Archive for the ‘travel’ Category

The Strand Cruise Set to Sail in Myanmar in 2016

Tuesday, July 7th, 2015

The Strand Hotel in Myanmar, one of Myanmar’s signature hotels, has recently launched a new luxury river cruiser plying the classic Irrawaddy route between Bagan and Mandalay.

The Strand Cruise in Myanmar

The Strand Cruise in Myanmar

The Strand Cruise will set new standards of luxury for river travel in Myanmar. The 4-deck, 27-cabin vessel was built in Yangon and has a large swimming pool, sun deck terrace, gym/wellness facilities, spa & beauty parlour, alfresco and indoor dining and a cocktail lounge.

2016 sailings will be three or four-nights in duration with cruise operations scheduled to start in January 2016.

Contact Hanuman for special launch prices for Jan-Mar 2016 sailings. Rates include all excursions, on-board meals and soft drinks, local beer and house wine during meals, port charges, excursions with English speaking guides and satellite wi-fi. Passengers booking one of the two Strand Suites will have added extras such as a one-hour spa treatment of their choice and a night at The Strand Hotel pre- or post-cruise with private airport transfers.

Inside the Strand Cruise in Myanmar

Inside the Strand Cruise in Myanmar

Scheduled Sailings

The Strand Cruise 5 Days/4 Nights – Bagan to Mandalay

The Strand Cruise 4 Days/3 Nights – Mandalay to Bagan

http://www.thestrandcruise.com/

An Elephant Caravan to Save the Asian Elephant

Friday, July 3rd, 2015

The Elephant Caravan will be packing its trunk to travel from Sayaboury to Luang Prabang in October 2015 to raise awareness of the plight of the Asian elephant and is being organised by the Elephant Conservation Center.

The Elephant Caravan – Laos 2015 (english version) from The Elephant Caravan on Vimeo.

Laos has been known as the “Land of a Million Elephants” for generations. Today, however, there are fewer than 900 elephants remaining in the country. The future of Asia’s largest land mammal, as well as the people who have cared for them for generations, has reached a crisis point. If elephants die out, not only does it mean the loss of a wonderful creature, but the end of an age-old culture as well.

In October 2015, an elephant caravan will begin its journey across northern Laos: 12 elephants will spend six weeks travelling 630 kilometers, making stops at 46 villages.

The caravan will travel from Sayaboury to Luang Prabang to coincide with the 20th anniversary of Luang Prabang’s World Heritage Status when lots of events are planned.

Hanuman plans to join the finale of the caravan in Luang Prabang and we hope to see some of you there.

For more details, visit the website: http://www.theelephantcaravan.org/

Hanuman is “one of the world’s top ten travel fixers” The Sunday Times

Monday, June 8th, 2015

Pick up a Hanuman business card and “One of the world’s top travel fixers” appears as the strapline thanks to a headline article in The Sunday Times in 2009. Here it is in case you missed it back in the day.

Temple Safari, a unique adventure from Hanuman

Temple Safari, a unique adventure from Hanuman

Hanuman is proud to have been selected by The Sunday Times Travel Team as one of the World’s Top Ten Travel Fixers. These are the “best locally-run companies, the established insiders with impeccable guides, and are masters of their region”.

Read an extract by travel writer Vincent Crump below: “ Kulikar Sotho’s first job in travel was organising passage for 7,500 UN peacekeepers. Then the Khmer Rouge collapsed, ancient Angkor was rediscovered by the west, and Kulikar’s company, Hanuman, was on hand to act as midwife to Cambodian tourism. A decade or so later, more than a million visitors pitch up each year — including Korean coach parties wielding megaphones. Not to worry: Hanuman’s impeccable guides know how to dodge the crowds. For example, they spirited me to Angkor Wat’s eastern gate, the “back door”, for an exclusive, all-to-myself view of Asia’s most humdinging archeological site.

Hanuman also fixed it for me to spend a few days in the remote, red-earthed Ratanakiri region, where I penetrated sacrificial rituals, shook hands with pipe-smoking toddlers, and found out exactly why you should never sup rice wine with the villagers.

Best of all was my “temple safari” in the steaming, spidery Cambodian jungle — the brainchild of Kulikar’s husband, Nick Ray, who is also Lonely Planet’s writer in Cambodia and a self-styled temple-hunter. As the location scout for Tomb Raider, Ray unearthed virgin Angkorian citadels such as Koh Ker, where I scrambled up a rickety ladder to the top of a 120ft pyramid and found myself sole overlord of a 10th-century city, scores of its monuments still smothered in the undergrowth. ”

Phum Baitang opens in August

Sunday, May 24th, 2015

Phum Baitang (Green Village) is set to open in August of this year and promises to be a leading addition to the luxury hotel options available in Siem Reap, Cambodia.

Phum Baitang, Siem Reap

Phum Baitang, Siem Reap

Hanuman recently visited the 8 acre site to check on progress. The setting is quiet and secluded yet still convenient for downtown and the temples. Once the landscaping is complete with lush gardens, sugar palms and paddy fields it will be a real oasis and offer some of the most elegant and luxurious villas in Cambodia. All structures are already complete with a handful of their beautiful villas now ready for booking.

This elegant hideaway comprises forty-five spacious villas, twenty-five with private terrace and twenty with private plunge pool. The wooden and stilted villas are inspired both inside and out by traditional Cambodian design, offering guests a unique experience in Siem Reap. A luxurious and tranquil Spa Temple offers seven treatment rooms, a sauna, steam room and relaxation area. A yoga pavilion, fully-equipped fitness room and 50m outdoor infinity pool complete the resort’s leisure facilities. During the day, guests can enjoy a light meal or sample a refreshing homemade juice at the Pool Bar. For elegant dining, Phum Baitang’s two restaurants, one locally-inspired and the other offering international cuisine, serve delicious meals using fresh organic herbs and vegetables from the resort’s own gardens. At the Cigar/Cocktail Lounge, guests can sip a cocktail while watching the sun set over lush paddy fields. 5-star luxury coming your way very soon in Siem Reap.

The new Viroth’s

Wednesday, May 13th, 2015

New Viroth’s Hotel opens its doors in Siem Reap, the gateway to Cambodia’s Temples of Angkor.

Viroth's Hotel in Siem Reap

Viroth’s Hotel in Siem Reap

Viroth’s is already well known for its small, stylish boutique hotel and its contemporary restaurant which have been welcoming guests and keeping diners happy with delicious Asian fusion cuisine for years.

They have now opened their second hotel which is a great addition to the character hotel scene in Siem Reap and welcomed by Hanuman. The old hotel with just 7 rooms is renamed Viroth’s Villa, while the new option is now Viroth’s Hotel.

Located on a quiet street just off Wat Bo road it’s just a short stroll to the Old Market, Pub Street and the alleyways. Viroths Hotel offers 33 stylish rooms all with spacious balconies or terrace, excellent bathrooms, a large pool and a small spa. Service and food are top notch and if your looking for a well priced, contemporary character hotel with one of the best locations in temple town, look no further.

Phnom Penh performances

Wednesday, May 6th, 2015

From May through until August, you can catch these excellent classical and traditional performances in Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s capital city.

Children of Bassac

Children of Bassac

The fabulous Children of Bassac show will continue throughout May at the National Museum in Phnom Penh from 7-8pm every Monday, Thursday and Saturday. Tickets cost $15 for adults & $6 for children under 12. This is classical and folk dance at its very best. RECOMMENDED.

In the 2nd week of June, the Plae Pakaa Season will resume, 3 nights a week until August. Performances at the Phnom Penh National Museum, starting at 7pm and costing $15 for adults. On Fridays, it will be the Dance show by Children of Bassac; Saturdays – Cambodian Opera, the Story of Mak Therng by Yike Amatak; Sundays – Large Shadow Puppets, The War of Indrajit by Department of Performing Arts and Children of Bassac. Also highly RECOMMENDED.

Our Laos’ Top 5

Saturday, April 25th, 2015
The Gibbon Experience - Laos

The Gibbon Experience – Laos

Enjoy our Top 5 Hanuman Experiences in Laos.

Whether it’s flying through the forest on a zipline, learning the local culture and ceremonies or something completely different, then Laos offers  its own unique experiences which we can  arrange for you. If you want to learn the secrets of Lao cuisine with a celebrity chef, or the art of travel photography with a professional or how about  enjoying a yoga class in the jungle, then we have an experience to suit you. Just ask Hanuman.

HANUMAN TOP 5

The Gibbon Experience

‘Fly’ (via ziplines) through the jungle canopy like a long-armed gibbon and spend the night in the treetops in an eco-friendly treehouse. This is one of those experiences you will never forget. Laos’ premier wildlife and adrenaline rush.

Be a Mahout for a Day

Learn the language of the mahout to control these graceful elephants as you move through the beautiful Lao countryside, just outside Luang Prabang. Help to give the elephants a bath in the Nam Khan River.

Discover the Vieng Xai Caves

Travel to the remote and remarkable Vieng Xai Caves in the NE province of Sam Neau, once used as a remote base for the leadership of the Pathet Lao. We tour the complex with a survivor from the Indochina War to hear the stories at first-hand.

Learn the Art of the Silk Weavers

Sign up for a silk weaving course with Ock Pop Tock in Luang Prabang. Learn about the traditional silk production process and weave your own piece of beautiful Lao silk to take home.

Traditional Baci Ceremony

Partake in a traditional Baci ceremony to welcome you to the UNESCO town of Luang Prabang. Guardian spirits will be bound to your wrist in the shape of 32 strings to protect you on your journey.

Cambodia’s two world records

Thursday, April 16th, 2015
The new Madizon dance world record

The new Madizon dance world record

The Angkor Sangkran Festival that has just taken place in Siem Reap, Cambodia welcomed more than half a million visitors to the festivities held amongst the Temples of Angkor, and the massive Khmer New Year crowds witnessed two world records. A 3.2 tonne sticky rice cake made it into the Guinness Book of World Records, and so did a 2,015-person Madizon line-dance (pictured), as Cambodia made their new year celebrations even more memorable with two records.

Travel insider’s last-minute Khmer New Year getaway tips

Tuesday, April 14th, 2015
Hanuman's Patrick Chase

Hanuman’s Patrick Chase

The Phnom Penh Post Weekend edition’s Will Jackson spoke to Hanuman’s General Manager Patrick Chase.

Patrick Chase’s job is to put together custom travel experiences, so with the Khmer New Year break looming, Will Jackson quizzed him on some lesser-known, last-minute getaway options for the less organised among us.

KEP
They’ve just built these new chalets and villas at Starling Ridge Plantation Resort and it’s just a great place to stay. There’s a main house where you can use the pool. The chalets are really, really nice, and from there you escape the crowds at Kep and Kampot but you’re only a 20-minute drive from both. It’s got a nice restaurant there, too. Obviously, they have the pepper, but they grow a lot of other organic produce down there as well. We sent some very high-end clients there for lunch who raved about it. They loved the journey from Kep through all the little dusty roads, paddies, sugar palms. The countryside is so beautiful down there.
Rooms start from $35 per night. Web: starlingridge.com.

PREAH VIHEAR
If you want to go see the escarpment temple at Preah Vihear – while tensions with Thailand are at a low ebb – the new Preah Vihear Boutique Hotel is the first decent place to stay in Sraem which is about 20 minutes away. It’s four-star and has air-conditioned rooms, a swimming pool, pool table and bar. It’s really nice. It would fit in in Siem Reap no trouble. And that could be something a little bit different.
Standard rooms start from $30 per night. Web: preahvihearhotels.com.

PHNOM PENH
If you actually decide just to stay in Phnom Penh, a lot of the hotels put on some great specials because the city’s just empty. The five-star Raffles Hotel Le Royal is doing “staycation” packages all through April with rooms starting at $125 including a buffet breakfast, three hours complementary babysitting and they will double the credit if you spend $50 or more on a restaurant, bar or spa voucher. La Rose Suites and Boutique Hotel and Spa is offering 50 per cent off its public room rates and bonuses like free massages and free use of the minibar. And Villa Sovanna, which is another nice little boutique place, is doing rooms starting at $50 with a free upgrade plus 15 per cent off food and 50 per cent off cocktails. Again, if you spend at least $5 on food and drinks, they will let you use the pool.
Web: raffles.com/phnom-penh, larose.com.kh and villasovanna.com

BANTEAY CHHMAR
If you want to see an Angkorian temple I guarantee a lot of people haven’t and don’t mind a bit of a bumpy ride, then driving north of Battambang to Sisophon and then continuing on a bumpy road about an hour north from there, you get to Banteay Chhmar, where there’s a full-blown, Jayavarman VII temple. It’s magnificent. The main structure is crumbling stone surrounded by jungle with huge towers everywhere, and there are several satellite temples to boot. If you want to stay up there, this really interesting community which looks after the temples – all the entrance fees and everything go directly to the community; they also do home stays.
Home stays cost $7 per room. Web: visitbanteaychhmar.org

BATTAMBANG
I just love Battambang, but it’s often forgotten. Last year at Khmer New Year, there was space at the best hotel in town, Bambu. It has a really airy, open-plan feel and combines contemporary design with a colonial feel. They have a lovely big swimming pool, nice informal outdoor bar/restaurant area and a great location. Great value for money.
Prices over KNY start from $90 for a standard twin or double. Website: bambuhotel.com.

Wildlife at close quarters

Tuesday, April 7th, 2015

Feeling adventurous and want to see at close quarters the work of Wildlife Alliance in Cambodia?

Sopheap the Sun Bear

Sopheap the Sun Bear

The Wildlife Rehabilitation Station is located in protected forest within the Cardamom Mountains in Koh Kong Province. Wildlife Alliance now offer the unique opportunity to stay in locally built chalets in an natural open grassland on site, while participating in one of many activities offered including: hiking to nearby hilltops and swimming in cool streams, setting up camera traps to help document the resident fauna and discovering the wildlife at various stages of release!

During your stay at the Wildlife Release Station, your guide will accompany you into the jungle and nearby surroundings to penetrate regenerating forest protected by Wildlife Alliance and the Cambodian Forestry Administration and situated far from human settlements or disturbance. EcoTour visits can include a variety of activities according to your schedule and all are provided as part of your donation to the Wildlife Release Station.

Savour the jungle:

Enjoy the isolation of the protected forest! Sleep in serenity in spacious thatched chalets and wake up to the sounds of its rare and endangered creatures including the morning call of wild pileated gibbons. Hike through the jungle tracking wildlife with your guide and swim in natural streams surrounded by trees.

Meet their animals:

Come see the wild animals around WRS who have been released by Wildlife Alliance and are making the protected forest their new home, including macaque monkeys, binturongs, civets and birds. Get up close with the bears (including Sopheap the sun bear in our photo) and other rescued animals living at WRS during their soft release, where they stay in safe forested enclosures to acclimatize to their new jungle habitat before release.

Get to know their dedicated staff:

Meet the full-time Cambodian staff rehabilitating and releasing animals rescued from illegal trafficking, raising orphaned animals and protecting the nearby forest. Tour the surrounding jungle with your English speaking guide and help staff set up camera traps and check them the following day for images of bears, binturongs and other wildlife!

For more on Wildlife Alliance’s unique Wildlife Release Station tours, visit http://wildlifealliance.org/page/view/507/wildlife-release-station-tours.