Siem Reap is a stunning city in Cambodia, known for its rich cultural heritage and incredible temples and countless attractions to keep travellers busy throughout their retreat. Whether you’re looking for an exciting adventure, a relaxing vacation, or a mix of both, there are things to do in Siem Reap that everyone can enjoy.
In this article, we’ll take a look at the top 10 places to visit in Siem Reap that you should not miss on your next vacation.
10 Places to Visit in Siem Reap
Siem Reap is a city known for its vibrant and unique culture, great cuisine, as well as its charming architecture and bustling nightlife. Here, we highlight some of the Siem Reap attractions you could and should visit during your next vacation break.
1. Angkor Archaeological Park
Angkor Archaeological Park is a UNESCO World Heritage site located in Siem Reap. It contains the remains of the ancient Khmer Empire, including the world-famous temple of Angkor Wat, and covers an area of over 400 km². The park features a diverse collection of ruins, including Hindu and Buddhist temples, palaces, and other amazing structures, many of which date back to the 9th to 15th centuries. Visitors can explore the intricate carvings and sculptures, as well as learn all about the rich cultural and historical significance of the site.
Highlights of Angkor Archaeological Park include:
- Angkor Wat: the largest religious monument in the world and Cambodia’s most famous temple
- Bayon Temple: known for its massive stone faces and intricate carvings
- Ta Prohm Temple: a unique temple partially engulfed by jungle trees
- Baphuon Temple: a towering temple mountain featuring a grand staircase
- Sras Srang: a large royal bath
- Preah Khan: a sprawling temple complex with intricate carvings
- Phimeanakas: a royal palace in the heart of Angkor Thom
- Terrace of the Elephants: a viewing platform used by Khmer kings to oversee public ceremonies.
2. Angkor Silk Farm
Angkor Silk Farm is a working silk farm located in the Puok district, about 30 minutes from downtown Siem Reap, Cambodia. It is home to millions of silkworms at different stages of the 42-day lifecycle. The farm provides visitors with an opportunity to learn about the traditional methods of silk production, including the raising of silkworms and the weaving of silk. Visitors can take a guided tour of the farm to see the various stages of the silk-making process and learn about the rich history of silk production in Cambodia. The farm also operates a shop selling handmade silk products, such as scarves, clothing, and accessories, providing visitors with an opportunity to purchase authentic and locally made souvenirs. The Angkor Silk Farm is a unique place to visit in Siem Reap and an educational experience that offers a glimpse into Cambodia’s rich cultural heritage.
Highlights of Angkor Silk Farm include:
- Guided tour of the silk-making process and demonstration of traditional silk production methods.
- Insight into the history of silk production in Cambodia.
- Opportunity to see silkworms and the silk weaving process.
- Shop selling handmade silk products, such as scarves, clothing, and accessories as souvenirs back home.
3. Apsara Theatre
The Apsara Theatre is the oldest and most well-known venue for Apsara dance performances in Siem Reap. It is a cultural centre dedicated to preserving and promoting the traditional arts and culture of Cambodia, including Apsaras dance. Visitors can enjoy a stunning performance of Apsaras dance, accompanied by live music and a chorus, in a beautiful and authentic setting. The theatre also offers traditional music and dance workshops, allowing visitors to experience the culture of Cambodia firsthand. It is a must-visit Siem Reap attraction for anyone interested in the rich history and cultural heritage of Cambodia.
Highlights of Apsara Theatre include:
- Live Apsaras dance performances.
- Available Traditional music and dance workshops.
- Sophisticated and authentic meals served at the restaurant in Apsara Theatre.
- An opportunity to discover Cambodian’s deep traditions through a dance show.
4. Banteay Chhmar
Banteay Chhmar is an archaeological site and temple complex located in northwestern Cambodia. It was built in the late 12th century during the reign of King Jayavarman VII. The temple is known for its well-preserved carvings and inscriptions, which depict scenes from Hindu mythology, as well as historical events and everyday life during the Angkor period. Banteay Chhmar is also notable for its large sandstone causeway, which was used to connect the main temple to the nearby city.
Despite being less well-known, Banteay Chhmar is considered a momentous cultural and historical site and is among the must-visit Siem Reap attractions for anyone interested in the rich heritage of the country.
Highlights of Banteay Chhmar include:
- One of the largest and most important temple complexes from the Angkor period.
- Well-preserved carvings and inscriptions depicting Hindu mythology and historical events.
- Less visited than other temples in Cambodia makes for a more pleasant tour of the temple.
5. Banteay Srey Butterfly Centre
Situated about 25 km from Siem Reap, Banteay Srey Butterfly Centre is a conservation centre in Siem Reap dedicated to the preservation and protection of Cambodia’s native butterfly species, as well as to educating visitors about the important role that butterflies play in the ecosystem. The centre houses a large collection of live butterflies, which visitors can observe and learn about in a natural and interactive setting. In addition to the exhibit, the centre also offers guided tours, workshops, and educational programs, allowing visitors to gain a deeper understanding of the biology, behaviour, and conservation of butterflies.
Banteay Srey Butterfly Centre is a unique and educational destination that offers various things to do in Siem Reap for those interested in nature’s creatures and environmental education.
Highlights of Banteay Srey Butterfly Centre include:
- Hands-on learning opportunities through interactive butterfly exhibits.
- Lush and beautiful butterfly garden to immerse yourself in.
- Supports local conservation efforts and sustainable tourism practices
- Fun and educational destination for all ages.
6. Cambodia Cultural Village
Cambodia Cultural Village is a cultural theme park located in that offers a unique take on the rich and diverse culture of Cambodia through a series of interactive exhibits, performances, and activities. The park features replicas of traditional Cambodian homes, as well as exhibits showcasing the country’s art, music, dance, and history. Here, you can also enjoy traditional dance and music performances, try on traditional clothing and participate in traditional hands-on activities.
The park originally opened to the public in late 2003. Now, it is home to more than 10 villages that showcase the diverse cultures and characteristics of 19 Cambodian races. It is a fun and educational destination, offering a comprehensive and immersive introduction to the culture of Cambodia.
Highlights of Cambodia Cultural Village include:
- Interactive exhibits showcasing Cambodia’s art, music, dance, and history.
- Replicas of traditional Cambodian homes
- Traditional dance and music performances
- Hands-on activities, such as basket weaving and pottery making
7. Phnom Kulen National Park
Phnom Kulen National Park is positioned approximately 45 km north of Siem Reap centre, it is considered one of the significant cultural and natural sites in Cambodia. It hosts a range of scenic landscapes, historical sites, and cultural landmarks. Visitors can explore the park on foot, by bike, or by car, taking in the breathtaking views, crystal-clear streams, and lush vegetation. Phnom Kulen National Park is also a popular destination for outdoor activities, such as trekking, picnicking, and bird-watching. All in all, it offers a unique and memorable experience for visitors.
Highlights of Phnom Kulen National Park include:
- Over 50 ancient temples, including Preah Ang Thom, Lolei Temple, Sarah Damrei, Sra Srang, and more.
- A wide range of wildlife species to observe and admire (birds, monkeys and other animals),
- The Phnom Kulen waterfall, which is one of the park’s main attractions and the place to have a relaxing picnic.
A Hindu-style temple located within the Angkor Thom and is the tallest climbable temple in the complex. Its history dates back to the 10th century and was built during the reign of King Rajendravarman. The temple is known for its central tower, which is surrounded by four smaller towers and a moat. It was used as a royal palace and was later converted into a temple. Phimeanakas is considered one of the most important temples within Angkor Thom, and its architectural style is unique, reflecting a blend of Hindu and Khmer design elements.
From the top, it offers a breathtaking view of the surrounding area, which is enough to say that it is one of the places to visit in Siem Reap you should not overlook.
Highlights of Phimeanakas include:
- Astonishing architecture dating back to the 10th century that exhibits a blend of Hindu and Khmer architectural styles.
- One of the tallest climbable temples in Angkor Thom
- Associated with the legends as the temple of the king and that in the golden tower that topped the temple, there dwelt a mystical serpent.
9. Pub Street
If you are looking for nightlife or vibrant fun, Pub Street is the perfect place for you. The street is lined with bars, restaurants, and shops selling a wide range of goods, including souvenirs, clothing, and local handicrafts. Visitors can enjoy live music, drink local and international beers, and try traditional Khmer dishes. Pub Street is also home to several spas and massage centres, offering a range of treatments and services to help visitors relax and rejuvenate. With its vibrant atmosphere and wide range of attractions, Pub Street is the place to visit in Siem Reap for anyone looking to experience the nightlife under the atmosphere of Cambodian culture.
Highlights of Pub Street include:
- Traditional Khmer cuisine both on the streets and inside restaurants.
- Local shops offering souvenirs, clothing, and local handicrafts.
- Spas and massage centres for the utmost relaxation.
- Party to your heart’s content, since the street becomes a pedestrianised zone from 5 pm until 4 am in the morning.
10. Psar Chas
Taking a tour in Psar Chas is among the most popular things to do in Siem Reap. Psar Chas, or Siem Reap Old Market, is one of the oldest markets in Cambodia and offers a unique shopping experience, with a range of goods for sale, including silk, textiles, spices, jewelry, and traditional crafts. Additionally, the market is also famous for its food stalls, which offer a variety of local and international dishes, including fresh fruit, noodle soups, and an array of street food. The market is a hub of local activity, attracting both tourists and locals alike. Visitors can explore the narrow alleys and observe the daily life of the local people, as well as bargaining for goods and trying new foods.
With its rich history, vibrant atmosphere, and diverse offerings, Psar Chas is the place where there you can indulge in a range of exotic products that cannot be found anywhere else.
Highlights of Psar Chas (Siem Reap Old Market) include:
- Unique shopping experience: with a range of goods for sale, including silk, textiles, spices, jewelry, and traditional crafts
- Food stalls: offering a variety of local and international dishes, including fresh fruit, noodle soups, and street food
- Local hub of activity: attracting both tourists and locals
- Rich history: one of the oldest markets in Cambodia
- Cultural experience: observing daily life and bargaining for goods
That includes our top picks for the places to visit in Siem Reap, and for all these activities you can enjoy in this vibrant city, you will surely need a hotel in Siem Reap to relax after a long day.
Fortunately, our 5-star hotel in Siem Reap – Park Hyatt Siem Reap is situated in the centre of the city, which is an ideal location for visiting all the interesting attractions.
Park Hyatt Siem Reap
Park Hyatt Siem Reap is situated in the centre of Siem Reap, which offers a seamless travel experience to the city’s attractions, including the world-famous Angkor Wat, Preasdark village, and more to satisfy everyone’s vacation journey.
At the hotel, guests will be greeted with luxurious property and the art of hospitality. The hotel offers 104 luxury rooms and prestigious suites complete with modern amenities and stunning decoration details. Here, you can indulge in a bespoke spa journey, a tranquil swimming pool, a fitness centre, and discover countless experiences and things to do in Siem Reap that make your vacation much more memorable.
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