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– Encouter with the photograh of Tuol Sleng, S21 prison and later official camraman of Pol Pot regime.
– Discussion with villager to get the opportunity to understand and ask question about their feeling and daily life during the khmer rouge era till nowaday.
Dive in the past for a day dedicated to the vibrant study of the Khmer Rouge period.
In the morning, meet an incredible observer and actor of the revolutionary movement and discuss the Khmer Rouge period. This photographer and cameraman of the regime will welcome you to his home and will talk about his life under the oppressive regime. He’ll share with you preserved documents and materials tracking back this major historical chapter of Cambodian history. You will have the unforgettable opportunity to ask all your questions to one of the last surviving close collaborators of Pol Pot in an hour and a half of discussions and question-answers.
You will then go to meet the inhabitants of the region. A couple of people, now old, will talk to you about their life in this countryside and how they use to live under the Khmer Rouge regime. That’s the perfect opportunity to have a new version from the people, other than the retired photographer you met in the morning. You’ll get to ask them all the questions you want to have a better understanding of the lifestyle during and after this tragic episode.
Activity available everyday, departure 8am
Pick up at your Hotel
Official Language: Khmer
Capital: Phnom Penh
Surface: 181 035 Km2
Population: 16 204 486
Currency: Riel (KHR)
Telephone code: +855
The RIEL is the national currency. But the US Dollar is also accepted throughout the country and prices are generally displayed in Dollars. The exchange rate is relatively stable: 1USD=4000 Riels. Warning: banknotes printed before 1990 are not accepted in Cambodia and their value decreases if the banknote is torn or scratched or graffitied or folded. In the case of a payment in Dollar, the change will be returned to you in Riel. The Euro and other foreign currencies are easily exchangeable in airports and markets.
Credit cards are now widely used in tourist cities (Siem Reap, Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville) and you can withdraw Dollars. Cash withdrawals are possible in major cities in Laos, with a credit card (Visa or American Express). Payments are also possible in some hotels, luxury shops, or restaurants. But the cost of the levies (variables) remains quite high (3% commission). We recommend that you carry cash to cover your personal expenses throughout the trip.
No vaccination is required. However, it is recommended to protect yourself against hepatitis A and B (ask your doctor for advice). We advise you to bring your own:
of a broad-spectrum antibiotic;
of your usual medications if you are undergoing treatment;
an anti-diarrheal and an intestinal antiseptic (Intetrix, Immodium…);
a protective cream against mosquitoes;
moisturizing sunscreen, lip stick;
a healing ointment and a local antiseptic.
The Khmer kingdom of Cambodia reached its peak in the 12th century when great temples were erected, but the struggles between Hindus and Buddhists, Khmers, Mon and Cham tore the kingdom apart. The Siamese gradually established their political control over the Khmers while the Vietnamese also sought to dominate and colonize Cambodia. In 1863, France offered its protection to Cambodia, once again threatened by the Siamese (Thais). King Norodom I accepted the protectorate and Cambodia became a French colony. It was only after the Second World War that King Norodom Sihanouk negotiated with France the independence of Cambodia, which was granted on 9 November 1953.
After 15 years of reign, the king could not prevent the Khmer Communist Party from starting the armed struggle in 1968. In 1970, a military coup d’état precipitated Cambodia into a civil war that ended in April 1975 when the Khmer Rouge seized Phnom Penh. The brutality of Pol Pot’s troops served as a pretext for the Vietnamese to invade the country in December 1978.
They left the country following international pressure in September 1989. In May 1993, multi-party parliamentary elections were held. A new constitution was ratified and Norodom Sihanouk was once again proclaimed king. In 2004, he abdicated in favour of his younger son Norodom Sihamoni, currently in charge of the kingdom.
Khmer (sometimes called “Cambodian”) is the official language, with a clear majority; it is estimated to have 11.2 million speakers, or 83.6% of the population, according to 2012 figures, far ahead of Vietnamese (1 million speakers), Cham (475,000 speakers) and Chinese (438,000 speakers). It is mainly spoken in Cambodia and the neighbour regions of Thailand by the Surin Khmer (northern) and in Vietnam by the Khmer Krom.
Hello : Sour Seday
Goodbye : Ly hai
Thank You : Orkoun
Can I have the bill? : Som kotleuy
How much does it cost ? : Klei ponman
I don’t understand : Ort yol
My name is : Kyom tchmo
Where are the toilets ? : Bantop teuk neuy na ?
I don’t understand khmer : Kyom atché pissa khmer
Do you speak english ? : Tah nyek neeyay preesah ahng-lay tay ?
Hotel : Santa Khear
On your way, you will often have the opportunity to meet local people. Wherever you are, be discreet and humble. The multiplicity of cultures and traditions means that certain attitudes are perceived differently in different countries. To avoid being disrespectful, take the time to understand the people you meet, take the time to make connections.
There too, listen to the advice of your guide! He knows better than anyone the behaviors to avoid or adopt. For example, if you want to take a picture of someone, always ask them for permission. The best way for acceptance is to have established a prior contact. Similarly, do not distribute gifts at all … This often encourages children to beg, to avoid this kind of drift, it is better to refer to the local structures competent (donate to school, hospital, village chief etc.). Finally, be careful not to wear too light clothing (short shorts, cleavage …) and avoid exuberant behavior.