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Cambodia to Thailand, Temples and Tropical Hideaways

17 Days / 16 Nights
, Cambodia

Overview

Discover an intoxicating mix of ancient temples and pristine landscapes on this journey across Cambodia and Thailand. From iconic Angkor monuments to glittering Royal Palaces, tropical jungles to sandy white beaches, be lured into Southeast Asia’s spirituality and natural beauty.

Trip Highlights

Cambodia to Thailand, Temples and Tropical Hideaways

Explore Cambodia’s southern coast

Travel to Kep, Sihanoukville and Song Saa Island, enjoying the area’s natural beauty and the slower pace of life. 

Discover the Cardamom Mountains

Head to Cambodia’s southwest corner to paddle quiet rivers, trek through the jungle and swim in majestic waterfalls.

See the highlights of Cambodia and Thailand

See the temples of Angkor, take an in-depth tour of Phnom Penh and get an introduction to Bangkok.

Itinerary

1

Arrive in Siem Reap

Siem Reap Airport - Siem Reap (8 km): 15 mins

Welcome to Siem Reap, the charming gateway to the famed Temples of Angkor. Be greeted by a local English speaking guide, and be accompanied on a transfer to the hotel for check-in. Settle in and enjoy some time at leisure to refresh.

This afternoon begin exploring the Angkorian temples by local ‘remok’ (similar to the Thai tuk tuk). Built during the reign of King Suryavarman II in the early 12th century, Angkor Wat was constructed following the model of the temple mountain symboliszing Mount Meru, home of the gods. The divine residence of Vishnu, the King himself was to reside here after his death. Inside the temple, the walls are covered with stone carvings and bas-reliefs depicting Hindu mythology and the wars Suryavarman II fought during his reign. Moreover, Angkor Wat is well known for the more than 2,000 Apsara dancers decorating the temple. Construction is thought to have taken around thirty years of intensive labour. Angkor Wat is figured on Cambodia's national flag as the temple symbolises the soul of the Khmer people.

This evening enjoy a welcome dinner at the Embassy Restaurant, an exclusive fine dining experience unparalleled in Siem Reap and headed by executive chefs Pol & Sok: the “Kimsan Twins”. Their experience has taken them to different continents and under the mentoring of Michelin starred chefs they have created one of the most unique five-star quality cuisines that can be experienced in Siem Reap. With a constantly changing menu based around seasonality, savour skilfully prepared masterpieces from multiple-course set menus, paired with a selection of fine wines.

Overnight in Siem Reap.

2

Siem Reap

Breakfast at the hotel.

Start the day with a tour to the temples of the Small Circuit by car. The most illustrious of these is Ta Prohm, built in the mid-12th to early-13th centuries. Ta Prohm is unique in that it has been left largely overgrown by jungle trees and vines, with many parts of the temple crumbling to the ground. This makes the ‘Tomb Raider Temple’ one of the most picturesque and memorable of the Angkor temples. The visit will also include Banteay Kdei, a Buddhist monastery from the late 12th Century, and Srah Srang, also known as the ‘pool of ablutions’.

From here, head to visit the ancient city of Angkor Thom, the last capital of the Great Khmer Empire under the reign of Jayavarman VII. This city is surrounded by an 8m-high wall, drawing a perfect square. Enter the city through the ancient South Gate, an impressive stone gate carved with Elephants and four giant faces.

Continue to Bayon Temple in the exact center of the city. This 12th century masterpiece is a study in grandeur and is well-known for its multitude of towers with enigmatic faces representing the Buddha. The Terrace of the Elephants and the Terrace of the Leper King are also must-visits as they are both known for their intricate bas-reliefs.

This afternoon experience a memorable private helicopter flight from Siem Reap over the Angkor circuit. See incredible views of Angkor Wat from the air. This is the best way to grasp the sheer enormity of the former Khmer empire. Flying time is approximately 20 minutes for the scenic flight over the Angkorian circuit & the floating villages on the Tonle Sap. (Please note: the helicopter flight does not fly over Angkor Wat itself as this is prohibited without special permission. However, get to see this most famous temple from an excellent angle).

Overnight in Siem Reap.

3

Siem Reap - Phnom Penh

Phnom Penh Airport - Phnom Penh (11 km): 20 mins

After breakfast you will transfer with guide to the Siem Reap airport for the short flight to Phnom Penh (45 mins).

After arrival at Phnom Penh airport, your local English speaking guide will pick you up and transfer to hotel for check in.

Phnom Penh was once considered as one of the most beautiful cities in the Orient, and despite its recent turbulent history, it still retains a colonial charm. Cambodia’s capital is a bustling city, majestically located at the confluence of the mighty rivers of the Mekong and Tonlé Sap. Wide tree-lined boulevards and many colonial-era buildings reflect the glorious days and add to the allure of the city, where Asian and Western traditions meet in a fascinating way.

This afternoon you will be greeted by a driver who will take you on a tour to the most remarkable sights of Phnom Penh in a Cyclo, an original Phnom Penh means of transportation and a fun way to explore this lively city. First, visit Wat Phnom, which is situated near the northern boundary of the city. The site contains some good examples of Khmer architecture and statues.

Continue along the lively riverfront to the Royal Palace. This palace dates back to 1866 and houses the Silver Pagoda, named for the over 5,000 heavy silver tiles that cover its floors. Its original name is Wat Prakeo, meaning Temple of the Emerald Buddha. In this temple you will view a collection of Buddhas in gold, silver, crystal, and bronze.

Then visit the National Museum, which was built in traditional Khmer style. It houses the world's foremost collection of ancient Khmer artistic, archaeological, and religious artefacts from the 4th to the 13th centuries. Over 5,000 pieces are on display, constituting the repository of the Kingdom's cultural wealth. In addition, the roof space is home to a large bat colony!

Your last stop is at the riverside area of Phnom Penh, a pleasant French style promenade that is great for people viewing. In the early evening (and morning) various activities take place include exercise classes, Khmer dancing and plenty of snacking on local food. You can participate in a Khmer dance class which is a lot of fun for all! After return by car to your hotel.

This evening will be at Bopha Phnom Penh Titanic restaurant.

Note: If your interest is to learn more about the Khmer Rouge then alternative sightseeing can be offered to the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, housed in the former school that was taken over by the Khmer Rouge and used as its main detention and torture center named ‘S-21’. Further visit the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek. A grim, but important visit that will allow you to dig below the surface and understand Cambodia better. If you would like to do both the Khmer Rouge tour and visit the classic sites (National Museum, Royal Palace etc) then we recommend an extra day to allow for everything to be done.

Overnight in Phnom Penh.

Overnight in Phnom Penh at Sofitel Phnom Penh 5* (Hotel) in Luxury room with ABF for 2 nights from Day 3 to Day 5          

4

Phnom Penh

Phnom Penh – Koh Dach (20 km): 40 mins

Today experience life along the quiet Tonlé Sap and Mekong waters. A full day trip on a wooden riverboat with large sun deck and western amenities offers a unique insight into a part of Cambodia that travellers usually don’t have access to. 

First travel south along Tonlé Sap River, past Phnom Penh’s riverside and the Royal Palace, and further to the point where Tonlé Sap feeds into the Mekong. The trip continues to the North on the Mekong to Koh Dach, the silk weaving village. After visiting several weaving mills, continue upstream to the Preak Bang Kang Resort, where Cambodian families gather on weekends for picnics and swimming. After a relaxing break, the Mekong’s west bank is traced back to Phnom Penh. Duration:  6-7 hours.

Spend the evening free at leisure to further explore Phnom Penh’s diverse and ever growing range of restaurants and/or an evening dance show.

Optional: Cambodian Living Arts performance (evening)

This evening get inspired by Cambodian arts as you watch a traditional dance performance by Cambodian Living Arts (CLA). Between October and March there is a rotating program of 3 unique performances: Classical and Folk Dance (Children of Bassac), Yike (Operetta) and Sabeak Thom (Lareg Shadow Puppets). All the shows last one hour and are held in the atmospheric gardens of the National Museum. After many years of gaining recognition for preserving many Cambodian art forms, the CLA are today striving towards providing the artists the tools required to make their skills sustainable and also so they can make a competitive income from their work (Please note: Shows are on daily except Sunday).

Overnight in Phnom Penh.

5

Phnom Penh - Takeo - Kep

Phnom Penh - Kep (149 km): 2h & 20 mins

Early morning, leave Phnom Penh and travel towards Kep.

On the way, pass Tonle Bati, a recreational area where the Khmers like to spend leisure time during the weekend. However, during the weekdays, the site is quiet and peaceful. Tonle Bati is an Angkorian-style temple and remains largely intact. The pretty garden around it makes it a great treat to relax.

Continue to Kep. On the way, visit a pepper farm and have lunch at Vine Retreat.

Cambodia’s prestigious seaside resort of the 1960s is now awakening to its former glory. The small town offers reminders of the past and a growing choice of activities including island trips, a national park and the famous crab market.

Enjoy the rest of the afternoon at leisure to discover Kep independently or just relax and unwind.

At the end of the day, an hour long traditional Khmer massage at the resort will be perfect for unwinding and recharging.

Overnight in Kep.

6

Kep

After a breakfast by the sea, explore the delights of Khmer cuisine with a hands-on cooking class experience in the hotel gardens on the beach. A professional chef will explain the local ingredients as well as impart skills of traditional cooking techniques. Explore the traditional methods of food preparation and discover new herbs and spices. Learn how to prepare traditional dishes like amok, banana flower and green mango salad, chicken pickled lime soup or some traditional Khmer desserts. A true sensory experience. Afterwards, treat yourself to a delicious meal prepared with new culinary skills!

Spend the afternoon free at leisure to relax or to explore Kep independently. Don’t miss out on the popular crab market for some crabs with Kampot pepper.

Spend the afternoon free at leisure.

This evening go on a memorable dinner and be introduced to the specialties of Cambodian’s coast that are fresh from the sea. At the end of the Knai Bang Chatt Jetty indulge in a private dinner. A beautifully decorated table and an exclusive menu is created for this special night.

Overnight in Kep. 

7

Kep - Sihanoukville

Kep – Kampot (15 km): 30 mins Kampot – Sihanoukville (130km): 2hr

After a leisurely start this morning drive approximately 2 hours to Sihanoukville to meet a scheduled speedboat transfer (shared with other hotel guests) to the private island of Song Saa. Located in the touristic undeveloped Koh Rong Archipelago, off the southwest coast of Cambodia in the Gulf of Thailand, is a luxury resort Song Saa Private Island, which fulfills the wishes of peace and quietness.

Overnight on Song Saa Island.

8

Song Saa Private Island

Wake up to a pristine environment and spend the entire day at leisure or partake in any of the activities listed below.

  • Complimentary activities include:
  • Snorkelling around the resort
  • Sea kayaking
  • Bird watching from sister island, Koh Bong
  • In Villa Movie Experience
  • Sunrise yoga
  • Song Saa Conversation & Community Programmme
  • Island Safari
  • Song Saa Rainforest Encounter
  • Koh Kong Rainforest Encounter
  • Marine Safari
  • Buddhist ceremonies
  • Song Saa cultural experiences

Other excursions that require additional payments are:

  • Koh Rong Beach picnic
  • Guided snorkelling around Coral Reef Island
  • Five Mile Beach excursion
  • Speedboat hire
  • Kayak mangrove tour
  • Song Saa sanctuaries
  • Overnight on Song Saa Island.

9

Song Saa Private Island

Enjoy another day at leisure or choose one of the suggested activities listed above or take it easy at Cambodia’s premier resort.

Overnight on Song Saa Island.

10

Song Saa Private Island - Koh Kong

Sihanoukville – Koh Kong (220km): 4hr

Enjoy some time at leisure until the shared speedboat transfer back to the mainland. Be transferred directly from Sihanoukville to Koh Kong.

After arriving at Tatai Bridge, be transferred by private boat (approximately 20 mins) to tonight’s accommodation, a peaceful retreat with overwater tented villas, set on a quiet bend in the river with the lush Cardamom Mountains as the idyllic backdrop.

Spend this afternoon at leisure exploring the river by kayak, swimming in its clear waters or fishing from the private terrace. Wildlife is abundant here and there are many chances to spot colourful butterflies and bizarre-looking insects as well as some of the 550+ bird species found in this area such as brahminy kites or great hornbills if you are lucky. In the evening take a short boat trip to see a spectacular nature: fireflies lighting up a tree resembling that of a Christmas tree!

Dinner will be served at the lodge.

Overnight in Koh Kong Province.

Sihanoukville – Koh Kong (220km): 4hr

11

Koh Kong

Today spend a relaxing day on a private excursion. Away from the tranquility of 4 Rivers Floating Lodge, the thunder of the majestic Tatai Falls reveals the river’s true power as it drops 6 meters to the rocks below. Your day, depending on the tide, starts at around 10am for the 45-minute boat ride past Tatai village to the falls. A local English speaking guide will lead the tour.

Turning on to a tributary you head into the heart of the Cardamom jungle to the far-off sounds of exotic birds and its secretive wildlife. Within minutes you are at journey’s end, gazing down into the turbulent waters of the falls. Soon it’s time for your picnic lunch, maybe a few moments hydro-massage and a refreshing drink as you find some shade for a picnic and relax amongst the sights and sounds of the jungle. Kayaks are available for the last stretch to add some fun and adventure or you can stay on board the boat.

On your return to the lodge the late afternoon is free at leisure for you to relax or do some more kayaking or fishing from the tent platform.

Dinner at the lodge.

Overnight in Koh Kong Province.

12

Koh Kong – Koh Kood

Border – Laem Sok Pier, Trat (123 km): 2 hr From Tatai Bridge to Koh Kong - Thai border (25 km): 30 mins

After breakfast, check out and be transferred by private boat to the mainland. A transfer to the Thai border at Hat Lek awaits. Take the 30 minute transfer exiting Cambodia and entering Thailand.

Upon arrival at Koh Kong border, be transferred to Laem Sok Pier to embark on a join speedboat directly to Koh Kood and Soneva Kiri Resort. Speedboat departure at 09:00 and 13:00.

Overnight at Soneva Kiri Koh Kood.

13

Koh Kood

Breakfast at the resort, relax on the island at the luxury resort, which boasts of the highest international standard of comfort and service in a remote environment that nurtures indigenous feel in design.

Overnight at Soneva Kiri Koh Kood.

14

Koh Kood

Breakfast at the resort, relax on the island at the luxury resort, which boasts of the highest international standard of comfort and service in a remote environment that nurtures indigenous feel in design.

Overnight at Soneva Kiri Koh Kood.

15

Koh Kood - Bangkok

Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport – Bangkok Hotel (30-40 km): 50 min – 1 hr

After breakfast at the resort, depart by speedboat to board the luxurious Cessna Grand Caravan for the 70 minutes flight to Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok.

Upon arrival at the airport, be greeted by the EXO Travel guide for transfer to the hotel in Bangkok by limousine.

Overnight in Bangkok.

16

Bangkok

Breakfast at the hotel.

Discover Bangkok by a limousine transport. Visit the Royal Grand Palace, Bangkok’s number one ‘must-see’ attraction as well as Thailand’s most important landmark. Be taken by the on an in-depth journey through Thailand’s history and royal heritage. Be awed by the grandeur and majesty of the building and its throne halls. And, of course, marvel at the mysterious Emerald Buddha, the most revered Buddha image in Thailand. Then, continue to visit Wat Pho, Bangkok’s oldest temple, home to the magnificent reclining Buddha as well as the first school of traditional medicine and Thai massage and is also regarded as Thailand’s first University.

Leave the vehicle behind and take to the famous River of Kings, when you board a boat across the Chao Phraya River to the Siam Hotel.

In the evening, dine by the riverside at Baan Khanitha‘s newest home serving up a panoramic view of the Chao Phraya River, as well as Khanitha‘s delectable Thai cuisine and legendary hospitable service. The restaurant is located directly at Asiatique‘s riverside pier. After that, be transferred by boat to the hotel.

Overnight in Bangkok.

17

Bangkok Departure

Bangkok Hotel – Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport (32.6 km): 39 min

Breakfast at the hotel and relax leisurely at the hotel until the guide and limousine arrive for the transfer to the airport for the return flight.

Important Information

  • Accommodation in a shared twin or shared double room in selected hotel
  • Meals as mentioned (B= Breakfast, L= Lunch, D= Dinner)
  • English speaking local guide (for other languages a supplement applies)
  • Tours and transfers as mentioned by private air conditioned vehicle unless stated otherwise
  • One way flight ticket Siem Reap/Phnom Penh in economy class
  • Entrance fees for mentioned visits
  • Transfer Koh Kong to Koh Kood with English speaking guide only
  • Shared return flight transfers between Suvarnabhumi Airport and Soneva Kiri Resort (see the below flight timetable)
  • In Villa Mini Bar, once daily replenishment.
  • Daily drinking water and cold towels
  • Visa for Cambodia (Visa issued on arrival for most nationalities, USD30/pax, please bring 1 passport photo)
  • Any surcharge/extra fees for visit of the Angkor Historical site imposed by the Apsara Authorities in Siem Reap which are subject to change without prior notice
  • Other meals than mentioned
  • International and Domestic Flights
  • Camera/video entrance fees
  • Personal expenses (drinks, laundry, telephone, tips etc)
  • Travel insurance including recommended helicopter evacuation for Cambodia
  • Other services not clearly indicated in the package inclusions above

Customize this tour

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Please fill in the appropriate information below regarding any travel plans or enquiries. Our team of travel experts will get back to you shortly.

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We’re experts who take pride in tailor-made itineraries that suit any need. Please fill in the form below and a member of our team will be in touch shortly.

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