From Temples & Jungles to Paradise

14 Days - £2,200pp

Taking you on a magical journey through temples, the jungle and a tropical island – this is the perfect off the beaten track Cambodia holiday. Ideal for those who want to see the highlights but do so a little differently; we will show you the best of the Angkor temples before taking you on a memorable river and road trip through Battambang and into the Cardamom Mountains where you can stay in an authentic local homestay. From there you will head to  the tropical island of Koh Rong Samloem to relax for a few days before finishing your trip in the capital – Phnom Penh where we will give you both a memorable night out and an insight into the more tragic history of the country.

Day 1 - Welcome to Siem Reap

Welcome to the magical land of temples. You will be met at Siem Reap Airport by your private driver and English-speaking guide who will take you to your hotel where you can rest and soak up your surroundings. The Mulberry is one of our favourite boutique hotels near the temples of Angkor – central, intimate and what’s more we will give you a free massage during your stay here. (Balcony Suite)

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Day 2 - Monk blessing, temples & bike ride

Begin your day with a unique opportunity to visit a local Buddhist pagoda and be blessed by a monk in a water ceremony before visiting the fabulous jungle temple of Ta Prohm and the greatest of them all; Angkor Wat. After lunch at a local restaurant (included) and some down time at the hotel you will embark on a bike ride through the local villages and surrounding area at dusk before taking a peaceful dragon boat ride on the moat of Angkor Thom with a glass of Champagne.

Day 3 - Phnom Kulen National Park

Take a drive through the pretty countryside this morning for a visit to the mysterious waterfall at Phnom Kulen, an area which was once used as an ancient quarry and today has UNESCO heritage status with many hidden temples and is famous for unique carvings (more than 1,000 etched in the riverbed under water). On the way back to Siem Reap we will visit the pink sandstone temple of Banteay Srei before stopping for sunset at Pre Rup Temple.

Day 4 - Battambang by boat

Today you will see a different side of Cambodia; from the river banks! You will travel from Siem Reap to Battambang by public boat and the journey is about seven hours; a fascinating stretch of the river and you will see how people live and work on the water in a completely authentic (and very local) manner. Upon arriving in Battambang, your private driver will take you to the Bambu Hotel where you can relax at leisure (Standard Room).

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Day 5 - Explore the Battambang Countryside by Tuk-tuk

Get ready to ride through the heart of the Cambodian countryside in a traditional tuk-tuk; you’ll stop at the ancient temple of Ek Phnom, pass small villages and observe their local life and daily traditions and step inside one of the most interesting ‘schools’ of Cambodia – where children learn circus tricks and art with a twist. After lunch ride the traditional bamboo train before heading to the Killing Caves, from which thousands of bats emerge at dusk.

Day 6 - Off the beaten track homestay experience

Today you will be getting off the beaten track like few others ever do in Cambodia; you will take a private road trip to Osoam – a rural community of four villages in the heart of the Cardamom Mountains in southwest Cambodia, the drive will take about 5.5 hours and you can stop as you please before reaching your village homestay for the evening. A very authentic experience, limited English is spoken, but it is a very unique opportunity.

Day 7 - Glamping in the Cambodian jungle

Your next stop on this epic journey is the fabulous Cardamom Tented Camp, which is about a 2.5 hour drive away. After arriving to the jungle-surrounded campsite by river, you can check into your comfortable safari-style tent. This afternoon, go on an exploratory hike in the jungle around the camp. The diversity of the fauna will amaze you! Get information on the conservation and protection work of Wildlife Alliance.

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Day 8 - Hike and kayak through the Cardamom jungle

This morning, accompanies by Wildlife Alliance Rangers and an English speaking guide, you will embark on patrol over a network of abandoned poaching and logging trails through the dense forest. Keep your eyes peeled for wildlife. The half-day hike will stop by the Ranger Station, where confiscated snares, traps and improvised hunting rifles are on display. Local khmer lunch will be served. Later this afternoon you can kayak along the river, or relax at leisure.

Day 9 - Travel to Paradise

The time has arranged to hang up the hiking boots and get out the flip flops as you trade your jungle environment for the paradise island of Koh Kong Samloem. After a drive of a couple of hours, you will take a speedboat to the island, where you will check into the delightful Sol Beach Resort – this is barefoot luxury at its best! Enjoy a complimentary massage on check in before relaxing into your ocean front stylish beach hut. (1st Row Villa)

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Days 10 & 11 - Relax at Leisure on your tropical island

We have planned nothing for you for two full days so you can relax at leisure on the paradise island of Koh Kong Samloem after your temple exploring and jungle trekking! All our trips are completely tailor made so if you want more days on the beach just let us know and we can give you as long as you like here. It is rather special and a little difficult to leave…

Day 12 - A Night out in Phnom Penh

Take the speedboat back to the mainland this morning before embarking on your drive to the capital, Phnom Penh (4 hours). This afternoon you check-in to the fabulous Villa Lanka and relax at leisure before you evening tour which kicks off with a rooftop cocktail before being driven on a Vespa to sample some of the best street food of the city. After dinner, whizz past key historical monuments before visiting a popular spot for live music and finishing in an upmarket street of unique bars.

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Day 13 - A city tour of Phnom Penh

Get under the skin of the capital today with a private tour of its highlights including Wat Phnom, the Royal Palace and Silver Pagoda before stopping for lunch at a local restaurant that trains and employs street children. This afternoon you will visit the  Tuol Sleng Prison to glimpse the devastating horrors that prevailed during Cambodia’s years of genoside and the Killing Fields, located just outside the city.

Day 14 - Bon Voyage!

Enjoy your last morning in Phnom Penh before checking out of your hotel. Your private guide and driver will pick you up and transfer you to the airport for your flight to your next destination.

DETAILS:

This itinerary costs from £2,200 per person B&B based on 2 sharing and including all private transfers but not international flights.

You can get flights from as little as £500 per person return and do ask us for advice. Alternatively we can book the flights for you but a booking fee may apply.

INCLUDED:

  • Prices start from £2,200 per person
  • Accommodation on B&B basis
  • Private transfers (air-conditioned vehicle)
  • All entrance fees with service of English speaking guide for excursions
  • Lunch on Days 2, 3, 5, 8 & 13
  • Dinner on Days 6, 7 & 8
  • Local taxes
  • All trips are ATOL protected or ABTA bonded to ensure you are fully covered