Follow a culinary journey through Siem Reap and Battambang, seeing the sites and satisfying the stomach. Learn the culinary secrets behind traditional Khmer cuisine with local chefs and feast on sweet and savoury delights at every turn. From the exotic to the sublime, taste the best of Cambodia cuisine.
Welcome to Siem Reap, the charming gateway to the majestic Angkor temples! Upon arrival to Siem Reap, your Cambodia Senses guide and driver will be waiting to transfer you to the hotel for check in. The remainder of the day is at leisure before enjoying our welcome dinner. Overnight in Siem Reap.
- Embassy Restaurant
Start the Cambodia Culinary Tour today. The Angkor Complex can be extremely busy at dawn, but just after sunrise is actually one of the quietest times to visit. After an early typical Cambodian breakfast served at a local noodle stall nearby the hotel, we continue to explore the best attractions of Angkor Archaeological Park. Commencing at the world’s largest religious temple, the magnificent Angkor Wat. Built by Suryavarman II in the early 12th century, it was constructed following the model of the temple mountain, symbolizing Mount Meru, home of the Hindu/Buddhist gods.
Continue to the ancient city of Angkor Thom, the last capital of the Great Khmer Empire under the reign of Jayavarman VII. This city is surrounded by an 8 m high wall, drawing a perfect square around its perimeter. Enter the city from the impressive stone South Gate, carved with elephants and four giant faces.
From here, proceed to Bayon Temple in the center of the city. This 12th century masterpiece is stunning and distinguished by its 54 face-carved towers and rich galleries of bas-reliefs featuring scenes from daily life during the Empire. Visit the Terrace of the Elephants and Terrace of the Leper King, both known for their intricate bas-reliefs. Return to Siem Reap for a cooling swim and a rest to drive away the heat.
Start the afternoon program with a visit to the magical and illustrious Ta Prohm temple, constructed in the mid-12th centuries. Ta Prohm is unique in that it has been left largely as it was found: overwhelmed by jungle trees, roots and vines, with many parts of the structure lying on the ground.
Head into town for the central marketplace, sample the famous pickled fruit and insects such as fried cricket, grasshopper and silkworms to whet your appetite.
Proceed to Siem Reap’s famous Road 60, located just out of town. Experience a true “Cambodian style” night out with a array of food vendors, picnics, and barbecues. Sample a wide range of different local flavors from exotic fruits and fried insects to pork belly and crispy duck. Continue to Triangle Restaurant, another local spot known for its food, drink, and live music. Return to hotel then rest.
Angkor Archaeological Park, Angkor Thom, Ta Prohm
Travel to Toek Vil village in the morning to start a half-day Khmer and Cambodia culinary experience. Begin with an introduction to the morning’s activities followed by a guided trip to the local market to learn about Cambodian vegetables, herbs, and other ingredients. From here, proceed onto a local Khmer House at the village for a hands-on culinary experience. After cooking, enjoy the recently prepared delicacies!
Travel back to Siem Reap after lunchtime for a two-hour walking tour around Kompheim village, which provides you with some excellent insight into village life in Cambodia and the challenges faced by rural Cambodians. Learn about rice farming, see ox and buffalo ploughing, and stroll through rice paddies to interact with locals. Discover how rural villagers here live, cook, and eat, and learn firsthand the different levels of poverty and how many struggles to put a meal on the table to feed their family each day. Half of the tour fee is donated to a village enrichment fund managed by HUSK, a non-profit NGO that works with communities to improve the lives of Cambodians. Finish the tour at the Village House, enjoying a sundowner and canapés while the sun sets over the surrounding rice paddies.
Dinner tonight will be at the renowned Sugar Palm Restaurant, owned by famous Cambodian-New Zealand chef Kethana Dunnet. Overnight in Siem Reap.
After check out, we will start the morning with a culinary tour into Siem Reap's food markets and street food stalls, sampling the most delicious selections along the way. This morning tour offers you a unique chance to sample Cambodia's best breakfast dishes, tasty treats, and tropical fruits, with plenty of photo opportunities along the way. Head into the countryside to visit a village known for its quintessentially Cambodian dish. Here it is possible to see rice noodles being made by skillful hands of the locals. After the culinary morning, depart to Battambang.
Upon arrival to Battambang, travel along Banan Road through some of Cambodia’s most beautiful countryside temples to visit Wat Banan. There is a chance to stop at Prasat Phnom Banan Winery, Cambodia's only commercial winery, where you could meet the winemakers and enjoy a brief wine tasting.
Continue through lively local villages and farms to Wat Banan. Climb the stairs up to an 11th century temple on a hilltop, where fragrant flowering trees and sweeping vistas over the countryside await.
Take a short ride on the famous Bamboo Train which offers a great chance to interact with locals. Running on an old, single-gauge railway line built by the French during the colonial times, this basic train was built by locals after original services were stopped. The current ‘train’ itself is very basic: one bamboo platform on 4-wheels is activated by a small motor. Sitting on the platform, travel the 8 km to the next station through lush rice fields. Proceed to hotel to check in, en route stop to watch the sunset over the rice paddies.
The dinner tonight is suggested at stylish Jaan Bai, a social enterprise restaurant run and established by the a social enterprise Cambodian Children’s Trust, located in the heart of Battambang, in an original French colonial building. The restaurant provides training and employment for disadvantaged youths; all profits go to support the activities of the Trust. Overnight in Battambang.
Despite the fact that Battambang is Cambodia’s second largest city, its atmosphere is very laid-back; a charming, relaxed river town full of fine examples of French-colonial architecture and a rural heartland of Cambodia and the center for production of rice, pineapples, coconuts, and many other different types of produce. Head into the historic center of Battambang to explore the town, beginning at the lively local markets. Quench the morning thirst with a freshly and tasty squeezed sugarcane juice.
Afterwards, discover the historic heart of the city and perhaps if you are lucky enough, you could even catch the procession of saffron-robed monks on their morning alms collection. Stop to observe the monks at the Wat Povil or pop into some nearby art galleries. Battambang boasts an impressive (and varied) collection of architecture that is considered some of the best preserved in Cambodia.
Taste a cup of coffee at the award-winning Kinyei Café before halting for lunch at Lan Chov Khorko Miteanh for some hand-pulled noodles and handmade dumplings.
Return to the hotel to relax and freshen up with some free time. The highlight of the evening is a snack food tour by bicycle with a Cambodian foodie. The tour stops at a handful of local eateries and stalls dotted alongside the river. End the tour at the smoky barbecue stalls that surround the market in the evenings. Overnight in Battambang.
This morning pay a visit to the nearby Mrs. Bun Roeung's Ancient House located in Wat Kor village. This is the oldest standing Khmer timber house in the village. Enjoy a tour of property conducted by the house owner and learn their betel-leaf ritual and how they milled their own rice.
Proceed through picturesque and tranquil countryside to Wat Ek Phnom to explore some of their cottage industries. Along the way, there is a unique chance to sample popular snacks from roadside vendors, including sticky rice and black beans in bamboo (kralan) and fish or pork paste and chilli grilled in banana leaf.
Wat Ek Phnom is a dilapidated 11th century Angkor-era temple that is surrounded by shady banyan trees. Rarely visited by tourists, it’s been a popular picnic spot for local Cambodians since the 1880s. Also on site you could see the Wat Samrong Knong, one of the oldest in the area, dating back to 1707, which was utilized as a prison after the Khmer Rouge seized it in 1976. On the adjoining land, the Well of Shadows is a sobering monument containing some of the bones and skulls of the 10,000-odd people killed here under the Khmer Rouge.
Travel back to Siem Reap. After check in and relaxing, head to the nearby Sombai Infused Rice Spirit shop in the afternoon to learn about the importance of rice to the Cambodian people and sample some local rice liquors produced on site.
It is worth a visit to Asana Bar (located in the last remaining traditional Khmer house in town) for a Khmer cocktail lesson. During this fun, informal class, learn more about Khmer herbs, spices and roots, the basic principles of making cocktails, and how to prepare and mix a cocktail.
Before ending the day, enjoy a farewell dinner at the stunning riverside Chanrey Tree restaurant for some of the most refined Cambodian cuisine in Siem Reap. Enjoy some outstanding renditions of Khmer dishes, many made to the owner’s mother’s recipes. Overnight in Siem Reap.
Wat Kor village, Wat Ek Phnom, Sombai Infused Rice Spirit shop
After breakfast, enjoy some time at leisure until the your driver transfers you to the airport for the departing flight. End the Cambodia Culinary Tour with Cambodia Senses.
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Nestled within private gardens and located just before the entrance of the Angkor Wat Temple complex, Angkor Village Resort & Spa offers accommodation away from the hustle and bustle of Siem Reap. A member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World, it boasts a 250 m outdoor pool that meanders through lovely landscaped gardens and guests enjoy use of the resort's daybeds. The property offers two in-house dining options and guests can have a drink at the bar.
Angkor Village Resort & Spa is about 5 km from Siem Reap International Airport. The property offers complimentary airport pickup services.
Angkor Village’s cottage rooms feature four-poster beds and private balconies. Each room has a flat-screen cable TV and tea/coffee making facilities. Spacious bathrooms are fitted with a hot tub and organic toiletries. Guests are also welcomed with a tropical fruit platter.
Guests can approach the 24-hour front desk for currency exchange, tour arrangements and concierge services. The full-service Spa Village includes saunas, hot tubs and an air-conditioned fitness room. Guests can browse items in the souvenir shop, or watch cultural performances at the on-site outdoor theatre.
The two in-house restaurants - Aaraama and Le Jardin offer a wide range of cuisines, including local, Thai and French choices. Private picnics, afternoon tea, and local cooking classes may also be arranged.
Delux Villa is an authentic wooden house which features an outdoor swimming pool and rooms with terrace offering views of the garden or pool. Free Wi-Fi access is available in all areas and complimentary private parking is provided.
The villa is a convenient 5-minute walk to the famous Phsar Nath. Battambang Train Station is only a 5-minute drive away, while Siem Reap International Airport and the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Angkor Wat Temple is about 70 km distance.
Fitted with a seating area and a wardrobe, air-conditioned rooms are furnished with an electric kettle, a personal safe, flat-screen cable TV and a minibar. Private bathrooms offer a hairdryer, hot shower facilities and free toiletries.
Operating a 24-hour front desk, Delux Villa provides luggage storage, laundry and car rental services. Conveniences include a tour desk and business centre. Guests can rent a bicycle to explore the area or request for massage services.
The in-house restaurant serves a variety of Cambodian dishes while the poolside bar offers a selection of cocktails and local drinks till late. Complimentary fresh fruits welcome guests upon arrival, and a souvenir is provided for each guest.