Culture Week

Siem Reap and Samraong - Cambodia

Only $455 per week!

This action-packed week will get you sightseeing, learning about Buddhism, interacting with the local people, enjoying Cambodian culture and more!

Explore the lively Siem Reap, a backpacker’s hotspot in the North of Cambodia with lots to do, a world famous temple close by and a vibrant night life. Then, dive into the untouched Samraong in the quaint Cambodian countryside. This is your chance to experience Cambodia from a local perspective, while you see and feel how most of the population live.

Culture
Learning
Leisure
Community Engagement
Physical Demand






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Program Description

This culture week is designed to introduce you to Cambodian customs, traditions, and pace of life. By getting to to know the surrounding town and its facilities, you will have everything you need to make your stay memorable, as well as comfortable.

Cambodia is arguably most famous for its glorious and magnificent temples. Siem Reap and Samraong are no exception and you will be taken to the finest temples in the area. We also carefully arrange a Q&A session with local monks to enhance your understanding of Buddhism.

During the culture week you will be staying in the famous city of Siem Reap and the rural town of Samraong. You will be given basic "survival" language classes and learn traditional Cambodian cooking techniques, with the chance to sample your work.

Cambodia’s relaxing, slow paced way of life will allow the maximum interaction between you and the local people, who are keen to learn about your culture too!

Modest clothing (covering your legs and shoulders) is requested outside of the accommodation for respect of the community.

Aims & Objectives

  • Help you familiarise yourself with the local surroundings
  • Teach you helpful Cambodian phrases
  • Broaden your knowledge of Cambodia’s customs, history and culture
  • Provide a full induction, preparing you for a longer stay!

Schedule

Monday (Siem Reap)

  • Breakfast
  • Introduction meeting, House rules, Health and Safety Advice and handling of documents
  • Khmer Do's and Don'ts, Khmer Culture Lessons and Khmer Language Lessons.
  • Tour around the compound and local area; where to find local shops
  • Lunch
  • Visit old market, super markets, bank, ATM , Sim-card if necessary. 
  • Excursion to Wat Preah Prom Rath and  Wat Thmey, a small pagoda
  • Dinner
  • Evening at Pub Street and the night market, the liveliest area of Siem Reap

Tuesday (Siem Reap)

  • Breakfast
  • Excursion to a silk farm and West Baray, a popular place for swimming
  • Lunch
  • Visit to the Museum of War dedicated to the Civil War, guided by ex-soldiers
  • Explore Artisant D’Angkor, a craft shop that brings ancient Khmer arts and crafts back to life
  • Khmer massage salon
  • Dinner

Wednesday (Samraong)

  • Breakfast
  • Depart for Samraong
  • Lunch
  • Introduction to the projects
  • Walk around and discover the local rural Cambodian village
  • Dinner

Thursday (Samraong)

  • Breakfast
  • Visit the rural Greenway School, built from scratch over the years by previous participants
  • Tour around Samraong and visit surrounding villages
  • Lunch
  • Cambodian cooking lesson
  • Dinner

Friday (Samraong)

  • Breakfast
  • Excursion to the local temple: assist the monks with the chores
  • Discussion and Q&A about Buddhism with a local monk
  • Lunch
  • Free time all afternoon to relax
  • Dinner

   Note:   This schedule can be changed and/or amended depending on weather conditions, local conditions and unforeseen circumstances.

Participant Criteria & Requirements

Standard Requirements

Minimum age:

Maximum age:

Minimum English level: Basic

CRB required: On Signup

Passport copy required: No

Resume copy required: No

Required qualification: None

Additional Requirements

There are no further requirements for this program.

Additional Equipment

No specific equipment required for this program.

Location

You will be located in the outskirts of Siem Reap, which will allow you to get a taste of a more rural side of Cambodia while at the same time being able to head to the city that acts as the gateway to the Angkor world with its Colonial architecture, museums, markets, nightlife and some of the most famous attractions Cambodia has to offer.

About the Accommodation

The accommodation is based in a typical Cambodian-style house. There are several common areas, including the living room and two terraces outside.

Food Arrangements

All your daily meals will be had at this guesthouse. These will be typical Cambodian meals with some Western-style food at times.

Facilities

There are two local shops within a one minute walking distance from the accommodation.

Downtown Siem Reap is located a 10 minute bike ride away, where you can find anything you might need during your stay. Bikes are provided in the house and, for those who prefer not to use them, a tuk-tuk will get you to the center.

Activities & Events

No scheduled activities outside the program.

Sights & Surroundings

Everything in Siem Reap is within a 10 minute bike ride away. Moreover, Angkor Wat and its adjacent temples are only a 20 minute ride away.

Phare Circus, the number one non-temple attraction in Siem Reap is located within walking distance from the house. The circus showcases juggling, acrobatics, aerial arts, theatre and dance performances!

Transportation

From this location we provide free transport to your next program at the following location(s):

  • Samraong
  • Kampot
  • Banteay Chhmar

Location

Samraong, which name translates from Khmer into “impenetrable jungle”, is a town located in northwestern Cambodia, close to the border with Thailand. You will be located in a small, rural village located in the outskirts of town. This remote location will give you a taste of what rural Cambodia looks and feels like, while at the same time allowing you to explore some of Cambodia’s highlights, as Siem Reap is located only two hours away.

About the Accommodation

The accommodation in Samraong is simple and natural. There are no laundry facilities, so expect to wash your clothes by hand. However, there are some places that you can do laundry in the town for a small cost.

All locations have a communal area where you can eat, relax, meet fellow participants or use the free Wifi. Requests for specific locations or room configurations cannot be guaranteed.

There are bikes available, which you can use to explore the area during your free time!

For participants desiring more comfort and/or privacy, families, couples, and more mature participants, we recommend upgrading to a comfort room. These rooms have more amenities and may be in a different location than the standard rooms, which means that it may be noticeably quieter.

Food Arrangements

Prepare your palate! During your stay the meals will be typical Cambodian style, which includes plenty of rice and noodle dishes. On a few occasions there may be meat, but generally speaking there is no western food served. Vegetarian options are available..

Facilities

There are ATMs in Samraong, as well as a bank. There are numerous local shops where you can get all the basics you might need during your stay. Depending on the location of your accommodation, these may be accessible within a 10 – 15 minute bike ride or walk.

Activities & Events

No scheduled activities outside the program.

Sights & Surroundings

There is a nearby park where you can relax or play volleyball with locals during your free time.

Further away is Siem Reap, which is two hours away from the accommodation. Participants often opt to head there during the weekends to explore the famous Angkor Wat and more!

Transportation

From this location we provide free transport to your next program at the following location(s):

  • Siem Reap
  • Kampot
  • Banteay Chhmar

Quick Facts

Name: Kingdom of Cambodia

Population: 15.14

Capital: Phnom Penh

Language: Khmer

Currency: Riel (KHR)

Time zone: UTC +7

Country Information

Once known as the Khmer empire, Cambodia is perhaps best known for its monumental temples, especially that of Angkor Wat – finalist in the election of the new 7 wonders of the world in 2006. It is without doubt a country of incredible beauty, scattered with these temples, fertile rice fields and a rich and interesting history. For this reason it is unsurprising that Cambodia has taken a firm place on the tourist map. Having been a protectorate of France for almost 100 years, the country gained its independence in 1953. Following this however, Cambodia experienced years of civil war, turmoil and political corruption, as well as suffering from its involvement in the Vietnam war.

Despite holding this dark history, Cambodia really is an extraordinary country and has prevailed due to what has been described as the unbreakable spirit of the Cambodian people. The people here are known for their friendliness and their smiles.

Climate

Cambodia has monsoon climate with temperatures ranging from 21°C – 35°C (The average year-round temperature is 27.7°C). Its monsoon season spans from May  – October, whilst dry season lasts from November to December . Dry season is the most popular time to visit however rainy season can be incredibly beautiful in Cambodia due to the richer colours that it causes. The rain also can help to make temperatures more pleasant. Post-monsoon season is also a favourite time to visit because of the stunning green countryside

Whilst temperatures do not vary hugely, during the winter the northern parts of the country can be colder.

Culture

Buddhism is an important aspect of Khmer cultural and is practiced by 95% of the Cambodian population.

Gastronomy

In true Asian style, the staple food in Cambodia is rice whilst fish from the Mekong river plays another major part in Khmer cuisine. You can also expect to find use of noodles, soups, stir-fries, curries and salads and so there is something to suit everyone’s taste. The french colonial influence can even be seen in the use of toasted baguette with Cambodian red curry.

It has to be said that the Cambodian cuisine is relatively unknown compared to that of Thailand and Vietnam.

Transportation

Taxi

Taxis are becoming increasingly popular in Cambodia however there are still very few metered taxis, especially anywhere outside of Phnom penh.

Cyclo

This are a cheap and practical way to get around in towns/cities. In Phnom Penh, drivers can be flagged down on main roads or found waiting around markets and hotels. You should expect to bargain and set a price before the journey.

Moto

Motorcycle taxis are a quick and cheap way to get around in a city. Prices may rise at night and like the cyclo, you should expect to bargain and agree on a price before the journey. It should be noted that Cyclo/moto drivers may speak little to no English.

Rotei Ses

Cart rides are common in the more remote/rural parts of Cambodia

Bus

Whilst Cambodia has no train service, buses provide a good alternative for the longer distance journeys/ travel into neighbouring countries.

Flight

Commercial flights connect the main tourist areas in Cambodia

https://youtube.com/watch?v=T9m9H9ZuORc

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