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WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 33467 [post_author] => 54 [post_date] => 2014-08-14 05:20:27 [post_date_gmt] => 2014-08-14 05:20:27 [post_content] => [caption id="attachment_33473" align="aligncenter" width="600"] Angkor Wat. Pic: Ben Cowles.[/caption]

WITH the city’s innumerable temples, overeager moto drivers, unofficial tour guides, flocks of one-dollar kids, and absurd humidity, 48 hours in Siem Reap can be a rather beguiling experience for the unprepared. This weekend warrior’s guide will set you straight.

Siem Reap By Day...

Roughly 900 years ago as the Khmer god-kings were busy subjugating Southeast Asia into their ever expanding Hindu-Buddhist empire, the architects back in the capital were busy putting the finishing touches to the city’s centerpiece, Angkor Wat. And if you have just two days in Siem Reap, this is where you'll want t spend the daylight hours. Today the second largest temple complex in the world is largely intact, a mightily impressive feat considering Cambodia’s difficult past. Inside you’ll find plenty of tourists milling around the stone facades, hindu-buddhists murals, monks, seven headed serpent balustrades, and posing for an endless array of kodak moments.

At the entrance to Angkor Wat (and pretty everywhere else in Angkor) you’ll find plenty of hawkers selling drinks, snacks and all manner of tourists whatnots. You might also find English speaking tour guides of various skills and legitimacy. You don’t have to hire them, though they could be handy.

[caption id="attachment_33469" align="aligncenter" width="512"] Pic: Ben Cowles.[/caption]

With massive trees growing atop once grand buildings, and their roots slowly cracking the stone floor, Ta Prohm is a touristic vision of a post-apocalyptic future. Another slightly spooky temple, thanks to the ever present serene face of the long dead King Jayavarman VII staring down at visitors from all angles, is Angkor Thom. If you want to be all cheesey then go check out the sunrise / sunset atop the mountain temple of Phnom Bakheng. It gets pretty busy up there, but the sun rising over Angkor Wat is almost unbearably beautiful.

Your entry ticket will cost US$25 per day, or US$45 for a three-day pass, and must be hung around your neck at all times.

Getting around the temples is easy; literally every moto driver in town that catches a glimpse of you will offer to escort you around. They’ll likely offer to drive you to many restaurants, bars, or hotels around town, as well as the shooting range and the landmine museum. They’re all pretty friendly guys and charge roughly the same rates.

The Angkor National Museum is also worth checking out, not only for its glorious air-conditioning but also for its vast array of Angkorian artifacts and all the historical understanding you will likely acquire. [caption id="attachment_33470" align="aligncenter" width="800"] Pic: Ben Cowles.[/caption]
Siem Reap by Night...
The francophiles among you will certainly want to check out Siem Reap’s Indochina architecture and cuisine in the centre of town near the Old Market. The narrow streets around there are lined with all manner of shops, restaurants, coffee shops, and bars to dine the night way. A favourite of mine is the Le Tigre de Papier, which serves up great Khmer and Western food, and also doubles as a cooking school.

Siem Reap isn’t much of a party town, but there are tonnes of lively bars, conveniently located on Pub Street, to strut in and down copious amounts of Angkor Beer.

A quick side note...
Cambodia is still recovering the Khmer Rouge and their diabolical aspirations which deprived the country of roughly 2 million people in the late 1970s. Poverty and inequality is rampant across the country, including the temples around Angkor. You’ll likely come across little kids selling tourist trinkets for a couple dollars. It’s up to you whether you buy them, or give them sweets, gifts, food, or not. You might also consider donating to a charity (such as the Cambodian Children’s Fund) or volunteering. Find accommodation in Siem Reap to suit your budget on Agoda.com [post_title] => The Weekend Warrior’s guide to… Siem Reap [post_excerpt] => WITH the city’s innumerable temples, overeager moto drivers, unofficial tour guides, flocks of one-dollar kids, and absurd humidity, 48 hours in Siem Reap can be a rather beguiling experience for the unprepared. This weekend warrior’s guide will set you straight. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => the-weekend-warriors-guide-to-siem-reap [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2015-01-18 05:14:14 [post_modified_gmt] => 2015-01-18 05:14:14 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.travelwireasia.com/?p=33467 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )

The Weekend Warrior’s guide to… Siem Reap

The Weekend Warrior’s guide to… Siem Reap
August 14, 2014 - 0 Comments - Ben Cowles

WITH the city’s innumerable temples, overeager moto drivers, unofficial tour guides, flocks of one-dollar kids, and absurd humidity, 48 hours in Siem Reap can be a rather beguiling experience for the unprepared. This weekend warrior’s guide will set you straight.

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Find a place to stay

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Places to stay

La Residence d’Angkor

Siem Reap, , Cambodia

La Residence d’Angkor

Siem Reap private tropical luxury

54 Bedroom, sleeps 2
1 Bathroom View

Knai Bang Chatt

Kep, , Cambodia

Knai Bang Chatt

The essence of Kep

View

Independence Hotel

Sihanoukville, , Southern Cambodia

Independence Hotel

Retro character beachside Sihanoukville

View

Royal Bay Inn Angkor Resort

Siem Reap, , Cambodia

hotel_lobby_resize_

4 Star City Centre Luxury

62 Bedroom, sleeps 2
1 Bathroom View

Soria Moria

Siem Reap, Old French Quarter, Cambodia

Soria Moria

Eco-minded sustainable Cambodia tourism

1 Bedroom, sleeps 2
1 Bathroom View

Comments

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  • avatarTigerLover { The lack of understanding - do you have any idea how they get tigers to merely sit around? Drugging them is one primary vector. Tigers... } – Feb 09, 4:47 AM
  • avataroldlady { we went to see the tigers in 2007 and they were playing with the staff in the canyon the older cats just laid around though... } – Feb 08, 7:29 AM
  • avatarDanika Hyssong { I was there in May 2009. My experience wasn't anything like yours. It was off season so my friend and I were the only tourists... } – Feb 06, 1:19 PM
  • avatarAmit Kumar Singh { Well i would like to share some more with different insights. This is a great list, thank you for sharing, Mullayanagiri, Chikmagalur :- Standing 1930... } – Feb 04, 10:34 AM
  • avatarRaj Khanna { This sound like, Nepal is trying to attract more and more audience towards this. } – Feb 04, 9:48 AM
  • avatarSai Yok Pizza { The 'temple' was raided yesterday by authorities. A large paper bag payment should, sadly, see it back to normal within a week or so. } – Feb 04, 9:39 AM
  • avatarRaj Khanna { Hey why not try some other site also, as you are belong to last time booking category. Well i check the sites which you people... } – Feb 04, 7:06 AM
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