Attractions and Activities
Sooner or later, you'll be looking for other things to do around town.
Not to worry, because there are a lot of non-temple activities available thanks to the booming Siem Reap tourism industry. So let's see what they provide.
They're roughly divided into three categories:
- Non-temple activities - Everything but temples.
- Museums - No, not as boring as you thought. Some are interesting.
- Places to spend your money.
These activities are great ways to see more of Cambodia and prevent (or cure) temple burn out. They can be easily done between your temple visits because most of them are around town.
Do crocodiles count as a Siem Reap tourist item?
Some of the activities involve 'natural' attractions, so they're not made up by the Siem Reap tourism industry just to please visitors.
Phluk - a large village of stilted houses near the
Tonle Sap lake. Another of my favorite Cambodia activities.
- Kampung Khleang - an even larger village
floating and stilted houses by the great lake.
Khneas - the most visited floating village due to its
short distance from town.
Sap Lake and Cruise - see how the
largest lake in Southeast Asia controls the livelihood of many
- Prek Toal Bird Sanctuary - a haven for
birds, a heaven for bird enthusiasts.
- Apsara Dance and Dinner Show - see the
temple carvings of Apsara dancers come to
life. There are lots
of places to choose from, but Angkor
Village is one.
a Day in a Cambodian Village - an unusual
look into Cambodian village life. Be a Cambodian for one day!
- Visit Social Foundations and Non-governmental Organizations
(NGOs) - see what kind of projects they are
currently working on. Here is the
website for Trailblazer whose project is a water filtering system.
- Dirt Bike Motor Tour - roam around the
countryside with your own bike. It provides a different view of
- Bicycle Around Siem Reap - A great way to
to know the town, and one that is pretty easy due to the flat
bicycles are available for rent though the hotel or hostels. There's
Bicycle for easy rides, and Biking
for a more involved approach. Also, click on this bicycle adventure
to read more about
cycling in Cambodia.
Silk Farm - visit the farm to see how those
lovely Cambodian scarves are made. A comprehensive tour from start to
- The Stone Quarry for Angkor temples -
the river where stones were carved and imagine how they were
transported downstream to the temple construction site.
- Visit the Buddhist Wats Monastery - you
probably stumble into one because there are several of them
around town. Also, 95% of
Cambodians are Buddhist.
Factory - see how incense sticks are made
by visiting this small family operation.
- Crocodile Farm - Cambodians sure do have
lots of crocodiles. They're fun to watch, but they smell bad!
- Horseback Riding - ride to the lesser
temples around town. You can choose between a one hour trip to a half
day or even an
all day trip. Website
- Free Cello Recital at the Children's Hospital
- performed by Dr. Beat Richner, a Swiss pediatrician working at the
hospital. Donations accepted. Website
- Visit a Mosque in Siem Reap - get a glimpse of the small Muslim community in Siem Reap and visit the mosque school there.
It looks like Cambodia is getting so popular that the Siem Reap tourism board decided to make an upscale Angkor museum. The Landmine museum is also great, though small and a little bit out of the way.
Defused land mines
- Landmine Museum - a small museum by Aki Ra, a former Khmer Rouge soldier. He defused landmines and put them all in the museum. Website
- Angkor National Museum
- just opened
in late 2007 so it's all posh and fancy. You'll see many artifacts
- Cambodian Cultural Village - a wax
museum and a mock up of a Cambodian village. Website
- Civil War Museum - you can see weaponry that was used during the last Civil War.
Who doesn't like this particular Siem Reap tourist attraction?
Haggling is alive and well at traditional markets. You may want to shop around and compare prices because they all carry similar stuff. The Siem Reap tourism business seems to be growing because they recently opened up a new night market.
- Central Market - the market for
Cambodian trinkets. Best prices.
Market - medium sized market selling
clothes and souvenirs. Okay prices.
Market - geared towards tourists.
Stays open until midnight. Highest prices. Website
- Artisans d'Angkor - the leading
silk company. Unbelievably gorgeous stuff, but expect Western 'prices,'
and no haggling. Website
- Boutique shoppes around the Old Market area - from arts and crafts, to silk clothes and trinkets. These small shops are fun to visit and have unique items.
One of Siem Reap tourism leading industries: Artisans d'Angkor silk
So In Short...
There you have it, a list of Siem Reap attractions and activities to get you started. There are so many things to do that you won't want to leave!
Who knew that there are so many Cambodia attractions in and near Siem Reap?
And I use the term attractions loosely, becuase sometimes you
will be the only
tourist! Considering that Cambodia is
visited by millions and millions of people, getting a temple to
yourself is an unbelievable treat.
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What Other Visitors Have Said
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