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Home » Siem Reap Travel Guide: An Excellent Guide to the World

Siem Reap Travel Guide: An Excellent Guide to the World

A man walking towards a temple

This Siem Reap Travel Guide helps you make the most of your day in the city. It features a well-crafted travel itinerary and a detailed budget for the trip. 

Disclaimer: Some information in this Siem Reap Guide changes too often. If you continue reading this article, you agree to cross-check information with concerned authorities. Please read the site’s full Terms.

Introduction

I entered the Angkor Archaeological Park early in the morning and head for to my first Angkor temple.

Khmer children came up as I arrived and offered their handmade products. They speak multiple languages, which astonished me, but, nothing compares to the immediate temples in terms of grandeur. I had limited time, thus I jumped right in and explore the ruins of this old civilization.

The Khmer Empire’s capital, Angkor, was built in the first part of the twelft century. Impressive wonders, including Ta Phrom, Bayon, and the Angkor Wat, the largest religious structure in the world are situated in this massive park. Though seemingly unthinkable, these constructions are the outcome of the early Khmers’ inventiveness.

The excursion wrapped up in eight straight hours, despite the sweltering heat, leaving me exhausted with heavily tanned skin.

Siem Reap Travel Guide Contents

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Quick Fact About Siem Reap

Siem Reap is the gateway to Angkor, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The expansive 400 square kilometers park is enveloped with thick forest and dotted with temple ruins. This impressive legacy of the ancient Khmers has put Cambodia on the world map.

Visa in Cambodia

Holders of foreign passports intending to visit Cambodia should contact the Embassy of Cambodia as to entry requirements. Otherwise, consult iVisa.com, a reputable and trusted visa service provider.

Philippine passport holders traveling for tourism in Cambodia are visa-exempt for a maximum of 21 days. In the event of a visit extension, you are required to apply for a visa.

However, travelers must undergo stringent immigration procedures before departure. Read ‘How to Avoid Getting Offloaded at Philippine Immigration?’

Standard Time in Siem Reap

The Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) in Siem Reap is UTC +07:00.

Thus, Siem Reap is three hours ahead of Dubai, five hours ahead of Paris, and six hours ahead of London. Moreover, Siem Reap is eleven hours ahead of New York. Conversely, Siem Reap is an hour behind Manila and four hours behind Sydney.

Climate in Siem Reap

Like most of its neighboring countries, Siem Reap has a tropical climate. It has two distinct seasons; the dry season from November until April and the wet season from May to October.

Best Time to Visit Siem Reap

Siem Reap is an all-year-round destination and experiences almost warm weather throughout the year. 

November to April

Considered the coldest months, December and January is the best time to explore Siem Reap. Visitors may expect a larger crowd and a spike in hotel room rates.

Conversely, heat exhaustion and sunburns are likely to experience during the driest months of March and April. 

May to October

Torrential rains are prevalent from May until October, resulting in muddy tourist sites and occasional floodings. But expect a more quiet atmosphere due to lesser crowds during these months.

Language in Siem Reap

Khmer is the official language in Siem Reap. Some Cambodians also speak and comprehend English, especially youngsters.

Here are essential Khmer words and phrases to learn before your trip to Siem Reap, Cambodia.

  • Susadei – Hello (informal)
  • Som dtoh – Excuse me / Sorry
  • Arkun – Thank you
  • Chom reap lear – Goodbye
  • Chop – Stop
  • Tini – Here
  • Da strong – Go straight
  • Noev eah Nah..? Where is..?
  • Som ket loy – The bill, please.
  • Bo man? – How much?
  • T’lay – Too expensive
  • Som jous thlai Bahn teh? – Can I get a discount?

Siem Reap Travel Guide Fact: Thuck Salik speaks at least ten languages. This Cambodian lad speaks English, Mandarin, Spanish, French, German, Thai, Japanese, and Filipino. 

Currency in Siem Reap

The Cambodian riel, abbreviated as KHR, is the official currency of Cambodia. It was introduced in 1953 and abolished in 1975 until 1979 under Cambodia’s communist movement, the Khmer Rouge.

After the Fall of the Khmer Rouge in 1980, the currency returned to circulation. Here is the exchange rate as of May 31, 2022: KHR 1, PHP 0.013, or USD 0.00025.

Modes of Payment in Siem Reap

Cash and cards are two of the widely accepted modes of payment in Siem Reap, Cambodia. 

Cash

Cambodia remains a cash-centered economy. Although the currency is Cambodian riel, the U.S. dollar is still the most preferred mode of payment in Siem Reap. 

Debit and Credit Cards

Some establishments in Siem Reap also accept cards such as Visa, Mastercard, and JCB.

Siem Reap Travel Guide Tip: Convert your currency to Cambodian riel or U.S. dollar in downtown Siem Reap. Money changers in the central Siem Reap offer more competitive rates than in airport.

Otherwise, convert just enough cash at the destination’s airport to cover your fare to the city center.

Ways of Getting to Siem Reap

Situated south of the Indochinese Peninsula in Southeast Asia, Siem Reap is accessible via air and land.

By Air

Several local and international airlines provide flights from Ninoy Aquino International Airport to Siem Reap International Airport. The flight hours between Manila and Siem Reap will take around 2 hours and 40 minutes.

Siem Reap International Airport is the gateway to the world-renowned Angkor. It is the second busiest airport in Cambodia, following Phnom Penh International Airport.

By Land

Cambodia shares a border with Thailand to the west, Laos to the north, and Vietnam to the east and southeast. To get to Siem Reap, transports such as cars and buses are available for inland travel.

Getting Around Siem Reap

The traffic condition in Siem Reap is not as heavy as those in other Southeast Asian cities. While there are available options to navigate this relatively small city, some attractions are concentrated and only require a short walk. 

Taxi

Cabs in Siem Reap operate privately and park in the city’s touristy areas. Aside from their one-way service, they also offer a full-day tour of more distant attractions. 

Taxis in Siem Reap operate 24 hours a day from Monday through Sunday. Fare starts at KHR 40, 720.00, PHP 525.02, or USD 10.00. 

Remork

A popular transport in Cambodia, the remork is a motorized rickshaw with a four-seater wagon attached to the motorcycle. 

Remork in Siem Reap operates 24 hours a day from Monday to Sunday. The fare starts at KHR 12,216.30, PHP 157.48, or USD 3.00. 

Motodop

Motorbike rental is not permitted in Siem Reap to provide a livelihood for the locals. Thence, motodop services are an alternative mode of transport for an entire day of Angkor tours. 

Motodop in Siem Reap operates 24 hours a day from Monday to Sunday. The fare starts at KHR 14,072.10, PHP 181.41, or USD 3.46. 

Bicycle

Explore Siem Reap’s tourist attractions using a bicycle. Renting the two-cycle is cheap, while some accommodations offer them for free.

The bicycle rentals in Siem Reap start at KHR 8,144.20,  PHP 104.98, or USD 2.00.

Areas to Stay in Siem Reap

Angkor Archaeological Park is located roughly 5 kilometers from downtown Siem Reap. This enormous park is home to the Angkor Wat and countless other temples, which require at least a day to explore. 

Siem Reap provides manifold accommodations situated in vibrant and quieter neighborhoods. 

Old French Quarter

Cambodia was once a colony of France for nearly a decade, and much of the architecture is of French influence. Along Sivutha Boulevard are French and Chinese colonial buildings transformed into lavish lodgings, restaurants, and boutiques.

Top attractions in the Old French Quarter are Royal Palace, Wat Preah Prom Rath, Angkor Night Market, and Pub Street. 

Old Market

The Old Market is a neighborhood near the Old French Quarter. It is home to the vibrant Pub Street, and alongside are restaurants and bars that are stone’s throw from accommodations.

Wat Bo

Located east of Siem Reap River, Wat Bo got its name from one of its Buddhist temples. This peaceful neighborhood offers budget to mid-range accommodations. 

Must-visit attractions within the area are Wat Bo, Made in Cambodia Market, and Siem Reap Art Center Night Market. 

Wat Damnak

Named after Siem Reap’s largest pagoda, Wat Damnak is a neighborhood that is a short walk from Wat Bo. It has several wellness centers, restaurants, and accommodations of all types.

Aside from some marketplaces, visiting Wat Damnak is the highlighted attraction in the area.

Charles De Gaulle Boulevard

The Charles de Gaulle Boulevard connects the downtown Siem Reap and Angkor Archeological Park. Alongside the 4 kilometers thoroughfare is a stretch of luxury and elegant resort hotels. 

Visit historical museums like Miniature Replicas of Angkor Museum, Angkor National Museum, and Cambodia War Remnant Museum. 

Internet in Siem Reap

Siem Reap offers free Wi-Fi in shopping malls, shops, museums, and most accommodations. Moreover, pocket Wi-Fi devices and sim cards are also available for rent.

Connect online anytime and anywhere. With Cambodia 4G eSIM, you can guarantee fast and reliable 4G data. Grab yours now!  

Power Adaptors in Siem Reap

Siem Reap operates on a 230 V supply voltage with a frequency of 50 Hz and has three types of power adaptors:

  • A or has two flat parallel pins
  • C or has two round pins
  • G or has three flat parallel pins

Siem Reap Travel Guide Itinerary

Siem Reap Travel Guide Highlights: Sights and Attractions in Siem Reap
Highlights: Angkor Wat, Ta Keo, Victory Gate, and Pub Street.

Day 1 - Angkor Archeological Park

Siem Reap Travel Guide Reminder: It takes roughly 900 meters to walk from point A to point B.

05:00 am Arrival in Siem Reap, Cambodia, from Ho Chi Minh City

05:00 am – 05:15 am Head to accommodation

  • From Siem Reap Bus Terminal
  • Take remork toward accommodation 

05:15 am – 07:00 am Confirm reservation and check-in at the Apsara Centropole Hotel, have breakfast, and prepare for the tour

Siem Reap Travel Guide Tip: Alternatively, stay in a hostel. A hostel is an inexpensive lodging facility that provides basic amenities, such as bunk beds and shared bathrooms. Thus, if you are on a budget, book a hostel in Siem Reap.

07:00 am – 07:15 am Head to Angkor Ticketing Office

  • From accommodation
  • Take the private-hire remork
  • Alight at the Angkor Ticketing Office

07:15 am – 07:30 am Secure a Temple Pass

Want to explore Angkor Archaeological Park at your convenience? Book Angkor Private Tour.

07:30 am – 04:00 pm Head to and explore the Angkor Archeological Park – Small Circuit Tour

  • From Angkor Enterprise
  • Take the private-hire remork
  • Alight at Prasat Kravan

Prasat Kravan

Erected in 921 A.D., Prasat Kravan is an ancient Hindu temple consisting of five brick pillars on a platform. The temple was devoted to the Hindu god Vishnu.

Prasat Kravan is open from Monday to Sunday from 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.

Srah Srang

Constructed in the 12th century, Srah Srang is an artificial reservoir used as a royal bath. The 700 meters long and 300 meters wide lake is fenced with greeneries and embedded with a striking stage.

Srah Srang is open from Monday until Sunday from 5:00 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.

Banteay Kdei

Situated opposite Srah Srang, Banteay Kdei is a Buddhist temple erected during the reign of King Jayavarman VII. Translated as the Citadel of Chambers, the Bayon-style temple consists of grids of passages.

Banteay Kdei is open from Monday to Sunday from 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.

Ta Prohm

Erected in 1186 A.D., Ta Phrom became the seat of massive public works during the 12th to 13th centuries. This ancient monastery was partly entangled with tree roots, making it one of the most picturesque temple ruins. 

Ta Prohm is open from Monday to Sunday from 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.

Siem Reap Travel Guide Facts: Ta Prohm is one of the shooting venues of the 2001 action-adventure film – Lara Croft: Tomb Raider. 

Ta Keo

Located on the east of Angkor Thom, Ta Keo is a massive temple built as a state temple of King Jayavarman V. This temple-mountain is a five-tiered pyramid structure with five sanctuary towers. The temple remains unfinished until the succession of King Suryavarman in 1006 A.D.

Ta Keo is open from Monday until Sunday from 7:30 a.m. through 5:30 p.m.

Chau Say Tevoda

Translated as Prolific Grandchildren of Deity, Chau Say Tevoda has a collection of small structures built in the 12th century. This Hindu temple was devoted to Vishnu and Shiva. 

Chau Say Tevoda opens from Monday through Sunday from 7:30 am until 5:30 pm.

Thommanon

The Thommanon is a Hindu temple situated opposite Chau Say Tevoda. This striking temple with carvings of Hindu deities is as old as the Angkor Wat.

Thommanon is open from Monday until Sunday from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

The Victory Gate

Victory Gate is one of the five-tower entryways in the eastern wall of the Angkor Thom. As the name denotes, the ancient gate welcomes the victorious return of Khmer royalties and their warriors against their rivals.

Victory Gate is open from Monday until Sunday from 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.

Preah Ponlea Sdach Komlong

Known as the Terrace of the Leper King, Preah Ponlea Sdach Komlong is a terrace decorated with carvings of Hindu deities. This 25-meter-long deck serves as a cremation site for Khmer royalties.

The Preah Ponlea Sdach Komlong is open from Monday through Sunday from 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.

Elephant Terrace

Located beside the Terrace of the Leper King, Elephant Terrace is a 300 meters long platform decorated with elephant carvings. This viewing platform is for ceremonies and public hearings.

The Elephant Terrace is open from Monday to Sunday from 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.

Phimeanakas

Vimeanakas or Phimeanakas is a three-tiered pyramid temple sited within the lush greeneries. It is the only Hindu temple with an enclosed gallery at the top.

Phimeanakas is open from Monday to Sunday from 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.

Baphuon

The Baphuon Temple is a three-tiered temple-mountain constructed in the mid-11th century that represents Mount Meru. This enormous structure was a state temple and transformed into a Buddhist monastery.

Baphuon is open from Monday to Sunday from 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.

Bayon

At the center of Angkor Thom sited the most decorated temple in the great city. Bayon is the last state temple on the Angkor soil, built in the 12th century. This Buddhist temple features 216 gigantic-smiling faces reflected on the temple’s 54 towers.

Bayon is open from Monday until Sunday from 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.

Angkor Wat

The Angkor Wat, or city temple, is the world’s largest religious monument, built in the early 12th century. The 163 hectares temple was built for King Suryavaramn II for his catacomb and eventually transformed into a Buddhist shrine. 

Angkor Wat is open from Monday until Sunday from 5:00 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.

04:00 pm – 06:30 pm Head to the Angkor Night Market and Pub Street, have dinner

  • From Angkor Wat
  • Take the private-hire remork
  • Alight at Angkor Night Market

Angkor Night Market

Established in 2007, The Angkor Night Market is Cambodia’s first night market. This outdoor marketplace has a wide range of food stalls and souvenir shops that offer authentic Cambodian handicrafts.

Angkor Night Market is open from Monday to Sunday from 4:00 p.m. until 12:00 a.m.

Siem Reap Travel Guide Fact: Craving for McFries? McDonald’s has never set foot in Cambodia.

Pub Street

Akin to Khao san Road in Bangkok, Pub Street, or Street 08, is a vibrant lane filled with shops and restaurants. The area becomes more energetic from 05:00 in the evening, as bars and clubs welcome nightlife enthusiasts. 

Siem Reap Travel Guide Recommend: A visit to Siem Reap is not complete without tasting its local street foods. It includes grilled tarantula, scorpion barbeque, fried crickets, silkworms, and roasted frogs. 

Also, sip a glass of snake wine to quench your thirst. Dare to try?

After a grueling Angkor temple hopping, book a Buffet Dinner with Traditional Khmer Show and enjoy a relaxing treat.

06:30 pm – 07:45 pm Head to accommodation, prepare for departure

07:45 pm – 08:00 pm Head to the Siem Reap International Airport

  • From accommodation
  • Take the private-hire remork
  • Alight at Siem Reap International Airport

08:00 pm – 10:15 pm Arrival at the airport, clear immigration, and customs checkpoint

10:15 pm Departure from Siem Reap

Budget for Siem Reap Trip

In 2019, I spent PHP 7,052.00 for one day and one night in Siem Reap, Cambodia. But, costs may still vary depending on your travel lifestyle. For more thrift tips, consider several ways to save money for your next trip. 

Below is the Siem Reap Travel Guide budget for your reference.

Pre-Departure

  • One-way airfare, Siem Reap to Manila, PHP 2,397.00
  • One-way bus fare, Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap, PHP 1,530.00
  • 1D1N accommodation, PHP 300.00/2, PHP 150.00

1st Day

  • 1-Day Angkor Private Tour, PHP 1,350.00/2, PHP 675.00
  • Breakfast, PHP 150.00
  • 1-Day Angkor Pass PHP 1,850.00
  • Lunch, PHP 150.00
  • Dinner, PHP 150.00

Siem Reap Travel Guide Resources

To help you with your travel plans, I’ve gathered a checklist of carefully chosen travel resources. These are the trusted online marketplaces that I highly endorse because of their excellent deals.

Passport icon

Looking for an easy-peasy solution to process your visa application and other travel docs, consult iVisa!

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SafetyWing is your safeguard for travel medical and health insurance solutions while away from home. 

Flight icon

The sky is the limit with Skyscanner if you are looking for better and cheaper flight options for your next trip.

Hotel icon

Make a reservation to one of the most extensive hotels booking services – Agoda. It offers unmatched hotel deals!

Hostel icon

Explore the world with HostelWorld! Book a hostel and share a space with newfound buddies. 

Car rental icon

Drive your way to undiscovered places! Book a car via Discover Cars and experience hassle-free road trips. 

Tour icon

Want to visit your favorite theme park or museum? For discounted attraction tickets and tours, look for Klook!

Transportation icon

For transfers from point A to point B, go for 12Go! It has extensive coverage of ground transports and ferries, too.

Siem Reap Travel Guide Question: What is the world’s largest religious monument built in the 12th-century?

Please drop your answers or messages in the comment section. Thank you, and see you on the road!

traveledictorian-blogger

About the Author

J. Sac is the author of ‘Siem Reap Travel Guide: An Excellent Guide to the World.’ He is also the founder of Traveledictorian – a travel blog that publishes well-thought-out travel content. 

His passion for writing, photography, and travel fueled him to explore Asia and the rest of the world. He also plans to undertake humanitarian work in his travels. Read his inspiring story and follow him on social media!

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