The kingdom of Cambodia is home to one of the worlds most famous architectural marvels: Angkor. But Angkor is much more than just one famous temple. Yes, the one big temple known as Angkor Wat is stunning in its own right, but there are dozens more --- actually hundreds --- of other fascinating Khmer temple ruins in the Angkor archaeological park and in the surrounding area. Depending on your threshold for old temples, you could easily spend a week or more wondering around these magnificent ruins. The town of Siem Reap serves as the home of Angkor and there are many direct flights there from other Asian cities.
The capitol of the country, Phnom Penh, is also worth a day or two of your time. Popular sightseeing spots include the Royal Palace, national museum, the riverside area, Wat Phnom, and many interesting local markets. Phnom Penh also has a very vibrant nightlife scene and many good restaurants. Phnom Penh is a very compact city with many tree-lined streets that help to shade pedestrians from the harsh tropical sun.
Other cities in Cambodia that are well worth visiting include Battambang, Kratie, Kompong Thom, Kampot, and Kep. Beach lovers will want to make tracks for Sihanoukville (only a few hours south of Phnom Penh), while those keen to venture well off the beaten path may find the northeastern town of Rattanakiri more to their liking.
Recommended Guides, Tour Companies & Hotels
Siem Reap: So Pengthai
So Pengthai (you can call him "Thai") is a licensed guide based in Siem Reap. Not only can he show you the wonders of Angkor, but he is available to take you to other magnificent temples and sights in the area, including Beng Mealea, Koh Ker, Banteay Srei, Banteay Chmah, Kbal Spean, and Phnom Kulen. Trips to nearby towns such as Battambang and Kompong Thom can also be arranged. So Pengthai can also recommend good restaurants to eat in Siem Reap, and he can assist you with arranging bus, boat, or air tickets.
Tel: (+855) 012 603 094
Dara Reang Sey Hotel
The charming sisters (Dara and Reang Sey, of course) who have run the hotel in Phnom Penh for many years have now opened a new location in Siem Reap. Both hotels have a variety of clean rooms to suit your needs.
Corner of Street 118 and Street 13 (one block from Psah Chas)
Tel: (+855) 023-428-181, 427 469
National Road No. 6 (just east of Psah Leu market)
Tel: (+855) 063-963-434,
Peace of Angkor Villas
This lovely guesthouse is run by British expat Dave Perkes and his well-trained Khmer staff. The garden setting, well away from the noisy main streets of Siem Reap, ensures for a relaxing atmosphere.
133 Slorkram Village (two blocks off Highway No.6 at the Wat Bo Road intersection), Siem Reap
Tel: (+855) 063-760-475