The One Page Essential Super-Guide to Siem Reap Cambodia

Being home to the amazing UNESCO-listed ancient ruins that are Angkor Wat, Siem Reap is one of Cambodia’s key destinations for travelers. It’s also a vibrant city and one, due to the massive volumes of international tourists, and the ones who fell in love and stayed, emerging as a very cosmopolitan city it’s own unique Khmer way.

 

 

Let’s take a look at the must-know essentials for visiting Siem Reap, Cambodia.

 

For a guide to language and currency visit, and a primer to Cambodia itself visit our super guide here.

 

Historic Attractions

You can buy a one-day, three- day or seven-day ticket. Tickets can only be purchased from the main ticket sales office is the Angkor Conservation Area ticket booth on Charles de Gaulle road, the road between Siem Reap and Angkor.  Complex opens at 5.00AM in time for sunrise viewing.

Hire a tuk-tuk with driver to take you there and around the complex US$20-25 per day or rent a scooter/bike. Read the Fast Guide to Angkor Wat for more details.

Angkor Archaeological Park 

The temples of Siem Reap are spread out over a massive area which all comes under the banner of Angkor Archaeological Park which in turn is managed by the Aspara Authority http://apsaraauthority.gov.kh

The key sights within the area are:

Angkor Wat – the posterchild of the park, Siem Reap and Cambodia for that matter. It’s outline features on the national flag and is the most visited temple of the park and THE most popular spot for that classic postcard sunrise photo.

Angkor Thom – Once a glorious walled royal city containing numerous temples. The gates to the area are themesleves something to behold (see main feature pic). Highlights located within Angkor Thom are Terrace of the Elephants, Baphuon Temple, Ta Prohm, The Victory Gate and Royal Palace.

Other key sites include Phnom Bakheng (the popular sunsnet viewing spot) ,Banteay Kdei, Ta Som, East Mebon, Banteay Srey, Banteay Samre, Pre Rup (an aletrnative susnset viewing spot).

The map below features the key sites and an outline of the suggested tour pathways which are the small circuit in red and the grand circuit in green.

Siem Reap Temple Map

 

Things to do & Activities

Get an Aerial View of Angkor and Siem Reap

Helicopters Cambodia – http://www.helicopterscambodia.com – various aerial tour packages on offer covering the temples through to the floating villages of Tonle Sap.

Sokha Angkor Balloon – http://www.sokhahotels.com/angkor/page/angkor-balloon – a tethered balloon that offers amazing sunset and sunrise views over Angkor Wat and the temples.

Angkor Ballooning – http://www.angkorballooning.com – offering two flights per day at sunrise and sunset.

 

Exploring a floating village at Tonle Sap

Tonle Sap is the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia and is renowned for it’s floating villages. Osmose – http://osmosetonlesap.net – offer tours of the villages and nearby sites.

Take a cooking class

Take more home than just souvenirs, take home a new skill. Top places are:

http://www.angkor-cooking-class-cambodia.com
http://www.sojournsiemreap.com/offerings/cambodian-cooking-class/
http://beyonduniqueescapes.co/small-group-tours/
http://www.siemreapurbanadventures.com
http://countrysidecookingclass.com
http://www.taraangkorhotel.com/cooking-class/cooking-class.htm
http://navutudreams.com/cambodian-cooking-class-siem-reap-navutu-dreams-resort/

 

Take a yoga class

Peace Café – http://www.peacecafeangkor.org/program.htm – offers yoga classes, meditation, monk chats, and vegetarian cooking classes.

Angkor Bodhi Tree – http://www.angkorbodhitree.com – retreat and meditation/yoga classes

Angkor Zen Garden – http://www.angkorzen.com – meditation and yoga retreat.

 

Watch a Show

Traditional Aspara Dance – Apsara Terrace at the Raffles Grand Hotel D’Angkor is known for its impressive classical dance and martial arts performances  – Apsara Terrace, Raffles Grand Hotel D’Angkor – http://www.raffles.com/siem-reap/ – 1 Vithei Charles De Gaulle Khum Svay Dang Kum

Bambu Stage Siem Reap – http://bambustage.com – “Temples Decoded” show and banquet $25 – Tangram Garden Restaurant, Wat Damnak Village, Sala Komroeuk Commune, Siem Reap

Phare The Cambodian Circus – https://pharecircus.org – Uniquely Cambodian stories told through performing arts.
Visit honeybees

Bees Unlimited http://www.beesunlimited.com visit a traditional beekeeping farm

 

Watch Khmer Kickboxing
CTN Angkor Arena – http://www.ctn.com.kh/en/ctn-angkor-arena – View website for event dates – Vithei Charles De Gaulle, Svay Deang Kum

 

Visit a Museum

Angkor National Museum – http://www.angkornationalmuseum.com – 8 separate galleries presenting Angkorian history, culture, beliefs and ancient artifacts.

The Cambodian Landmine Museum and Relief Facility –  http://www.cambodialandminemuseum.org/ – the collection of defused landmines.

War Museum – http://www.warmuseumcambodia.com – an insight into Cambodia’s war years.

 

Watch a movie

Platinum Cinema – http://www.platinumcineplex.com.kh/siem-reap/ – a modern cinema offering 3D movies in air-conditioned comfort.

Angkor Cinema – http://www.angkorcinema.com – private cinema located in the Angkor Trade Centre

 

Eat & Drink

Siem Reap is an affordable place to fill your stomach with a mix of Western, European and Khmer cuisines. Prices range from $1 through to $10 at restaurants in the central area.

Some examples include

Omelette and Baguette Breakfast $1 (Jeanie’s Sok San Road)

 

Khmer Mixed Vegetables and Rice $3.50 (Kuriosity Cafe)

Fish Amok just about everywhere for $5 anywhere in Pub Street, the one pictured is from the restaurant Amok in the alleyway that runs parralel to Pub Street on it’s southern side. Outside Pub Street expect to pay around $3.

 

Of course, the most popular area for eating and drinking is the Pub Street area which sprawls across several streets containing numerous restaurants. The food prices here range from 5-10 for meal. Beers start at 50 cents and happy hour Mojitos just $1.50. I’ll list a couple of highlights further below.

If the hustle and bustle of Pub Street is not your thing, try heading down Sok San Road where you’ll find several really laid back, open cafe/restaurants that are clean, comfy and serve up great food. Prices are a little cheaper too. A couple of highlights of the street are Genieve’s and Kuriosity Cafe. Also, take stroll along the Angkor Night Market Street that heads north to south. At its northern end you’ll find Rom Chang Khmer Restaurant which is clean, and serves great value, and a little further along the popular Bugs Cafe (http://bugs-cafe.e-monsite.com) where you can try culinary creations featuring crickets, scorpions, spiders, ants and more.

 

 

Head along Preah Sangreach Tep Vong St and you’ll find Naga Guest House which is followed by several good value eateries. Many are the basic plastic chair and stainless steel table restaurants but if you will find tasty food at a fair price. There is also a wood-fired pizza bar with great prices on that same street.

 

 

Around Pub Street

Miss Wonghttp://www.misswong.net – step back into 1930s Shanghai and sip on fine cocktails and classic dim sum, hot pot and more – The Lane, Siem Reap

Le Tigre de Papier – https://www.letigredepapier.com – cosy little restaurant bar that has nice food and fair prices. Street 08 (Eastern end of Pub Street)

 

Elsewhere in Siem Reap

Green Starhttp://www.greenstarrestaurant.org – South end of Wat Bo Road, Siem Reap

Haven –  http://www.havencambodia.com – Asian-Western fusion with a mix of the healthy and classic comfort foods – Chocolate Rd, Wat Damnak area

Peace Cafehttp://www.peacecafeangkor.org –  vegetarian cafe in a peaceful garden setting. Also offering cooking classes – East River Road, Siem Reap

Sister Srey Cafehttp://www.sistersreycafe.com – popular place focussed on fresh, healthy food – 200 Pokambor St, Old Market Area

New Leaf Book Cafe https://newleafeatery.com – Locally sourced and roasted coffee, full menu of western and local – No. 306 Street 9

Blossom Cafehttp://www.blossomcakes.org – cupcakes and aircon, can’t go wrong – 6 Mondul 1 Svay Dangkum, Central Market

Blue Pumpkinhttps://bluepumpkin.asia – 7 locations in Siem Reap – bakery with light meals

Little Red Fox Espressohttp://www.thelittleredfoxespresso.com – Australian Barista – Hup Guan Street (Kandal Village)

The Hive – http://www.facebook.com/thehive.siemreap – Australian-inspired brunch – Psar Kandal Street (Central Market Street)

Pages  – http://www.pages-siemreap.com – Western and Asian breakfasts (à la carte), finger food, as well as providing a peaceful setting for a coffee – Street 24, Wat Bo

Artillery Cafehttp://artillerycafe.com –  Wat Bo Road

Hard Rock Café – Just the same as every other HRC – King’s Road Angkor, Old Market Bridge

Rom Chang Khmer – local and western dishes, super clean place with super clean food presentation. Near the Night Market and great value, walk north down Night Market Road.

 

Coffee with WiFi, Power and comfy seats

Looking for somewhere to plug-in, do internet work, or simply while away some hours in air-con comfort perusing facebook? Here’s a few spots

Brown Coffee – https://browncoffee.com.kh –  Modern, large, open, it’s a bit of an oasis with great coffee, good food and fair prices, unfortunately, only limited seats have access to power – Taphul Rd

Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf – http://coffeebean.com.kh – Super clean with comfy seats, air-con, great drinks and simple cafe food, most seats have access to power – #073-076, Street Hospital Sangkat #2, Svay Dangkum (near pub street)

Gloria Jeans – Wat Bo Road – http://gloriajeans.com.kh – There are two Gloria Jeans shops in SR, this particular one is on Wat Bo Road. It’s spacious, clean, comfy and cool with fast wifi. If you like a latte with perfectly steamed milk, try here. Near the intersection of street 22 and Wat Bo Road.

Costa Coffee – https://www.facebook.com/CostaCoffeeCambodia/ – The downstairs area is small but head upstairs for comfy chairs, with power sockets and A/C. King’s Road near Made in Cambodia Market.

The Missing Socks Laundry Cafe – cosy little cafe, that’s clean and a bit hip. Great coffee and delicious comfort food. Bonus, they also have washing machines and dryers where you can do a load while you enjoy the coffee, food and wifi. 55, Steung Thmei, Svaydangkum Village (just off Sok San road)

Temple Coffee n Bakery – the Temple group is ubiquitous across the pub street with multiple cafes, bars, restaurants and massage centers. This is their new cafe just across the river from pub street and it’s a good one. Decent meals for $3-$9 and drinks from $1.50. It’s spacious and on the second level you’ll find lounge beds/chairs (with nearby power) and there’s also a Skylounge on the third floor. Achar Sva St

 

There’s more co-working spaces listed further down.

Shopping

Markets

Angkor Night Market – http://angkornightmarket.com – open 5PM to 12PM – Off Sivatha Boulevard and then along Ankor Night Market Road

Old Market (Psar Chas) –  traditional Cambodian market – Psar Chaa Road

Made in Cambodia – just as the name implies – located on Kings Road – this market area has a much more relaxed feel, with the market stalls nestled amongst several cafes and restaurants it’s a comfortable place to hang.

China Tang Market  – handicrafts, souvenirs, factory outlet clothing, cosmetics, and jewelers – Sivutha Blvd., near the Night Market Road

 

Fashion

Eric Raisina: Charming City and FCC Complex, Pokambor Ave, Siem Reap; www.ericraisina.com

Jasmine Boutique: FCC Complex, Pokambor Ave, Siem Reap; www.jasmineboutique.net.

Ambre: 37 RUE 178, Siem Reap; romydaketh.net.

Wild Poppy: Alley West, Siem Reap

Spicy Green Mango: Alley West, Siem Reap.

Old Forest: Alley West, Siem Reap

Three Seasons: The Lane, Siem Reap.

Mitsou: The Lane (above Graines du Cambodge), Siem Reap.

Artisans Angkor: Route 6, Siem Reap; www.artisansdangkor.com.

Samatoa: Street 26, Siem Reap; samatoa.com.

Sakura Recycle Shop: #99 National Route 6, Siem Reap.

 

Malls

T Galleria by DFS – International Chinese mall chain, designed for Chinese tourists – 968 Vithei Charles De Gaulle, Krong Siem Reap

Angkor Shopping Arcade –  open 9 till midnight – On airport road (National Road 6)

Lucky Mall –  http://www.luckymarketgroup.com/stores.html –  is the most popular and visit Mall in Siem Reap. The Mall has a huge supermarket on the ground floor which has a wide range of local and imported products. Open 9 till 10PM  – Sivatha Boulevard

Angkor Trade Center – featuring international restaurant chains, entertainment venues, and supermarket. Near Phsar Chas (Old Market) – Old Market, Sangkat Svay Dangkum, Siem Reap

 

Crafts

Artisans d’Angkor/Pouk Silk Farm – http://www.artisansdangkor.com – learn about local silk production and textiles. 8:00AM to 5.30PM – Located in Pouk district, 20 minutes from Siem Reap.

Khmer Ceramics Centre  – http://www.khmerceramics.com – Traditional Cambodian craftsmanship, classes also available – #130, Vithey Charles de Gaulle (Temple Road)

Made in Cambodia Market – handicrafts, souvenirs, performances, cafes and restaurants – Achar Sva Street | King’s Road Angkor

Angkor Handicraft Association – http://www.aha-kh.com – Road 60, Trang Village, Sangkat Slorkram Commune

 

Groceries

most of these stock differing ranges of local and import products

Asia Market – has two locations, with a store on Sivatha Rd near Central Market St (Open 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 a.m) and a new store on the corner of Preah Sangreach Tep Vong St and Taphul Rd (open 24hrs). Good range with many imported lines but some items can be found elsewhere much cheaper.

Angkor Market – Open 7:00 a.m. to 10 p.m. possibly one of the most popular supermarkets, featuring a good range of products including imported lines. Cheeses, dairy and some meats. Upstairs has a large range of household needs.

Thai Huot – http://www.thaihuot.com  Large range with many imported lines and quite reasonable prices. Also has bulk lots. Lots of cheeses, dairy and imported meats.

Lucky Supermarket – http://luckymarketgroup.com – Open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Good range with fair prices.

Chao Sang Hok – on Preah Sangreach Tep Vong St near to Funky Flashpacker. Good range and cheap prices on common lines. Also has a store on Highway 6.

Huey Meng Mini Mart – Close to Pub Street

Triangle Market –  facebook.com/Triangle-Market – at the corner of National Highway 6 and Sivatha Blvd, it’s a handy stop to grab a few things as you head out to the temples.

Metro Market facebook.com/metromarketcambodia/ – on Sivatha Blvd opposite the High School and near to Mad Monkey Hostel. A very new and very clean store with some outdoor seating. A reasonable range.

Medical

UCare Pharmacy – http://www.u-carepharmacy.com – Hospital Road (at the end of Pub Street), Siem Reap. Location 2: In Lucky Mall on Sivatha Road

Angkor Thom Pharmacy – Sivatha Blvd, Siem Reap

Royal Angkor Hospital – http://www.royalangkorhospital.com – best all-round medical facility – Route 6 Airport Rd, Siem Reap: (063) 761 888

British Khmer Clinic – http://www.britishkhmerclinic.com – British doctor, Dr Ian Ferguson – House A73 Charles De Gaulle, Siem Reap

Lysreyvyna Medical Group – http://www.lysreyvynaclinic.com – 24-hour services – #113 National Route 6, Siem Reap; (063) 965 088

Doctors Rithy Kong and Sok Leng: Consultations  US$5 – no appointment necessary. Behind Akira Electrical, #11, National Route 6, Siem Reap; (012) 832 152

 

Police

Tourist Police  – office opposite the ticket booths for the Angkor Archaeological Park – PH (012) 402 424.

 

Transport

The prime way to get around is by tuk-tuk, and they are everywhere. To go anywhere in the central area is usually 1 dollar, they may ask for 2 but will easily accept 1. A little further and you may need to pay more.

All the drivers I have met are friendly and helpful. They are quite proactive in getting your business, they have to be because there are simply so many tuk-tuks and some days they may only make a couple of fares.

You can negotiate the rates for daily hire or tours.

 

Heading in and out

Fly

Siem Reap to Bangkok Thailand  – regular flights via AirAsia, Thai Smile, Cambodia Angkor Air, and Bangkok Airways. $50-80

Siem Reap to Phnom Penh – (45 mins).   Cambodia Angkor Air, Cambodia Bayon Airlines, and Bassaka Air. US$60 and up

Siem Reap to Sihanoukville – (60 mins) Cambodia Angkor Air, Cambodian Bayon Airlines, and Sky Angkor Airlines. US$120

 

Bus 

Siem Reap to Phnom Penh – 6.5HRS – Giant Ibis US$17 http://www.giantibis.com

Siem Reap to Battambang – 3HRS – Mekong Express – US$7

Siem Reap to Bangkok Thailand – Nattakan Transportation is the only direct bus from Siem Reap to Bangkok. US$28

Siem Reap to Vientiane  Laos: US$56.00

Siem Reap to Pakse Laos: US$30.00

For bus tickets try http://camboticket.com Also see the post Siem Reap to Poipet.

 

Nightlife

 

 

At the core of nightlife in Siem Reap is Pub Street with it’s 50 cent beers and happy hours with 1.50 mojitos, and open till the wee hours of the morning, it’s loud and lively but very family freindly at least in the early hours. For more laid back and cruisy try the surrounding streets.

It’s a lively place but it feels quite safe and not too sleazy as some would advertise. Foot massage places are everywhere as are Fish spas (streetside fish tank). Prices range from $4 for a 30 minute foot massage or 1 hour body massage for $10. More about massages and relaxing in Siem Reap here.

Tuk Tuk drivers fill the streets, and come nightfall they start to offer more than rides, it’s not unusual for single guys to be offered weed, or to go to ‘girly bars’, ‘go go bars’ or a ‘lady for for the night’.

Here’s a pub street map from the team at Wiki Voyage showing the bars and eateries.

 

 

There’s a facebook group to keep in on latest events https://www.facebook.com/groups/394144740616218/

Even more in-depth details to nightlife can be found here https://www.backstreetacademy.com/blog/the-backstreet-guide-to-the-best-bars-in-siem-reap/ and here http://www.madmonkeyhostels.com/?h2o_blog=pubstreetsiemreap

 

Coworking Spaces

Digital nomad and looking for somewhere to plug-in? Try these:

Angkor Hubhttps://angkorhub.com
1961http://the1961.com

 

Where to Stay

These places are picked out based on their popularity with past visitors and value for money. They are clean and comfortable, many with pools and in-house cafe/restaurant.

Hotel
Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel – Street 53, Number 418, Vihearchin Village, Songkat Svay Dangkom – $50
Xing Angkor Hotel – City Center, Taphul Street – $25
Damnak Riverside Hotel – No. 0141, Wat Domnak Street, Old Market Area – $20
Pension Lodge – 169 St Wat Damnak, Salakamreuk Commune – $20
Angkor Island Home – Wat Bo street – $16

Hostel
Tropical Breeze Guesthouse  Wat Domnak Area – $15 and up
Garden Village Guesthouse & Pool Bar – #434, Sok San Road, Steng Thmey village – $15 and up

Of course, if you want to splurge you can do that too, see these as Siem Reap does have some mind-blowing stunning resorts. Also, here is my pick of the Top Five Star Hotels

 

Rent

Looking to stay longer? This facebook group features postings of places for rent in Siem Reap
https://www.facebook.com/groups/siemreaprealestate/ or https://www.facebook.com/groups/267683863384653/

Perhaps the best way to find somewhere is to just come here, walk around and you’ll see signs displaying rooms for rent. Many hostels often advertise rooms for monthly rental. You will pay a deposit and then one month rent in advance. On top of that, you’ll need to pay electricity each month.

You may pay 190 per month for something clean, reasonable standard with security, then 100 deposit and your electricity will depend on how much you use the air-con which may be between 40-80 p/m. Concept Residence is one such example which does monthly rentals for basic studio apartments (no fridge, shared kitchen).

For something more comfortable which includes washing machine, kitchen, weekly servicing, maybe a pool or gym then you’d be paying 280-300 p/m plus electricity but you will likely need to sign-up for a 3-6 or 12 month contract.

I would suggest scoping things out a bit first, find an area that suits you, then find a place, then scope it out over a couple of days. Why do I say that? Some places are a bit crazy, not in a bad way but you may find that are located next to a bar that opens at night and they like their music loud around these parts, or you might find a lovely place with a dreamy pool only to find that they open it to everyone for small entry fee, and a group of 20 lovely little Khmer kiddies can make a jet engine seem like background music in a temple…

Siem Reap Tourist Map

 

 

Useful Resources

WikiTravel Siem Reap – http://wikitravel.org/en/Siem_Reap

TrpAdvisor Travel Forum – https://www.tripadvisor.com.au/ShowForum-g297390-i9163-Siem_Reap_Siem_Reap_Province.html

Expats in Siem Reap https://www.facebook.com/groups/siemreap

 

Map of Temples, Attractions, Cafes, Restaurants and more

Here is a map of most everything we have listed on this page including Temples, Attractions, Cafes, Restaurants, spa retreats, massage, plus some extras.