Meet with your guide and driver at Phnom Penh airport, and transfer to the city center. Check-in at your hotel from 14h. Freetime.
The first visit of the day is to the Royal Palace monuments which comprises the Chan Chhaya Pavilion, the Silver Pagoda and the National Museum, where they house the world's finest collection of Khmer sculptures. We will then explore the monument of Independence, shaped like the central tower of Angkor Wat. It was built in 1958 to commemorate the country's independence from France in 1953. We next visit Wat Phnom Daun Penh - a pagoda built by lady Daun Penh in 1372 on a small hill. Wat Phnom remains today the highest artificial hill in Phnom Penh and the center of many recreational activities.
This day is dedicated to your transfer to Siem Reap (no guide), the gateway to the ruins of Angkor, the capital of the Khmer kingdom from the 9th-15th centuries. On the way we make a stop to take a look at the Skun Market, better known as the Insect Market, where the adventurous among you can sample unusual but highly prized Cambodian specialties: cicadas, spiders, grasshoppers, grilled crickets… You will arrive in Siem Reap mid-afternoon. Overnight at the hotel.
Today we will make the visit by tuk tuk (a motorized tricycle which can carry up to 4 passengers) and follow the river to reach the west site of Angkor Wat complex. Among all Cambodia’s temples, Angkor Wat is the most famed, so much so that its picture is featured on the national flag and some riel notes. After having lunch in a local restaurant, we head to the temple of Angkor Thom (Great City). We enter the southern gate, admire the famous Bayon, dating from the 12th and 13th centuries, and the 11th century Baphuon, dedicated to Brahmanism (ancient Hinduism). We then proceed with the Elephant Terrace or the Leper King Terrace.
After thanking your hosts, cycle for an hour along a beautiful country road. Venture into Roulos, the oldest temple complex in Angkor, called "Roluos Group", located 12km east of Siem Reap. These temples are the remains of Hariharalaya, which was for 70 years (and under four successive kings) the first Khmer capital.
● The Preah Kô is dedicated to Jayavarman II, first king and founder of the kingdom of Angkor
● Bakong is by far the largest temple of the Roluos group and the first "state temple" supposed to mark the center of the capital
● The remains of Lolei, four dilapidated brick towers laid on a two-level basement
Continue your cycling trip to Kampong Khleang, a lakeside village. After lunch at a local’s home, hop on a traditional wooden boat. Cruise gently on the river and the great Tonle Sap Lake, discover the lakeside Khmer life: everybody’s fishing, 70-year-old women and 6-year-olds included! In the late afternoon check-in and spend the night at your homestay.
After breakfast, short transfer via the foot of Mount Phnom Kulen (lychee tree mountain). There, like Khmer pilgrims, climb the staircase and follow a lush path to reach the summit of this sacred mountain. At the top, explore the River of a Thousand Lingas, the main pagoda and its huge stone statue. Seize the opportunity to swim in the river next to a beautiful waterfall. On the way back, explore Banteay Srei temple (Citadel of Women), dedicated to Shiva, whose architecture and pink sandstone sculptures are a Khmer masterpiece. The temple turns a beautiful shade at sunset.
Freetime to explore Siem Reap then transfer to Siem Reap airport. Flight to Luang Prabang. Arrival at Luang Prabang Airport, welcome by the Greentours guide and transfer to your hotel. This peaceful city, world heritage, is located in the heart of a mountainous region in the north of the country.
Today is dedicated to the most important sites in Luang Prabang. We venture into Wat Visoun, the oldest temple in Luang Prabang founded in 1512. The temple has a nice selection of centuries-old Buddha statues in bronze and many religious objects. Then we continue on to Wat Aham, a temple from the early 19th century. Two guardians, laid at the foot of the staircase, represent two characters from the Ramayana (Hanuman, the monkey god and the ferocious Yaksa). Our next destination is Wat Xiengthong, the most important temple in the city built between 1559 and 1560. It is one of the most important monasteries and remains an important relic to the spirit of religion, royalty, and traditional art. In the afternoon, we climb up the 328 steps of Mount Phousi leading to the sacred hilltop. This shady Mount dominates the sky of Luang Prabang and offers a splendid panorama of the surrounding villages and the Mekong River. As the day ends, you will no doubt enjoy wandering through the night market, where you can find a beautiful collection of textiles handcrafted by local tribes. Overnight at the hotel.
In the morning, we get on board a narrow, fast local boat, for a cruise on the Mekong River to Pak Ou. Many surprises await you on this journey: lush landscapes, quintessential villages, and authentic local life. Pak Ou sanctuary consists of two large caves in the limestone cliff overlooking the Mekong river. The caves are crammed with a myriad of Buddha images, ranging from a few centimeters to two meters in height. Typical Laotian villages in the area are barely visible behind the thick green foliage. You will pass by slender canoes paddling near the shore, floats and bamboo poles marking the location of nets and fish traps. We will visit Ban Muang Keo, a village famous for its tradition of distilling Laotian rice whisky, known as Lao-lao. A short drive along the Mekong will bring you south to the Kuang Si Waterfalls, located in a protected national park. These famous low falls offer a spectacular sight in their verdant setting. You will have enough time on site to relax and take a dip in the cool water, before returning to Luang Prabang by late afternoon. Night at the hotel.
Free time to discover Luang Prabang then transfer to the airport for your departure flight.
Explore the mysterious temples and breathtaking landscapes of Cambodia and Laos on this 10-day tour through Indochina. From floating villages to towering ancient temples and mysterious, Buddha-filled caves, this tour takes you deep into the wonders of these two beautiful countries.
• Explore legendary Angkor temples
• Discover local life of floating village at the great Tonle Sap Lake
• Admire the most vibrant temples of Luang Prabang
• Visit Kuang Si waterfall & Pak Ou cave
OUR SERVICES INCLUDE:
- Accommodation with breakfast on a Double/Twin Basis in Hotels listed or similar
- All entrance fees and sightseeing as mentioned in the program
- Experienced English speaking tour guides except on free days (for other language guides supplements will be applied)
- Meals as mentioned in the program (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner)
- Transportation in private air-conditioned vehicles with driver
- Boat trips in the Mekong Delta as mentioned in the program
- Domestic flight Siem Reap - Luang Prabang in economy class
- Bottled water during the tour day
OUR SERVICES DO NOT INCLUDE:
- Rates and Hotels are subject to availability
- Domestic & International flights when not mentioned
- Drinks and meals other than those mentioned
- Gratuities to guides, drivers, boat crews, wait staff... We recommend you allow USD$3-6 per day, per traveller. Tipping your guide is an entirely personal gesture.
- Personal expenses of any nature like, laundry, telephone calls, shopping, incidentals at hotels etc.
- Visa Stamping Fee for Laos and Cambodia
- Travel Insurance
- Peak season or Public holiday surcharges if any
- Other services not mentioned in the itinerary
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