The Beauty of Rural Battambang
Join Khiri Travel Cambodia for a tour that introduces you to the beauty of Battambang city; taking you kayaking down the Sangkae River, a beautifully tranquil body of water that winds its way picturesquely into downtown Battambang.
You first meet with your local guide about eight kilometres from Battambang and start kayaking east down the river towards the heart of this fascinating historical city. The student guide will share their knowledge with your clients about farming communities and the fishermen you see eking out a living along this enchanting rural waterway.
Annexed by the French in the early 20th century, Battambang town underwent a thorough modernization with well-defined boulevards and avenues constructed, and the linking of both banks of the river via two bridges built in 1917. A number of large residential villas and public buildings were also built – some of best preserved examples of French colonial architecture in Cambodia today.
After an insightful kayaking trip, we stop to enjoy lunch at a local cafe, which in addition to local Khmer food, offers a surprisingly broad range of international cuisine. Set up by the Apostolic Prefecture of Battambang, profits from the café go towards a number of humanitarian projects for disadvantaged people in the province, including education and healthcare programs, and support for people with disabilities.
After lunch we continue on to Phnom Banan, an 11th century temple complex constructed on top of a hill overlooking the Sangkae River, just 22 km to the south of Battambang. With its five ancient temple ruins it is often referred to as ‘mini Angkor Wat’. Be prepared to climb over 350 steps to get to the top where you will have – not only the ancient towers to admire – but some stunning views of Cambodian rice plains and small farming communities stretching far below to the horizon.
After the exertion of the climb, a bit of refreshment is in order, so we head to our last stop of the day, Prasat Phnom Banan Winery, the only winery in Cambodia. Passing some picturesque vineyards along the way, we arrive at this small local wine maker which produces only a few thousand bottles of wine, brandy and fresh grape juice, each year. Tastings takes place in their garden pavilion and are not just limited to wine, so if you’re more of brandy connoisseur, you won’t be disappointed.
After this relaxing time meditating on the differing bouquets, you return to your hotel for the rest of the evening at your own leisure.
For more information on this tour and other Cambodian experiences, please email us at [email protected].