Siem Reap was one of the most enjoyable cities on my Southeast Asian route. Sure it’s a little touristy, but I loved the vibe in the town as well as the plethora of things to see and do. I was glad to spend a few days exploring the town and a few more exploring Angkor and the surrounding area.
Here were my favorite highlights:
Proximity to Angkor
Obvious but true, there is no better place to base yourself to explore the ancient temples of Angkor. Its a quick cab or tuk tuk ride to the temples and its easy to find someone willing to take you in time to watch sunrise over the temples.
Whether dining out or taking a Cambodian cooking class, the city is full of great opportunities to indulge in Cambodian food.
Beyond Unique Cooking Class
Cambodian Cooking Classes in a village location 10 min from town. Classes include a visit to a local family and information on Cambodian cooking customs and beliefs. See Website.
Siem Reap has more than just tourist kitch, there are numerous places to find beautiful local handicrafts. Find weavings, silk, jewelry and spices at places like the:
Made in Cambodia Market (Shinta Mani Market)
A monthly market on the first Saturday of each month, specializing in Cambodian crafts. Open 4pm to 9pm. Located between Shinta Mani Hotel and Cassia Restaurant.
Nightlife lovers rejoice, Siem Reap is loaded with places to grab a drink on a patio or a night out dancing and a ‘bucket’. One of my favorite nightlife spots was “Temple”, a highly themed nightclub right on the main strip.
Day Trip Excursions:
Kampong Phluk Floating Village
The water village near Siem Reap is an incredible place to visit. It was fascinating to see the people, the floating homes they built and the unique lifestyle they have. Although it’s possible to cab/tuk-tuk to the Tonlé Sap ferry harbor and hire a water taxi, most travelers will find it easier to take an organized day tour from an operator.
Angkor Silk Farm (Artisans Angkor)
Just a little way outside of Siem Reap is the Artisans Angkor silk farm, which makes a great stop on route to Thailand or as a day trip from the city. Learn about the silk-making process – from worm to fabric – and purchase beautiful handicrafts. There is no admission fee and there is a free shuttle available.