Siem Reap, a vibrant city located in the northwest of Cambodia, is famous for being the gateway to the magnificent Angkor Wat temple complex. But beyond its historical significance, Siem Reap offers an array of exciting activities and accommodations that cater to all types of travellers.
Whether you are an adventure seeker, a history enthusiast, or simply seeking a peaceful retreat, this article will guide you through the top things to do and where to stay in Siem Reap.
From exploring ancient temples and floating villages to indulging in exquisite Khmer cuisine and relaxing in luxurious resorts, Siem Reap promises an unforgettable experience that blends cultural immersion with modern comforts.
What to do around Siem Reap?
- food tours
- visits to local villages by Vespa or bicycles
- floating villages
- meditation with the local monks at sunrise
- arts & crafts
- learn the art of Aspara dancing
- cooking classes
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Map of Siem Reap Cambodia – Where is Siem Reap
Siem Reap is located in North-West Cambodia 318 km from the capital Phnom Penh.
The town of Siem Reap is made up of 7 main areas:
- Old Market area
- Kandal village
- Wat Bo
- Old French Quarter
- Taphul village
- Road to Angkor
- Airport Road
Many small streets don’t have names so you will need to look for landmarks.
You can read our article on What To Do in Phnom Penh here
Getting To Siem Reap
A private taxi transfer from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap can be pre-booked here.
Book your Bus Tickets to Siem Reap here:
Flights to Siem Reap
Find the cheapest flights with Skyscanner our go to when we are researching and booking flights.
Getting around Siem Reap
- by foot is easy as it is a walkable city
- moto fare at 0.75 for a short journey premium charges at night.
- Tuk-tuks short trips are USD1
Check out our YouTube Video on Top Things To Do in Siem Reap
Top Things To Do in Siem Reap
The #1 must-do in Siem Reap is visiting the Angkor Wat Complex.
1 day pass USD37
3 days pass USD62
7 days pass USD72
We used Get Your Guide for our 4-day Angkor Wat and Beng Mealea tour – you can read our review here. A tour over 4 days is the perfect way to see Angkor Wat. There is a lot of walking and climbing stairs and steps and by mid-afternoon, we were quite tired, we could change the itinerary if we wanted during the day as well. We travelled in October, it was hot, humid and rainy. We highly recommend this tour. Not only did we visit the complex at sunset and sunrise, but a visit to Tonle Sap Lake was also included as well.
You can read our guide on visiting Angkor Wat here
Angkor National Museum – top attraction in Siem Reap
If you are looking for something to do in Siem Reap other than temples check out the National Museum.
To understand the Angkor Wat Complex we would recommend visiting the Angkor National Museum first before visiting the complex.
You can now pre-book a one-way Tuk-tuk transfer from your hotel to the Angkor National Museum with entrance tickets included. Click here for more details and booking.
Adult USD$12 Children USD$6
Audio USD$5 per person
Opening Hours: 08.30 – 18.00
Address: #968 Vithei Charles de Gaulle Phoum Salakanseng Khom Svaydangum Siem Reap District
The layout of the Angkor National Museum:
The Gallery of 1000 Buddha Images – the most prestigious collection of Buddha statues ever assembled.
Gallery A Khmer Civilisation – how the Khmer Empire was established, people’s faith and their stories
Gallery B Religion & Beliefs – beliefs that styled peoples living, literary works, sculptures and architecture, myths and folk tales
Gallery C The Great Khmer Kings – 4 Khmer Kings and their stories
Gallery D Angkor Wat – learn how it was constructed
Gallery E Angkor Thom – learn about ancient engineering plans and its relation to the symbolic story of the churning of the ocean of milk (the immortal city)
Gallery F – Story from stones – stone inscriptions beliefs and legends of the ancient Khmer empire
Gallery G Ancient Costume – Aspara (celestial dancers)
Wat Preah Prom Rath
Address: Opposite Temple Coffee & Bakery, Pokambor Ave, Krong Siem Reap 17254
The complex is beautiful and calming. At 4 am and 5 pm monks chant a blessing that takes around 20 minutes.
Visit the Floating Villages on Tonle Sap Lake
Wondering what to do around Siem Reap?
From our tour operator Get Your Guide you can visit the fishing villages on Tonle Sap Lake, visit a crocodile farm and fish farm followed by a meal and a drink.
Private Street Food Tour With Dinner
Visit a local fruit market and navigate the alleyways of a bustling market. Explore the stalls and bright lights at Siem Reap’s largest local picnic spot. Hear insights from your local guide on Cambodian favourites.
Vespa Tour Visiting the Countryside – Bike Tour in Siem Reap
- Explore the countryside of Siem Reap on the back of a scooter
- Visit a mesmerizing Buddhist temple
- Taste delicious Cambodian bamboo rice cake
- Learn to make a rattan basket Weaving
- Sample traditional Cambodian rice wine
4 Hour Cycle Tour to a Local Cambodian Village
- Experience the countryside surrounding Siem Reap by bike
- Enjoy chatting with the village people about Cambodian life
- Meet a local family who make palm wine and sample the product
- Visit a duck farming family a lotus field for sunset
Shopping in Siem Reap
Visit the T Galleria from DFS which is only 1 minute from the Angkor National Museum. It is Cambodia’s best Duty-Free store.
Address: No 968 Vithei Charles De Gaulle Siem Reap, 17259, Cambodia
If you are after that special gift to take home visit the Gift Shop in the Angkor National Museum.
Siem Reap Night Markets
The Siem Reap night market is a must. If you are wondering what to buy at the Siem Reap night market you will be spoilt for choice from local souvenirs to jewellery and much more
Where To Eat in Siem Reap
Molop Wat Damnak Restaurant
Address: Wat Damnak Village, Sangkat Salakamrouk, Siem Reap
Molop Wat Damnak is a local restaurant specialising in vegetarian and vegan cuisine with local organic produce. Meat dishes are also available. You can visit the organic produce farm and enjoy vegetarian cooking classes as well.
Address: Watdamnak Road, Wat Damnak Village Sangkat Salakamrouk Siem Reap Town, 17254, Cambodia
The Khmer Grill is a very popular restaurant in Siem Reap with an excellent menu offering local Cambodian dishes and Western cuisine and vegetarian options. We ate here most nights and prices were reasonable.
Address: 17 Sala Kamreuk Road Siem Reap 17252
For Western cuisine and Khmer-style cooking head to Krousar Cafe. Their breakfast menu is extensive and we can highly recommend their muffins. Krousar Cafe is very affordable and offers great food.
High Tea at the Sofitel
Address: Vithei Charles De Gaulle Khum Svay Dang Kum Siem Reap, 17259, Cambodia
Daily between 3.00 and 5.00 pm the Sofitel offers a range of 8 teas, sandwiches, scones, cakes, pastries and more in their High Tea.
Mouhot’s Dream at the Sofitel
Voted the most romantic restaurant in Siem Reap a visit to Mouhot’s Dream is highly recommended for its French and Khmer cuisine. The award-winning restaurant also offers an extensive wine list. The restaurant is located beside Sala Lake at the Sofitel and creates a magical romantic atmosphere for the diner.
Pub Street – Siem Reap Nightlife
Siem Reap’s Pub Street is where it all happens in the evening. Head to Pub Street for a range of bars, pubs, nightclubs and international restaurants.
Where To Stay in Siem Reap
There is a range of accommodations in Siem Reap to suit all budgets.
5 Star Hotels in Siem Reap
Sofitel Angkor Phokeethra Golf & Spa Resort
Address: Vithei Charles De Gaulle Khum Svay Dang Kum Siem Reap, 17259, Cambodia. This is the best location to stay in Siem Reap.
To experience a tour of the Sofitel Hotel Siem Reap check out our Youtube Video:
With luxurious 223 rooms and 15 suites available you are spoilt for choice. The Sofitel is well located to visit the Angkor Wat complex just ten minutes away.
The elegant Sofitel reflects French sophistication and yesteryear refinement and offers guests an outdoor swimming pool, gym and spa all located in lush green tropical gardens.
You can read our full review here.Book here
Their signature restaurant Mouhot’s Dream is rated the best romantic restaurant in Siem Reap.
The Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor was constructed in 1932 in the French Colonial style. The hotel was closed during the war between 1975 – 1979.
The elevator dates back to 1929. It is an Otis and it s the only timber elevator in Cambodia. It was renovated from 1995 to 1997.
The hotel offers 119 luxurious rooms, suites and 2 private villas.
It was recently renovated during 2019 between May and October.
All-day dining is available at Café D’Angkor (check) and for breakfast on weekends till 11.00 am.
The hotel offers guests yoga classes, a traditional daily monk blessing, spa, gym, jacuzzi, kids club, tennis courts, the largest swimming pool in Cambodia and more.
Over the years the Raffles Hotel has had the pleasure of hosting many famous guests such as Michelle Obama, Hilary Clinton and more.
The walls are adorned with stunning photographs by photographer John McDermott.
1932 is the main dining restaurant at Raffles. If you are dining in the restaurant take note of the napkins that have the exclusive royal logo and their Narumi Bone China dinnerware. The restaurant is only one of 2 restaurants in Cambodia that is permitted to serve Royal Khmer Cuisine which was passed on by the King’s own kitchen.
Happy hour is between 4.00 – 6.00 pm daily and we recommend trying their signature cocktail – Airavata at the Elephant Bar.
Address: Sangkat Sala Komreuk Wat Damnak Village Siem Reap
The 5-star Moroccan-inspired luxury boutique hotel is centrally located in Siem Reap city and only 7km away from the Angkor Wat complex.
The rooms are elegantly decorated in traditional Khmer-style and some include an outdoor terrace.
Address: House #173, Wat Damnak Village, Sala Kamreak Commune Siem Reap, 17252
Recently opened in 2019 the Siem Reap Palace Residence offers guests luxury accommodation, a restaurant, pool, spa and bar. We spent 4 nights here and were well looked after by their staff. Breakfast was included from a small a la carte menu. The pool was a welcome relief after visiting Angkor Wat.Book here
3.5 Star Hotel in Siem Reap
Dream Mango Villa
Address: Phum Wat Damnak Sangkat Salakamrouek Siem Reap
We spent 5 nights at the delightful Dream Mango Villa centrally located in Siem Reap. The rooms were comfortable and large. Breakfast was included and good strong WiFi. The hotel also includes a swimming pool, restaurant and bar.Book here
Siem Reap Weather
The peak tourist season runs from December through to January in the dry North-East Monsoon period that covers the period from December through to April.
The wet season with high humidity runs from May to November. We visited during the month of October and experienced rain showers in the afternoon, the humidity was high but it was less crowded.
Do You Need a Visa for Cambodia
International Travel To Siem Reap
Is there an airport in Siem Reap?
Siem Reap’s international airport is located 8 km from the city.
What is the distance from Bangkok to Siem Reap by bus?
It is 402 km from Bangkok to Siem Reap. It can take anywhere between 8 – 10 hours depending on the border crossing. We travelled by bus from Siem Reap to Bangkok and the border crossing took 1 hour.
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In conclusion, Siem Reap offers a plethora of activities and attractions for travellers seeking a unique and enriching experience. From exploring the awe-inspiring temples of Angkor Wat to immersing oneself in the vibrant local culture at the night markets, this city has something for everyone. Moreover, with a wide range of accommodation options available, ranging from luxury resorts to budget-friendly guesthouses, finding a place to stay that suits your preferences and budget is effortless. Siem Reap truly encapsulates the rich history, natural beauty, and warm hospitality of Cambodia, making it an ideal destination for any traveller looking to create unforgettable memories.