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Luxury Cambodia Holidays, Ta Promh
Luxury Cambodia Holidays, Phnom Penh
Luxury Cambodia Holidays, Angkor Wat
Luxury Cambodia Holidays, Raffles in Siem Reap
Luxury Cambodia Holidays, Hanuman Alaya

Cambodia's Green Season

FURTHER JOURNEYS IN CAMBODIA  brown-arrow-right.png

Day 1 - Arrive Phnom Penh
On arrival at Phnom Penh International airport, where you will be met in the Arrivals Hall by your guide and privately transferred to your hotel.  The rest of day is at leisure.

Overnight:  White Mansion (with upgrade option to Raffles Le Royal)
 

Day 2 - Tuol Sleng - Choeung Ek
This morning explore the stunning Royal Palace complex, home to the Cambodian royal family and a symbol of the nation. From the royal gardens enter the Throne Hall where the Royal receptions are held and the Cambodian king's coronation took place, before passing the Napoleon III Pavilion, a gift from the French emperor in the 19th century.

Continue to the Silver Pagoda, housing some of the country's most cherished treasures, including a life-size gold and jewel encrusted Buddha as well as a delicate emerald Buddha, which gives the temple its Khmer name of Wat Preah Keo (Temple of the Emerald Buddha).

Leave the Royal Palace and continue to the nearby National Museum built in the early 1900's, home to the world's finest collection of sculpture from the Angkor period, set in a lush courtyard garden.

You then come face to face with the horrific crimes of the Khmer Rouge. Tuol Sleng museumwas a former high school that the Khmer Rouge turned into a centre for interrogation, torture and death, today it serves as a reminder of the terrible atrocities that came to pass in Cambodia. 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. 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.

From Tuol Sleng, you will 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 8,985 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.

Overnight:  White Mansion (with upgrade option to Raffles Le Royal)

 
Day 3 - Siem Reap
You will be transferred to Phnom Penh airport for your short flight to Siem Reap. On arrival, you will be met and privately transferred to your hotel.  The rest of day is free at leisure.

Overnight:  Sala Lodges (with upgrade option to Phum Baitang)
 

Day 4 - Rolous Group Temples
After breakfast, travel back in time to one of the earliest capitals in the Angkor area, Hariharilaya, now known as Rolous.  Begin with a visit to the brick temple of Lolei, originally set on an island in the centre of the Indratataka baray (reservoir). This temple has some well-preserved sandstone carvings and the vast stone doors are carved from a single piece of stone.  Continue on to Preah Ko (sacred cow), named in honour of Shiva's mount, Nandin. This temple owes more to the pre‐Angkorian brick sanctuaries of Cambodia's earlier Chenla empire than the sandstone behemoths that came later. Originally coated in stucco and painted, there is still some of the ancient plaster visible on the rear towers.  Finally, you will arrive at Bakong, the earliest of the temple mountains, which later became the signature of Khmer kings. It is a giant pyramid, its cardinal points marked by giant elephants. We climb to the summit for views over the surrounding countryside. 

If it appeals your guide can take you on a short diversion to visit a small country town of Rolous, a world away from the hive of activity that is Siem Reap.  Lunch will be at Sala Rolous which is a traditional khmer house and the afternoon is at leisure.

Overnight:  Sala Lodges (with upgrade option to Phum Baitang)
 

Day 5 - Ta Prohm - Banteay Srei
Rise early to travel to Ta Prohm in the dawn light. 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 are slowly strangling the surviving stones.  

After soaking up the unique atmosphere of Ta Prohm, you will have a picnic breakfast before continuing to a traditional Khmer house, Sala Kdei, for a cookery class. 

After you have enjoyed eating what you cooked, head to Banteay Srei, Angkor's ultimate art gallery. This petite pink temple is the jewel in the crown of Angkor‐era sculpture. The elaborate carvings here are the finest found in Cambodia and the name translates as 'Fortress of the Women', thanks to the intricate detail here, considered too fine for the hands of a man.  Originally believed to date from the latter part of the Angkor period, inscriptions at the site suggest it was built by a Brahman in 967. However, some architectural historians have suggested that the inscriptions may date from an earlier structure on this site. 

Overnight:  Sala Lodges (with upgrade option to Phum Baitang)
 

Day 6 - Angkor Thom - Angkor Wat - Phare Circus
This morning you will 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.   Begin at the Terrace of the Leper King before heading to see the Terrace of Elephants, originally used as a viewing gallery for the king to preside over parades, performances and traditional sports. At the southern end lies the Baphuon, one of the most beautiful temples at Angkor, dating from the reign of Uditayavarman in the 11th century. The 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. 

Return to your hotel for lunch and time to freshen up before your guide takes you on to the Mother of all temples, Angkor Wat dating back to the 12th century. 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. Explore almost a kilometre of intricate carvings depicting Hindu mythology and of the glories of the Khmer empire.

This evening you can experience a performance of the Phare Circus.  This modern circus under the Big Top is proving very popular in Siem Reap and the performers display a variety of disciplines including acrobatics, choreography, juggling, clowning, live music and much more. We can arrange dinner before the show if you wish.  

Overnight:  Sala Lodges (with upgrade option to Phum Baitang)
 

Day 7 - Departure
You will be transferred to Siem Reap airport for your departure flight home.

 

Enquire

 

PRICING

From £1,041 / $1,561 per person for land arrangements only (however does include internal flight between Phnom Penh and Siem Reap), based on two people sharing a room, travelling between May and October 2016.

Upgrade Options:  2 nights at Raffles Le Royal (State Room Pool View) in Phnom Penh - an extra £82 /$123 per person. 4 nights at Phum Baitang (Terrace Villa) in Siem Reap - an extra £252 /$378 per person.
 

All of our itineraries are tailor-made according to the interests of our clients and the above itinerary is an example only. Please contact our Cambodia specialist, Melissa Matthews, for your own tailor-made holiday to Cambodia on +44 (0)1242 787804.

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