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Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Journey Back in Time - Mystical Angkor. 5Days 4Nights Travel Itinerary in Siem Reap, Cambodia (Small Circle)

Siem Reap - our 4th trip of the year!  The last time Chengy visited this place was back in 2010 and, developed a little crush. This round, we made the trip with Chengy’s colleagues.

Initially, the trip was supposed to be a trip with Camel solely because he wanted to step foot onto Angkor Wat, a UNESCO world heritage site long ago and at the same time we managed to purchase the great deal of AirAsiaGo promos at a very last minute. 

Day 1: 22 May 2015 
Penang International Airport (PEN) Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2
(KLIA 2) 
Capsule by Container Hotel at KLIA 2 (3 hr stay)

Day 2: 23 May 2015 
Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (KLIA 2) Siem Reap International Airport (REP)   
Small Circle   
Morning: Angkor Thom South Gate (Bayon Temple, Baphuon, Phimeanakas) - Terrace of
the Elephants - Terrace of the Leper King - Chaosay Tevoda – Thomanon - Ta Keo 
Afternoon: Ta Prohm - Banteay Kdei -  Srah Srang  – Preah Palilay –
Tep Pranam – Prasat Suor Prat  
L/D: Krousar Khmer Restaurant / Angkor Village Apsara Theatre Khmer Set Dinner 

Day 3: 24 May 2015  
Big Circle 
Morning: Angkor Wat (Sunrise) – Return to Hotel for morning breakfast - Preah Khan Temple - Neak Pean Temple   
Afternoon: Ta Som Temple - East Mebon - Pre Rup Temple - Phnom Bakheng (for sunset viewing)
B/L/D: Continental Breakfast at Malika d'Angkor Boutique Hotel / Angkor Flower
Restaurant / Triangle BBQ Bar Restaurant (Pub Street) 

Day 4: 25 May 2015 
Outside Circle 
Morning: Banteay Samre - Banteay Srey - Beang Mealea  
Afternoon: Kompong Phluk (Tonle Sap Lake) 
B/L/D: Continental Breakfast at Malika d'Angkor Boutique Hotel / Red Piano Restaurant / Blue Pumpkin Restaurant (Pub Street) 

Day 5: 26 May 2015   
Siem Reap International Airport (REP) → Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (KLIA 2) → Penang International Airport (PEN) 
B: Continental Breakfast at Malika d'Angkor Boutique Hotel 

So, we arrived Siem Reap on 23 May 2015. The hotel tuk-tuk driver picked us at the airport and transferred us back to the hotel. Pros Bou, our local driver waited us at the hotel lobby. We hired Pros Bou, our local driver / tour guide beforehand though e-mail. Since we were too early to check-in and our rooms hadn’t ready yet, Pros Bou brought us to the control gate area located in the north part of Siem Reap to purchase our entry pass before move on to our first destination. 

With an entrance fee of US$40 for a 3-day pass, we explored the history of the Khmer Empire as well as an in-depth look at the monuments and monarchs of the Angkorian period at our own leisure.
Enigmatic Faces. The many faces of Bayon at Angkor Thom
Our adventure in Angkor started with the fabulous Angkor Thom which were scattered by four stone gates. Upon approaching the South Gate of Angkor Thom, we were greeted by fascinating giant faces with different form of expressions – smiling, serene, serious, livid, creepy. We spent little time there before we visited the three main temples: (i) Bayon, (ii) Baphuon and (iii) the Phimeanakas.  
I won't forget these (smiling, serene, serious, wild, creepy) faces
Us with the row of Gods lining the path to Angkor Thom's South Gate
Smiling stone face at the South Gate heading towards Angkor Thom
The faces of Bayon were mesmerizing. There were originally 54 towers with four faces each but today, only 37 towers left. Aside from the face towers, Bayon is also adorned with complex bas reliefs representing Khmer’s traditional symbols and daily life. Baphuon is a five-tiered temple mountain dedicated to the Hindu God Shiva.  
Smiling Quietly @ Bayon Temple, Angkor Thom
Enigmatic Faces. The many faces of Bayon at Angkor Thom
Enigmatic Faces. The many faces of Bayon at Angkor Thom
Bas-reliefs depicting scenes of battle in Bayon Temple, Angkor Thom
The five-tiered Baphuon Temple
Stairs leading to the top of Phimeanakas
We then moved on to the Terrace of the Elephants and Terrace of the Leper King, which are all nearby, approx. 5 minutes’ walk from the center of Angkor Thom. The Terrace of the Elephants is a 350-meter long terrace wall carved elephants and garudas spanning the front of the Royal Palace area of Angkor Thom. The terrace was used by King Jayavarman VII as a platform to view his victorious returning army. Meanwhile, the Terrace of the Leper King got its name due to the mark and moss growing which is reminiscent of a person with leprosy.  
Figure from Terrace of the Leper King
Figure from Terrace of the Leper King
Elephant figures at Terrace of the Elephants
Later in the afternoon, Pros Bou brought us to a nearby restaurant for lunch at   Krousar Khmer Restaurant. We had pork fried rice & mango shake at which cost us around US$6.50/meal/pax. We had our first-hand experience of mango shake for the first time! **falling in love** After lunch, we moved on to Chaosay Tevoda, Thomanon, Ta Keo,  Ta Prohm, Banteay Kdei and  Srah Srang (River).  
Bas- reliefs depicting dancing apsaras at the eastern entrance
The Crocodile Tree inside Ta Prohm
The famous Tomb Raider Tree in Ta Prohm
The waterfall tree that dominates the temple's masonry
The waterfall tree that dominates the temple's masonry
Devadas (Dancers) portrayed in Ta Prohm

Ta Prohm (must-visit temple), also known as the Tomb Raider Temple is an example of a famous temple in Angkor where it is wrapped in centuries-old tree roots and insanely photogenic. The temple was founded in 1186 A.D.  We spent over 2 hours in this Tomb Raider temple alone. To us, the carvings and sculptures here are fine and well-preserved compared to the other temples.  

Later on, we continued our first day journey to Banteay Kdei, Preah Palila, Tep Pranam and Prasat Suor Prat  which are all nearby. Banteay Kdei (Citadel of the Cells) is a Buddhist Temple built in the late 12th century and one of the highlights of this temple is the Hall of Dancers located in the central corridor.

Beautiful carving details in Ta Prohm
The Devada sculpture inside Angkor Thom
Dinosaur Carving. No one has been able to explain the presence of this mysterious carving
Banteay Kdei- one of the highlight of this Temple is the Hall of Dancers
The Hall of Dancers in Banteay Kdei Temple
After these temple visits, Pros Bou brought us to the Art Center night market for some locally designed fashions, gallery shops and art prints.  We spent approx. 1.15 hr there.
Arts of Siem Reap
Later in the evening, we headed to Angkor Village for an Apsara Theatre Dinner. The Apsara dance was beautifully curated and neatly performed with stories to tell, taking us on a journey through history and cultural heritage with delicate alignment of the fingers, special traditional sequined silk clothing, jewelry and slow dancing. You can find engravings of Apsara dancers on the walls of Angkor Wat temples too! We truly enjoyed this beautiful cultural experience but found it a little costly compared to other restaurants in downtown.
Beautifully curated Apsara Dance
Beautifully curated Apsara Dance
Beautifully curated Apsara Dance
And that’s the end of day 1.  

**Read more about our travel experiences @ Siem Reap:
Places of Interest / Suggested time spent / Entrance Ticket(s): 
Places of Interest
Suggested Duration (hour/minutes)
Entrance Ticket Fee(s) in USD
Small Circle Tour
Angkor Thom South Gate
10 – 15 minutes

Included in the 3-day Angkor Pass (USD40/pax)
Bayon Temple
2 hour
30 minutes
15 minutes
Terrace of the Elephants
10 - 15 minutes
Terrace of the Leper King
10 - 15 minutes
Chaosay Tevoda
2 hour
15 minutes
Ta Keo
45 minutes
Ta Prohm
2 hour
Banteay Kdei
30 minutes
Srah Srang
10 – 15 minutes
**Angkor Wat (Sunset) at Phnom Bakheng
1 - 2 hour
Preah Palilay
10 – 15 minutes
Tep Pranam
10 – 15 minutes
Prasat Suor Prat
15 minutes
Big Circle Tour
Angkor Wat (Sunrise)
**wake up early!
1 - 2 hour

Included in the 3-day Angkor Pass
Preah Khan Temple
1 - 2 hour
Neak Pean Temple
45 minutes
Ta Som Temple
45 minutes
East Mebon
15 – 30 minutes
Pre Rup Temple
1 hour
Prasat Kravan
30 minutes
Outside Circle Tour
Banteay Samre
   15 – 20 minutes
3-day Angkor Pass
Banteay Srey
   20 – 30 minutes
Beang Mealea
      1 – 1.5 hour
Kompong Phluk (Tonle Sap Lake)
      1 - 2 hour
USD15 / pax for boat ride to Kampong Phluk
** Phnom Bakheng Temple (for sunset view) – proper attire (no shorts, no shirts without sleeve) 

What to see / buy:
Angkor Night Market
Jewelry, cloths, accessories, paintings, souvenirs and decorative items, etc.
Angkor Old Market
Jewelry, cloths, accessories, paintings, souvenirs and decorative items, etc.
Siem Reap Art Center Night Market
Jewelry, cloths, accessories, paintings, souvenirs and decorative items, etc.
Angkor Pub Street
Bistros, cafes, pubs, restaurants, souvenir shops and street vendors

Air Itinerary Details:  
AirAsia: Penang – Kuala Lumpur (KLIA2) – Siem Reap / Siem Reap – Kuala Lumpur (KLIA2) – Penang 
From             To                    Flight           Date            Dep            Arr  
Penang           KLIA 2           AK6121           22 May           2320           0020 
KLIA 2           Siem Reap     AirAsia 542   23 May           0650            0750 
Siem Reap     KLIA 2           AirAsia 543   26 May           0835             1135
KLIA 2           Penang           AK6114          26 May           1435             1530  

Travel Package (AirAsiaGo – inclusive of return tickets and hotel):  
◊Two return tickets from Kuala Lumpur (KUL) → Siem Reap (REP) 
◊Deluxe Room for 2 person at Malika d'Angkor Boutique Hotel (inclusive daily breakfast)
Total Fares:RM730 nett (inclusive of taxes & other charges) = RM365nett/person 

Malika d'Angkor Boutique Hotel
Address: Krom 7, Phoum Sala Kanseng,  Khum Svay Dangkum,  Siem Reap
Website: http://malikadangkor.com/
e-mail: book@malikadangkor.com
Telephone: 855 (063) 767 789
Fax: 855 (063) 761 405
Room Type: Deluxe Room (inclusive of (i) daily continental breakfast, (ii) free wireless
internet, (iii) free one-way airport transfer

Local Transportation:  
Car / Tuk Tuk Driver(s): Pros Bou
Telephone: (+855) 12 733075, (+855) 93 733075
WeChat ID: boup936
LINE ID: prosbou
Facebook: Siem Reap tour & sightseeing
e-mail: prostuktuk@gmail.com
Rate: USD135/6 person(s) = USD22.5/pax. Inclusive of wet tissue, petrol, daily cool drinking water, headset , return airport pick-up service
Types of package(s):
◊ Tour via Tuk tuk: USD12 (small circle), USD15 (big circle), USD70 (outside circle via van)
◊ Tour via air-conditioned van USD30 (small circle), USD35 (big circle), USD70 (outside circle)

Entrance Pass/Fee(s): 
Angkor Pass (entrance ticket to all the Angkor temples and monuments in the Siem Reap area)
Click here for more information. 
Fee(s):USD40 / 3-days visit per one week validity (photo required)
             USD20 / 1 day validity (photo required)

Angkor Village Apsara Theatre Dinner 
Menu: Khmer Set
Price: US$27/pax
Time: 19h30 to 21h30
Address: Angkor Village Resort, Phum Traeng, Siem Reap , Kingdom of Cambodia
Tel: 855-63-963561
Fax: 855-63-963363
Mobile: 855-89-555263
Skype: mithuna.tep
e-mail: welcome@angkorvillage.com (Ms. Mithuna TEP)
Website: www.angkorvillage.com

“Travel teaches toleration” – Benjamin Disraeli

Note: All entrance / transportation fees and accommodation rates/charges listed on this post are based on our (chengywong.blogspot.com) travel dates (2015) and therefore subject to change(s). ©chengywong.blogspot.com is not responsible for content on external web sites.

Welcome to Small World! This blog is not a travel agency, but rather a personal site which allows us to share our past travel experiences in a straightforward and far-reaching way. We often made great use of other peoples travel blogs and sites every time we plan for our travel itinerary as they often contained most updated information and invaluable resources from their past travel experiences.  We hope that you will find every piece of information & images contained within our blog handy and useful. Thank you very much for reading our post(s). If you find this blog worth a read, please feel free to leave a comment/testimonial or click "Like/Share" if you love reading them all. xoxo Both Chengy & Camel are passionate travelers who enjoys speaking to young keen travelers about the freedom to get cultured and to taste the fullness of life. Feel free to contact them if you need any travel advice, guidance or tips or if you have any burning questions with regards to your upcoming trip(s)/ journey
- Be inspired but more importantly be inspiring -


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  2. Thanks for these helpful recommendations.The carvings on the temples is very beautiful. Nice blog. One can also try visiting greatescapecambodia.com for some reality escape game in Siem Reap.
    Things to do Siem Reap

  3. Thanks for the post. I will try my level best to visit this place. I had joined the Cambodian Language Course so that I can easily communicate with the native people without any worry or mistake.

  4. Hi, how is Tuk Tuk Driver(s): Pros Bou service? English speaking?