For my husband’s birthday last month, we took a short and sweet trip to Siem Reap in Cambodia. We’ve always wanted to visit the ancient city of Angkor because we’re both big history nerds and I have a crazy fascination with ancient cities. When I was a kid, there was a time when I wanted to be an archaeologist and I dreamt of finding a lost, ancient city on my own – preferably Atlantis but we all know that’s pretty far from reality. 😉
Going to Angkor was the next best thing and though we only had a short time to spend in Siem Reap, I think we were able to maximise our stay.
Our itinerary was pretty relaxed despite having just two full days there. We prioritised seeing the Angkor complex as well as the Angkor National Museum which, I believe, is a must when you visit Siem Reap. It’s pretty modern with interactive displays as well as beautiful artefacts accompanied with comprehensive explanations as to what they are and why they’re important to the history of Cambodia.
I tried my hand at making a travel video of our trip and I hope you guys enjoy it. But I will be posting up some photos here as well to turn this entry into some sort of photo diary.
*Do watch in HD!*
More a lot of photos after the jump! Travel tips/notes to Siem Reap are also at the end of this entry. 🙂
SIEM REAP PROPER
Some more tips:
Where to stay: There are a lot of hotels and guest houses in Siem Reap and the range of prices is pretty great. We stayed at The Villa Siem Reap, a small, 3-star hotel with a feel of a guesthouse. It’s affordable with a great, accessible location. I will write a separate review for it soon. 🙂
Where to book a guide: Our hotel offered us a one day tour for USD60, excluding the USD20 passes for each person to enter the temple complex. That price included having our personal guide and a driver who took us around the complex using Toyota Camry. They will also have water ready for you every time you finish each temple. Our guide and driver are a great team. They are nice, accommodating, and the guide’s knowledge of Angkor’s history is impeccable.
If you want to explore on your own, do rent a bicycle, a tuk-tuk, or your own car. The temples are quite far apart within the complex and it can be very hot. At first, I wanted a tuk-tuk instead of an air conditioned vehicle but my husband (who’s actually the king of logistics and planning) foresaw that the heat will get too much and the car’s air conditioning unit was always a welcome respite after sweating it out in each temple.
Do be prepared for the weather. Drink enough water, bring a hat and sunglasses. Put on sunblock and wear light clothing plus comfy shoes. The sun is harsh and though there are a lot of trees, the shade isn’t enough to protect you. Ladies, do bring a thin cover up for your arms, shoulders, and legs as some temples do not allow skimpy clothing.
While you’re in Siem Reap, try out the spas! They are so cheap and a foot massage after a long day of walking is just what you need. 😉 Baray Spa is a small establishment near the Night Market that offers 15-minute foot massages for only USD2.
Bring US Dollars in cash and don’t change have it changed into the local currency. Vendors and business owners prefer accepting USD. 🙂
Thanks so much for dropping by and hope your visit to Siem Reap will also be as fun!