The Jahan sailed into Angkor Ban in the early morning to find a quiet village along the banks of the mainstream Mekong River. After Tai Chi and breakfast, guests strolled through the quiet back streets of Angkor Ban, home of the novice monks taking exams and receiving alms. It was interesting to observe the design and construction of village houses. Some are over a hundred years old, while others were only built in the last decade. Cows, geese, chicks, dogs, and cats accompanied guests as we were invited into local homes to see how people live daily life.
Guests returned to the Jahan to witness a Blessing Ceremony by local monks in the lounge. Monks chanted for 20 minutes and then answered questions with the help of our local Cambodian guides. This was a very special event, and guests were intrigued to learn about the lives of monks from Angkor Ban and in Cambodia. Anna Kayes conducted a disembarkation briefing, which was followed by a presentation on Angkorian inscriptions by cultural specialist Julia Esteve. Julia outlined how historians have reconstructed over a thousand years of Angkorian history.
After lunch, the Jahan sailed north to Kampong Cham, and guests disembarked to visit the remarkable 12th century Wat Nokor. This was a spectacular preview to Angkor Wat, built by Jayavarman VII as he extended the Angkorian Kingdom east to the Mekong River to defeat the Cham. After Wat Nokor, guests visited the famous bamboo bridge that connects Kampong Cham to Kaoh Pan Island. Previously used for local access to Kaoh Pan Island, the bamboo bridge is now disassembled in the wet season and reassembled at the start of the dry season, primarily for tourists.
After visiting the bridge, guests were treated to a festive farewell party on the terrace, complete with a DJ, drinks, and surprising dance routines by both staff and crew. The evening finished with a five-course dinner and guest slideshow to cap off a remarkable voyage.