Siem Reap Travel Guide

Overview

Ta Phrom Temple, Siem Reap
Ta Phrom Temple, Siem Reap © Justin Vidamo

Siem Reap lies on the northern shores of the Tonle Sap Lake. It's the main access city for Angkor's magnificent temples, and a popular launching pad for further travel into Cambodia and Thailand. Not just a headquarters for exploring neighbouring regions, it also boasts popular markets, craft shops, museums and Apsara dance performances.

The Temple of Angkor Wat is Siem Reap's most famous feature. Situated just outside the city centre, the UNESCO World Heritage Site dates from the 12th century and is the largest religious monument in the world. Within the city, the Angkor National Museum provides a useful cultural and historical background for the Angkor Temples and the ancient Khmer civilisation. The Aki Ra Landmine Museum is also worthwhile as it gives tourists an understanding of the ongoing war Cambodia is still fighting against these buried weapons.

Siem Reap has budget- and luxury guesthouses, and a host of fun bars and excellent restaurants. With so much in the way of amenities and attractions, the city is a great base from which to venture into other parts of this fascinating country. Visitors will find silk farms, rice paddies and fishing villages in the surrounding countryside, as well as a bird sanctuary near Tonle Sap Lake - one of Asia's largest freshwater lakes. The area is home to charming villages on stilts, built to accommodate monsoon flooding.