Cambodia Bird Watching Tour: Begin this 6-day Siem Reap tour at the fabled temples of Angkor, when you explore the 12 century temple on both foot and from the elevated perspective of a balloon ride. Begin the second day of this adventure wut an early morning tour of the Rolous Group temples, exploring the surrounding countryside by cow cart while stopping to interact with the local Khmer people. Continue the day with the unique encounter of a private blessing from a Buddhist monk before discovering the ancient city of Angkor Thom in an eco-friendly electric vehicle.
Continue this Cambodia Tour with a visit the Sam Veasna Centre in Siem Reap, a centre that promotes wildlife conservation in Cambodia and develops bird watching sites. Discover the temple of Banteay Srey, thought to be the best preserved of its kind in Cambodia before you travel north to the Hindu pilgrimage site Kbal Spean. Once there take a moderate trek through the dense jungle trek to be rewarded by sprawling views and the chance to take a refreshing dip in a waterfall.
On the last day of this Cambodia bird watching and nature tour embark on a boat trip to Prek Toal, beginning on the Tonle Sap before continuing on the Stung Sangke River. Observe the floating river communities as you cruise along where many villages live on stilted or entirely floating houses, a pretty unique spectacle for anyone accustomed to western living. Once you arrive you will visit the Visit the Prek Toal Environmental Research Station with a specialist bird guide and take a boat trip through the sanctuary. We recommend this tour to travellers who are keen to see Siem Reap main attractions a swell as the rich wildlife and nature that encompasses the area, in effect Siem reap and much more.
Cambodia Bird Watching Tour: Day 1 – Arrive Siem Reap (D)
Welcome to Siem Reap, the charming gateway to the famed Temples of Angkor. You will be greeted by your local English speaking guide, who will accompany you to your hotel for check in. Settle in and enjoy some time at leisure to refresh.
This afternoon, get your first glimpse of Angkor. Enjoy the spectacular view from above and get an idea of the sheer size of the temple area as you ride in a tethered helium balloon that takes you 120m up in the air! See Angkor Wat, Phnom Bakheng, West Baray and other ruins amongst the surrounding jungle and rice paddies glimmering in the best evening light.
From there, depart on a sightseeing tour of the legendary Angkor Wat. Built during the reign of King Suryavarman II in the early 12th century, Angkor Wat is constructed following the model of the temple mountain symbolising Mount Meru, the home of the gods. Inside the temple, the walls are covered with stone carvings and bas-reliefs depicting Hindu mythology and the wars Suryavarman II fought during his reign. Angkor Wat is well known for the more than 2,000 Apsara dancers decorating the temple. Construction is thought to have taken around thirty years of intensive labor. Today, Angkor Wat is figured on Cambodia’s national flag as the temple symbolises the soul of the Khmer people.
Enjoy a welcome dinner at Selantra Restaurant and try a discovery menu introducing you to some of the varied tastes of fresh Khmer cuisine.
Overnight in Siem Reap.
Cambodia Bird Watching Tour: Day 2 – Siem Reap (B,L)
Start your day at the early temples of the Roluos Group. Roluos is the site of an ancient centre of Khmer civilisation known as Hariharalaya. It was the first town built by the Angkorian kings in the 8th and 9th century and consists of three main temples: Bakong, Lolei and Preah Ko. The surrounding countryside with its paddy fields and sugar palm trees is very typical for Cambodia – enjoy the natural beauty on a cow cart ride, a fun way to get in touch with rural Cambodia and its friendly people.
Your destination is Roluos Pagoda, where Buddhist monks will celebrate a private blessing ceremony for you, wishing you health and a safe journey – a memorable experience!
Return to your hotel for a lunch break. This afternoon, visit the ancient city of Angkor Thom in a local tuk tuk. Angkor Thom is 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. Enter the city through the ancient South Gate, an impressive stone gate carved with Elephants and four giant faces.
From here, continue to Bayon Temple in the exact centre of the city. This 12th century masterpiece is a study in grandeur and is well-known for its 54 towers with enigmatic faces representing the 54 provinces of the Great Khmer Empire. The Terrace of the Elephants and the Terrace of the Leper King are also must-visits as they are both known for their intricate bas-reliefs.
Angkor is full of magical highlights, visit another one! Explore Ta Prohm temple, unique in that it has been left largely as it was found: overgrown by jungle trees and vines, with many parts of the temple crumbling to the ground. This makes the ‘Tomb Raider Temple’ one of the most picturesque and memorable of the Angkor temples. Your visit will also include Banteay Kdei, a Buddhist monastery from the late 12th century, and Srah Srang, also known as the “pool of ablutions”. Return to Siem Reap.
Overnight in Siem Reap.
Cambodia Bird Watching Tour: Day 3 – Siem Reap (B,L)
Early morning, visit the Sam Veasna Centre in Siem Reap. The centre promotes wildlife conservation in Cambodia and develops bird watching sites in co-operation with the Wildlife Conservation Society and local communities. They provide a unique opportunity for visitors to observe local wildlife without disrupting their natural habitat. From there, head to the Ang Trapaeng Thmor protected wetland area (2 ½ hours from Siem Reap), accompanied by a specialist bird guide.
This area was originally constructed for irrigation during the rule of the Khmer Rouge, but is now surrounded by rice paddies and is home to a great diversity of waterbirds. Here we expect to find over 300 Cranes in the dry season. A further 200 species of other birds live and breed here, of which 18 have been classified as globally or near globally threatened. This is also one of the handful of sites in Cambodia where the endangered Eld’s Deer can be seen. The best time to see the Sarus Crane is from February to May, although many bird species can be spotted year-round. Enjoy a picnic lunch in the countryside with a stunning view of the grasslands. Return to Siem Reap in the late afternoon.
Overnight in Siem Reap.
Cambodia Bird Watching Tour: Day 4 – Siem Reap (B,L)
After breakfast, travel to the countryside to see the “gem” of the Angkor area, the pretty temple of Banteay Srey. The so-called “Citadel of the Women” remains the best preserved temple in Cambodia. It displays some of the finest examples of classical Khmer art as this small temple is noted for its truly remarkable fine bas-reliefs. Banteay Srey is unique in that it is constructed of pink sandstone, which is seen nowhere else in Angkor.
Also don’t miss to visit the Banteay Samre. The structure with its typical lotus flower shaped tower has compact proportions. This temple was built during the most elaborate period of Khmer architecture and its condition is almost perfect.
Continue north to Kbal Spean, one of the earliest Hindu pilgrimage sites in Cambodia. A moderate 3 km trek up the hill through dense jungle will reward you with excellent views over the plains and the Kulen hills. At the top, be surprised about the “River of 1,000 Lingas” with its remarkable stone carvings of Hindu gods, animals and other symbols in the river bed. During the raining season, enjoy a refreshing bath in the waterfall, which is extremely popular with local families. After the descent, enjoy a packed lunch at a picnic site.
Then visit the Angkor Centre for Conservation of Biodiversity, the first nature conservation centre in Cambodia. The aims of the centre are the rescue, rehabilitation, breeding and reintroduction of threatened wildlife, providing environmental education, promoting wildlife conservation and training local villagers in the sustainable use of natural resources. You can see various endangered species, reptiles and a beekeeping project.
On the way back, stop at the Land Mine Museum which promotes mine awareness. Mr. Aki Ra, the museum founder, was trained as a child soldier during the Khmer Rouge regime and is working today as a de-miner. The museum serves also as a rescue centre for a number of land mine amputee children that Aki Ra has brought off Phnom Penh’s streets or from impoverished rural communities.
You will be right in time to catch the beautiful evening light from Pre Rup, a pyramidal temple surrounded by rice fields.
Overnight in Siem Reap.
Cambodia Bird Watching Tour: Day 5 – Siem Reap (B,L)
Today, you will embark on one of the most stunning boat trips in Cambodia, as you will be taken from Siem Reap to Prek Toal (duration 3h one way). First, you will float across the mighty Tonlé Sap Lake until it meets with the Stung Sangke River.
The largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia is an exceptional water system as it is swelling to almost five times its size during the raining season.
The water of its main drainage, Tonlé Sap River, is being pushed back from the Mekong, carrying an incredible amount of water from the rains, causing the river to reverse its direction and thus causing the lake to overflow, flooding nearby fields and forests and supporting an extraordinarily rich and diverse eco-system. The lake is also an important breeding ground for fish, providing more than half of the amount of fish consumed in Cambodia. The particular water system requires the people living of the lake to adapt to the living conditions. You will see many villages on the way where people live on stilted or entirely floating houses.
The Prek Toal biosphere covers 31,282 hectares and is the living area of water birds such as Greater and Lesser Adjuncts, Black-headed Ibis, Painted Stork, Milky Stork, Spot-billed Pelican, Grey-Headed Fish Eagle and many more. Visit the Prek Toal Environmental Research Station with a specialist bird guide and take a boat trip through the sanctuary. Packed lunch will be served on board. Return to Siem Reap in the late afternoon.
Overnight in Siem Reap.
Cambodia Bird Watching Tour: Day 6 – Siem Reap – Departure (B)
Enjoy the day at leisure until the transfer to the airport for your individual departure flight.
Cambodia Bird Watching Tour: Rates vary frequently. Please contact us to get the best possible price based upon your travel period and specific touring needs, private basis not join in, please inquire for pricing which varies depending on accommodation standards.
Cambodia Bird Watching Tour: What’s Included:
Accommodation in a shared twin or shared double room in selected hotel
Meals as mentioned (B= Breakfast, L= Lunch, D= Dinner)
Local English speaking temple guides and local English speaking specialist bird guides for Ang Trapaeng Thmor and Prek Toal. Please note that there are only English speaking specialist bird guides available for Ang Trapaeng Thmor and Prek Toal.
Tours and transfers as mentioned by private air conditioned vehicle unless stated otherwise
Entrance fees for mentioned visits
Donation to Angkor Centre for Conservation of Biodiversity.
Boat trips as indicated in itinerary
Daily drinking water and cold towels
Cambodia Bird Watching Tour: What’s NOT Included:
Visa for Cambodia (Visa issued on arrival, USD20/pax, please bring 1 passport photo)
Any surcharge/extra fees for visit of the Angkor Historical site imposed by the Apsara Authorities in Siem Reap which are subject to change without prior notice
International and Domestic Flights (quoted separately)
Meals other than mentioned above
Camera/video entrance fees
Personal expenses (drinks, laundry, telephone, tips etc)
Travel insurance including helicopter evacuation for Cambodia)
Other services not clearly indicated in the package inclusions above
Cambodia Bird Watching Tour: Creating Unique Touring Experiences
All the touring itineraries on this website have been carefully crafted by our in-country management teams and represent a series of experiences we can certainly recommend. However, we understand that every travel experience should be as unique and individual as each traveler. Our consultants are waiting to hear from you so that we can tailor or custom design a Cambodia tour to your individual specifications.