Photography Guides: Aaron Dowling and Seng Mah
Duration: 6 nights
Participants: Minimum 6, Maximum 10
2016 Tour Dates: Future dates to be announced shortly
The Angkor temples and its crown jewel, Angkor Wat, provide the backdrop for a mesmerising photography tour that will introduce you to the wonders of Angkor and to the culture of Cambodia and the Khmer people.
The Kingdom of Angkor Photography Tour is an unforgettable journey into this UNESCO World Heritage site, where you’ll join Aaron Dowling and Seng Mah in exploring the majestic, ancient temples and palaces that harken back to the age of the the Khmer Empire and its devarajas, the God Kings of the 9th to 15th centuries.
Angkor is a site of living history and many of these temples still serve as modern-day places of worship for the Khmer. An exploration of Angkor reveals secluded shrines and the Buddhist monks, nuns and locals who have come to make offerings or to pray. You’ll experience traditional Buddhism practices at the temples and local monasteries and will have the opportunity to photograph Buddhist monks at some of Angkor’s most scenic locations.
This tour will take you beyond temples and ancient ruins, to local villages and markets, where you will have first-hand opportunity to engage with and photograph the colour and textures of traditional life. You’ll embark on an amazing boat ride to visit the floating villages on the shores of Tonle Sap, the largest inland body of water in Cambodia, and to photograph daily life on the shores of the great lake.
With camera in hand, you’ll embark on a fully-escorted photographic adventure that will see you shooting in one of the most visually rich locations in the world. You’ll have Aaron and Seng at hand to give you photographic help and advice every step of the way, and will be supported in this tour by a local guide and local driver. You’ll also learn post-production techniques from Aaron and Seng, so bring a laptop if you’d like to participate in our post-processing sessions.
The Kingdom of Angkor tour focuses on giving you the best opportunity to visit and photograph these unique locations, so we will be avoiding tourist crowds by chasing the light at dawn and dusk, and visiting locations that are off the tourist circuit. You will have plenty of time to soak in the splendour of the temples and our visits to villages and markets will take you to places untouched by commercial tourism. This tour is dedicated to photography: your photography.
- The Bayon, with its gigantic heads of the Buddha staring into the four cardinal directions. Explore its walls and climb to the apex to see the giant-sized heads eye-to-eye.
- Angkor Thom, the ancient capital of Angkor, with its intricately carved terraces, palaces and imposing gates.
- Angkor Wat, the jewel in the crown of Angkor; look for the statues of Vishnu clad in saffron robes while you wander the complex’s passageways, courtyards and corridors.
- Ta Prohm, where the forest has taken over the temples, with giant fig trees and their serpentine roots growing all over temple ruins.
- Sunrise and sunset visits with monks at Angkor temple sites. Feel free to converse with the monks or use our guide to assist with translation.
- Visits to local villages and village markets, where you’ll see and photograph traditional Khmer life and village practices.
- Phnom Kulen, the sacred mountain, where sunrise will see beautiful light filtering through jungle canopy to fall on a thunderous waterfall. You will also visit the river of 1000 Lingas and a carving of the Reclining Buddha carved out of the mountain at Phnom Kulen.
- A visit to one of the oldest wats in the region, where monastic life seamlessly blends with village living. You’ll visit a school for monks and attend evening prayers. Experience Buddhist traditions being lived and practiced in the 21st century.
- Beng Mealea, a temple deep in the jungle that looks and feels like a setting straight out of an Indiana Jones movie. Walk above the temple and then clamber over its ruins to discover hidden courtyards that just beg to be photographed.
- Visit the stilted villages on the banks of Lake Tonle Sap, where traditional houses soar above the flood plain on tall stilts. Take a boat ride up the river to photograph traditional life on the shores of the river and Lake Tonle Sap (the largest inland body of water in Cambodia).
- A fully escorted tour with two professional photographers, a local guide and a local driver.
- Excellent accommodation at a boutique hotel at the heart of Siem Reap. You can step outside and experience the culture, shopping, night life and delicious food of Pub Street, Psar Chaa (the Old Market), The Laneway, The Alley and Sivatha Road. Or if you prefer something a bit quieter, relax by the pool or have a drink at the hotel’s beautifully appointed bar and restaurant.
- All ground transport in an air-conditioned minibus.
- Light refreshments and snacks during our photographic trips.
- Flexible, personalised photography tuition when you require it.
- Off road adventure in open air jeeps through the back country and villages.
- Post-processing sessions with Aaron and Seng, where you’ll learn the techniques to enhance your photographs using Lightroom and Photoshop.
- All accommodation (twin share in a superior room at a boutique hotel in Siem Reap).
- Breakfast Daily (When we are at hotel for Breakfast)
- All ground transport during the tour (air conditioned mini bus).
- Entry fees to Angkor temple sites, Beng Melea and Phnom Kulen as listed in the tour itinerary.
- Airport transfers.
- Water and snacks while on visits during the tour.
- All expert photography guidance and advice from Seng and Aaron.
- Flights to/from Siem Reap, Cambodia.
- Entry Visa on Arrival (USD$30).
- All tips.
- Transport and tips not already detailed in “Inclusions” above.
- Travel insurance (you will require comprehensive travel insurance).
- Camera equipment (you’ll need to bring your own camera, lenses, tripods and so on).
- Personal expenses such as laundry, telephone, entry fees for site visits not listed in the tour itinerary.
“Thank you to you and Seng for the most amazing experience. It is difficult to single out one highlight as there seemed to be several each day. The group was accompanied by two gifted photographers who freely shared their knowledge and experience making it possible to learn as much as possible about the art of photography. In addition we had the service of a Cambodian guide who having lived through Cambodias dark history was extremely knowledgeable and keen to explain all the aspects of his country, in addition he became a friend to the group and particularly helpful to me. Every day there were wonderful photo opportunities including monks in front of a lake at sunrise, monks in the temples, the wonders of Anchor Wat, a waterfall at sunrise, a jeep journey where we came close to village life with a stroll through the local markets and a boat ride to see the fishing families living in stilt houses. The week was an exhilarating experience which I will always remember especially as I have the photos to remind me of this amazing time.”
Costs to be released when tour dates available.
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