You will find few places in Asia that still have the old world charm where you are surrounded by the flavor and culture of the country more than Cambodia. Cambodia hasn't been washed away by modernity and western commercialism by comparing to some of its neighbor countries. Cambodia will not disappoint and you will truly feel like you are in a foreign land and it is also a very affordable place to visit, once you get there. If you have small budget you can have greater time in Cambodia than anywhere in Europe. |
Angkor Wat, Ta Prohm And Bayon
Without a visit to Angkor Wat, Bayon and Ta Prohm and a lot other interesting temples, your trip to Cambodia is not a complete one. You will see that nature has taken over Ta Prohm, trees literally growing through the walls and ancient structures in a strange, symbiotic relationship. Ta Prohm's claim to fame is that the film Tomb Raider was filmed there. Bayon is also interesting in that the entire complex has over two hundred large visages of the legendary Khmer king Jayavarman VII carved onto the many large pillars and towers. Angkor Wat is, of course, the highlight and the most famous temple in Cambodia. It is one of the world's largest religious buildings which a very impressive sight and great for photographs during sunrise and sunset. You can spend a half to visit these three temples. Anyway, do not miss the opportunity to see the sunrise or sunset at Angkor Wat Temple. If you are a true history and temple enthusiast, there are a lot of other old Khmer complexes in the area and you can easily spend a few days to visit them all. Anyway, you need to buy the temple pass which is US$20 to access all of the temples for one day and for two or three days visit the fee is only US$40.
Visiting Around Siem Reap
There are several other things you can do in the city of Siem Reap. A visit to the Old Market and the surrounding streets is a must. It is a traditional market that caters to both foreigners and locals. You can find souvenirs, crafts, and knickknacks around the perimeter of the market, while the center of the market sells produce, meats, and kitchen supplies to the locals. You should make it a point to have a meal on Pub Street, which is a strip of very affordable restaurants and bars where you can get both local and western food. The entrees are about US$5 and a local draft beer is only fifty cents, so you will not break your wallet. The restaurants are open for both lunch and dinner, in case you want to avoid the area in the evenings.
If you want to see the biggest market which usually only the locals and it is also the place to supply meats and vegetables to restaurants and hotel around Siem Reap. That Market is called Psa Ler.
You can easily drink your night away at Pub Street, or choose a restaurant which offers an Apsara dancing show. It is a traditional dance style which features slow movements, and is normally performed solo or in teams by women and men in traditional regalia. It really is worth considering in case you have a free night.
Outside of Siem Reap
The different options are a day away from Siem Reap by going to a number of the surrounding villages. A particular village worth to visit is Kompong Phhluk, which is about one hour away from Siem Reap by Tuktuk. The thing that makes Kompong Phhluk distinctive is the fact that the entire village is built on high stilts because it is nearby the river and the very big Tonle Sap Lake, in which the water rises substantially while in the rainy season and floods the whole countryside. Getting there needs a drive as well as a boat ride when the water levels are high. From Kompong Phhluk, you can continue down a river by boat to Tonle Sap Lake to see the floating village of Chong Kneas, as well built on stilts, but upon the lake itself. In case you go while in the dry season, the water will be brown and the water levels minimal, sometimes making even journey by boat difficult. Nevertheless, I would recommend it as you'll have a glimpse of village life outside the tourist havens.
Where to Stay in Siem Reap
A great place to stay is the New Riverside Hotel, a small hotel on the outer edges of Siem Reap. The price is very reasonable (about US$30 a night) and you will be treated like royalty. The food is great, service excellent, and there are plenty of frills. All room rates include a free tuktuk one way to town and breakfast. Having a personal tuktuk driver is a good option during a visit to Siem Reap and Angkor Wat no matter where you stay, as it is hard to get to town or the temples by yourself, or it is pricier if you wish to hire a driver separately for each excursion. Even within Angkor Wat and the surrounding temples, you will need a driver to take you from place to place as the temples are not within walking distance.
Taking a Tuktuk Tour in Siem Reap is really a good experience you should really try.
To make your trip more fun and hassle free you can simply visit www.siemreaptourguides.com to request for quote to your budget.
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