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5 star rating: Highly Recommended 6 Reviews

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  • Location: Siem Reap, Cambodia
  • Duration:  3 days, 2 nights

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Discover Cambodia’s mystical temples at the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Angkor Archaeological Park. This three-day Siem Reap adventure brings you face to face with awe-inspiring temples of the Khmer Kingdom, from the famous Angkor Wat to the city of Angkor Thom – including the Bayon, Ta Prohm and Pre Rup -- plus Banteay Srei. Enjoy a jungle hike to the River of a Thousand Lingas and a boat trip around Tonle Sap, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Receive personal attention from your professional guide on this small-group tour, limited to 12 people.

Highlights

  • 3-day Siem Reap tour of Angkor and Tonle Sap
  • Explore the temples of Angkor Archeological Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Walk around the jungle ruins of Angkor Wat, Angkor Thom and Banteay Srei
  • Get up close to Cambodia’s endangered wildlife at the Angkor Centre for Conservation of Biodiversity
  • Ride a remork (Cambodian tuk tuk) to Kbal Spean and hike to the River of a Thousand Lingas
  • View the Cambodian fishing villages of Tonle Sap by boat
  • Maximum of 12 people ensures personalized attention from your guide

Why Our Insiders Chose This Tour

This tour gives an excellent overview of the Angkor Archaeological Park, and going with a small group offers plenty of flexibility to stop and look at your favorite ruins. Make sure to bring an extra bottle of water as it can be scorching hot there during the day!

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

3-Day Siem Reap Tour: Angkor Wat, Ta Prohm, Bayon and Tonle Sap

3-Day Siem Reap Discovery: Angkor Wat, Banteay Srei and Tonle Sap

Your three-day tour of the magnificent Angkor region includes two overnights stays at a Siem Reap hotel including breakfast and lunch. You’ll sample tasty Khmer cuisine as you explore the Angkor temples on foot, hike through the jungle to ancient Hindu sculptures carved into the riverbed and board a boat on Tonle Sap to see floating villages around the lake – an unbelievable adventure!

Itinerary

Day 1: Siem Reap – Angkor (L)
Your guide will pick you up from your original hotel at 8am in Siem Reap – once a collection of small villages and now a vibrant town – and drive your small group to the Angkor Archaeological Park. This UNESCO World Heritage Site contains the incredible Angkor temples of the Khmer Empire, ranging from the 9th to the 15th century. When you arrive at the Angkor temple complex, located just 3.4 miles (5.5 km) north of Siem Reap, begin your temple tour with a visit to Angkor Wat, the most famous and well-preserved of all the temples of Angkor.

Built in the early 12th century in the former Khmer capital, Angkor Wat first honored the Hindu god Vishnu before becoming a Buddhist temple, and remains the world’s largest religious monument. As you tour the spectacular site with your guide, learn about the100 stone temples that have survived at Angkor, once surrounded by wood palaces, public buildings and houses that have since disappeared.

Continue to the old capital city of Angkor Thom to see the Bayon Temple with its 54 towers decorated with more than 200 smiling stone faces. Take a look at Phimeanakas, Baphoun, the Terrace of the Elephants and the Terrace of the Leper King before stopping for pictures at the magnificent South Gate. Here, gods and demons line the causeway that leads up to the gate, which is crowned with four large faces pointing in the cardinal directions.

Investigate these once-sacred temples with your knowledgeable guide, who will not only inform your small group about the ruins but share stories and fascinating folklore of god-kings and lost civilizations. Learn about the Khmer kings that once ruled over a vast domain, from Vietnam to the Bay of Bengal.

Stop for a Khmer-style lunch at a local restaurant, situated in a forest village surrounded by rice paddies, and enjoy a delicious meal. Afterward, take a nap while lazing in a hammock, or hear about the traditional way of life as you chat with the locals dining here.

In the afternoon, return to Angkor Thom and visit the beautiful Ta Prohm Temple – made famous by the film Tomb Raider – and imagine yourself an early explorer as you come upon the temple ruins being reclaimed by the jungle. Complete your tour with a climb up the brick steps of the terminal pyramid of Pre Rup (if time allows), one of the oldest buildings in the Angkor complex.

Your evening is free to enjoy at leisure, perhaps experiencing Siem Reap’s vibrant nightlife or more mouthwatering food before retiring to your accommodation.

Overnight: Basic: Mekong Boutique Hotel in Siem Reap; Original: City River Hotel in Siem Reap; Comfort: Angkor Home Hotel
in Siem Reap

Day 2: Siem Reap – Banteay Srei (B, L)
After breakfast, take a trip with your small group through the countryside past Siem Reap to the small village of Kbal Spean. En route, stop for local snacks like sugar palm candy and see rural Cambodian life unfold as you watch villagers plant or harvest rice or engage in other seasonal activities.

When you reach the base of the nearby mountains, follow your guide on a 40-minute jungle trek to the River of a Thousand Lingas. Here, encounter Hindu sculptures carved into the river's granite banks more than a thousand years ago. The short uphill path to the carvings can be a bit slippery when wet, but the more challenging sections have bamboo handrails and wooden steps – it’s well worth the climb for the view of the valley below. (Your guide will make sure you have suitable footwear and carry water if you intend to do the walk.)

On your return to the base of Kbal Spean, visit the Angkor Centre for Conservation of Biodiversity (closed Sundays and public holidays) – home to a variety of animals that have been saved from illegal trafficking, including gibbons, monkeys, anteaters, snakes, turtles and the bright-eyed loris.

After a tour of the wildlife center, enjoy another scrumptious Khmer lunch and head back to the Angkor temple complex to explore Banteay Srei, a small sandstone Hindu temple dedicated to Shiva. Considered the jewel in the crown of Angkor art, this temple boasts some of the finest and best-preserved stone carvings of the World Heritage Site. Built in the 10th century, Banteay Srei consists of three rectangular enclosures whose designs are magnificently ornate.

If time and weather allow, explore the gorgeous Banteay Kdei temple, a sprawling former monastic complex that remains largely unrestored. Constructed by the same architect as the Pre Rup temple, it has a multi-tiered platform adorned with naga (dragon) balustrades and lion guardians. Enjoy sunset at the picturesque reservoir Sras Srang, where during the dry season the remains of a temple in its center can be seen!

Your evening is free for you to relax amid the laidback atmosphere of Siem Reap. If you’d like, choose an optional activity such as a Khmer cooking class or a traditional massage (own expense).

Overnight: Basic: Mekong Boutique Hotel in Siem Reap; Original: City River Hotel in Siem Reap; Comfort: Angkor Home Hotel
in Siem Reap

Day 3: Siem Reap – Tonle Sap (B)
Enjoy breakfast with your small group and then hop in a remork with your guide, touring a bit of Siem Reap before leaving it behind for the countryside. Journey to Tonle Sap, one of the world’s most productive bodies of fresh water, which feeds into the Mekong during Cambodia's dry season and forms a large lake during its monsoons.

Classified as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, the ecosystem supports millions of fish that come to spawn each year in the seasonally flooded forest, and attracts a variety of water fowl. Take a boat trip around the lake to find floating villages where Cambodian people have settled along the shores, and get a sense of the water-based agricultural life shaped by monsoonal rains and the water’s rhythms.

Afterward, jump back in the remork and take the back roads on your return, watching more seasonal agricultural activities along the way, such as cricket catching, smoking fish, fish paste-making and duck farming. Finally, stop in a local village to pick up Khmer snacks, and pay a short visit to a modern Cambodian Buddhist monastery, before arriving in Siem Reap where your three-day tour ends around noon.

Customer Reviews

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2013

Absolutely incredible! Wonderful guide that was very informative! Simply fantastic!! :D

Adnan H
United Kingdom

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2013

Chanmol, our group leader, provided a fantastic experience in terms of allowing us to be in awe of the most beautiful Angkor Wat complex as well as enjoy Siem Reap. He has a great knowledge of the area in terms of its history, and is very good at engaging his audience. Considering members of our tour were aged between 20s-60s, no one felt left out. He knew where the best places were to take pictures, and this was of great significance, expecially for someone like myself who loves photography. Definitely loved every minute.

The hotel, City River was great. Definitely felt better than a 3 star experience. I would certainly recommend it. The location of the hotel was fantastic and the staff are wonderful.

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Tour code: 5912TKAS

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