Cambodia and Siem Reap have much more to offer than just the temples of Angkor. Admittedly, as the world’s largest city of antiquity Angkor is truly impressive. But it is worth taking a closer look at the city of Siem Reap, its surrounding area and its people. Many people still travel to Siem Reap for just a few days and usually only on a really tight program of visits to the Angkor Temple. Often by the 5th Temple onwards, and with what I refer to as a “glazed expression”, people are less receptive to the many stories the tour guides know from times long ago. Especially in the unfamiliar heat.
Here is a list of 100 things you can do in Siem Reap and the surrounding area!
To inspire you, here is a list of 100 things you should “do” in Siem Reap and the surrounding area. Why 100? Well, to begin with there were 15 points, and they were put together really quickly. And then there were 25 and even 30 that came to me quickly. So I decided instead to create a list of 100 things to do and publish it, even though it is not yet finished. There are still some of the things to do missing and it is far from being fully linked. But this will certainly change over time, so here is the plan, I wish you lots of fun browsing the list and maybe you will have a few of your own ultimate suggestions for me, if you do why not let me know in the comments and I can add your suggestions to the list.
- Visit the temples of Angkor during the equinox
- Foster a close friendship with Cambodians
- Find yourself a favorite Tuk-Tuk driver
- Try an unusual breakfast at the Pshar Leu market in Siem Reap
- Show off your singing skills during a karaoke session
- Enjoy exquisite drinks at the Shinta Mani Hotel during happy hour
- Try Sampeah, the Cambodian way of greeting
- Buy souvenirs from adult street vendors to help support them and their families
- Visit the silk farm outside Siem Reap
- Enjoy Rocher chocolates in the Blue Pumpkin Cafe
- Enjoy your lunch in a hammock restaurant
- Go to a Dr. Beat Richner concert [update April 2017] Due to the illness of Dr. Beat Richner, there are no more concerts.
- Go and donate blood
- Be the guest of a Cambodian family in Siem Reap
- Enjoy Phare’s breathtaking circus performance
- Get a haircut at a small hairdresser
- Take a tour of Cambodia with the Bee doctor
- Visit the Angkor National Museum
- Admire the beautiful butterflies in the butterfly garden
- Visit the Angkor Handicraft Association market
- Test your courage and order a meal with insects
- Take part in a cookery course and prepare your own food
- Take a trip to Phnom Kulen
- Climb Phnom Krom and admire the sunset
- Take a bicycle tour
- Take a helicopter trip over Angkor and Siem Reap
- Quench your thirst with coconut water
- Try food from a small street vendor
- Take a Khmer massage course
- Buy your souvenirs at the “Made in Cambodia Market”
- Order Lok Lak and / or water spinach in a restaurant
- Take a journey on the Cambodian Bamboo train
- Go to Friends ‘N’ Stuff and buy something
- Treat yourself to a great meal in the Marum restaurant
- Visit the Hard Rock Café
- Give your feet a fish massage
- Visit a pagoda, for example the Po Banteaychey Pagoda to the south of Siem Reap
- Help with rice cultivation
- Ride a gondola through the jungle
- Look at the breathtaking sunrise from a hill
- Travel during the Cambodian rainy season
- Take part in a food tour
- Visit the Angkor Center for Conservation and Biodiversity
- Learn about the tradition of Cambodian craftsmanship
- Take part in the potter’s hour at the Khmer Ceramics Fine Arts Center
- Walk along the Siem Reap river
- Go to a different restaurant every day
- Learn a few words of the Khmer language
- Go on a quad tour
- Play mini golf
- Go to the HAVEN restaurant for lunch or dinner and support the training of Cambodian youths
- Run in the Angkor Half Marathon
- Visit classes at a school or university
- Swing through the jungle with the Flight of the Gibbons
- Go on a jeep tour
- Visit the “Smile of Angkor” show
- Go to the Landmine museum
- Let yourself be enchanted by the valley of the 1000 Lingas
- Visit the Beng Mealea Temple
- Join the “Angkor Wat Bike4Kids” bike spectacle in aid of a good cause
- Go swimming in the Western Baray
- Visit an Apsara show
- Celebrate the Cambodian new year Festival of Susdei Chnam Thmei
- Take a boat trip on the Tonle Sap Lake and watch the floating villages
- Treat yourself to a Cupcake at the Blossom Café and support the training concept for Cambodian youngsters
- Play a game with Cambodian children
- Visit the Prek Toal Bird Sanctuary
- Take part in a tour of Artisans Angkor
- Visit the Wats in Siem Reap in just one day
- Visit the new Angkor Panorama Museum
- Get in touch with a local NGO and donate
- Visit the new Artbox Museum
- Buy a picture at the Khmer Kids Gallery
- Order Khmer Amok in a restaurant
- Book a Tuk Tuk driver for a countryside trip
- Enjoy nightlife at Pub-Street
- Visit the Angkor Night Market
- Visit the Sam Veasna Center for Wildlife Conservation
- Enjoy a meal at New Hope Training Restaurant which also supports a health centre and a free community school
- Stay in Siem Reap for more than 3 days
More info for your stay in Siem Reap
In these articles, you can find further information here on Visit Angkor for your stay in Siem Reap:
- Visas -The most important information at a glace
- Siem Reap: Arrival
- Angkor-Pass: New Prices from 1.2.2017 – full details
- Let’s go to Angkor Wat, but what should I wear?
- 34 Sunset Points in the Angkor Park
- What is the Code of Conduct for Angkor
- Behaviour – 18 tipps
- Climate in Cambodia
- Angkor Temples – timeline of an Epoch *Photogallery*
Find your hotel in CambodiaMaybe you don’t have a hotel for your Cambodia trip yet, then you can browse and book directly here at booking.com* agoda. com* there are also great deals.
Links with a * are affiliate links. If you like my blog and you buy, book or subscribe to something via an affiliate link, I get a small commission from the provider. Of course there are no additional costs for you.
Join our Facebook group
International travel group with friendly people who love Cambodia. We speak English, German and a little Khmer.
I’d 500% reccommend taking a pottery class from Khmer ceramics. It’s $20, and you learn from a deaf-mute potter. It was one of my favorite experiences!
thank you for your nice comment! I think this must be a touching experience you’ve made at the Ceramics Center. And for sure, a visit is an important point on my bucket list as well. Thank you for the extra motivation :-)
Btw: I fell in love with ceramics – my daughter made me a present with two little bowls. They are such pretty that I started to take nearly countless photos. You can watch some of them here on my instagram account: https://www.instagram.com/ingapalme/
Best :) Inga
Hi, how about eating the special rolled ice creams the street vendors make?
Or visiting Gelato, also THE place to have ice creams.
Another great thing to do is to visit the elephants sanctuary or even volunteer there for a few days to contribute to environmental sustainability, reforestation, teach English in the villages, and take care of the rescued elephants.
I did this for 1 week when I spent a month in Chiang Mai, a life changing experience. The same famous lady opened a rehab center here in northern Cambodia and in Myanmar.
Take part in an outdoor Zumba class near the Royal Palace.
Take a yoga class or workshop with Navutu Dreams.
Spend a day at Cambo Beach off Funky Lane, the only beach in SR; opened December 24, 2018.
Thank you for quite an informative blog, I love the language section with its easy to learn sentences and counting. We have just settled down in SR so I’m already learning the Khmer language, but I appreciate listening to the spoken parts and the info about the apps.
All the best,
arkun chraaan <3 Thank you so much for your detailed comment and your feedback! Sounds fantastic! Will add some of them in my list. Only with teaching english by foreigners, I am not sure that's really good. In my home country Germany, for example, I am only allowed to teach at a school if I am officially trained and certified to do so. But in Cambodia I can go to school and teach whatever I want to without any documentation of my skills. Not sure, whether this is really helpful for the kids. However, I think there will be kind of a solution one day :-) Happy to hear that you have such a fantastic time in Cambodia! I'll back in Siem Reap this coming March. For how long are you going to stay in Siem Reap?
Le Hai ;-) Inga