Cambodia Classic 5

Relive the recent past in Phnom Penh, and discover the ancient city of Angkor, home to centuries old crumbling temples.

Day 1 - Phnom Penh

Arrive in Phnom Penh and transfer to your hotel. Overnight in Phnom Penh.

Day 2 - Phnom Penh

Cambodia’s capital sits at the confluence of the Mekong, Bassac and Tonle Sap Rivers. Considered the loveliest of the French-built cities of Indochina, it was founded as a small monastery in 1372 by a rich Khmer woman called Penh, after she found four Buddha statues in a tree trunk on the banks of the Mekong. She set up the monastery on a nearby hill or "phnom" in Cambodian. Visit the Royal Palace and Silver Pagoda - the royal palace stands on the site of the former citadel, Bantey Kev (built in 1813). Visitors are not allowed in to some portions of the grounds, as the palace is the official residence of King Norodom Sihamoni. The silver pagoda is often called the Pagoda of the Emerald Buddha or Wat Preah Kaeo after the statue housed there. The wooden temple was originally built by King Norodom in 1892 and inside its floor is comprised of more than 5000 silver blocks, which together weigh nearly six tonnes. Visit the National Museum, designed by a French archaeologist and painter, George Groslier, in Khmer style in 1920 to exhibit works previously scattered throughout the country. It contains a collection of Khmer art including the beautiful 6th century bronze statue of Vishnu. Visit one of Phnom Penh’s two great markets. The Central Market is located in a distinctive domed Art Deco building, and is filled with jewellery, fabrics and all types of souvenirs. The Russian Market is a sprawling labyrinth of stalls selling everything from CDs and DVDs to silks, crafts, jewellery and more. Both are fascinating places to browse. Visit Tuol Sleng Museum - formerly the Tuol Svay Prey High School. In 1975 it became the Khmer Rouge’s main torture and interrogation centre. It was known as Security Prison 21 – or just S-21. Excursion to the Killing Fields where people tortured in the S-21 prison were brought here to be executed. Many mass graves were found in this area. Overnight in Phnom Penh.

Day 3 - Phnom Penh - Siem Reap

Transfer for your flight from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap. On arrival in Siem Reap, transfer to your hotel. Visit Angkor Thom, a fortified Royal City (10 square kilometres) built by King Jayavarman VII, who ruled from 1181 to 1201. The city has five monumental gates and is encircled by a moat 100 metres wide. In the centre of the walled city are the city’s most important monuments including Bayon, Baphuon, the Terrace of Elephants, the Terrace of the Leper King and Phimeanakas with Royal Enclosure. Visit a temple at sunset and watch the sun set over the Cambodian countryside from the upper terraces of an ancient Angkorian temple. Overnight in Siem Reap.

Day 4 - Siem Reap

Visit Angkor Wat, a temple dedicated to the Hindu god Vishnu by King Suryavarman II, who reigned between 1131 and 1150. It was constructed over a period of 30 years and is world famous for its beauty and splendour. Angkor Wat features the longest continuous bas-relief in the world, which runs along the outer gallery walls and narrates stories from Hindu mythology. In 1992 the UNESCO declared the monument and the whole city of Angkor a World Heritage Site. Excursion to the Tonle Sap Lake with boat trip - located in the heart of Cambodia, this extraordinary lake swells up to seven times its original size during the monsoon season. Its ecosystem is one of the richest and most diverse in the region. This boat trip will explore the floating fishing villages that live at the edges of the lake, passing submerged forests and fishing farms. Overnight in Siem Reap.

Day 5 - Siem Reap

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