On arrival in Phnom Penh, you will be transferred to your hotel to freshen up before getting some lunch and continuing on to visit part of the “must do’s” for the rest of the afternoon. Next morning, see 2 of the capital’s facets, cruising the Mekong to the countryside in the morning, discovering its architecture in the afternoon. Before heading to your next destination, continue visiting the capital’s inevitable sites before a well-deserved massage and a tasty lunch.
Arrival in Phnom Penh airport and transfer to the hotel (room may not be ready until the afternoon)
Lunch at local restaurant 13:30 hours Visit the notorious Tuol Sleng Museum (S21 prison). This former school was used as a prison by Pol Pot's security forces and became the largest center for detention and torture during the rule of the Khmer Rouge.
Continue to visit the biggest local market and one of the most traditional markets located at the heart of the capital: Orussey. Don't expect to find any souvenirs there, nor any other tourists, expect rather an organized chaotic market where Cambodians go to buy anything from food, to clothing, from electric goods to silverware'85
End your afternoon with a visit to Wat Phnom, Phnom Penh's namesake.
Set on top of a tree-covered knoll 27m high, Wat Phnom is the only hill in town. According to the legend, the first pagoda on this site was erected in 1373 to house four statues of Buddha washed ashore by the waters of the Mekong and discovered by a woman name, Mrs Penh. West of the vihara is an enormous stupa containing the ashes of King Ponhea Yat (reigned 1405 to 1463). Today, many people come here to pray for good luck and success and return to give offerings (such as a garland of jasmine flowers or bananas, of which the spirits are said to be especially fond) promised when their prayers have been answered. Dinner at leisure
08:00 hours Today, explore the city's countryside and local traditions, discover the city's architectural heritage.
Little would you guess that a bustling city such as Phnom Penh has a beautiful authentic countryside just across the river. To go and discover this part of the city, you will board one of the nicest boats in Phnom Penh and start your cruise where the Tonle Sap and Mekong River meet, up the Mekong towards Silk Island (Koh Dach). Cambodian silk production and weaving, thrived from the 13th century until the arrival of the Khmer Rouge in the mid-70s. The know-how of the craftsmen who survived that terrible period is continuing in villages of silk-weavers, notably on Silk Island.
Explore the architectural landscape of the bustling and quickly transforming Cambodian capital, Phnom Penh on a well thought Heritage audio Tour which highlights the city's architectural heritage dating back to the era of the French Protectorate.
A tuktuk will pick you up and take you to the embarkation point from where you will start cruising towards Silk Island. You will disembark near a nice little village of the island where you will visit a silk farm an see the weavers at work, as well as the local pagoda, while your Chef prepares the BBQ.
While you cruise back to Phnom Penh City, enjoy your BBQ lunch and relax.
Upon arrival, your tuktuk will be waiting to take you on an exploration providing a comprehensive architectural tour of this bustling city.
Discover the architectural landscape of the bustling and ever-changing Cambodian capital, Phnom Penh. The Phnom Penh Heritage Tour is a digital (audio-visual) tour by tuk tuk, which highlights the architectural heritage dating back to the era of the French Protectorate.
Cambodia was under French rule for nearly a century leaving some of Phnom Penh's buildings with a curious mix of both French and native Cambodian features. The most significant concentration of these colonial buildings are located in the centre of the city, near the Royal Palace, Wat Phnom, Post Office Square and Norodom Boulevard. Architecturally speaking, Phnom Penh is a comparatively new city. Before the late 19th century the city was comprised of a few pagodas and clusters of wooden structures along the riverfront.
When the tour is finished, the tuktuk will drop you off either at your hotel or in town center.
Alternative Optional Tour:
Discover a side of Phnom Penh you wouldn't have thought about and enjoy a morning bicycle ride on quiet back roads of the Silk Islands, visiting local communities and farmland to witness village life in the Cambodian countryside.
These islands, created by the flows of the Mekong River, are isolated by a lack of bridges, but ferry connections provide access for villagers who use the fertile soil here to grow fruit and vegetables and then weave silk and cotton between farming cycles. The riding is flat and easily achievable for anyone who can ride a bike and we take care to ensure a high degree of safety through the journey, making this an enjoyable and truly family-friendly experience.
You will cross the river by ferry boat, making your way towards the north of Phnom Penh and the Silk Islands. Back on land you will start a scenic 20-25km ride through Cham Muslim communities on quiet back roads. The riding is interspersed with some additional short ferry rides to reach the Mekong Islands and navigate between them. On the islands you will cycle through orchards and market gardens, enjoying the peaceful farmland and learning about the lives of the people who call the Silk Islands home. Adeliciouslocallunchofauthenticregional Khmer food is included in the bike tour along with fresh fruit and water provided through the Journey.
08:00 hours This morning, visit the beautiful National Museum, built in 1917. It is an exceptional example of traditional architecture and is exclusively devoted to preserving and displaying Khmer art and sculptures. Hundreds of pieces are housed here including both pre-and post-Angkorian pieces.
Next to the National Museum, gleaming in gold, is the Royal Palace is one of Phnom Penh's most splendid architectural achievements. It was built in 1866 by His Majesty Preah Bat Norodom, great grandfather to our current King. The Royal Palace is built on the site of the old town. This site was especially chosen by a Commission of Royal Ministers and Astrologers because it had great geographical significance in relation to the King, who was regarded as a direct descendant of the gods, whose role it was to live and govern on earth under the influence of heaven.
The Royal Palace contains some spectacular buildings including the Throne Hall and its 59-meter tower, The Royal Treasury and the Napoleon III Villa and the Silver Pagoda, also known as the Pagoda of the Emerald Buddha of which the steps are crafted from Italian marble and the regal floor made of more than 500 solid silver blocks.
The magnificent 17th century emerald Buddha statue is made of jade. Another treasure is the life-sized solid gold Maitreya Buddha which weighs 90 kilograms and is adorned with 9,584 diamonds. The Silver Pagoda is home to a number of unbelievable treasures.
Because visits can take the energy out of your body, you will be treated with a 1hr body massage in a heavenly Spa, a space of physical, mental and spiritual healing which reflects traditional, non-clinical and holistic based therapies.
Walk to Friend's restaurant for lunch Enjoy creative local cuisine and support students in their hospitality training and journey in becoming a skilled individual, ultimately building futures for themselves! All profits made through this restaurant are reinvested into students in training and partner NGO existing as well as in future projects.
Transfer to Phnom Penh International Airport for departure flight to the next destination.
All sightseeing tour and transfer services with private air-conditioned van/coach as detailed in our itinerary Water
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
Domestic airfare (quoted separately, if requested)
International airfare to / from Cambodia (quoted separately, if requested)
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 program
Drinks with meals
Compulsory gala dinners during festive seasons and peak season surcharges which will be advised at the time of booking
Early check-in and late check-out at hotels, if not mentioned in the program
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