Cambodia

17-day Cambodian Luxury Vacation

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Tour type

Tour Level: Relaxed / Easy

Tour Comfort: Luxury

Tour Period: 17 Days

English, Russian, German, French, Spanish

tour highlights

  • Stay in the best 5* accommodations
  • Observe local livelihoods of the Tonle Sap and country side
  • Visit the landmarks of Phnom Penh and Siem Reap
  • Meet local artists
  • Take an amazing helicopter journey to visit Koh Ker and Preah Vihear
  • Take an exclusive tour to hidden arts & crafts workshops
  • Visit temples by vintage sidecar-bikes

tour details

Cambodia hasn’t been a luxurious destination in over four decades but the recent developments across the country are bringing back class.
From Phnom Penh, cruise the Tonle Sap to Siem Reap and finish with a getaway in the middle of the luxurious jungle followed by relaxation on a private island.
On this journey, visit the best of what must be explored and discovered, from the Royal Palace, to life on the Great Lake, to majestic Preah Vihear and Angkor Wat.

Plaza Premium Lounge VIP Meet and Greet Service is dedicated to delivering the perfect airport experience for your guests. Our welcoming and friendly team is always at hand to ensure your guests' journey is hassle-free and seamless at the airport, be it departing, arriving or transiting.

Our Customer Service Officer will meet the guests at the arrival gate with a placard displaying guests' name. Upon meeting the guests, they will be accompanied through Immigration, Baggage Reclaim and Customs. The Customer Service Officer will accompany the guest out to the arrival hall, either to be handed over to the receiving party of Diethelm Travel's guide.

Transfer with English speaking tour guide from Phnom Penh International Airport to the hotel (rooms may not be ready until the afternoon).

The rest of the day at leisure (no car and no guide provided)

Lunch and dinner free

Accommodation at Rosewood Hotel, Executive room
Breakfast at hotel,

This morning, visit Wat Phnom. Founded in 1373, the pagoda was built to house Buddhist relics washed ashore by the river.
Continue to the National Museum, also called Musee des Beaux-Arts. A French archaeologist and painter, Georges Groslier, designed it in Khmer style in 1917. The museum contains a collection of Khmer art - notably sculptures - from throughout the ages.
Finally, visit the Royal Palace, built by King Norodom in 1866 on the site of the old town, and the Silver Pagoda. Located within the grounds of the Royal Palace, the Silver Pagoda is so named because of its floor, which is made up of 5,000 silver tiles. The treasures found inside include a solid gold Buddha encrusted and weighing 90 kilograms and a small 17th century emerald and baccarat crystal Buddha.
Lunch at Sugar Palm restaurant

After lunch, walk down to visit X-Em Gallery & meet renowned and multi-talented Cambodian Artist Em Riem.
Before heading to the port, meet with Cambodian Fashion Designer Romyda Keth whose creations are set in a beautiful Colonial house.

Transfer to Aqua Mekong Cruise for Embarkation

Be welcomed over custom sundowners like the Salted Watermelon Crush with Thai basil and celebrate the onward journey towards the heart of this mighty river with a Khmer Apsara performance, an indigenous tradition memorialized on the temple walls at Angkor Wat.

Accommodation on board of Aqua Mekong Cruise
Breakfast on board

This morning, visit Koh Chen, a silversmith village known for its fine craftsmanship. Keep an eye out for their famous silver bowls, regularly chosen by Cambodia's king as gifts for visiting dignitaries.

In the afternoon, continue learning about Khmer riverside life in Kampong Chhnang, the 'Port of Pottery' so called because archaeological findings here date to the 6th century. Bike option is available.

Accommodation on board of Aqua Mekong Cruise
Breakfast on board

Today, explore the remote communities around the Tonle Sap Lake, designated as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in 1997. In Chhnok Tru, "slide" into an ice factory and learn from locals what it's like to live in a town where schools, churches, pagodas, and even the karaoke bar and police station all float.

After lunch, visit the floating village of Moat Khla, accessible only by water, and attend a Buddhist blessing ceremony in this isolated community.

Accommodation on board of Aqua Mekong Cruise
Breakfast on board

Set off by skiff into the 22,000-hectare Prek Toal Core Bird Reserve, one of the largest freshwater bodies in Asia and the last refuge in Southeast Asia for large waterbirds like the spot-billed pelicans, milky stork, black-headed ibis and the elusive masked finfoot.
Disembarkation.

Transfer by Jeep to Phum Baitang Resort

Lunch and rest of day at leisure

Accommodation at Phum Baitang Resort
Breakfast at hotel.

This morning, hop on in your Jeep and head to Angkor and sStart by visiting the last capital of the Khmer Empire: Angkor Thom, built in the 12th century and deserted most likely during the 16th century. Inside its walls, visit:
-the South Gate with its huge statues depicting the churning of the ocean of milk
-Bayon temple, unique for its 54 towers decorated with 216 smiling faces of Avolokitesvara
-Baphuon, a pyramidal representation of Mount Meru
-the Terrace of the Elephants, used by Jayavarman VII to watch his victorious army return
-the Terrace of the Leper King, which's statue was formerly thought to represent a legendary "leper king", but is now considered to represent Yama - the Lord of the Dead and believed the terrace itself might have functioned as a royal cremation platform.

Continue towards famous Ta Prohm, beautiful jungle temple which nature seems to have taken over, has been relatively untouched since it was discovered and retains much of its mystery.

Stop and relax for a nice lunch at Sala Kdei, beautiful local restaurant set in a wooden house, facing Sra Srang.

After lunch, visit the most famous of all temples: Angkor Wat, the world's largest religious monument named UNESCO World Heritage site in 1992. The 12th century temple complex spreads over 81 hectares. It's five towers symbolize Meru's five peaks, the enclosed wall represents the mountains at the edge of the world and the surrounding moat, the ocean beyond.

On the way back from the temples, stop to visit Theam's House & Art Gallery, escorted by Maddy, the artists' sister and maybe meet the artist himself, then relax with a little Champagne Cocktail before heading back to the hotel.

Dinner at leisure

Accommodation at Phum Baitang
Breakfast at hotel.

Transfer to Siem Reap International Airport to board your private helicopter and fly to visit majestic Preah Vihear and former ancient Khmer capital Koh Ker.

Preah Vihear is an ancient Khmer temple, built between that straddles a large cliff along the present-day border between Thailand and Cambodia. Sovereignty over the temple had been disputed for many years until 1962, when the International Court of Justice ruled that it belonged to Cambodia.
It is known that the temple is dedicated to the god Shiva and was built during the reign of Suryavarman I (1002-50) with continued construction during the reign of his successor, Suryavarman II (1113-50)

Koh Ker is a 10th-century temple complex in the north Cambodian jungle. A former capital of the Khmer Empire, the site is now remote and heavily forested. The main structure, Koh Ker Temple, is a stepped 7-tiered pyramid. The large rectangular tank, Rahal Baray, supplied water to the complex. The Prasat Krahom, meaning "red temple," is known for its sandstone carvings, while Prasat Pram is covered in strangler figs.

Enjoy a picnic lunch in between visiting

Accommodation at Phum Baitang (Terrace Villa)
Breakfast at hotel

This morning, be picked-up at your hotel by amazingly well restored classic sidecar-bikes, for a memorable experience, and start your morning journey to discover some of the smallest yet remarkable and magnificent temples built by King Jayavarman VII in the second half of the 12th century.

King Jayavarman VII was generally considered the most powerful of the Khmer monarchs by historians. Over the 30 some years of his reign, Jayavarman embarked on a grand program of construction that included both public works and a large number of monuments. As a Mahayana Buddhist, his declared aim was to alleviate the suffering of his people.

You will ride approximately 30 minutes from the city center, to Preah Khan temple while passing by Angkor Wat, entering through Angkor Thom's South Gate, get a glimpse of Bayon, the terraces of the Elephants and Leper King before exiting through the North Gate to reach Preah Khan.

Preah Khan Temple is located in the Angkor Archaeological Park and is still largely unrestored. Its aesthetics are very similar to nearby famous Angkor temple Ta Prohm, with vegetation and trees seeming to swallow the ruins. Preah Khan translates to "Holy Sword" in Khmer, named by Jayavarman VII in honor of his battle victory against the invading force of Chams, who belonged to a kingdom in what is now Vietnam, in the year 1191.

Continue your ride around Jayatataka to visit the surrounding temples of Kro Ko, Neak Pean and Ta Som

Kro Ko, which means "the shed of the oxen", is a single tower monument with two enclosing walls built of laterite with an entry tower at the east and a moat with steps. There is a library built of laterite and sandstone opening to the west on the left of the interior courtyard. The Central Sanctuary stands on a terrace in the shape of a cross.

Neak Pean is small and a collection of five ponds with unique features. Some historians believe that it represents Anavatapta, a mythical lake in the Himalayas whose waters are thought to cure all illness. Neak Pean was originally designed for medical purposes (the ancients believed that going into these pools would balance the elements in the bather, thus curing disease and is based on the ancient Hindu belief of balance with four connected pools representing Water, Earth, Fire and Wind.

Little is known about the purpose of Ta Som temple, but it may have been dedicated to the King's father or one of his teachers. Ta Som was swallowed up by the jungle until the 1930's, when it was cleared out enough for visitors to access the site, but left in its mostly unrestored state. Ta Som depicts both Hindu and Buddhist icons, as the official Angkor religion switched back and forth over the centuries.

Return to freshen up at your hotel and lunch at leisure

Around 14:00 - 14:30 hours, your host ad adventure guide for this experience will pick you up and drive you along local roads through the Khmer countryside of paddy fields and sugar palm trees to where we meet the Finfoot. drive along local roads through the Khmer countryside of paddy fields and sugar palm trees to Meichrey, where we meet and board Finfoot, the boat which will take you along the river, passing a hill top pagoda and between the floating houses of a small village.
The Kayaks allow you to experience this very different culture up close and personal. Finfoot will be moored at the edge of the Tonle Sap Great Lake as the sun dips low over the water, where cocktails and canap'e9s from famous Miss Wong Cocktail Bar will be served.

Return to your hotel and dinner at leisure (*)
(*) if you want to prolong this cruising experience, a bbq dinner can be organized on board following the cocktails.

Accommodation at Phum Baitang
Breakfast at hotel

This morning, sleep in a little or enjoy breakfast a little longer, then go on an exclusive tour and discover the "Behind the Scenes", inaccessible to the public, of a great social enterprise.

Artisans Angkor, created in 1992 when the country was faced with the challenge of rebuilding its economy, has developed from the ambitious belief that it is possible to revive ancient Cambodian Arts & Crafts while improving the lives of thousands of people living in rural areas.
Not only are they committed to the preservation of Cambodia's cultural legacy, but they also want to empower individuals by helping them secure their future by the means of education and welfare.

Today, it has 48 workshops (of silk, stone and wood carving, lacquerware, gilding, ceramics, silver plating, silk painting, and jewellery) operating in 12 sites located in Siem Reap province and provides employment to over 1100 people, including about 800 artisans, many of which, over the last few years, had the privilege to be selected for the restoration of several parts of the historical Angkor site. You will visit 3 special workshops and learn about all the facets of their creations.

You will be picked-up at your hotel around 09:30am and taken to your first hidden workshop which is one of the ceramics, followed by a lacquer workshop. Observe in details the fine and delicate work it is to create a piece and learn about each process explained by your personal Artisans d'Angkor expert.

Continue to Puok, where Artisans d'Angkor Silk Farm is located and visit a stone carving workshop which is also the location where special project are realized. You will be able to see both up-close but as these are private individual's orders, and some may be very confidential, no photos or videos of special projects are allowed.

You will continue to the main location of Artisans d'Angkor, in the city center where you can have a glimpse at the Chantiers-Ecoles, where students are trained to become artisans and end your experience in the Prestige Room with a glass of wine with sparkles'85

Lunch and afternoon at leisure

This evening, enjoy a stunning sunset over the rice fields followed by a romantic dinner, a magical experience where you will enjoy destination dining to its fullest.
The Village of Chhreav is located approximately 20min south-east of Siem Reap City Center and is surrounded by rice fields and farming lands. The contrasts between the red soil and the green lands is mesmerizing. From the road, a wooden path-bridge crosses the rice field and takes you to a charming little hut especially decorated for your romantic evening. Enjoy a drink and canapes while watching the sun set over the rice fields which will be followed by a delicious Khmer dinner and accompanied by traditional music.

Best time of the year: thanks to a great irrigation, this experience can be done all year long.

Although rice is planted during the rainy season, around mid-June and harvested between mid-November and mid-January, the fields stay green during the dry season, mostly covered by grass.

Departure from your hotel: recommended 05:00pm
Departure from Chhreav Village: around 08h00

Accommodation at Phum Baitang
Breakfast at hotel.

Transfer to Siem Reap International Airport for departure flight to Sihanoukville.
Arrive at Sihanoukville airport and transfer by Shinta Mani Wild to their resort.

The drive to Shinta Mani Wild takes approximately 2.5hrs, therefore lunch will have to be on the road, at a local restaurant (nothing fancy) but it can also be requested to Shinta Mani Wild to prepare a picnic to have on the way.

Rest of day free at leisure to enjoy all the inclusive activities and spa treatments

Dinner and accommodation at Shinta Mani Wild
Breakfast at hotel.

Lunch at hotel

Day free at leisure to enjoy all the inclusive activities and spa treatments

Dinner and accommodation at Shinta Mani Wild
Breakfast at hotel.

Lunch at hotel

Day free at leisure to enjoy all the inclusive activities and spa treatments

Dinner and accommodation at Shinta Mani Wild
Breakfast at hotel

Transfer when you are ready, by Shinta Mani Wild, to Six Senses Krabey's port near Ream National Park, Sihanoukville, for departure by joint speedboat to Six Senses Koh Krabey

Lunch and rest of day at leisure

Day free at leisure

Accommodation at Six Senses Koh Krabey
Breakfast at hotel.

Full Day at leisure

Accommodation at Six Senses Koh Krabey
Breakfast at hotel.

Full Day at leisure

Accommodation at Six Senses Koh Krabey
Breakfast at hotel.

Full Day at leisure

Accommodation at Six Senses Koh Krabey
Breakfast at hotel.

Take the morning speedboat to main-land and transfer to Kep

Upon arrival, have a tea or coffee, then hop on a tuktuk which will take you on the discovery of Kep.
From the turn of the century through the 1960s, Kep was Cambodia's premier beach town, drawing holiday-makers to its breezy shores and numerous Le Corbusier-inspired villas. Today, Kep inspires the more adventurous travellers seeking a rustic and relaxed tropical atmosphere, yet part of its charm lies within the footprints of its privileged past.
During this tour you will get a glimpse into Kep's earlier glory, visiting several abandoned colonial villas, including the former residence of King Father Norodom Sihanouk. Mixing the old with the new, you will also travel along the coastal roads, visit the famous crab shacks, a hillside temple, and the iconic siren of the sea statue overlooking Kep Beach.

Lunch at the Sailing Club of Knai Bang Chatt

Overland transfer from Kep to Phnom Penh International Airport to catch evening flight to next destination.
At Phnom Penh Airport, you will be met and assisted with a customer service officer who will take care of everything until you board and you will enjoy the services of the VIP Lounge while waiting.

includes

  • All sightseeing tour and transfer services with private air conditioned van/coach as detailed in our itinerary Water
  • Accommodation in shared twin room with air-condition (AC) and private bathroom
  • Meals as specified in the itinerary
  • All entrance fees for the places as mentioned in the programme
  • Transfers and tours with English-speaking locally-stationed guides (guides in other languages are on request and may be subject to supplements) in private air-conditioned vehicles
  • Service charges, room tax and baggage handling
  • Bottled water and cold towels available on the vehicles

excludes

  • Domestic airfare (quoted separately, if requested)
  • International airfare to / from Cambodia (quoted separately, if requested)
  • Optional tours
  • Surcharges for other language guides
  • Personal travel insurance
  • Personal expenditure, such as drinks, souvenirs, laundry, camera fees, communications, postage, gratuities etc.
  • Meals and services other than mentioned in the programme
  • Drinks with meals
  • Compulsory gala dinners during festive seasons and peak season surcharges which will be advised at the time of booking
  • Visa fees
  • Early check-in and late check-out at hotels, if not mentioned in the programme
Tour code: PNHDPCLV

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