VC10 Khmer Era & New LifeStyle ( 5 days / 4 nights )
Day 1 Siem Reap – Arrival
Upon your arrival in Siem Reap, transfer to your hotel. Enter Angkor Thom via the Southern Gate and explore this ancient city. Then proceed to visit the ruins at Bayon, Baphoun, Phimeanakas, the Royal Palace, the Elephant Terrace and the Leper King Terrace. In the afternoon, visit the magnificent Angkor Wat. Explore its extraordinary architecture for an opportunity to experience a spectacular sunset over the monuments.
Overnight in Siem Reap.
Day 2 Siem Reap – Banteay Srei – Banteay Samre – Taphrom – Silk Farm – Artisans d’Angkor
After breakfast, take a car to visit the graceful 11th century Temple of Shiva – Banteay Srei – and the Banteay Samre Temple. On the return trip, pay a visit to Ta Prohm Temple which is mystically enveloped by the jungle. In the afternoon, travel in the countryside and visit a Silk Farm at Pourk where visitors can see the process of silk making from start to finish. Afterwards, visit Artisans d’Angkor, an organization focusing on training unschooled rural youth in traditional handicraft skills. Ancient techniques are still practiced here such as wood and stone carving, lacquering, gilding and silk painting. End the tour by relaxing after a long day of climbing around temple ruins as you get pampered with a rejuvenating and traditional Khmer or foot massage.
Overnight in Siem Reap. [Breakfast]
Day 3 Siem Reap - Local Village - Planting/ Harvesting Vegetable/ Rice - Cooking with local family – Private Blessing Ceremony at Monastery
Today, we journey out to a local village where you will spend the day. The village sits around 10km from Siem Reap and consists of mostly farming families. This is a real village, not a replica set up for tourists to visit, as such you may need to be flexible, things can change, ceremonies may be running or events may be taking place in the village. Upon arrival, you will be welcomed by the farming families and have some time to interact with the families before starting the activities such as planting vegetable crops, harvesting and watering vegetables. In addition, to experience what is the real in the village, you and the farming family will harvest vegetables and cook them together for lunch. The farming family will show you how to cook and tell you about the Cambodian vegetables, spices and culinary technique of a traditional Khmer dish. Then you can enjoy your own culinary creation together with your host family.
After lunch, learn about life in a typical village. Visit the local Pagoda and school and find out about village customs and culture and gain new insights and experiences. As you wander slowly through the village your guide will show you about the way of life for the local people and answer any questions that you have. Learn about, religion and the people’s lives. This is a chance to meet local people, learn about their lives and interact in a respectful and meaningful way. Then, proceed to a local monastery and meet the resident monks and participate in a private good luck blessing ceremony, wishing you good health and a safe journey, performed by local monks. Sit on the mat while the monks chant blessings and sprinkle holy water on you – a traditional way which is believed pass on the good luck of the gods. Afterwards, a sacred thread will be tied around your wrist. This is traditionally believed to protect you from any evil spirits or accidents and is a memorable experience. Afterwards, learn about Buddhist philosophy and monastic life. In the evening, drive to have dinner at local restaurant before spending the night at a local Khmer house in the monastery. Please note that the accommodation is local standard. There will be a shared sleeping area, bucket showers and squat toilets. Vidotour will provide some basic accessories such as rattan mats, pillows, blankets, mosquito nets and fans.
Overnight in monastery. [Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner]
Day 4 Monastery & Meditation – Siem Reap
Wake up early in the morning to the sound of drums which is a wakeup call for all monks. This morning you will be introduced to Buddhist meditation and practice in monastery as well as witness religious chanting for a complete half day which is truly a spiritual experience. Return to town for lunch at a local restaurant and the rest of the afternoon you will be free at your own leisure.
Overnight in Siem Reap. [Breakfast, Lunch]
Day 5 Siem Reap – Departure
Free until transfer to the airport for departure flight. [Breakfast]