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Spend an unforgettable week as a volunteer in Cambodia. See the breathtaking Angkor Wat temple complex and connect with the Cambodian people in a way no all-inclusive trip will ever give you.
Cambodia is an exotic country with a rich history. You may think at first of Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge but don't let that dark period in Cambodian history colour your impressions of the country. It borders Thailand, Laos and Vietnam and you will see influences in Cambodia from those neighbours and also from France who ruled it from 1863-1953. For many people it has become a more exotic holiday destination than the more conventional choice of Thailand, but it certainly has everything you could want from a trip to Asia: intricate and almost unbelievable temples including Angkor Wat, exotic flora and fauna like elephants, monkeys, a mind-boggling 536 species of birds and an incredible 240 species of reptiles. As you walk around the markets, towns and temples you will see colours that seem a little brighter than at home, smells you never thought existed and meet people so proud of their country they will make you feel truly welcome.
Siem Reap (where the tour takes place) means "Defeat of Siam" in commemoration of the Cambodians' fights with their Thai neighbours. Even the names of things are a nod to the complicated and interesting history of Cambodia. While exploring Siem Reap you will be surrounded by so many influences: the colonial and Chinese architecture, the French infused cuisine and the Buddhist temples. You'll have time to visit the spectacular and iconic Angkor Wat, the 12th century temple with so many intricate carvings and unique structure, you'll be lost for words on how best to describe it. In between sightseeing you will feel even better knowing that your tour fee has gone to help locals and you can see it with your own eyes - what will it be like when you teach novice monks English colloquialisms or present a wheelchair to a small child injured by a landmine? You have to agree to this wild and fulfilling adventure to find out.
"Volunteer vacations" as they are called, are certainly not the stereotypical luxurious holidays. This is an active holiday, both in body and mind and you will have to be up for that. Cambodia is a complicated place with a sad and bloody history - since you will be up close and personal with the people, you may be confronting some hardships that they face so it could be quite an intense week. That said, this is a perfect tour for people who want to make a difference, see something completely unique and want to truly experience a different culture from the inside. It might be hard at times but it will be a life-changing and positive experience in the end. If you only stay in five star hotels, don't like trying new food and want to sleep in (the starts on this tour are as early as 5.30am) don't book this tour. You don't have to be a teacher or work for non-profit organisation to have a successful week, just an open mind and willingness to try new things and meet new people.
We select specialist operators who are experienced, qualified and most importantly passionate about what they do. Your enquiry will be passed straight through to the experts who will be able to give you the best advice.