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Jan 3rd, 2014, 08:38 AM
  #1
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Cambodia

Hello,

Is it easy enough for a family to travel in Cambodia by themselves without a guided tour?

Thanks,
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Jan 3rd, 2014, 09:05 AM
  #2
 
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Yes. You might start by reading talesofasia.com. Where do you want to go?
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Jan 3rd, 2014, 09:13 AM
  #3
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We would like to see Angkor Wat and perhaps the killing fields.
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Jan 3rd, 2014, 09:30 AM
  #4
 
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There are killing fields all over the country. Do you mean the one near Phnom Penh?

Both PP and Siem Reap (for Angkor War) are easy to reach. Many people fly from Bangkok. You can take a bus between the two, or hire a car, or take an expensive cruise. What is the rest of your itinerary?
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Jan 3rd, 2014, 09:33 AM
  #5
jgg
 
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Yes, you do not need a guided tour, though it might be helpful to have a guide while you are at Angkor Wat to get you from place to place and explain the significance and history of the region. We traveled as a family to Angkor Wat and used Ponheary Ly as our guide for Angkor Wat as well as to Tonle Sap Lake. Here is a link to my trip report along with pictures:
http://www.fromhometoroam.com/2012/0...nd-angkor-wat/
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Jan 3rd, 2014, 04:27 PM
  #6
 
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Siem Reap will be extremely easy to handle as a family. It's really nice and easy-paced, with tons of fellow tourists. Besides Angkor Wat, you can rent bikes and ride around and visit the night market and shops. Also there are many great charity based tours to nearby villages. Tons to do as a family and it's really safe. I lived there for while, so if you'd like more info, please ask!

Phnom Penh (with the main killing fields that I assume you refer to) is a bit more hectic. It's more of a city and a bit more dangerous, but totally still able to do as long as you keep aware. There are tons of buses going SR -> PP (and vice versa) and you can also arrange personal taxis fairly easily (tons of reviews of services online).

Another option is to see the Killing Caves of Phnom Sampeau in Battambong. You won't get as much of the history as at the PP Killing Fields, but you'll still definitely get the eye-opening truth of the Khmer Rouge, as well as Battambong might be a bit nicer to visit for a family (and it is a lot closer to Siem Reap).
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Jan 3rd, 2014, 11:36 PM
  #7
 
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I agree that you don't need a guided tour to travel successfully in Cambodia. Travel to Siem Reap and a hotel while there are easily navigated on your own; tuk-tuks are everywhere and would be a fun method of transport for both you and your kids.

How old are your children, and how adventurous are you? Depending on your answer, and following up on Nattilee's suggestion of Battambang, you might consider taking a boat from Siem Reap to Battambang. It's long (8 or more hours) and uncomfortable but probably the most memorable experience we had in Cambodia. It could be a huge adventure for your kids (and you!). In Battambang, we liked our lodgings at The Sanctuary Villa. The hotel arranged our tuk-tuk driver in Battambang, Lucky, who is a survivor of the Khmer Rouge period (his father and siblings were killed, and he and his mother fled to a camp in Thailand, whence he got his name). We spent a memorable day touring the area with him.

This may or may not be what you are looking for, but for us it was unforgettable.
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Jan 4th, 2014, 12:40 AM
  #8
 
Join Date: May 2004
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Travelling in Cambodia without a guide is straightforward enough although if you plan to travel by bus then some of the journeys can be a little challenging. A great resource for independent travel in the region is http://www.travelfish.org/country/cambodia . It is worth signing up to their newsletter as they blog some great articles on places to stay things to do etc.
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