Cultural Experience in Cambodia
Samraong is the capital of Oddar Meanchey province located in the northwest of Cambodia near to the O Smach border crossing into Thailand. The Oddar Meanchey province is located in the Dangrek Mountains and is an area dominated by heavy forest, although deforestation has been a problem in some parts of the area in recent years.
The Samraong culture week is designed to introduce participants to the Cambodian culture and way of life; you will get to know your town and its facilities, and you will be provided with everything you need to make your stay as comfortable as possible.
You will also be given basic ‘survival’ language classes, and you will learn traditional Cambodian cooking techniques with a chance to sample your work too.
Cambodia is best known for its glorious and magnificent temples and Samraong and its surrounding areas more than live up to this reputation. On this culture week you will be taken to the finest temples in the area with sessions arranged where you can meet monks and ask them questions to build your understanding of Buddhism.
Samraong – the town where you will live during your culture week – is primarily rural. The locals enjoy a relaxed and slow-paced way of life and it’s sure to leave a memorable mark on all of the travellers that visit. During the week you will be fully immersed in the environment and you’ll have plenty of opportunities to interact with the locals, who will be really keen to talk to you and learn about your culture too.
The Samraong culture week is designed as an introduction to Cambodia and would ideally feature as the starting point of your time there. Your week here will set you up to experience the culture of Cambodia, and it’s location so close to the Thai border also provides excellent transport links for your next stage of the journey.
Aims & Objectives
- Help you familiarise yourself with the local surroundings
- Teach you helpful Cambodian phrases
- Broaden your knowledge of Cambodia’s customs, history and culture
- Provide a full induction, preparing you for a longer stay!
- Introduction meeting, House rules, Health and Safety Advice and handling of documents
- Khmer Do’s and Don’ts, Khmer Culture Lessons and Khmer Language Lessons.
- Tour around the compound and local area; where to find local shops
- Visit the old market, supermarkets, bank, ATM, Sim-card if necessary.
- Excursion to Wat Preah Prom Rath and Wat Thmey, a small pagoda
- Evening at Pub Street and the night market, the liveliest area of Siem Reap
- Excursion to a silk farm and West Baray, a popular place for swimming
- Visit to the Museum of War dedicated to the Civil War, guided by ex-soldiers
- Explore Artisant D’Angkor, a craft shop that brings ancient Khmer arts and crafts back to life
- Khmer massage salon
- Depart for Samraong
- Introduction to the projects
- Walk around and discover the local rural Cambodian village
- Visit the rural School, built from scratch over the years by previous volunteers
- Tour around Samraong and visit surrounding villages
- Cambodian cooking lesson
- Excursion to the local temple: assist the monks with the chores
- Discussion and Q&A about Buddhism with a local monk
- Free time all afternoon to relax
Participants in the Samraong culture week are always free during the weekend. You can relax in your homestay accommodation, take a bicycle into town or expand your sightseeing into the many other sites around Oddar Meanchey Province.
You can also take a taxi to Siem Reap for the weekend where you can visit the famous Angkor Wat – the largest religious monument in the world. Friendly staff are always available to help with advice about the local area so that you can choose the experience that most suits you. During the weekends only two meals are served in the accommodation: breakfast and dinner.
**Please note: This schedule can be changed and/or amended depending on weather conditions, local conditions and unforeseen circumstances.**
Samraong, which name translates from Khmer into “impenetrable jungle”, is a town located in northwestern Cambodia, close to the border with Thailand. You will be located in a small, rural village located in the outskirts of town. This remote location will give you a taste of what rural Cambodia looks and feels like, while at the same time allowing you to explore some of Cambodia’s highlights, as Siem Reap is located only two hours away.
The accommodation in Samraong is simple and natural. There are no laundry facilities, so expect to wash your clothes by hand. However, there are some places that you can do laundry in the town for a small cost. All locations have a communal area where you can eat, relax, meet fellow participants or use the free Wifi. Requests for specific locations or room configurations cannot be guaranteed.There are bikes available, which you can use to explore the area during your free time!
Available Room Types
- Persons per room 4
- WiFi in public areas
- lockable rooms
- Private bathroom
- Private rooms available upon request
Your meals will be typical Cambodian style, including plenty of rice dishes, meat and at times, western food. Vegetarian options are available.
Three meals on weekdays, Two on weekends
There are ATMs in Samraong, as well as a bank. There are numerous local shops where you can get all the basics you might need during your stay. Depending on the location of your accommodation, these may be accessible within a 10 – 15 minute bike ride or walk.
Sights & Surroundings
There is a nearby park where you can relax or play volleyball with locals during your free time.
Further away is Siem Reap, which is two hours away from the accommodation. Participants often opt to head there during the weekends to explore the famous Angkor Wat and more!
Trip Country Info
Capital: Phnom Penh
Currency: Riel (KHR)
Time zone: UTC +7
Once known as the Khmer empire, Cambodia is perhaps best known for its monumental temples, especially that of Angkor Wat – finalist in the election of the new 7 wonders of the world in 2006. It is without doubt a country of incredible beauty, scattered with these temples, fertile rice fields and a rich and interesting history. For this reason it is unsurprising that Cambodia has taken a firm place on the tourist map. Having been a protectorate of France for almost 100 years, the country gained its independence in 1953. Following this however, Cambodia experienced years of civil war, turmoil and political corruption, as well as suffering from its involvement in the Vietnam war.
Despite holding this dark history, Cambodia really is an extraordinary country and has prevailed due to what has been described as the unbreakable spirit of the Cambodian people. The people here are known for their friendliness and their smiles.
Gap year travel to Cambodia is on the rise as more and more people discover its culture, traditions and historic treasures. A relatively unexplored country compared to its neighbours, Cambodia opened up for tourism very recently.Troubled by extreme poverty, Cambodia is one of the poorest countries in Asia according to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), with over 75% of the population living on less than 2 USD a day. Things such as infrastructure, healthcare, and education are lacking in quality and are often not available to their fullest extent.
With a wide range of volunteering opportunities, Tru Experience wants to help you find the volunteer experience that’s perfect for you whether you are looking to work & travel in Cambodia or go on a road trip across the country. By visiting Cambodia, you can find yourself in a world where you can help those less fortunate than yourself while exploring the many cultural treasures of the nation and getting to know the people in a way that can’t be compared. If you are looking for a gap year holiday in Cambodia, a road trip, conservation work, teaching, community work or other work & travel in Cambodia have a look at our latest experiences below.
Participant Criteria & Requirements
No requirements have been provided.
No requirements have been provided.
- 24/7 support in case of emergencies
- Airport Pick up
- English speaking coordinator
What's not included
- Airport drop off
- Travel insurance