Part of the Angkor Archaeological Park, the Bayon temple was built during the 12th century CE, during the rule of Buddhist King Jayavarman VII. Today what we see is a perfect blend of Theravada Buddhist and Hindu styles of architecture patterns, as this temple was modified by various kings later on.
Image Credits : RichElla17
Highlights – If you are an architecture lover, you will truly love Bayon temple, where the main deity is Lord Buddha. Built in traditional and historic Khmer style of architecture, this temple contains numerous towers. All these towers have wonderfuls stone faces carved on them. The other highlight here is a couple of bas reliefs found here, representing various mythological values.
Location – Situated in King Jayavarman’s capital city of Angkor Thom. Timings – 5AM to 6PM. Entry fee – One day, three-day and seven-day passes cost USD20, USD40 and USD60 respectively.
Cambodia is known for its ancient temples replete with architectural brilliance of traditional Khmer style. Ta Prohm is one such Angkorian temple in the province of Siem Reap.
Highlights – Of all the architectural remnants found in Cambodia, Ta Prohm is the most scenic with a canopy of greenery all round. Today, one look at the dilapidated towers and walls of the temple remind us of the glory that this temple was used to many centuries ago. During 1186, the year of its construction, this temple was known as Rajavihara (Royal Temple) and was a prominent Buddhist pilgrimage site. The very fact that it required 80000 people to maintain the temple is enough to know the glory of the temple. During 1992, it was declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
. Location – Siem Reap. Timings – Temple is open from 5AM to 6PM.
Price – Since this is part of Angkor Archaeological Park, the price is same as the park – USD20, USD40 and USD60 for a single day, 2-day and 7-day pass respectively.
There are many places in Siem Reap that capture the attention of history and archaeological lovers. Angkor Thom is one of them.
Highlights – Set up during the 12th century by King Jayavarman II, Angkor Thom was the last and most reputed capital of the Khmer Kingdom. Built in pure Bayon style, this site was constructed using a large amount of laterite and massive naga-carrying figures on its 5 towers, each 23m tall. The gates opening to this site has massive representations of “Churning of the Ocean” episode from Hindu mythology. The gate on the south is often used by tourists who come from Angkor Wat to Angkor Thom. Traditionally, the Khmers addressed this as Prasat Angkor Thom. By 1609, many parts of Angkor Thom started getting damaged and what is left today are just the colossal remnants.
Location – Siem Reap.
Timings- 5AM to 6PM.
Price – Part of Angkor Archaeological Park; therefore prices are USD20 (one day pass), USD40 (2-day pass) and USD70 (7-day pass).
Located towards the northeast of Angkor Archaeological Park, Preah Khan (meaning, Royal Sword), is a temple which was constructed by King Jayavarman VII. It is also quite closely situated to Ta Prohm temple, which makes this a good tourist spot.
Image Credits : Anandajoti
Highlights – Lots of plants and trees grow around the Preah Khan temple, which makes it look lovelier than ever before. Lord Buddha, in the name of Avalokiteshwara, is the main deity of this temple. The temple complex is quite huge and there are two gates leading into the temple. Prior to becoming a temple, this complex was used as the residence of the royal clan who ruled over this place, which gives a majestic look to this place. Location – Towards the western side of the Jataka Baray and north east of Angkor Thom, this temple is situated in close proximity to the Ta Prohm Temple. Timings – 5AM to 6PM every day. Price – Temple entry pass of USD20 (one day), USD20 (3 days) and USD60 (7 days).
It is the architectural ruins of Angkor that tourist unearth some historic marvels. Terrace of Elephats is one of them, found in the massive Angkor Thom ruins.
Highlights – Part of the well-protected temple complex of Angkor Thom, the Terrace of Elephants was the platform which King Jayavarman II used to witness his successful army returning. All through the 300m long structure, one can find stunning and rare bas-reliefs covered with small figurines and statues of elephants, dancers, lions, horses, soldiers and more. The entire terrace is about 2.5m tall. Of the three main platforms here, the carvings on the north platform are the most gorgeous. As you walk past the life-size sculptures of elephants, you cannot help but get awestruck at the skill of the local artisans.
Image Credits : ronan crowley
Location – Angkor Thom complex, Siem Reap.
Timings – 5AM to 6PM.
Price – USD20, USD40 and USD60 for 1-day, 2-day and 7-day pass respectively. If tickets are bought for Angkor Thom, you need not pay again for Terrace of Elephants.
One of the most famous spots in Siem Reap, Srah Srang or the Royal Bath is a reservoir which has water always in it.
Highlights – Constructed during the 12th century by King Jayavarman II, Srah Srang is a massive lake (700x300m). The major highlight of this reservoir is that it contains water all the time and has a canopy of greenery surrounding it always. The Angkor Archaeological Park is clearly visible from the courtyard of this lake. Laterite and sandstone were used in abundance for constructing this lake. The platform which leads into this lake is flanked by two lions at the entrance. Sculptures of a Garuda and serpents are also found near the lake. Come here during sunrise/sunset for best views. Location – Angkor, Siem Reap. Timings – Sunrise to sunset. Price – Part of Angkor Archaeological Park. So entrance fee of USD20 (1-day), USD40 (2-day) and USD60 (7-day) applies here as well.
If there is one place where you can witness Khmer majesty in full form, it is the Angkor National Museum.
Highlights – This museum is the best place to witness Angkor and Khmer civilisation representations under one roof. The museum contains various displays denoting the various religions and royalty witnessed by Khmer dynasty. Also some of the collections like inscriptions, carvings and details about great Khmer rulers, denote to the glory of this place during the pre-Angkorian era. One look around the place is enough to take you through the impressive history and evolution of Angkor over the years. Location – Siem Reap.
Timings – 8.30AM to 6PM from April to September and 8.30AM to 6.30PM from October to March. Price – USD12 per person for adults and USD6 per person for kids below 1.2m of height. Guided audio tours are available for USD3 per person.
If you want to improve your knowledge about landmines, Cambodia Landmine Museum is the place where you need to be during your vacation.
Highlights – The landmine museum of Cambodia is one of its kind in the country and contains useful and educative information about landmines, their harmful impacts, how they can endanger people’s livelihoods and about the various risks that people face while working in these places. Also, you can find an impressive collection of powerful tools and guns that were used for mining those days. Location – Siem Reap. Timings – Museum is open from 7.30AM to 5.30PM on all days of the week. For better understanding of tourists, the museum offers English and Japanese speaking guides from 9 to 5 four times a week on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Firdays. Price – Foreign tourists are charged USD5 per person.
Siem Reap is not just a place for adventure enthusiasts, but it is also a place for nature lovers and ornithologists. Prek Toal Bird Sanctuary is one such place.
Highlights – Set up over 42000 hectares, the Prek Toal Bird Sanctuary is located in the Battambang Province. A popular eco-tourist destination, Prek Toal Bird Sanctuary is the abode of rare species of water birds that come here from different parts of the world during the migratory period. The sanctuary is located within the Tonle Sap Biospere Reserve. Some of the birds that you can spot here are Black headed Ibis, Painted Storks, Milky Storks, Spot-billed pelicans, Fish Eagle, Greater Adjuncts, Lesser Adjuncts and many more. Location – Battambang Province, Siem Reap. Timings – Come to the park during the dry season between December and March to witness lots of birds.
Price – USD25per person towards entry into the park. Boat tours are available here.
Situated in close proximity to the famous Angkor temples, Me Chrey is a beautiful floating village which offers guests various opportunities to feel entertained. Living with locals and bird watching are few of them.
Highlights – When you visit the floating village of Me Chrey on Tonle Sap Lake, you should mandatorily get to know about the lifestyle of the locals living here. Planting rice plants and fishing are the main occupations of the locals. Come here during the early hours to witness live action of fishing. You can take boats or tuk-tuks from Siem Reap to reach Me Chrey. Location – Bank of Tonle Sap Lake, about 9km from Siem Reap.
Timings – Can be visited all through the year; however visiting this place during sunrise is considered ideal.
Price – While the boat ride costs just about USD20 per person, eco-tourism packages cost around USD70 per person.
Do you love the harmless and colourful, winged-creatures called butterflies? How about spotting hundreds of butterflies at one location? Exciting, isn’t it? You have to come to Banteay Srei Butterfly Centre to witness this.
Highlights – One of the newer tourist spots in Cambodia’s Siem Reap Province, Banteay Srei Butterfly Centre, shortly known as BBC, consists of thousands of butterflies in one single place. It is the biggest butterfly exhibit centre in South East Asia and is definitely worth a visit for nature lovers. When you visit BBC, you can get introduced to butterfly farming, life cycle of butterflies, butterfly conservation and other ecological details. The amount collected by tourists goes towards the welfare of the local people. There are expert guides to take you through the farm. Location – Siem Reap. Timings - 9AM to 5PM on all days of the week. Price – USD4 per adult and USD2 per kid.
One of the best things that attracts tourists to Cambodia is its cultural and heritage. Apsara dance is a true representation of the culture of Cambodia.
Highlights – Lots of hotels in Siem Reap and othe provinces in Cambodia arrange for Apsara dance forms and other traditional art forms for the benefit of local and international tourists coming here. Temples in Angkor too host Apsara dance performances at affordable costs. Some places also offer complementary drinks that you can enjoy while watching dance performances of professional artists. Location – Alliance Café, Apsara Theatre, La Residence d’Angkor, Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor, Smile of Angkor and more. Watch the graceful moves of Apsara dancers at these places. Location – Many hotels and temples in Siem Reap. Timings –The dance shows last usually for an hour. Price – Varies as per place. It can be anywhere between USD5 and USD25.
If you are looking for a serene place that offers you myriad natural attractions under one roof, Tonle Sap Lake, or the “Great Lake” in Siem Reap, Cambodia is the perfect place. Here you can experience the various ecologically rich elements in their full forms. The place is also famous for its floating villages and migratory birds.
Image Credits : tesKing (Italy)
Highlights – With a maximum length of 250km, this is the biggest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia. During 1997, this place was designated as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. This is probably the only place in Cambodia where you can witness close to 100 types of water birds and 200 species of fishes. Location – Lower Mekong Basin. Timings – All through the year.
Price – There are various lake tours available to take tourists through Tonle Sap. Prices differ as per the routes and time covered. A basic lake tour starts from around USD29 onwards.
Have you always wondered how silk is made from silkworms? The Angkor Silk Farm in one of the best places in the world to teach you this craft.
Highlights – This is the place where you get to know about the end to end process of sericulture through lots of workshops on silk farming. When you come here, you will be introduced to new processes like mulberry cultivation, cocoon formation, application of natural dyes to silk worms and all the process of silk cultivation. Here you will also get to know about the ancient weaving technology of Ikat weaving.
Location – Puok district, about 20minutes away from Siem Reap Centre.
Timings – The Angkor Siolk Farm is open from 8AM to 5PM on all days of the week.
Price – Free guided tours are available and entrance is also free of cost.
Cambodia is a land where you will find many wildlife rescue centres and zoos. Crocodiles are one of the most common animals found in this part of the world. Crocodile Farm in Siem Reap is enough proof for this fact.
Image Credits : Damien @ Flickr
Highlights – If you are a wildlife lover, visit the Crocodile Farm at Siem Reap to spot close to 300 crocodiles living in perfect harmony with each other here. You not only get to witness the lifestyle of these crocodiles, but you will also be introduced to their breeding and feeding schedules through expert guides who are available here on request. It takes around 20 minutes to complete a tour of this farm.
Location – Siem Reap.
Timings – Tours are available from 9AM to 5PM.
Price - USD3 per person for foreigners and USD0.25 per person for locals.