DISCOVERY CAMBODIA (9 DAYS)


Tour Style: Cambodia Adventure Tour
Nights: 8 nights
Destination: Cambodia
Departs: Daily
Start: Phnom Penh
End: Siem Reap
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DISCOVERY CAMBODIA
9 Days / 8 Nights
 

We get around on this Cambodia Adventure Tour! You start in Phnom Penh and finish in Siem Reap via Kratie and Ratanakiri provinces. This will give you the full flavour of Cambodia from the must-see tourist sites like the Royal Palace and Angkor Wat, to the less visited sites such as the Elephant Valley Project and the Irrawaddy dolphins. Local flavour is our specialty on this tour, but of course ensuring to include the most popular attractions.

A highlight is bound to be the day you will spend at the Elephant Valley Project Mondolkiri (EVP), shadowing the elephants, which have effectively been rescued from their ‘working life, giving rides or hauling lumber etc. This is a beautiful NGO run by very caring animal lovers.

No tour however can exclude Angkor Wat and indeed you will explore this and the many other wonderful temples from the base camp of Siem Reap at the Angkor Archaeological Park.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Living Art Performance
S21 Museum & Killing Fields
Royal Palace and Museum
Cyclo Tour
Elephant Valley Project
Irrawaddy Dolphins
Angkor Wat
Angkor Archaeological Park
Landmine Museum
Floating Village
Phare Cambodian Circus

TRIP DETAILS:
 
Duration: 9 Days / 8 Nights
Tour type: Cultural, adventure
Destinations: Phnom Penh, Ratanakiri, Kratie, Siem Reap
Price: from $
Departs: Daily by arrangement
Starts: Phnom Penh
Ends: Siem Reap

BRIEF ITINERARY:

Day 01: Phnom Penh – Royal Palace, Museum
Day 02: Phnom Penh - S21 - Killing Fields – Koh Dach
Day 03: Phnom Penh - Mondolkiri
Day 04: Mondolkiri – Elephant Valley Project
Day 05: Mondolkiri – Kratie – Koh Trong
Day 06: Kratie - Siem Reap
Day 07: Siem Reap – Angkor Thom – Angkor Wat
Day 08: Siem Reap – Banteay Srey – Landmine Museum – Phare Circus
Day 09: Siem Reap – Floating Village – Departure

DETAILED ITINERARY

DAY 01: ARRIVAL - PHNOM PENH - CITY TOUR
Welcome to Phnom Penh, the capital city of the Kingdom of Cambodia. Located on the banks of the Tonlé Sap and the Mekong Rivers, Phnom Penh has been the national capital since French colonization of Cambodia.
On arrival, you will be met by your local Cambodian English-speaking tour guide, who will transfer you to your hotel to check in. On the way your guide will give you lots of great information on the history of Cambodia, its culture, people and lifestyle.

In the afternoon you will visit the Royal National Museum, the Royal Palace, and the Silver Pagoda. The Royal Palace was built in 1866 by King Norodom and is now home to His Majesty Preah Bat Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk Mony, King of Cambodia. The Silver Pagoda is located within the Royal Palace compound, so named because of its floor, which is made up of 5,000 silver tiles; among the other treasures are a solid gold Buddha encrusted with 9,584 diamonds weighing 90 kg, and a small 17th century emerald and baccarat crystal Buddha. Your enjoyable day will end with a cyclo excursion along the Mekong Riverfront passing Wat Phnom and Phsar Chas.

Meals: Breakfast included
Accommodation in Phnom Penh


DAY 02: PHNOM PENH - KOH DACH (MEKONG ISLAND)

Another amazing breakfast today is followed by something new: you'll climb aboard the quirky form of local transport known as a Moto-Remork, or Tuk Tuk, to Koh Dach Island, where you'll have a local's eye view of life on the river. Stroll around the village, and pay a visit to a community craft workshop. Besides fishing and farming, the people here preserve many traditional skills in arts and crafts, put to excellent use in their high-quality products sold in the local markets. After perusing these fine items, you can have a great time stretching out on a hammock under the thatched roof of a water bungalow.

In the afternoon we will explore the harsher times of Cambodian history while ruled by the Khmer Rouge (1975-79) with a visit to the Tuol Sleng Museum and Killing Fields. Tuol Sleng Museum was used as an interrogation center before sending the victims to the killing fields about 15 Km south of Phnom Penh. Next you can enjoy browsing or shopping at the Russian Market. This market morphed into a fully-fledged foreigner’s market during the 1980s - a time when most visitors were Russians, explaining the story behind the name. This market has a huge, varied selection of souvenirs, curios and silks. Just like the nearby Central Market, there are plenty of jewelers and gold-sellers, but it's also the best choice in town for buying top-quality fabric.

Meals: Breakfast included
Accommodation in Phnom Penh

DAY 03: PHNOM PENH - MONDOLKIRI

After breakfast at the hotel, you will check out and then head off to Mondolkiri Province and its capital town of Senmonorom. Situated on the northeast plateau of Cambodia, Mondolkiri is unique. Its characteristic red earth roads and paths bordered with lush greenery and rolling hills are a prominent feature. Life is simple; farmers till the earth and work the rice paddies with hand tools. Villagers and minority people live in hand-built stilted wooden houses. At night, closely-knit village communities gather around the fire and share a warm meal and drink homemade rice wine.

After checking in at our hotel in the afternoon, we will enjoy a visit to the Bousra Waterfall, one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Cambodia, divided into multiple tiers; this is a great place for a swim or just to enjoy nature; we also visit a minority village near the falls.

In the evening you will enjoy some local entertainment; you will hear folk songs and other traditional music performed by the villagers before returning to town for dinner.

Meals: Breakfast and Dinner included
Accommodation in Modolkiri.


DAY 04: MONDOLKIRI - ELEPHANT VALLEY PROJECT

In the morning enjoy your breakfast at the hotel and then transfer to the Elephant Valley Project Mondolkiri.

Elephant Livelihood Initiative Environment and the Elephant Valley Project
Elephant Livelihood Initiative Environment (E.L.I.E.) were founded in early 2005 and were officially registered with the Cambodian government after much negotiation in June 2006.
ELIE’s primary goal is to improve the health and welfare of captive elephants in Mondulkiri Province. The secondary goal is to work with the owners and keepers and the problems that face them. To achieve the primary goal, ELIE started with programs that monitored the captive elephant population and provided veterinarian care to elephants that were in need. To fulfill the secondary goal, ELIE provided assistance, advice, practical and appropriate education to the local people oriented at improving the techniques used with treating working elephants.


For this special day you will spend a full day with the elephants, shadowing two families of elephants in the jungle for the morning and afternoon as well as learning about the elephants, the local mahouts, the forest and conservation. This is a highly unique and unforgettable experience for your visit to the northeast plateau of Cambodia.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner included
Accommodation in Mondolkiri


DAY 05: MONDOLKIRI - KRATIE - KOH TRONG

Today rise up early to see the monirity people bring their crop for exchange at the local market then go back to hotel. After breakfast we travel to Kratie, one of Cambodia's lesser-populated, eastern provinces. The city stands along the Mekong River bank with some nice-looking homes of French and Khmer style scattered about, adding to the pleasant feel of the place. The local people make their living on the riverbanks of the Mekong by fishing and farming. Upon arrival at Kratie we will visit the local market and have lunch before crossing to Koh Trong. Koh Trong is an island situated in the middle of the Mekong River directly opposite Kratie Town. A 9km loop road around the island is great for cycling or a leisurely ox cart ride.

In the afternoon after check in at your hotel, you can opt to take an ox cart ride or a leisurely cycle through the traditional Khmer villages, orchards and rice fields while observing the daily rituals and routines of traditional village life.

Meals: Breakfast included
Accommodation on Koh Trong.


DAY 06: KRATIE - SIEM REAP

Continuing our Cambodian Adventure Tour we enjoy breakfast at the hotel and check out; next we travel to Siem Reap. Before leaving Kratie, you will travel along the riverbank and take a boat excursion to see the home to a group of rare freshwater Irrawaddy dolphins.

And so begins a journey of about five hours, crossing the Mekong River, passing the rubber plantations and the green villages with stops for a chat with local people; the farming life is really happy as you will see from the smiles and hellos you get along the way. When we reach Kompong Thom we will stop for a short rest where you can experience something new like deep fried spider, crickets, and small birds that the locals eat. Followed by check on arrival at your hotel in Siem Reap you will be made welcome to the entrance of the ancient Khmer Empire.

Meals; Breakfast included.
Accommodation in Siem Reap.


DAY 07: SIEM REAP - ANGKOR (FULL DAY ON TUK-TUK)

The morning after breakfast at our hotel, we begin another magical day on Tuk-Tuk at the mystical Ta Prohm temple, where ancient stones and massive tree roots engulf the ruins. These trees and stones provide a stunning temple experience while also enjoying with sound of birds and nature; this is a wonderful place to start the temple tour. The exploration will take approximately one hour, walking through this jungle temple after weaving our way through the beautiful Ta Prohm we journey into the ancient city of Angkor Thom.
After exploring the treasures of this ancient walled city, we continue with a visit to the mystical Bayon temple adorned with its smiling faces. The journey through the jungle to the famous Bayon which stands in the middle of the city of Angkor Thom is now everyone’s favorite site, surrounded by hundreds of smiling faces engraved on the pieces of gigantic sand stone; the temple is definitely one of the most stunning and mysterious. We head further into the temple complex and visit Baphoun, a hill top pyramid-temple, consecrated to the God Shiva that just opened to the public recently after renovation. We also visit the Elephant and Leper King terraces, the royal enclosure temple of Phimean Akas and the serene Preah Pithu groups of smaller temples. We will enjoy a walk along the ancient walls of this city and relax with a hot Cambodian style picnic lunch in a shaded area or alternatively we will have lunch at a local restaurant.

Following Angkor Thom we head to the jewel of the Khmer Empire and visit the amazing Angkor Wat. The spectacular temples of Angkor were constructed to express the wealth and power of the Khmer Empire at the time. Many stone inscriptions describing the foundations of the temple have been found but Khmers left no word to tell how this great empire collapsed. Come and dig out some secrets of Angkor with our experienced guide, reveal the stories and legends behind the sandstone carved bas-reliefs, gables and lintels. Stroll around this massive monument to admire the Khmer architectural masterpiece and engineering.

Tonight, your sumptuous dinner will be accompanied by a Classical Apsara Dance performance depicting scenes from Khmer mythology.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner included.
Accommodation in Siem Reap.


DAY 08: SIEM REAP - RUINS - LANDMINE MUSEUM - PHARE CAMBODIA CIRCUS

Another beautifulday begins, no need to rush this morning; after breakfast at the hotel you will head off with your guide to the mountain at Phnom Kulen National Park. The mountain was used as the ancient capital city in AD 802 in the reign of king Jayavarman II, who declared himself god king and announced independence from Java, giving birth to present day Cambodia. There are 56 Angkorian temples made of bricks and volcanic stones, but most of them are in poor condition. You will see the Thousand Linga River, and an enormous reclining Buddha, constructed in the 16thcentury; you can enjoy a swim at the waterfall followed by a picnic lunch on the riverbank.

Descending from the mountaintop on the afternoon we head off to see the pink sandstone temple of Banteay Srei, which stands alone in the jungle. The enchanting temple of Banteay Srei is many people’s favorite site. The special charm of this temple lies in its remarkable state of preservation, and the intricate, high quality carvings in the solid sandstone. The unanimous opinion amongst French archaeologists who worked at Angkor is that Banteay Srei is a 'precious gem' and a 'jewel in Khmer art'. Later in the afternoon we head back to Siem Reap via a stop to learn about the period of civil war in Cambodia, which only ended as recently as 1998. We visit the Cambodia Landmine Museum, an NGO that demines and also provides education and support for dozens of at-risk youth and landmine affected children.

Tonight you will be amazed by the spectacle of the Phare Cambodia Circus; a troupe of young Cambodians offering a spectacular and exciting blend of traditional and modern theatre, music, dance, acrobatics, juggling and contortion beautifully choreographed and performed as a story about Cambodian life and society.

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch included
Accommodation in Siem Reap.


DAY 09: SIEM REAP - FLOATING VILLAGE - DEPARTURE

In the morning after breakfast we will travel to the eastern part of Siem Reap to visit the floating village of Kompong Phluk or Kompong Khleang on Tonle Sap Lake. During the dry season we are struck by the forest of stilted houses rising up to 10 meters in the air and in the wet season the waters rise up to one or two meters from the base of the buildings. The village is a permanent community within the flood plain of the Lake, with an economy based on fishing and surrounded by flooded forest. A boat excursion will take us through the floating village, stopping at one of the local houses to visit the family where you will find out close up, how different life is between this country and yours. If time permits, you can also explore this great ecosystem by canoe and hear the calls of the macaque monkeys, and the birds while observing the forest beneath the lake’s surface.

In the afternoon you will enjoy exploring Siem Reap on your own or relaxing at the hotel till your departure transfer. (Check out at 12:00noon). 

YOUR FUN-FILLED FAMILY TRAVEL EXPERIENCE! 


Lyle B
"Always memorable!"

I consider myself very lucky to have known Mr Kun (Travelloops General Manager) since 2007. Many unforgettable fond memories have been attributed to the well constructed and customised itineraries Mr Kun and his team have thoughtfully put together for myself and the many friends I have travelled Cambodia (and neighbouring SEA countries) with over the years. Mr Kun and his team have always proven to be extremely knowledgable, accommodating and of course lots of fun to be around with many friendships forged over the years! Our short visit in June certainly didn't dissappoint. Although short on time (2 days) we managed to squeeze in a half day Angkor tour (in the comfort of an air conditioned car), sampled wonderful local cuisine and also got a taste of the local nightlife thanks to the amazing Mr Kun! Don't know when I'll be back but Travelloops will always be my first point of contact. Thank you Mr Kun for another memorable time in Siem Reap!

Visited June 2016


KenandDi
B.C
"Cycle touring Camboia and Laos, multi-day tours"

From 2010 to 2016, we have toured with Travelloops several times on very memorable trips. Our initial tour was 3 weeks from Siem reap to the Mekong which we followed from Pakse, Laos to Southern Cambodia. It was a tremendous trip due to the experience and wonderful Travelloops folks led by Chanra , chanra@travelloops.com. We have since done 2 more multi weeks tours and several 1 day trips, all of them tremendous experiences.
I can enthusiastically recommend Travelloops as a tours company for cycling, hiking, or motor tours in and around Siem Reap, Cambodia and Laos.
KenandDi

Visited February 2016

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