Siem Reap Itinerary

Sep 4th, 2007, 12:33 PM
  #1  
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Siem Reap Itinerary

Will be in Siem Reap three full days in early February 2008. Have been in touch with Jonh Teng, a local guide, who has proposed the following. Please give me your thoughts on this.

Day 1 Morning--South Gate, Bayon, Terrace of Elephants and Leper King.

Day 1 Afternoon--Ta Prohn, Angkok Wat.

Day 2 Morning--Sunrise at Angkor Wat, Breakfast, Banteay Srei with countyside tour on the way, Banteay Samre.

Day 2 Afternoon--Preah Khan, Sunset at Phnom Bakheng.

Day 3 Morning--Tonle Sap Lake, Floating Village, Boat tour on Tonle Sap Lake, Artisan school.

Day 3 Afternoon--Rolous Group, Lolei, Preah Ko, Bakong.

His fee for driver and english speaking guide is $50 for days 1 & 3 and $75 for day 2 because of the early morning start time and the distance to Banteay Srei. The $10 boat trip on Tonle Sap Lake is not included and neither are tickets to visit temples at Angkor, food or drink.
MSheinberg is offline  
Sep 5th, 2007, 05:42 PM
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Nobody has any thoughts?
MSheinberg is offline  
Sep 5th, 2007, 07:02 PM
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I think the prices are pretty standard.

If I were you, I'd get a copy of Dawn Rooney's book, Angkor, and read about the temples. You have plenty of time to decide where you want to go. Remember, you are seeing a small portion of the temples. And you may find that particular temples appeal to you that aren't "major" temples - we did. Also, you can add some small temples, the "minor" ones where you may be the only visitor. It will be easy to do given the rough schedule which is not crowded.

You can also look at our photos of Angkor to get a sense of the temples. We saw 26 or 28 of the temples in our week there. www.marlandc.com
Kathie is online now  
Sep 5th, 2007, 07:43 PM
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yes it is standard....that is fitting in many of the highlights...i would check the weather as sometimes sunset and sunrise are clouded over...
rhkkmk is offline  
Sep 5th, 2007, 07:56 PM
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Also, they just added a light and sound 'spectacular' show at Angkor Wat, in the evening. It sounds interesting, but at $60 a pop it's a bit steep.
MichaelBKK is offline  
Sep 8th, 2007, 10:20 PM
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This itinerary is pretty full on I think. Whilst it is, as others say, 'standard', be mindful that although the temples are AMAZING, it will be HOT at this time of year and you will be walking quite a bit and I personally think it is easy to get 'templed out'.

I have been twice in the past couple of years, for a couple of days in June 2005 and for 3 days in February 2006. The first time I was part of a hard core tourist group and we had a similiar sort of itinerary to you. By the end of each day though, we were all very very tired (and we were all young and quite fit).

The second time I went (February 06), by about 11am the days were just too hot and we were all tired from getting up early to see sunsets that we would go back to our hotel for a rest and then return to the temples when it was a tad cooler. Mind you, that time, I was with people who initially found the temples enchanting and amazing but after a few hours just got tired of the temples, the heat, the crowds etc etc. (and these people were fit, very well travelled, very into cultural things etc.).

Re: expense. I think this is a bit over priced. Although Cambodians, particularly in Siem Reap know that they can get good money from tourists - this is a very large amoutn of money for the average Cambodian. When I went in February 2006, we paid $30 a day for our guide and this included car travel. He also knew his stuff.

However I wouldnt stress out about the cost - knowing how competitive the industry is, if he is charging that much then he would be experienced and be offering a good service.

Have a terrific time!

Other advice: get to sunset at Phnom Bakheng at least an hour before hand - it gets crazily crowded there. Check out thirteenmonths.com and look at the pictures of Cambodia - you will see what I mean!
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Sep 8th, 2007, 11:14 PM
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You've been given the standard itinerary.

All it shows me is that you're going to be in the same place at the same time as all the other tourists on the same standard itinerary.

You'll get very hot, tired and cranky, templed out after a day, talked at non-stop [none of which you will remember] and may find yourself at times in the midst of 500 people all trying to do the same thing at the same time.

Enjoy.

Here's a tip: when you see 35 tour buses outside a location suggest firmly to your guide that you go somewhere else - where the 35 tour buses aren't. Do the same schedule in reverse each day. [you can negotiate all this on the spot - no need for drama] - and wander off on your own once there. Otherwise your guide will talk you to death.

Above all: go somewhere else for sunset and sunrise. By some strange quirk of nature both events happen ALL OVER Angkor Wat - not just at Phnom Bakheng. Why not be INSIDE Angkor Wat at sunset - or wandering Ta Prohm as the sun comes up. You'll be the only ones there. Magic.

dogster is offline  
Sep 9th, 2007, 03:51 AM
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Since some of the posters here recommend seeing the "minor" temples and avoiding the crowds for a more pleasant experience, I would recommend a half-day spent at Beng Melea. It is a little difficult to get to (1.5 hr. drive or helicopter) but when we were there, we were all by ourselves. The temple complex is large but utterly subsumed by jungle which appealed to our romantic notion of what Cambodia would be. If you are active, you may climb up and down the ruins, getting wonderful angles for your photographs.

There's some good info and pictures on the web. It may be worth a little googling.
Ericka is offline  
Sep 9th, 2007, 07:09 AM
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i can't recall ever seeing a bus at any temple...

i think your aiming for the trip as described is a perfect way to start....you can always back off a bit..

the pricing is correct all around...
rhkkmk is offline  
Sep 9th, 2007, 09:23 AM
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Note that if you are hiring a driver and guide for yourself, you will have lots of flexibility. The comments about being talked "at" I can only assume were from people who were part of a tour group. As independent travelers, you can choose the level of detail you want from your guide (and you can choose not to have a guide if you prefer). Give your guide feedback about what you want to know and let your driver/guide know if you want to avoid the crowds as much as possible. WHile no one can keep you away from all of the crowds, any driver/guie can help you find less crowded times and places.

Everyone is different. We couldn't get enough of the temples, others get "templed out." Find your own pace, let you driver/guide know what you want, and have a wonderful time.
Kathie is online now  
Sep 9th, 2007, 11:23 AM
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Bob, I did see buses out at Banteay Srei and in the parking lots across from Angkor Wat in 2001.
Kathie is online now  
Sep 11th, 2007, 02:24 PM
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Kathie, do you know the exact title of Dawn Rooney's book?
MSheinberg is offline  
Sep 11th, 2007, 05:55 PM
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Tim and Liz, thanks for the info.
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Sep 11th, 2007, 06:13 PM
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Yup, that's it!
Kathie is online now  
Sep 11th, 2007, 06:41 PM
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Kathie,
Thanks for the recommendation. I just received my copy last week and will begin researching soon!
Liz
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Sep 12th, 2007, 02:12 PM
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Kathie, just ordered my copy.

You should get commissions for these sales.
MSheinberg is offline  
Sep 12th, 2007, 03:03 PM
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That would help finance my next trip to SE Asia!
Kathie is online now  
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