Siem Reap is a popular Cambodian city that is known for its glorious Angkor Wat. Because of that, there are hundreds and thousands of tourists who travel all the way just to get a glimpse and see the magnificent sunrise in Angkor Wat.
Siem Reap Travel Guide
Apart from exploring the Angkor Wat, there are a lot of other things to do and places to see in Siem Reap. The moment you set your feet on the grounds of Siem Reap, automatically it will occupy a special place in your heart. In this blog, we will show you how to enjoy Siem Reap even on a budget!
Things to Do In Siem Reap
Phnom Kulen National Park
One of the best attractions in Siem Reap is the Phnom Kulen National Park. This park is about 50km far from Angkor Wat, situated at Kulen mount. Kulen mount is sacred to Khmers because as their history says, it is the place where their king announced their independence from Java, thus, the birth of Cambodia.
Photo: Phnom Kulen National Park, Siem Reap / CC Stefan Fussan
Entrance fee to this national park is at US$20 per person. Note that appropriate clothing must be worn when you plan to go here because this is a sacred place. With that being said, bikinis are not allowed. Swimming attire should be shirt and shorts only.
Points of Interest
Angkor National Museum
Want to know more about Angkor Wat and the rich heritage of Siem Reap and other parts of Cambodia? Then, the Angkor National Museum is the best place for you to discover everything about Cambodia! For just US$ 9, you will be able to explore the museum and begin discovering the best of Khmer history. Screenplays are presented to better understand how their temples are built as such. Also, before leaving the museum, you can drop by the souvenir shop to buy little things that would remind you about your visit.
Photo: Angkor National Museum /CC E_Chaya
The Angkor Wat
Probably one of the main reasons why a lot of tourists visit Siem Reap, it is because of the magnificence of the Angkor Wat. Visiting the Angkor Wat entitles you a privilege to visit other temples and explore them each. We had a blog on this and you can read it here.
Kampong Phluk Floating Village
Wondering what else to do aside from temple hopping? Well, you can also visit the Kampong Phluk Floating Village and know why floating villages exist. The floating village is located an hour away from Siem Reap proper. Beware of scammers, most especially those who operate boat rides.
On top of your Things To Do in Siem Reap should be temple hopping, and be prepared to walk, climb, explore, and repeat. Siem Reap is more than just Angkor Wat. It has other temples that are worthy of your time. To name a few, here is a list:
- Banteay Srei
- Preah Khan
- Phnom Bakheng
- Banteay Samre
- Baksei Chamkrong
When you visit these temples, you must be dressed appropriately. Also, do not forget to bring water to keep you hydrated.
Nightlife Hot Spots
People in Siem Reap also knows how to party right. Most nightlife parties happen in Pub Street area. In this area, you will see not only parties but also even casual drinking sessions. Here are some of the best-known nightlife along Pub Street:
- Angkor What? Bar
- Easy Speaking
- In Touch
- Mezze Lounge & Nightclub
- Soul Train Reggae Bar
Are you looking for souvenir shops and/or shops that sell handicrafts and other unique things from Siem Reap? You came to the right place as we will give you five shopping hubs in Siem Reap, and here’s the list:
- The Angkor Night Market
- The Old Market (Pshar Chas) – oldest Khmer market
- Made in Cambodia Market – opens every Tuesday, Saturday, and Sunday only
- Angkor Trade Center
- Angkor Handicraft Association
Common things that you see at these shops are: Cambodian handicrafts, lots of souvenir goodies, their homemade soaps, organic teas, coffee, and of course different kinds of foods.
Experiences to Have
This is the most exciting part of this blog. If you noticed, we just put a little in the Points of Interest section because there is only a few attractions in Siem Reap that you can go to. [Well, we just compiled all temples in one number] We’re excited on this part of the blog because we wanted to let you know that there are still a lot of things to experience and do while in Siem Reap! Here’s a list of those things:
- Rent a bicycle and explore Siem Reap
- Have a $3-worth body massage
- Try their Khmer draft beer
- Try eating exotic street foods – bugs, tarantula, etc.
- Take a hot air balloon ride
- Enroll in a Cambodian cooking class
- Drink iced coffee
- Fish massage!
Best Time to Visit Siem Reap
Best time to visit Siem Reap is during November to April, when the weather is mostly fine and little to no rains occur. During these times, keep yourself hydrated and protect your skin from the damaging rays of the sun. December to February are also good, but these are when the weather is a bit cooler, and rains are to be expected.
Tuk-Tuk is the most reliable, convenient, and accessible mode of transport in Siem Reap. When you are in Siem Reap, you can immediately hire a Tuk-Tuk with a driver for a fixed price. Rates would range from US$35 to US$50 for 2 days, depending on where do you want to go and what do you want to see. If you opt not to hire a driver, a one-way Tuk-Tuk ride can cost around US$2 – US$ 5.
Note that it is illegal for a foreigner to drive a motorbike. If you see motorbike rental shops, this is illegal, too. Yes, you may see foreigners driving one, but in reality, this is prohibited.
How Safe is Siem Reap
Siem Reap is one of the safest cities in Cambodia. It is tourist-friendly, most especially in the Pub Street area. Even though it is considered a safe place, you have to be aware still of your surroundings, most especially when you go on a drinking session at night. There will still be pickpocketers or drive-by snatch. Always keep an eye on your belongings.
July 1, 2018 7:30 am
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