‘Angkor Sangkranta’ unexpectedly exploded in Siem Reap over the Cambodian New Year period with hundreds of thousands joining in the festival, organised by the Union of Youth Federations. Exhibitions, concerts and traditional games and activities were in full flow and the larger than expected crowds made visiting the temples a tough task during the New Year celebrations. In addition, every hotel and guesthouse room was snapped up. It’s certainly a consideration if booking a visit to Cambodia next April during Khmer New Year. One of the benefits for visitors was an illuminated display of the Angkor temples at night.
Archive for the ‘Festivals’ Category
Try Hanuman’s Top Ten Authentic Experiences in Indochina.
Enjoy a helicopter ride over remote temples or the islands of Halong Bay, enjoy a nostalgic city tour by vintage car, meet leading artists and sculptors in the regional art scene, learn the secrets of local recipes with a celebrity chef and learn the art of travel photography with a professional. All these authentic experiences are possible in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam through Hanuman.
Helicopter Flights : Take to the skies to see the region from a different view. Fly to remote jungle temples in the far north of Cambodia, the endless array of temples in Bagan or discover the dramatic scale of Halong Bay from the air.
The Art of Travel Photography : Learn the tricks of the photographic trade from one of the professional photographers living in the region, including diverse destinations such as the temples of Angkor, lovely Luang Prabang, balloons over Bagan and the Mekong Delta.
Living History in Selected Cities : Understand the complicated history of the war years in Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam with a history tour of the leading cities. Experience an intimate tour of iconic locations in Phnom Penh, Saigon and Vientiane.
Wine and Dine in Memorable Places : Enjoy an exclusive private champagne dinner in a unique location. Imagine dinner at one of Angkor’s ancient temples or a romantic picnic on a deserted tropical island.
Encounter Wildlife in Remote Places : Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam have an extensive network of national parks. Sleep in a treehouse with the Gibbon Experience in Laos, visit Prek Toal Bird Sanctuary near Siem Reap or see rare langurs in Vietnam.
Cooking with a Celebrity Chef : Experience a cookery demonstration with one of the region’s finest chefs to learn more about the delights of Cambodian, Laotian or Vietnamese cuisine. This can be arranged in most popular visitor destinations.
Meet the Movers and Shakers : Enjoy a private meal with one of the leading lights of the Mekong region, from royal family members in Cambodia to respected international figures who live in Laos and Vietnam.
Hidden Treasures of Indochina : Enjoy exclusive access to leading museums and conservation departments of the region with leading art experts and archaeologists. Go behind the scenes to see forgotten treasures not on display.
City Tour by Vintage Car or Motorcycle : Explore the bustling streets of cities in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam by vintage car. For the more adventurous, it is possible to experience a city tour on the back of an old motorbike.
Yoga Class in Unique Locations : Relax and unwind with your own private yoga session somewhere to remember. Try one of the more remote and secluded beaches of Vietnam or one of the lesser known temples around Angkor.
Continuing the Laos theme of recent days, discover Luang Prabang with our 4-day Explorer tour.
Luang Prabang oozes class and old world charm, it’s a living, breathing museum with its gleaming temple roofs and crumbling French architecture and deserves its World Heritage status as one of the most atmospheric cities in the whole region. In our 4-day Luang Prabang Explorer tour, we delve into some of its 32 stupa-studded pagodas like Wat Xieng Tong and the Royal Palace Museum, we take a boat upriver to river to visit the massive collection of Buddhas in the Pak Ou Caves and enjoy a relaxing day in the turquoise waters of the Kuang Si Falls. To complete our immersion into this lovely city, we also enjoy a cooking class of authentic Lao food at the classy Tamarind restaurant by making a classic dish such as mok pa (steamed fish in banana leaves). Recommended hotels in Luang Prabang include La Residence Phou Vao, Auberge les 3 Nagas, Apsara and Le Sen Boutique Hotel. Eat at Tamarind but also try the fare at Le Banneton, Coconut Garden, Rosella Fusion, Le Patio and Dyen Sabai. You are spoilt for choice.
Pushed for time but you really want to see the charms of Laos. Try our 8-day Laos Discovery tour.
The sleepy capital of Vientiane and its alluring riverside setting with historic temples and the eccentric Buddha Park begin our journey in this relaxed and laid-back country. We then head to the Plain of Jars, a mysterious mountainside dotted with ancient burial jars from a forgotten civilisation for a brief adventure before we arrive at the highlight of our tour, the World Heritage city of Luang Prabang. Home to 32 stupa-studded wats, it remains one of the most atmospheric destinations in all Asia. We take in the Royal Palace Museum, classic Wat Xieng Thong, enjoy a boat upstream to the Buddahs of the Pak Ou Caves and a day of relaxation in the turquoise waters of the multi-tiered Kuang Si Falls.
Contact our Sales Team at Hanuman for more information or visit our website at http://www.hanuman.travel/Tours/Laos/Laos_Discovery.html to find out more about the delights that Laos has to offer visitors.
With Laos in mind, we love this article by Richard Waters for the Independent newspaper, as he takes to his motorcycle and explores this beautiful country. Read about his trip at http://www.independent.co.uk/travel/asia/on-your-bike-in-central-laos-8873871.html.
What better way to experience a country than to immerse yourself in its culture and lifestyle. Our 12-day tour of Cambodia has all that and much more. Come and join us to see the real Kingdom of Wonder.
Cambodia’s unique culture comes under the spotlight in this 12-day tour as we explore the diversity on offer in the beguiling Kingdom. What better way to begin than in the capital Phnom Penh at the inspiring National Museum before we meet one of the country’s iconic classical artists in person. We also get an insight into the country’s more recent and harrowing history. The remote northeast minority tribes and endangered wildlife, both dolphins and elephants, await our arrival in the Kratie and Mondulkiri region. We head northwest to one of the earliest capitals at Sambor Prei Kuk before we reach the pinnacle of the Khmer Empire at Angkor. A timeless testament to the ingenuity of the Khmer people, we immerse ourselves in the numerous stone monuments including Angkor Wat as well as experience life in a floating village, the art of shadow puppetry and classical Khmer dance at its best.
Contact our Sales Team at Hanuman for more information or visit our website at http://www.hanuman.travel/Tours/Cambodia/ET_Culture_Lifestyle_Cambodia.html to discover details of this wonderful experience.
The flooding in Cambodia has now spread to 17 provinces and has claimed the lives of at least 83 people. Continued bad weather is expected for another week. The government have reacted by cancelling the Water Festival celebrations from 16-18 November, for the third year running.
Battambang, Cambodia’s 2nd city, is experiencing its first flooding for many years and one of the most popular hotels, Bambu Hotel is currently out of action due to flooding problems. Water levels in the city center are covering all roads and outlying districts making access to sites like Ek Phnom, Phnom Banan and Phnom Sampoeu, as well as the bamboo train, not possible at this time. The road that links Phnom Penh to Battambang is also experiencing flooding for the second half of the route from Pursat to Battambang. The journey is not recommended until the water levels recede.
Kompong Thom, along the main highway from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap, is having flooding problems in outlying districts, with the Sambor Prei Kuk Temple complex currently inaccessible to visitors. The Sambor Village Hotel is also closed due to flooding.
Siem Reap, gateway to the Angkor temples, is having some flooding problems, particularly the road to the airport from the city and the road to the Chong Kneas floating village. At the moment these roads are still passable. There has been some minor flooding near the Angkor Wat temple as well, though nothing that should halt any visits.
An update on the Phnom Penh to Siem Reap journey: National Highway 6A between Phnom Penh and Skun (Spiderville) is undergoing major reconstruction and most drivers are currently travelling via NH5 and the Prek Kdam Bridge to avoid the first 47km of this route. From Skun to Kompong Thom is very potholed and progress can be slow. From Kompong Thom to Siem Reap, the road is generally still in excellent condition but parts of the road is experiencing minor flooding. It now takes around up to five hours from Phnom Penh to Kompong Thom and around two hours from Kompong Thom to Siem Reap. So the total journey time from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap is around seven hours depending on the traffic situation. While current road conditions prevail, it may be advisable for travellers to consider flying from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap to save time and avoid discomfort. However, heavy rainfall in the capital Phnom Penh, has left the roads leading to the city’s main airport under water and considerably longer travelling times.
Feeling fit? Then you might be interested in taking part in two international half marathons gracing Cambodia before the end of the year.
Up first is the debut of the Thansur Bokor International Half Marathon & Bike Race in October. Bokor Mountain near Kampot and overlooking Cambodia’s beautiful south coast is the venue for this inaugural event, with all proceeds going to the Cambodian Red Cross. The bicycle races, 50km and 30km, will take place on 26 October and the following day, its the turn of the half marathon of 21km as well as 10km and 5km road races and a 3km fun run. The Thansur Bokor Highland Resort are offering special deals for overnight stays and packages.
1 December has been earmarked for the 18th Angkor Wat International Half Marathon, an annual event which the Angkor Park in Siem Reap has hosted since the first half marathon way back in 1996. Proceeds help charities such as Hearts of Gold and this massively popular event will have five different races on the day, a 21km half marathon, a 10km road race, a 3km family run and two races for disabled competitors, a 21km wheelchair race and a 10km run. Ask Hanuman for more details if road running is your forte.
Find your very own sunset spot at Angkor.
An initiative to spread the numbers of tourists visiting the Angkor Park in Cambodia, especially at sunset, to different locations, has recently been launched by the Apsara Authority who control the park. The Sunset Finder is a pilot project arising from a tourism master-plan being put together and supported by the host government, Australia and UNESCO. By promoting the diverse and wonderful sunset experiences at Angkor, the project aims to spread visitor load across the park, provide benefits to local communities and offer new attractive opportunities for visitors. The selection of sunset options provides key information such as likely crowd turnouts, transport options and ambiance so you can choose the sunset experience that is best for you. From watching the sunset with a group of friends over the West Baray to an intimate dusk gondola ride on the moat of Angkor Thom, Angkor caters to every taste, budget and age group. You can see the Angkor Sunset Finder for yourself, here.
Come and enjoy a virtual trip through Myanmar with Hanuman Travel TV.