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Angkor Walkers | July 23, 2017

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Testimonials

Our visit to the Kingdom of Cambodia started with a referral to Yut Chhon Chhea (www.angkorwalkers.com), a guide based in Siem Reap. I explained to Yut that I was seeking a level of service that would require an experienced English speaking guide and a personal attendant at my side from the time I woke in the morning until I retired in the evening. After considering several candidates, Yut choose Mara Long as our attendant.

When our plane arrived in Phnom Penh, Yut and Mara greeted us as we walked from the tarmac into the airport and when we departed Siem Reap, they were with us at the gate. Both of these areas are generally restricted to ticketed passengers but Yut and Mara had arranged for special passes. You can imagine the surprise of our friends who were traveling with us when Yut and Mara accompanied us into these areas.

In Phnom Penh, Yut and Mara started the day at eight o’clock after our breakfast and finished at eleven o’clock or later when we returned to the hotel after dinner and a nightcap. Since it is best to visit the Khmer temple ruins of Angkor early in the morning, Yut and Mara were waiting in the hotel lobby at five or six in the morning during the time we were in Siem Reap. If I took a nap in the middle of the day, Yut and Mara were engaged in evaluating restaurants, confirming my spa reservations, and running errands.

Yut’s knowledge of the ancient Khmer civilization was vast and, like a good teacher, he knew how to keep our interest. It should be noted that both Yut and Mara are fluent in English with minimal accents so communication was fluid. This is not always the case as several people in our group hired a guide for a tour and found the guide’s English to be virtually unintelligible. I also appreciated that Yut and Mara had a quiet presence that was calming and respectful.

Mara carried out his duties as attendant with such aplomb that one would have thought that he had served at Downton Abby. Wearing black pants and a white, long-sleeve shirt, he was at my side, as I had requested, until I excused him whereupon he would be within eyesight. At restaurants this usually meant that he and Yut occupied a table that was near our table. If I looked in their direction or started to stand, Mara was at my side to receive my instruction. When we were touring, Mara and Yut regularly offered me chilled water and cool, moist towels which was particularly important when we were touring the hot countryside on dirt roads in a open tut tut. When we walked through the Angkor Archaeological Park, Mara held an umbrella to shield me from the sun. One evening, Mara served drinks at our suite at the Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor. His manor was reserved without being stiff which was important as one of our guests was unaccustomed to being waited on in such a manner.

Yut’s restaurant recommendations were excellent and tailored to our guidelines. We typically visited restaurants prior to lunch or dinner to secure a favorable table and so that Yut and Mara could explain to the staff my request for prompt service and waiters who were experienced and had a professional appearance. The service was usually excellent but I expect that the servers were on their toes since Yut and Mara kept an eye on our table.

Although Yut and Mara had not previously provided the level of service that I have described, they exceeded my expectations. This was quite an accomplishment as I am accustomed to being waited on by my own full-time, uniformed staff. I look forward to exploring more of the Khmer temples in the future and, of course, being served by Yut and Mara.

Leland Stone  8 October, 2012  Leland Stone 415 Madison Street San Antonio, Texas 78204 210-738-1060 (office) 877-608-5740 (fax) 21  Website

We spent 3 days with Yut at the beginning of August 2012. We have read the very favourable reviews about him above and wholeheartedly share the comments that have been made by others. We enjoyed his company throughout – his lovely sense of humour, his considerable knowledge about current and historical events in Cambodia and his genuine concern for us. He wanted us to understand and enjoy his amazing country and he certainly succeeded in this. He picked us up from our hotel in Siem Reap in either tuk tuk or taxi – depending upon the distance we were to travel – and then returned us there after journeys and sightseeing we will never forget. A good guide makes all the difference – Yut is a great one and anyone who uses his services will be hugely satisfied.

John and Helen Smitheman  31 August, 2012  Citadel, 190 Corporation Street, Birmingham B4 6QD, England.

Yut is such an amazing, knowledgeable, flexible, fun, and funny guide. You can really feel how genuine and warm his personality is. Not only does he offer fascinating insight in to the rich culture and mysteries of Ankor, but time with him also allows you to have a real glimpse into the spirit and heart of the wonderful people of Cambodia.

Nick Bradford  18 August, 2012  United States

We have just returned from a first visit to Siem Reap. Our goal was to learn something about Cambodia while visiting some of the incredible Wats over a period of eight days. Before leaving, we had received information from a friend running an NGO from an office in Siem Reap recommending a Tour Guide by the name of Yut. After an initial meeting it was clear this guy had lots to offer.

Yut is a delightful, charming and very knowledgeable 30 yr old Cambodian, coming originally from a local village community. His grasp of English, his understanding of the complex history of Cambodia and present day issues was very impressive. The fact that Yut had been a monk in the Phnom Penh and Thai monasteries for 12 years before leaving to support his parents and siblings, has given Yut an extra competency. We learned a great deal and enjoyed spending time with him especially as he also has a great sense of humour– in a Tuk Tuk or at the top of a Temple! Thanks to Yut this was a memorable experience.

Yut is now keen to develop his tour packages to meet the needs of the increasing tourists. We have no doubt that anyone using Yut as guide would have a very valuable experience. His website –www.angkorwalkers.com

— Felicity and David

David Feeny  3 August, 2012  Oxford UK

We traveled to Siem Reap in March and toured with Yut for three days. He was very professional, organized, and personable, and we really enjoyed our time with him. He has extensive knowledge of Khmer culture, and we especially appreciated his insights on Buddhism. We highly recommend Angkor Walkers!

Dana  18 July, 2012

Amazing!!! If i had one word to describe our experience with Yut, this would sum it all up. My trip to Siem Reap started off pretty chaotic due to a system failure from the AirAsia flight status network. To make a long story short, we missed our moring flight out to Siem Reap from Malaysia, however, we were still determined to get there on the same day. The only option available was to take an afternoon flight Phnom Penh and then taxi it to Siem Reap. I contacted Yut of my issue while i was at the airport and he promptly set up driver from the Phnom Penh airport, where his friend Lucky met us and instructed the driver of where we needed to go. He was so considerate that he even contacted the drive a couple times during our trip from PP to SR to ensure that everything was going smoothly.

You will be treated like royalty when you travel with Yut. There was absolutely no worries the entire trip as he took care of all the details. He was super flexible with the itineray. If we felt tired one day, he would amend the itinerary to our needs. I would recommend Yut to everyone on the drop of a dime.

Thanks for showing me your country Yut, hope to see you some time in the near future. I will forward your contact over to my friends who will be coming down to SR in the next couple of months. Their names are Kevin and Vivian.

Cheers,

Dactin Tran  25 June, 2012

Yut is a professional and a knowledgable guide for all of the temples in and around Siem Reap. I spent two days with him in July. He possess a deep knowledge of the religious traditions and iconography of the temples, knows the great places to take pictures, understands and communicates the history, and is simply a joy to spend time with. I give him the highest possible recommendation as a tour guide. When i return there, I will hire him again.

Hikari  15 April, 2012  Website

I traveled to Cambodia this summer and, among other places, visited Angkor Wat. An incredibly knowledgeable and kind guide, Yut showed us around and offered a perfect amount of information, leaving us well informed but not overwhelmed. His charming, warm personality and wonderful sense of humor added entertainment to our day. We loved our time at Angkor Wat and especially with Yut!

Guido  15 April, 2012  Darien, Connecticut USA  Website

My group spent an unforgettable six days with Yut this past December and January. Our Cambodia adventure was nothing short of awakening, inspiring, and incredible, and this is due in huge part to Yut and his guidance. Not only is he extremely knowledgeable about the Angkor temples, he also shares his own personal knowledge of the Siem Reap area, Khmer culture and language, as well as insights into history and philosophy. We learned a new Way every day, and went a new way too!

Yut’s smile is infectious, and his pride in his country and his work is very admirable. Yut is a great guide and a great guy, on both counts very worth listening to. My only regret was not having more time to do so. I cannot recommend him highly enough.

E. Claire  21 February, 2012  Website

Yut is an absolutely amazing person and a great guide! His kindness, immense knowledge, and willingness to share about his country and culture all made our experience of Cambodia very rich!

We were able to spend 3 days in a small village called Banteay Chmar, which included waking up with the sun, touring more remote temples, learning of the community projects that are happening in this village, fireside Cambodian dancing, and a great deal of enjoying life! This was followed by 4 days in Siem Reap where we looked at the delicate carvings of the temple complexes around Ankor Wat, learned about the history of Cambodia, sunset viewings, sunrise viewings and and a great many joyous meals full of jokes and laughter. Yut’s careful guidance throughout our whole trip made all of these experiences possible.

He is also so. friendly! Yut seems to take special care to develop relationships with everyone around him–within our tour group and even down to the businesses and communities that we visited. These connections were invaluable during our stay–they made us feel very welcome and connected to real people everywhere we went.

I would absolutely recommend hiring Yut if you’re planning on coming to Cambodia! You can’t ask for a better person to be your guide! Thanks again Yut!

Currently living in Japan.

Miriam  7 February, 2012  South Dakota, U.S.A.

We were so lucky to have Yut on our 7-day tour around Cambodia! His smile, openness and knowledge of Cambodia and Buddhism made my stay unforgettable!

We spent 3 days in Banteay Chmar, in the countryside close to Thailand, and 4 days in Siem Reap. During that time we saw so much, learned so much, laughed so much, ate so much… it was like having a good friend show you around! Yut taught us some useful Khmer expressions and a bit about Cambodian history, decoded the beautiful stories behind the wall carvings at Angkor Wat, we ate the BEST Cambodian food and had loads of fun chatting and having fun!

I highly, highly recommend Yut if you’re planning on visiting Cambodia for any length of time! Thank you again Yut, for your ways of the day and everything else!

Currently living in Japan

KatieLily  17 January, 2012  Prince Edward Island, Canada

We have just returned from a three day tour of Siem Reap with Yut. Yut had been recommended to us by friends living in Phnom Penh and he proved to be nothing short of exceptional. We were travelling with our three small children (aged 7, 2 and 12 months) and Yut showed extreme patience and understanding throughout our time with him. He seemed to know intuitively when the kids had had enough and at times acted more like a third parent to them than a tour guide. His knowledge about Khmer history and culture was extensive and his ability to communicate that knowledge in a down-to-earth manner made the tour very enjoyable. Yut offered great advice regarding the best times to visit each temple to ensure we were never battling the crowds and even when there were lots of people, he had a knack of finding the quiet places to sit and explain things to us. We would have no hesitation in recommending Yut to any of our friends or family. Thank you, Yut, for making our holiday to Cambodia one that we will never forget.

Currently living in Bangkok, Thailand

Rohan & Anita,  27 November, 2011  Australia

My group and I just got through with a trip to Cambodia with Yut as our guide, and it was extraordinary. Yut’s abundance of charisma and boundless knowledge of Khmer history and culture are none other than exemplary. We also found a rarity in Yut in that he was able to honestly and openly discuss some of the finer points and not-so-finer points of his own culture while still retaining pride for his country and its people.

Our trip was 7 days long and Yut stayed with us through the whole leg of our journey. From doing 3 days of a homestay in an old village in Banteay Chhmar to visiting the Angkor Wat from sunrise to sunset, Yut made our entire stay pleasant and unforgettable. In our downtime, he offered interesting insight into Khmer daily lives and taught us a slew of helpful phrases to get around. If you’re planning to go to Cambodia, I pass the along the absolute highest recommendations for Yut and his company, the Angkor Walkers. I assure you that you won’t be disappointed.

Kamron  27 November, 2011  United States of America.

I spent a month in Siem Reap ,Cambodia studying travel writing and photography. Yut was a major contributor to the success of my studies. His knowledge and passion for his culture helped me to grasp what Cambodia is all about. I spent time with Yut during our tours, but I also got to know him outside of his job as we sat in local coffee shops to chat about life and culture. His story is inspirational, and I think he has what it takes to make Angkor Walkers a major success. I would recommend Yut to anyone who is looking for a quality tour guide with a great personality!

Kristy Densmore  25 October, 2011  Athens, Georgia, USA

I never thought I could be on the other side of the world while also feeling so at home. The tours were informative and fun but the friendships made were something to never forget. I am certain that Angkor Walkers will be a huge success with tour guides like Yut running the show. It would be silly to choose anyone else to spend your site seeing time with. I hope to visit Cambodia again soon and will undoubtably be seeking the guidance of Angkor Walkers and Yut to show me the way.

Alicia  10 October, 2011  Athens, Georgia, USA

Yut is a professional, enjoyable, and a knowledgable guide for all of the temples in and around Siem Reap. I spent two days with him in July. He possess a deep knowledge of the religious traditions and iconography of the temples, knows the great places to take pictures, understands and communicates the history, and is simply a joy to spend time with. I give him the highest possible recommendation as a tour guide. When i return there, I will hire him again.

Associate Professor at Augustana College

Reynold Nesiba  6 October, 2011  Sioux Falls, South Dakota, USA  Website

I was in Cambodia in May and had a fantastic time with Yut as my tour guide! He really showed us local Cambodia and gave us a great insight into religion and culture! When you meet Yut you don’t just meet a tour guide you meet a friend!!!Love you Yut!

Lynn Rusk  13 September, 2011  Castleblayney, Ireland

Yut was a wonderful tour guide of the temples of Angkor Wat area. His English is fine,he is passionate about the topic of Khymer art and he is most informative on many subjects. I highly recommend him as a guide for anyone coming to Siem Reap. My husband is a specialist in art and was impressed by his knowledge of Khymer art and also his awareness of world events and history.

Gayle Ackley  4 September, 2011  Baltimore, Maryland, USA

I traveled to Cambodia this summer and, among other places, visited Angkor Wat. An incredibly knowledgeable and kind guide, Yut showed us around and offered a perfect amount of information, leaving us well informed but not overwhelmed. His charming, warm personality and wonderful sense of humor added entertainment to our day. We loved our time at Angkor Wat and especially with Yut!

Kristen Ball  4 September, 2011  Darien, Connecticut USA

My friends and I were pleasantly greeted by a friendly tour guide at our hotel on an early morning to catch the sunrise at Angkor Wat. And this friendly guy is none other than Yut. Throughout the tour of Angkor Wat, Yut gave detailed explanations of the history and even helped to suggest good shots for photos in the temple :) We were also impressed by his command of English. It was truly a memorable experience.

Will definitely recommend him to anyone who’s planning to visit Cambodia!

Alicia Tan  2 September, 2011  Singapore, Singapore

Yut is amazing! I definitely recommend going to Angkor with him. He’s not only a great guide, but a great guy. We learned so much from him about Buddhism, Cambodian culture and history of Angkor and so much more. Not to mention he’s GREAT at games and came and celebrated my birthday with me. Thanks for being a great guide and friend, Yut and hope to stay in touch!

Anya  2 September, 2011  Armonk, New York, USA  Website

Yut has the perfect combination of education and personality to give anyone a fantastic tour of Angkor, Siem Reap and even Cambodia.

What amazed me was that he combined his knowledge of spiritual and historical facts into the tour. We would sit in a quiet corner of a temple and he would discuss the history of the temples combined with Hinduism and Buddhism. The tour was flexible and tailormade, so we could choose any temples that we were interested in. Yut knew the best combination to see them all in 3 days.

This was my first time in Cambodia and will now return again to visit Yut and Siem!

Philipp F  1 September, 2011  Zürich, Switzerland  Website

For only being in Cambodia for a week, I learned more than I could have ever imagined thanks to Yut and the PEPY team.
Yut’s knowledge of Buddhism, Khmer culture, and Cambodian history taught me more than I have ever taken away from any education course. His dynamic personality is not only captivating but quite entertaining; and I am very fortunate to have met such an amazing person. Little did I know that my short journey would leave me with lifelong friends across the globe.

Caitlin Cocilova  1 September, 2011  Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA  Website

Yut is the best guide I ever had!!! On his motorbike we visited Angkor Wat and he told me all about it, the different meanings and every bullet hole and also all about the history of Khmer Rouge and Buddhism! He was so enthousiastic and proud of his country. This was one of my most inspiring days of my trip! Thanks Yut! I can recommend them to everyone! :-)

Breda,

Natalie  25 August, 2011  Netherlands  Website

Our trip wouldn’t have been half of what it was without Yut.
His knowledge of the history and culture of the Khmer is vast and deep, and he delivers with ease. I appreciate his great humor and demeanor, and consider myself lucky to have made his acquaintance. Hopefully we will remain friends for a long time!

Elizabeth  25 August, 2011  Chicago, Illinois

Yut was such a fantastic guide! It is not possible to more highly recommend him.

We were in Siem Reap for 6 days and had the pleasure of Yut’s guidance for 2 days at the temples. Not only was he incredibly knowledgeable when it came to explaining the history, customs, details, and culture of the temple complexes and the Khmer people, but he waited patiently while we took thousands of photographs. Yes, thousands. On the first day we saw Angkor Wat, Angkor Thom, the Elephant Terrace, and Preah Khan. He showed us the best angles to take photos from and taught us much about the conservation of the temples. In addition to guiding us around the beautiful and enormous temple complexes, prior to our trip, he helped us figure out the temples we’d like to see and the schedule we should follow; he arranged for our tuk tuk with our driver Chun (who is also great, and always had chilled water ready for us); and he brought us to good restaurants during our 2 full days of touring. And when I say “full day” I mean, Yut met us at our hotel at 7am and was our guide until 6pm.

On our second day of touring, Yut took us out to the temples further afield, including the amazing Banteay Srei. We had the joy of riding there in a tuk tuk and experiencing first hand the Cambodian countryside and people. Far better than doing it via tour bus or car. During the drive, he taught us about the history of the country, pointed out aspects of the architecture, explained to us how to plant and harvest rice, and explained to us some of the drawbacks of ignorant tourism. We also stopped in a couple places to speak with rural folk planting rice and boiling palm sugar. It was fantastic.

Perhaps due to his many years spent as a monk, Yut is very understanding and kind. We had the pleasure of spending time with him outside of the guide-tourist dynamic and he has a great sense of humor and an appetite for new information. We were looking for some traditional Khmer art to bring back from Cambodia so Yut also took the time to introduce us to artisans who are currently crafting some amazing artwork for us. We will forever be indebted!

If you’re looking for a personalized tour of Angkor, the Cambodian countryside, and all there is to experience, you cannot do better than Yut’s Angkorwalkers!

Chicago, Illinois, USA

Matt  25 August, 2011

Ben is not just a tour guide. He is an historian well versed in Cambodia’s rich culture and traditions. I first met him in 2007, and was immediately impressed not only with his wealth of knowledge, but also charmed by his quick wit and gentle demeanor. Realizing his talents, I hired him to be my primary translator for my book project titled “Red Psalms and Blue Requiems.” Ben and I traveled the country conducting interviews with survivors of the Pol Pot regime. Over a two year period we conducted over fifty interviews covering every province in the country. Without Ben’s professional translation and faithful friendship, I would never have been able to experience Cambodia and her people as I have.

Ben is an informed teacher, steeped in tradition and full of wisdom. He is a thorough guide and a humble friend.

Lives in Phnom Penh. From Fransisco, USA

Aaron Reed  7 March, 2011