Phnom Penh / Kratie / Kampong Cham / Kampong Thom / Siem Reap

4 Days / 3 Nights

Day 1

Phom Penh – Kratie

We leave Phnom Penh and travel northeast to the bustling provincial city of Kompong Cham. En route, there is the chance to pause at Skuon, affectionately known as ‘Spiderville’, where it is possible to sample the local delicacy of deep fried tarantula. We continue northeast to Kratie, a sleepy Mekong port and gateway to an encounter with the rare freshwater Irrawaddy dolphins that inhabit the upper reaches of the Mekong in Cambodia. We check into our hotel. After lunch, we travel to Kampi, one of the many deep pools where the rare river dolphins gather to feed. We board a local boat and cruise out into the mighty Mekong for a chance
encounter with these gentle creatures. Viewing is  commonplace, although it is easier to see the dolphins in the
shallower waters of the dry season, than in the swollen river  of the wet season. Then, take a sunset classic river view from Phnom Sambok.  Accommodation at hotel, Kratie  [Own arrangement]

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Day 2

Kratie – Kampong Cham

We travel by road to Kampong Cham. We’ll see the ‘fusion’ temple of Wat Nokor, an 11th century sandstone temple with a colourful modern wat set in its central courtyard. There are some intricate carvings at this temple and the kitsch contrast between the Hindu past and the Buddhist present is almost unheard of elsewhere in Cambodia. Then, visit the sacred hills of Phnom Pros and Phnom Srei (man and woman hill). In the afternoon, we visit a nearby Mekong island and its pagodas. Feel free to cycle to the riverbank or browse around
the market. Accommodation at hotel in Kampong Cham [Own arrangement]

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Day 3

Kampong Cham – Kampong Thom

Then, we continue to visit pretty elegant Prasat Guha Nokor, an 11th century sandstone and laterite temple set within the grounds of a modern wat. We continue to visit the hilltop temple of Phnom Sontuk, with its many Buddha images. We head to Kampong Thom. After lunch, We explore the impressive pre-Angkorian capital of Isanapura, known today as Sambor Prei Kuk. The first major temple city in SouthEast Asia, the brick temples of Sambor Prei Kuk are a peaceful contrast to their more illustrious relatives at Angkor. Visiting these ancient structures before our pilgrimage to Angkor offers a fascinating chronological insight into the development of temple architecture during the Khmer Empire. We explore the main temples here, including Prasat Tao with its elaborately coiffured lions and Prasat Sambor, with its crumbling sanctuaries. Accommodation at hotel in Kampong Thom [Own arrangement]

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Day 4

Kampong Thom – Siem Reap

We visit Prasat Andet on the journey to Siem Reap. After lunch in Kompong Kdei, we continue northwest on
National Highway 6. This was an old Angkor road and we stop in Kompong Kdei to see one of the ancient Angkor bridges that were built to span the rivers. Spean Praptos or the Praptos Bridge has more than 20 arches and is a spectacular sight, reinforcing the impression that the Khmers were like the Romans of Southeast Asia. We continue to Siem Reap, our base for the rest of the tour. Accommodation at hotel, Siem Reap [Own arrangement]

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