built in the mid-12th to early 13th centuries. Ta Prohm is unique in that it has been left largely as it was found: overgrown by jungle trees and vines, with many parts of the temple crumbling to the ground. This makes Ta Prohm one of the most picturesque and memorable of the Angkor temples.
Enjoy your afternoon at leisure or you can take part in one of the optional activities.
Optional: Angkor Silk Farm
Drive through the countryside around the Western Baray where you can spot water buffalos in swampy ponds, kids in school uniforms on their bicycles and oxcarts. Visit the Angkor Silk Farm 15 km west of Siem Reap, where you can witness the entire process of silk creation from growing and harvesting mulberry as food for the silk worms, the breeding process and life cycle of the silk worm to the spinning the silk, the dying process and the creation of beautiful silk weavings on wooden hand looms. Children will get the opportunity to feed the silk worms – a fun experience!
Optional: Horse Back and Quad Bike Rides
Fun half day outings to the heart of Cambodia, passing authentic local villages, rice fields and a peaceful Angkor temple. Here, life goes on much as it has for centuries.
Optional: Angkor National Museum
The modern museum showcases artefacts from the Golden Era of the Khmer Empire by use of multimedia technology to picture this interesting historical period. Experience Angkor at its best on a guided visit to the Museum.
Optional: Tonle Sap Lake
Embark on an interesting boat trip on the Tonlé Sap Lake, where you will have the opportunity to learn about life on the lake. The Tonlé Sap Lake is the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia and officially designated as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, covering an area of around 250,000 hectares in the dry season. Due to a unique phenomenon, when the monsoon begins, the swollen waters of the Mekong River force the Tonlé Sap River to reverse its flow northwards, feeding the Great Lake and spreading over the surrounding flood plain.
Board a local boat and visit Kompong Phluck, a village where you will see houses on stilts that are submerged when Tonlé Sap Lake extends. On the way, you will pass floating houses and impressive flooded forests, portraying life on the water. (Note: Due to low water levels during the dry season, the boat trip is only possible from June to March. However an alternative floating village at Chong Kneas can be arranged instead).
Overnight in Siem Reap.
Day 3 - Siem Reap (B)
Breakfast at the hotel and enjoy this morning at leisure or you can take part in one of the optional activities:
Optional: Roluos Group
Get a first glimpse of Angkor today at the early temples of the Roluos Group. Roluos is the site of an ancient center of Khmer civilization known as Hariharalaya. It was the first town built by the Angkorian kings in the 8th and 9th century and consists of three main temples: Bakong, Lolei and PreahKo. The surrounding countryside with its paddy fields and sugar palm trees is very typical for Cambodia - enjoy the natural beauty on a cow cart ride, a fun way to get in touch with rural Cambodia and its friendly people. Your destination is Roluos Pagoda, where Buddhist monks will celebrate a private blessing ceremony for you, wishing you health and a safe journey - a memorable experience!
Optional: Cooking Class at Cassia Restaurant
Discover the secrets of authentic Khmer cuisine in a half-day cooking class at Cassia Restaurant. The tour starts with a guided trip to the market where you will learn everything about Cambodian vegetables, herbs, spices and other ingredients of which you will later be shown how to prepare these delicious dishes. Khmer cuisine is influenced by Thai, Indian, Vietnamese and Chinese food and not very spicy. At lunchtime, indulge yourself in your self-prepared meals.
Optional: Kbal Spean/Banteay Srei
One of the earliest Hindu pilgrimage sites in Cambodia. A short 3 km trek up the hill through dense jungle will reward you with excellent views over the plains and the Kulen hills. At the top, be surprised about the "River of 1000 Lingas" with some remarkable stone carvings of Hindu gods, animals and other symbols in the river bed. During the raining season, you can enjoy a refreshing bath in the waterfall, which is extremely popular with the local families. Enjoy a picnic lunch at the waterfall.
Continue to the countryside to see the "gem" of the Angkor area, the pretty temple of Banteay Srei. The so-called "Citadel of the Women" remains the best preserved temple in Cambodia. It displays some of the finest examples of classical Khmer art as this small temple is noted for its truly remarkable fine bas-reliefs. Banteay Srei is unique in that it is constructed of pink sandstone, which is seen nowhere else in Angkor.
On the way back, you will have the possibility to stop at local communities along the way and your guide will help you to interact with the local community to learn about the way of life here. Seize the opportunity to see how rice paper is produced and to taste Palm Wine and Palm Sugar, which are a popular local produce (seasonal).
This afternoon visit the biggest religious temple in the world: the magnificent Angkor Wat Temple. Built by Suryavarman II, in early 12th century Angkor Wat is constructed following the model of the temple mountain symbolizing the Mount Merou, home of the gods. Considered as the masterpiece of the Khmer architecture, this Vishnuite temple is the King"s funerary temple. These are the main reasons to explain the West exposure of the temple. Inside the temple the walls are covered by carvings and bas-reliefs depicting the Hindu mythology and the wars Suryavarman II made during his reign. Stay at this magic place until the sun sets and witness how the warm evening light changes the appearance of the 2000 Apsara dancers decorating the temple.
Overnight in Siem Reap.
Day 4 - Departure day (B)
Enjoy this morning free at leisure to relax at the hotel or to do some last minute souvenir shopping at Siem Reap"s colorful markets. Transfer to Siem Reap International Airport for your individual flight home.
(based on afternoon flight departures).