Departing in the morning, you will enjoy a scenic drive from Siem Reap to Kampong Cham, Cambodia, with a lunch stop, arrives on Mekong Navigator in the afternoon. After settling into your well-appointed suite/cabin, that evening, following a welcome reception, safety briefing, and introduction to key members of our crew, a delicious Cambodian Welcome Dinner is served in Le Marche Dining Room.
This morning, we visit to the rural and charming village of Opopel, with its stilted houses and grazing Brahim cows seeking the shade of banana trees. You feel a sense of timelessness here, witnessing the rhythm of rural life. A visit is made to the home of a local family who discusses their lifestyle, then onto the local school to join children in their classroom giving you a glimpse a typical Cambodian school day. A leisurely stroll through the village offers an opportunity to take photos of this place that time has forgotten. On your way back we make a brief stop at the local monastery.
In the afternoon we will visit Wat Roka Kaong. Based on archaeologists’ statements this Temple complex was built in 1840. Some parts of the building were made by wood and have been renovated 1998. An emerald statue was found during the renovation believed to be over 180 years old and given this Wat its second name Wat KeoMoni Chort (Emerald). In front of the two Golden Buddhist Columns (53meter tall), where two temples, the north temple called Preah Keo Preah Kor and the south temple called BakSei Chamkrong. Unfortunately, Baksei Chamkrong temple was destroyed by a landslide in 2020. Enjoy wandering around this temple complex and then proceed to the Main Pagoda.
Upon entering the beautiful and colourful Main Pagoda, we receive a traditional water blessing from the local monks.
In the morning, learn more about the darkest days of Cambodian history. After a scenic 45-minute drive from the ship, you arrive at the Choeung Ek killing fields, where you may walk through the fields, visit the small museum and Buddhist memorial stupa, and learn more about the atrocities committed during the Khmer Rouge regime. Before returning to the ship, there is a visit to the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum (also known as S-21), the former school converted to the main prison and torture headquarters of the Khmer Rouge.
After returning to the ship from the S-21, enjoy a free afternoon in Phnom Penh – shopping, dining at one of the many wonderful restaurants, or exploring the city independently.
(There is a scheduled shuttle coach with your local guide provided from the Port to the Central Market for your shopping time).