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Photo Gallery's Virachey National Park

 
 
 

Visitor Information

The culture and the way of life of the Brau people are of course very different to out own. As you are a guest in their village it is important to be aware of how to behave in an appropriate way during you stay in the village to ensure your own comfort and that of your hosts. Some of this is common sense but other codes of conduct are specific to please be sure to read and follow the following guidelines when you visit the village.

-         Always make sure your guide introduces you guide introduces you to the village headman and /or commune chief when you arrive in the village and be sure to seek permission from your home stay family before you enter their house (remember to take your shoes off).

-         Dress modestly, especially when bathing. Nudity is offensive.

-         Bathe only in the community designated areas – ask for advice if you are not sure.

-         Avoid open displays of affection in the village – this is not custom in rural Cambodia.

-         Enjoy any rice wine offered but please avoid becoming drunk and loud. This is offensive and possibly frightening for your hosts.

-         Men should be careful not to flirt with women in the village. Please be respectful at all times.

-         Please respect the privacy of the family you are staying with. Ask for permission to enter a room first if you are not sure.

-         Do not hand out expensive gifts, money or medicine to individuals in the village as this may encourage begging or cause jealousy. If you wish to donate some money to the school for example make sure that it goes to an appropriate authority figure in the village. Your guide and provide advice.

-         Please follow the set prices for accommodation and porter employment in the village. Negotiation will create uncertainty and unpleasant relations between visitors and villagers.

-         If accepting food from your host family try to ensure that they have sufficient for themselves first. Pay only a realistic price for any food offered if this is expected – ask your guide for advice. Remember there will be more visitors after you and the expectations you raise will be passed on.

-         Before taking photographs please ask permission – your guide can help with this. Some people may be very offended if you do not. Please do not pay for photographs.

-         As tempting as it may be please do not purchase cultural artifacts (e.g. gongs, silver jewelry, old weavings, carvings, pipes etc) in the village. Many people need additional income and will sell off their heirlooms even if they are not happy to do so. These artifacts are an important part of the community’s cultural heritage. You can buy every day handicrafts however such as baskets, mats, weavings, knives if offered – ask your guide for advice on an appropriate price.

-         Please do not leave the village area unaccompanied. The villagers will feel responsible for you as you are their guest and so will worry if you wander off on your own. You may also inadvertently enter or violate a sacred or taboo area and be liable to appease the offended spirits by purchasing rice wine or even an animal sacrifice.

-         The Brau people are animists and so practice a myriad of rituals and ceremonies to communicate with the spirit world. If you are  unsure about entering a certain space or touching a certain object or symbol always ask your community guide first (with the help of your  English speaking ranger guide) to make sure you do not break any taboo or offend your hosts.

 

 

 

 

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