The essential guide for sustainable travel in Cambodia

by Huyen Nguyen
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Sustainable travel is always a goal that every country strives to achieve because it not only creates economic and national development but also helps us preserve cultural and historical values for the future.

As sustainable travel is on the rise, Cambodia has emerged as an active player in developing this type of tourism in Southeast Asia. In this guide, we’ll discover Cambodia’s eco-friendly activities, and sustainable accommodations that make your adventure both interesting and environmentally responsible.


1. Explore Mondulkiri and Ratanakiri, two hidden gems of Eastern Cambodia

Eastern Cambodia is truly a gem with captivating experiences but is not well known. This eco-conscious journey will take you through the enchanting landscapes of Mondulkiri and Ratanakiri provinces, introducing you to exciting sustainable travel activities.

In Mondulkiri, you’ll have an encounter with “rescued elephants” during your visit to the Elephant Valley Project where they focus on protecting and raising elephants. Continue your journey deep into Ratanakiri, where you’ll immerse yourself in the traditional lifestyle of the indigenous tribes. Meeting with local people will help you gain unique insights into long-standing customs here and participate in sustainable activities in harmony with nature.

Photo: Elephant Valley Project on TripAdvisor

Besides, at Bousra Eco Park, you will experience ziplining among the primeval forests, immersing yourself in the fresh natural beauty. You also have the chance to protect Mother Nature by participating in tree planting activities, a highly responsible activity during your trip.

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2. Rehash Trash Workshop, Siem Reap

The Rehash Trash Workshop is a notable activity taking place in Siem Reap. This unique social business not only creates vibrant and imaginative products from plastic waste but also provides a lifeline to the mothers of former street kids, helping them escape poverty.

Photo: Rehash Trash on Facebook

During your visit, you will be captivated by the resourcefulness and artistry of these inspiring women. Together, you’ll embark on a recycling journey, learning how to turn waste plastic into personalized, eco-friendly souvenirs. This experience not only empowered these resilient mothers but also supported an important purpose in Cambodia – fighting plastic waste. And when you create your own unique souvenir, you help create a brighter future for both these amazing women and the environment.

3. Discover Local Village Communities

Get a taste of rural Cambodian life with a sustainable journey. Travel by traditional ox cart to a remote village, immersing yourself in the beautiful countryside landscape. Along the way, you will have the chance to explore vivid markets and participate in agricultural activities. Share a meal with villagers, discover the unique flavors of Cambodian gastronomy, and receive blessings in a traditional Buddhist ceremony.

Floating village in Tonle Sap Lake

Your adventure also takes you to Tonle Sap Lake, where you’ll learn about the unique floating village lifestyle of local residents. This interesting experience not only allows you to connect with local traditions but also supports the sustainable development of these village communities.

4. Watch traditional dance performances, Siem Reap

Enjoy artistic performances that give visitors a mesmerizing glimpse into Cambodia’s unique culture. By participating in this activity, you are helping to preserve culture as well as support local artists, as these performances often serve as important sources of income for the dancers.

Apsara dance – a traditional dance of Khmer culture that is loved by tourists

These dance shows are often inspired by fascinating stories from Cambodian folklore, with elaborate costumes and elegant choreography. The resounding rhythm and vivid storytelling will give you an enjoyable experience. Some typical art forms include Apsara dance (Cambodian royal dance), Robam Trot folk dance, Sneak Toseay, etc.

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1. Raffles Hotel Le Royal, Phnom Penh

Located in Phnom Penh, Raffles Hotel Le Royal is truly a paradise with a strong commitment to sustainable development. This hotel has implemented many eco-friendly practices to minimize its environmental impact, including energy-efficient lighting programs, waste reduction and recycling, and a strong focus on supporting the local community. Raffles Hotel Le Royal is also actively involved in local charity, working closely with organizations supporting education, health, and sustainable development in Cambodia.


2. Palace Gate Hotel & Resort, Phnom Penh

Nestled in the center of Phnom Penh, Palace Gate Hotel & Resort works actively in reducing carbon emissions and protecting the environment. From energy-efficient lighting to waste reduction programs, all their efforts are aimed at keeping the environment clean. This hotel also offers local handmade products, supporting neighboring communities and artisans. This not only helps tourists enjoy the charm of Cambodian culture but also helps local people develop economically.


3. Shinta Mani Hotels, Siem Reap

Located in Siem Reap, Shinta Mani Hotel always strives to minimize its impact on the environment. Outstanding activities include water-saving, energy efficiency, waste reduction, etc. Furthermore, the hotel also serves locally sourced food in every meal, ensuring your culinary journey benefits the neighboring community.

Shinta Mani also demonstrates the spirit of sustainable development by actively supporting the Shinta Mani Foundation, a non-profit organization that aims to uplift disadvantaged Cambodians through education and employment opportunities.

© Shinta Mani Hotels

4. Anantara Angkor Resort, Siem Reap

From water and energy conservation to supporting local communities, Anantara Angkor Resort is one of the hotels that stands out in its commitment to sustainable, responsible tourism.


A typical project demonstrating this commitment is the program ‘Buy a bottle, Fill the future’, replacing single-use plastic bottles with reusable glass bottles, contributing to reducing plastic waste. Furthermore, Anantara Angkor also cares about local communities, through on-site sourcing and education initiatives.

About Lux Travel DMC

Founded in 2005, Lux Travel DMC provides 100% tailor-made private tours in Southeast Asia.  We are deeply committed to sustainable tourism, recognizing our responsibility to preserve the environment, protect cultural heritage, support local communities, and ensure that future generations can continue to enjoy the charm of our destinations.

Contact Us

Address: No.456 Lac Long Quan Street, Tay Ho District, Hanoi, Vietnam
Phone: (+84) 24 3927 4120
Email: [email protected]


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