Travel to Cambodia and encounter the cultural and architectural riches of this ancient land

From the majestic temples of Angkor to the gorgeous colonial-era architecture of Battambang and the devastating Khmer Rouge reign of the 1970s, Cambodia is a country that emanates history at every turn. Jungle vines crawl over Angkor Wat’s weathered walls, bamboo trains trundle along railway lines and villagers work their land in much the same way they have for generations. This remarkable small group adventure will get you off the tourist trail, away from the crowds, and into the heart and soul of this inspiring destination.

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Terms & Conditions

Start
Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Finish
Siem Reap, Cambodia
Country
Cambodia
Style
Comfort
Code
TKKI
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 12

Why we love this trip

  • Kick things off with dinner at the Friends restaurant, combining an excellent local cause with a memorable dining experience

  • The gorgeous French facades of riverside Kampot are only the beginning. Explore the surrounding countryside, visit the Kampot Pepper Project, discover a hidden cave temple and stroll along Kep Beach

  • Visit the Tuol Sleng Prison and the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek to learn about the important, albeit confronting, Khmer Rouge history

  • Get behind the scenes of small industry in and around historic Battambang, from pottery and silversmithing to sticky rice and fish paste production

  • Enjoy a classic Cambodian journey – a boat trip to Siem Reap, down the scenic Sangker to the Tonle Sap

  • Explore the amazing Angkor archaeological complex in depth, with two full days to appreciate the magic of Angkor Thom, Angkor Wat, the Bayon and more

Is this trip right for you?

  • Cambodian roads can be rough and bumpy, and delays are sometimes unavoidable. A dash of patience will go a long way toward your enjoyment of this beautiful country!

  • Cambodia can get very hot, and even temple-hopping can take it out of you quickly. Remember to use sun protection and drink plenty of water.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 January 2017 to 31 December 2017. View the itinerary for departures between 01 January 2018 - 31 December 2018

Sua s'dei! Welcome to Phnom Penh. An airport arrival transfer is included. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm on Day 1. After this, enjoy dinner with your fellow travellers in the excellent Friends restaurant, a Phnom Penh institution (and noble social enterprise). If you arrive early today and have some free time, why not stop in at the art deco-designed Psar Thmei (Central Market), a great place for browsing. Or stroll along the atmospheric Sisowath Quay and grab a coffee or cocktail at one of the many cafes while watching the busy river traffic.

Notes: Your arrival transfer is only valid if arriving on Day 1 or if you have booked pre-trip accommodation through Intrepid. Please provide your flight details at the time of booking, or at a minimum of 15 days prior to travel. We may not be able to confirm requests made within 15 days of travel. Once you have provided your details, a transfer representative will be booked to meet you at the airport and take you to your hotel.
Included Activities
  • Complimentary Airport Arrival Transfer
Meals Included
  • Dinner
Head south this morning along National Road 2. You'll pass through the town of Takeo and continue towards Kampot, one of Cambodia's most attractive old towns. Arrive in Kampot and enjoy an afternoon of free time. You might choose to stroll by the river and observe the French colonial architecture or relax on the veranda of one of the riverside restaurants and admire the view of the Bokor mountains. A massage at Seeing Hands is also highly recommended – surely one of the most enjoyable ways to support a great local cause.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Kampot - Phnom Chisor - USD2
  • Kampot - Tamao Wildlife Santuary - USD2
  • Kampot - Traditional massage - USD5
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Enjoy a day out in the countryside. Visit the Kampot Pepper Project and learn why Kampot pepper has been acknowledged by international chefs as the world’s best. Also visit the Kampot salt field, the only salt field in Cambodia. Take a short walk through the rice fields and climb to where some lovely views of the surrounding countryside are found. A few steps later you will enter the mouth of Phnom Chhnork limestone cave, which has a small 7th-century brick temple inside it. Also enjoy a walk along the beach at Kep and explore the old buildings near the ocean front. The town was Cambodia's most popular and prestigious beach town from the early 1900s until the 1960s. Sadly many of the mansions and villas didn't survive the reign of the Khmer Rouge, and their ghostly remains mark a dark history.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Kampot - Phnom Chhnork
  • Kampot - Countryside tour
Optional Activities
  • Kampot - Sunset cruise - USD30
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Say goodbye to the beach and take a different route back to Phnom Penh (approximately 4 hours). In the afternoon you will visit the Tuol Sleng Prison Museum and the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek. These serve as sobering reminders of the violent rule of the Khmer Rouge. Here you can learn more about this confronting but important chapter in history. If you'd rather not visit these sites, simply let your leader know. This evening, with free time, you might opt for a relaxing sunset drink at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club, a great way to spend your evening.
Included Activities
  • Phnom Penh - Choeung Ek (Killing Fields)
  • Phnom Penh - Tuol Sleng Prison Museum (S21)
Optional Activities
  • Phnom Penh - Cyclo tour - USD4
  • Phnom Penh - Royal Palace & Silver Pagoda - USD10
  • Phnom Penh - National Museum - USD10
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Travel by private bus through the countryside to Battambang (approximately 5 hours, not including stops). Along the way you will stop to see some local pottery and silversmithing at work. This gives a fascinating insight into small cottage industry in a lesser-visited spot in Cambodia. Arrive in Battambang (pronounced Battambong) and put your feet up after the journey. Perhaps take a stroll along the riverfront to soak up the elegant French vibes of the town. Some of the colonial architecture has been beautifully preserved, and friendly Khmer people abound.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Jump on a remork (Cambodian tuk-tuk) and travel through the beautiful surrounding countryside of Battambang. Stop along the way to visit the village of Wat Kor. This village is known for its historic stilted wooden houses, some of which pre-date French colonial times. Visit a house whose large wooden floorboards are shiny from generations of feet walking across them. The owner’s small collection of antiques and agricultural tools paint a picture of Cambodia in the early 1900s. Afterwards you will visit some small cottage industries that produce rice paper, dried banana, sticky rice cooked in bamboo, and aromatic fish paste (Cambodia’s equivalent of vegemite or marmite). In the afternoon there is the option of riding the famous bamboo train – a favourite activity for many visitors. Afterwards, visit Prasat Phnom Banan Winery (Cambodia's first winery) for an optional tasting. Wat Bai Dom Ram, a modern temple nearby, is worth a look – note the big fruit bats hanging from the tree at the entrance.
Included Activities
  • Banon winery tour & wine testing
  • Battambang - Countryside guided tour
Optional Activities
  • Battambang - Bamboo Train - USD10
  • Battambang - Artistic Social Centre - USD8
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Enjoy some breakfast, check out of the hotel, then take a private boat to Siem Reap (approximately 5–6 hours). This classic journey follows the Sangker River downstream to the Tonle Sap – the largest lake in South East Asia. Along the way you'll see fishing villages, a scattering of fishermen and no doubt some local people living atop floating and stilted houses. The roof of the boat provides shade while open sides make for nice viewing as you float along (there's also a toilet on board). Arrive in Siem Reap, the gateway the famous Angkor complex, which roughly 7 kilometres out of town. Relax before your temple-hopping begins tomorrow. You might like to hit the night markets for some cheap and delicious street food, or maybe indulge in a traditional massage.

Notes: In April and August, when water levels are typically at their lowest, we are unable to travel by boat. Instead make today's journey by minibus. In this case, a boat trip to a riverside village is included, so that travellers don't miss out on the Tonle Sap experience.
Optional Activities
  • Siem Reap - Walking tour to Artisan D'Angkor - Free
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Spend a full day visiting the amazing temples of Angkor on a guided tour. Angkor Thom, the 'Great Royal City', is famous for its series of colossal human faces carved in stone. The impressive Bayon temple is the centrepiece. The famous Angkor Wat is the largest and most complete structure. It is the only one of Angkor's temples with its entrance facing to the west (the others face east), the reason being that it was constructed as a funerary temple for King Suryavarman II and a westerly countenance was seen to represent a sunset. Ta Prohm temple is an incredible sight, with large trees embedding themselves in the stone foundations of the structure. Today for lunch you will visit the Sala Bai Hotel School, where underprivileged local youths learn skills that enable them to find gainful employment in the hospitality industry.

Notes: The hotel school is closed on public holidays and school holidays. An alternative restaurant will be visited on these days.
Included Activities
  • Siem Reap - Three Day Angkor Pass
  • Siem Reap - Angkor Temples Guided Tour
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
An early morning start for those looking to catch the sunrise over the temples. On a clear morning this is a truly spectacular sight. After breakfast, travel out to Banteay Srei, famous for its detailed and intricate stone carvings. It is not a big temple, but has been sometimes referred to as ‘the jewel in the crown of Angkorian art’. Back at the main temple complex, Preah Khan contains a maze of vaulted corridors and is another complex that has been largely reclaimed by the jungle. Tonight after dinner you will visit Phare the Cambodian Circus. Coming from vulnerable households, the performers have gained international recognition through their art practice. Like a Cambodian Cirque Du Soleil, modern Khmer tales mix theatre, music, dance, acrobatics, juggling, aerial acts, and contortion.
Included Activities
  • Siem Reap - Phare Cambodia Circus Ticket
  • Siem Reap - Angkor Temples Guided Tour
Optional Activities
  • Siem Reap - Landmine Museum - USD5
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Today is a departure day and no activities have been planned. You are free to depart anytime. If you are not 'templed out', your three day temple pass allows you to return to explore some more of Angkor Archaeological Park on your own. Your leader can help you arrange a remork or car to take you out. If you have extra time you might like to schedule a tasty Khmer Cooking Class, indulge yourself with high tea at Raffles Hotel, or simply relax by the pool.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

9 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 1 dinner

Transport

Private mini bus, boat, remork (tuk tuk)

Accommodation

Hotel (7 nights), Resort (2 nights)

Included activities

  • Complimentary Airport Arrival Transfer
  • Kampot - Phnom Chhnork
  • Kampot - Countryside tour
  • Phnom Penh - Choeung Ek (Killing Fields)
  • Phnom Penh - Tuol Sleng Prison Museum (S21)
  • Banon winery tour & wine testing
  • Battambang - Countryside guided tour
  • Siem Reap - Three Day Angkor Pass
  • Siem Reap - Angkor Temples Guided Tour
  • Siem Reap - Phare Cambodia Circus Ticket

Dates & availability

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Important notes

1. A single supplement is available on every night of this trip. Please contact your sales agent if you would like to book a single supplement.
2. An airport arrival transfer is included. Please advise your flight details at time of booking.

Essential trip information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

Reviews

Our Cambodia Encompassed trips score an average of 4.5 out of 5 based on 2 reviews in the last year.

Cambodia Encompassed, September 2017

Cassandra Tilse

Cambodia Encompassed, April 2017

Wendy Armstrong