Trekking around temples in the beating sun takes its toll, a heavy toll sometimes and Siem Reap is a place where chillin is a must do activity. Rest and relax time is not just part of the holiday schedule it’s a necessity for managing and getting through the unrelenting heat without pushing yourself into a hospital.
What are the top ways to relax in SR?
Swimming – if your hotel/hostel lacks a pool, or at 3 o’clock it becomes the local village pool, try Angkor Century Hotel & Resort ($8 for sauna, wet steam, and large salt water pool), Prince D’Ankor ($10 salt water pool, gym, sauna, hot and cold jacuzzi) or Somadevi Resort & Spa ($6 with nice pool and gym) all of which are semi-luxury hotels, clean and crystal clear water and usually only a handful of people using the facilities at any time.
Massage – there are so many options. You can stick your feet in a fish tank and have those little suckers go to town on your foot gunk for a $1, or for $3 enjoy a foot massage while watching the masses walk by on pub street. You can go up a notch and get a full body massage for between $5-15 and there’s also hand massages, body scrubs, facials and more on offer.
Many of the 4-5 star hotels have semi luxurious spas but expect to pay upwards of 30.
A great value option is Legacy Spa which has wet and dry steam rooms, hot and cold jacuzzis, gym and optional massage. You can use all of that and get a massage for $9.
Another option is the newly built Marrison Boutique Spa which offers steam room and jacuzzis for just $5. Massages and other services are available at extra cost.
Spas – Taking it up a notch there are several world-class spas in Siem Reap. You can get body scrubs, detox, beauty treatments and much more. Some commonly recomeded ones are Bodia Spa, Sok Khak Spa and Real Spa. Aslo, as mentioned earlier, all of the 5-star hotels in Siem Reap feature comprehensive spa services.
‘Other Services’ Single men (and maybe single women too) will likely get offered even more from certain places, it starts as a plain $9 massage within minutes will be getting hustled for upgrades to four hands massage, six hands massage and tips for happy endings. And that 9 probably turned into 40 or more, apparently, some ‘Barangs’ (foreigners) get hit for hundreds. Whether it’s a scam or a service is completely up to the buyer I guess. Single men walking around pub street or the night market later at night are likely to get proposals for even more extensive services aka Boom Boom. But to be honest I wouldn’t say its prolific, just in certain places and as far as international tourist cities go, it’s fairly tame by international standards.
Single men walking around pub street or the night market later at night are likely to get proposals for even more extensive services aka Boom Boom. But to be honest I wouldn’t say its prolific, just in certain places and as far as tourist cities go, it’s fairly tame by international standards.
Most massage places are above board you shouldn’t have too many fears about this, probably what will concern you more is that some places are cleaner and more comfortable than others. You can ask to look around first before choosing.
Essential Siem Reap features a guide to the temples, including those rarely visited by the tourist masses, loads of activities and things to do in Siem Reap, plus guides to local foods, where to eat, and how to stay safe. It’s available via Amazon in ebook and print.