Phnom Kulen National Park
Lost TemplesStray away from Cambodia’s tried and tested circuit with a temple safari that feels like an Indiana Jones adventure. You’ll trek into the jungles of northeast Cambodia and discover the ancient Khmer Empire beyond Angkor. Phnom Kulen National Park includes a 1600-foot high and 18-mile long plateau considered sacred by locals—it was here, in 802, that Jayavarman II declared independence from Java and created the first Khmer Empire. You’ll camp with a local expert at the summit and wind your way through the jungle to some pre-Angkorian temples—including Prasat Pram and Prasat Domrei Krap—many of which have yet to be properly documented by researchers. In addition to the ancient temples, you’ll see majestic stone sculptures of local animals, visit the giant reclining Buddha, and cool your feet as you explore a series of waterfalls.