Angkor Wat is the number one attraction in Cambodia. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the world’s largest religious monument. Originally built as a Hindu temple, Angkor Wat remains crammed with stone reliefs and statues of Vishnu, Brahma, Shiva, Ganesha and Hanuman.
We took Airasia from Kuala Lumpur to Siam Reap, cost around $90 only. It is a 2 hours flight. Siam Reap airport is small, simple airport but fairly new terminal. Beautiful inside, marble floors, lots of counters with staff for both visa and immigration. Airport staff were efficient and friendly. We bought mobile sim card in airport with data package which cost around USD$5 only. It is valid for 30 days and is preloaded with US$10. Can use it to make calls and surf the Internet. There are loads of hotel and budget hotel around Siem Reap. Hotels there are cheap. Our 3 star hotel costs only USD 20/night.
We rent a tuk-tuk for 2 days, to take us around siam reap. It cost us USD$15/ per day. The average cost for one day tuk-tuk is USD$18. We had a very good driver and he also became our tour guide as well. At end of the tour we give him extra tips. Siam reap economy completely depends on tourism. Even though Riel is the official currency of Cambodia, US dollar is widely accepted. In fact the main currency for most of the transactions are in US dollar.
We bought 3 day pass. It cost us USD$40. The entrance fees for a visit to the Angkor Park will change on 1.2.2017. The planned increases for the Angkor-Pass are quite substantial. New Price as of 01.02.2017 : 1 day pass is $37, 3 day pass $62 and 7 day pass $72.
On the 2nd day of tour we woke up early at 4am to catch the sunrise at Angkor Wat. We had packed breakfast, provided by the hotel. Unfortunately, we did not get the best view of the sunrise because of the season (too cloudy). But anyway, it was still priceless!
Angkor Archaeological Park hosts the temples which include the Angkor Wat Temple, Bayon Temple, and majority of Ancient Temples in Siem Reap. The temples are actually grouped into two – The Big Circle, and the Small Circle. The Big Circle is composed chiefly of all the surrounding temples within the park, which are quite interesting and quite far from each other, while the Small Circle is where you get to see Angkor Wat and all the other temples near it.
There are also other temples which are not part of these two primary groups which we manage visit by tuk-tuk. Banteay Srei and Kbal Spean. Gorgeous ride thru the countryside. Both temple located about 15km from each other.
Kbal Spean is a river and waterfall with thousands “Linga” in Kulen hills. We climb the hill to reach the temple itself, and the walk is absolutely stunning. It is in the jungle and the journey to climb up the hills took us around 45 minutes. The waterfall at the top is small but a great splash/swim opportunity. The lingas and the carvings at the top are only small but they are significant religious icons and, in conjunction with Phnom Kulen, form part of a pilgrimage trail for hindu visitors.
Restaurants in Siam Reap are scattered across town, though many are concentrated in the Pub Street and Old Market areas. Pub Street is the most happening place in town. Here, there is many international cuisine restaurants. There are few good indian restaurants as well. Pub street is a good place for shopping and also for foot massage.
Angkor Wat built by Descendant of Raja Raja Cholas and it is a largest Vishnu temple. Visiting Angkor really is one of those ‘journeys of a lifetime.’