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As majestic as it is notoriously mysterious, Bhutan is only slowly opening up to foreign visitors, and remains enticingly devoid of the trappings of tourism. Spread across the country, we recommend staying in five different lodges spread across five different valleys – including Paro, Thimphu, Gangtey, Punakha and Bumthang. Bespoke Travel Design will create a tailor made tour of your own, visiting all or a selection of the lodges/valleys, with a private driver provided for the duration of your stay – offering unprecedented access to the world’s last surviving Buddhist kingdom.
cambodia ~ the bespoke to do list
• Explore Angkor archaeological park, from the majestic temple of Angkor Wat to the stone carvings that testify to an exceptional civilisation.
• Discover the floating villages on the nearly Lake of Tonle Sap which offers insight into the rich culture of the region.
• Enjoy lunch, brunch or cocktails aboard Amansara’s lake boat and discover the varied plant, fish and bird like that help make this vast inland lake one of Cambodia’s most valuable ecosystems.
• Cycle through rice fields dotted with sugar palms and stilted wooden Khmer houses surrounded by fruit trees and overlooked by the Phnom Kulen hills in the distance
• Receive a water blessing to cleanse your spirit at Wat Athvea, on the outskirts of Siem Reap
• Early morning and late afternoon walks explore the temples surrounding Angkor Wat, including Ta Prohm, Preah Khan and Bayon
• Delve deeper into the region’s heritage by visiting lost jungle temples by helicopter, with landings at Banteay Chmar, Koh Ker, and Beng Mealea
hotels we love
Once a residence for guests of the king, Amansara is a masterpiece of 1960’s New Kmer architecture – an unabashedly modern style. A careful and sensitive restoration brought the building back to its former glory retaining the original single-level layout, curvilinear pool and monochrome minimalism. The Suites open onto private courtyards and ponds. Our bespoke itineraries, lead guests intuitively towards less-explored destinations – cycling through crowd-free ruins, meditating amid ancient forest, or cruising to the floating villages of Tonle Sap Lake. Visit the hotel website.
BELMOND LA RÉSIDENCE D’ANGKOR
A Khmer hideaway near fabled Angkor Wat – Launch into an otherworldly adventure at this leafy retreat, where ancient tradition meets contemporary style. One of the first luxury hotels to open in Siem Reap, we boast an enviable position on the river moments away from the mystifying temple complexes. Traditionally-designed suites spread out among lush flora. Retreat to the salt-water pool, or indulge at Kong Kea Spa. After a day of adventure, we’re the perfect welcome home. View hotel website.
Zannier hotels: Phum baitang
Phum Baitang which, translated, means “green village” rests elegantly outside of city center, amidst rice paddies and lemongrass fields. And features 45 villas (half with private pools) scattered against lush vegetation. Hop on one of the resort’s tuk-tuks to visit the nearby Angkor Wat temple. Relax after with an ancient Cambodian massage in the resort’s spa temple. Dine overlooking torch-lit rice fields. Visit the hotel website.
Amansara, Angkor – Luxury Hotel & Resort in Cambodia
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