Happy Chol Chnam Thmey! Happy New Year from Exotissimo! We’re sure you’ve never experienced New Year festivities quite like in Cambodia, have you? Ever gotten drenched in the middle of the street in a party like atmosphere? Or perhaps see families, friends and elders gently pouring or sprinkling water at Buddha images on each other wishing good luck and prosperity? Then you should try out the Khmer New Year. It is nothing like you’ve experienced before! Mark your dates for April13-15.
You’ll arrive in Siem Reap right at the beginning of the celebrations. And you’ll see the traditional side of the festival at Wat Bo, a local temple in town. Family members gather around and burn incense, paying homage and thanking the Buddha for his preaching. You’ll also receive your blessing from the temple’s resident monk. A quiet day but an eventful day as you’ll see the preparation methods for the big celebration that is sure to come soon.
Hey, you’re in Siem Reap after all. This means one thing, Angkor Wat. Head over to the archaeological site and see why this temple continues to amaze people.
On the second day of the Khmer New Year celebrations, people head out to charities or do what they can to help the less fortunate. You can do your part too. Your first stop is at an NGO that does its part to conserve the biosphere of Tonle Sap. This is a great opportunity to learn about this important body of water. All this exploration must make you sore, eh? You can support the next charity by getting a massage by a trained blind masseur.
The third day, everything explodes, H2O style! People will head out to the temple and bathe Buddha images. This is believed to bring good luck. That water is then considered blessed and gently poured onto other, bringing the good luck vibe onto them. Take part in traditional games and be a part of the party atmosphere! Prepare to get wet. Do you have your water pistol? And why not bring the festive atmosphere to Angkor’s temples?
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