Siem Reap Travel Guide

Introduction to Siem Reap

Siem Reap is a fascinating, bustling yet laid-back city in Cambodia, filled with an exotic mix of ancient Buddhist temples and French Colonial architecture. A popular tourist destination, Siem Reap is the main point of access to the breath-taking Angkor Archaeological Park. There are some exciting ways to see the city including hair-raising rides in local tuk-tuks and motorbike taxis although bicycles are also available for hire if you prefer a more leisurely pace of transport. Once just a charming little village, Siem Reap has blossomed into a modern city with restaurants and cafes and a commitment to protecting its heritage through ecological travel.

Siem Reap Archaeological Park

Angkor Archaeological Park – One of the most important historical sites in Southeast Asia, the 400 square kilometre park is UNESCO protected and contains thousands of ancient temples and monuments.

Angkor Wat Temple

Angkor Wat – this is the grandest temple in the whole of Angkor Archaeological Park.

Angkor Wat National Museum

Angkor National Museum - This museum takes a comprehensive view of Cambodian, history, culture, and religion.  A must-see for before or after your trip in the Angkor National Park. 

Other things to do in Siem Reap

Explore Siem Reap’s history and culture with trips to see the stunning Wat Bo Temple, Angkor National Museum and, of course, the breath-taking Angkor Archaeological Park, north of the city. UNESCO protects this 400sqkm park that is home to some of Southeast Asia’s most important historic monuments, including the symbolic Angkor Wat Temple. In Siem Reap you can relax with a blissful but outrageously cheap massage in the Frangipani Spa or Lemongrass Garden, discover the flavours of Asia with cookery classes, take in a cultural performance in the Aspara or Smile of Angkor Theatres or visit a Cambodian Cultural Village. Siem Reap boasts some wonderful festivals including a photography festival, the extravagant Water Festival in October and a Street Puppet Festival. Psar Chas or Central Market are the best places to haggle for local bargains, while Angkor Trade Centre sells a range of international goods. 

Eating and drinking in Siem Reap

Cambodian food is a fantastic concoction of spices and flavours evoking the spirit of Southeast Asia. The city offers everything from budget street food to the finest in French cuisine but eating local is always best.  Be sure to try the famous Amok Curry, a Cambodian Laksa and some delicious semi-sweet donut balls. If you’re feeling brave you could choose a side order of deep fried spiders – not for the feint hearted! On a par with Bangkok's Khao San Road, Pub Street is where many of Siem Reap drinking establishments can be found, from cocktail bars to cosy cafes and lively clubs. From wooden huts to Persian style Lounge Bars, Siem Reap has plenty of choice when it comes to a night out in this lively Cambodian city.

Siem Reap climate

Temperatures rarely drop below thirty degrees in this tropical wet and dry climate. There is, however, a pretty lengthy wet season running from April until November with just a four month dry season. 

When to go to Siem Reap

Siem Reap is a wonderful all-year-round destination but obviously if you prefer to avoid the rains then December to March is the best time to visit. These are also likely to be slightly quieter months and many visitors come in the height of summer. 

Flying to Siem Reap

Siem Reap International Airport is the second largest in Cambodia and passengers can choose flights to Siem Reap from thirteen different airlines. The airport is only seven kilometres from the city centre and can be reached easily by Tuk Tuk, taxi and mototaxi. Many hotels also offer free shuttle bus services.  When you arrive, there are plenty of hotels in Siem Reap to choose from which meet budgets of every size.

 Siem Reap Deals

Hotels in Siem Reap

Car hire in Siem Reap

Images by Flickr/David A. Villa, cornstaruk, e_chaya