Breakfast at hotel.
In the morning, drive from Battambang to the archeologist site of Banteay Chhmar. This is the last of the great Angkorian temples that has not undergone significant conservation or development and as such offers a completely unique destination.
Originally enclosed by a 9km long wall, the temple housed one of the largest Buddhist monasteries of the Angkorian period. The site is set within a living cultural and natural landscape, the likes of which is simply no longer visible at Angkor.
Welcome in Banteay Chhmar Community-Based Tourism centre and settle in your home stay. In 2007 the villagers of Banteay Chhmar formed the CBT committee (Banteay Chhmar Community-Based Tourism), dedicated to preserving and protecting the cultural heritage of the area as well as creating a sustainable tourism industry in Banteay Chhmar. Over 70 villagers are directly involved in the CBT as tour guides, cooks, home stay owners, musicians and activities providers. Many more people in the community receive secondary benefits as food sellers, taxi drivers and performing other services. CBT has also become involved in community development projects. Preservation of the Banteay Chhmar temple is since 2009 being led by Global Heritage Fund. They formed a partnership with the CBT and are currently paying their running costs. Global Heritage Fund itself also provides many jobs to the community with the preservation project and helps to teach the local people about the importance of protecting their cultural heritage.
While seeing the wonderful temple of Banteay Chhmar is definitely the highlight, an even more memorable experience is the interaction with the local Khmer people. Our guide together with the local guide of CBT will allow you talk to the many people you meet, be it at the market, during the meals one of which will be a torch lit dinner at the temple, all meals prepared by local women, or during the visits of the Banteay Chhmar temple and its satellite temples. A close contact with the local population will of course also be possible during the home stay, an important part of the activities in Banteay Chhmar. Accommodation is very simple, certainly not comparable to "western-style" home stays but the friendliness and the warm smiles of the home stay family will fully compensate for any shortcomings.
Lunch prepared by local women at the CBT restaurant under a straw hut.
After lunch visit the Banteay Chhmar Temple and Ta Prom temple by walking and see the intriguing bas reliefs that tell the history of epic battles and religious beliefs.
Take an Ox-cart from Ta Prom temple through the village to the silk center and learn about the process of silk weaving.
Relax and refresh in your new home before having dinner at the temple site with traditional wooden torches.
Dinner is not included
Accommodation at Bambu Hotel (Superior room)