Ampersand's Unusual Escorted Journey to Angkor & Beyond, 2019
10 days from £6,595 per person
19th – 27th January 2019
The re-discovery of the ancient Kingdom of Angkor is accredited to the French archaeologist Henri Mohout, whose expedition in 1860 first documented these magnificent temples to the rest of the world. We have created Ampersand's Unusual Escorted Journey to Angkor & Beyond to offer clients the exceptional opportunity to explore Mohout’s journey with local and international authorities. Follow in the archaeologist’s footsteps in the discovery of one of the world’s greatest series of monuments, amid the largest open archaeological site on earth. The tour will be led by Ampersand Travel’s Richard Saward. The Mekong River region in Cambodia and Laos were his home for nearly seven years as he worked within a team documenting the lesser visited temples surrounding Angkor. Richard is a true expert on this region and will undoubtedly educate everyone on this trip!
Having only been accessible to researchers in the last 15 or so years after half a century of isolation, archaeologists and historians are only now discovering the true size and scope of what was the pre-industrial age’s most advanced civilization. With three nights in Siem Reap, you will be able to take in the remnants of this ancient kingdom with one of the world’s leading authorities on the archaeology and reconstruction of the temples of Angkor, Mr Bunchhay Chem, who will be able to uniquely bring these ancient wonders to life. Step away from the tourist trail to the fine Cambodian countryside where you will be welcomed into the home of Andrew Booth OBE. Author of the best-selling field guide to Angkor, Andrew has spent a decade working to provide improvement to the educational needs of underprivileged school children in Cambodia. Deep in the Cambodian countryside you will dine much as explorers would have in Mohout’s era, in a rural setting which remains unchanged for centuries.
The next part of your journey will take you to the laid-back and enchanting former royal capital of Luang Prabang, which is still relatively untouched by Western influence. Stroll through charming streets filled with colonial houses and restaurants and watch long lines of saffron robed monks emerge from the morning mist to collect their alms. You will be guided by Francis Engelmann, author and advisor to UNESCO. Francis’ area of expertise covers the crumbling architecture of Luang Prabang, the resting place of Henri Mohout. He is a long-time resident of Laos and has unprecedented access behind the scenes of the many royal residences and religious monuments. Multi-published and a leading voice for the conservation of Luang Prabang, Francis has fascinating insights into Laos' past, present and future.
Filled with extraordinary private access experiences, using Ampersand’s contacts, this itinerary is subject to minor changes to ensure the smooth running of the tour, and due to the schedules of the private individuals hosting the group.
Not included in the rate: Alcoholic beverages other than when provided, meals at leisure or those indicated as independent, personal expenses, trip insurance, Tourist Visas.
10 days from £6,595 per person
- Day 1 - In transit.
Fly from London to Bangkok.
- Day 2 - The Metropolitan - Bangkok
Arrive and transfer to your hotel. There will be an introduction to the journey at the Mandarin Oriental with guest speaker from the Greater Angkor Project.
- Day 3 - The Metropolitan - Bangkok
Morning guided tour of the Prasert Museum followed by a private river boat trip on the Chao Praya. Afternoon at leisure followed by sunset at Wat Arun.
- Day 4 - Park Hyatt Siem Reap - Bangkok
Morning flight to Siem Reap. Afternoon private tour of the National Museum with Mr Kin Po Thai, pre-eminent authority of Ancient Angkor. Private dinner at Cuisine Wat Damnak with specially prepared menu, and nightcap in The Living Room.
- Day 5 - Park Hyatt Siem Reap - Siem Reap
Morning breakfast in the temple grounds followed by private guided tour of Angkor without the crowds. Afternoon guided walking tours through the temple ruins. Sunset drinks on an ancient Angkorian waterway.
- Day 6 - Park Hyatt Siem Reap - Siem Reap
Eary morning sunrise at Angkor Wat, followed by a behind-the-scenes active archaeological dig. Afternoon at leisure with optional activities such as cycling tours. Evening private dining experience under the stars in a traditional country home.
- Day 7 - Satri House - Luang Prabang
Morning tour of the town's pagodas and galleries. Afternoon flight to Luang Prabang. Evening stroll to see the architecture of Wat Xieng Thong by candlelight.
- Day 8 - Satri House - Luang Prabang
Morning architectural walking tour of the city with renowned UNESCO Expert historian, Francis Engelmann. Afternoon boat trip up the Mekong River to explore the Pak Ou caves with picnic lunch on-board.
- Day 9 - Satri House - Luang Prabang
Pre-dawn viewing of alms collection, and wander around the local market to see hill tribe villagers selling their wares. Morning optional activities include private tour of the botanical gardens, Laos coffee farming or traditional textile manufacturer. Afternoon visit to Mohout’s grave and talk of his final days from this fascinating journey.
- Day 10 - In transit.
Early morning flight to Bangkok for onward international flight.
- Mr David Wallace, North India
- Matthew Nicklin, North India
- Mr Richard Stoughton, Sri Lanka
- Mr & Mrs Manson, North India
- Krista Weir, Sri Lanka
- Leslie Siben, India
- Susan Ford, India
- Jaime Benitez, South India