Siem Reap is a busy city and popular destination for tourists arriving from all around the world to see that the worlds renowned Angkor Wat temple complex.
Hundreds of years back, the asian south east was part of this mighty Siam Empire and this can be reflected in the towns current name, Siem Reap, which means literally “beating the Siam” which refers to the war which is depicted on the temples of the Angkor Wat Temple Complex.
The first mention of Angkor Wat and is its surrounding temples in contemporary literature was by Antonio da Magdalena, a Portuguese monk who traveled through the area in 1586. He explained the temples as having “Extraordinary construction, impossible to explain with a pen” remarking that they were like “no other building in the world” with “towers and decoration” which are as refined as the human imagination would believe possible.
The best way to get around Siem Reap is either with a hired bicycle, or even a Tuk Tuk. After many foreigns having mishaps, it is no longer possible to rent motorcycles and the choice, the individual powered bike, could be rented for around $4-5 daily. There are many bicycle rental shops around the city, and you can also ask your hotel or guest home if they have any bikes available for rent. The other option, a Tuk Tuk, Siem Reap guide, is better in warm weather.
There are many Tuk Tuk’s around town in Siem Reap and its impossible to go without transport. You can employ a Tuk Tuk for brief trips which can cost you $1-$2 in the city, or you can hire a Tuk Tuk for your entire day, from before sunrise, till after sun-set. This can cost you $15/day, but in the event that you decide to visit the far out temples such as “bantey srey” you will have to give your Tuk Tuk driver an additional $10. Tuk Tuk drivers at Siem Reap need to enroll for a Tuk Tuk permit and wear a numbered vest at all times. Remember your Tuk Tuk drivers number or you might be unable to recognize which driver is yours.
Souvenirs popular with tourists, inluding paintings, carvings, silks and other fabrics, silver products, clothing, DVD’s and CD’s and pottery can be bought at the Old Marketplace which lies at the middle of the most happening part of town. Vendors expect you to drive a hard bargain, so if you pay more than 2/3rds the initial cost, you are not bargaining tough enough. Always halve the price first quoted, and play hard ball. That is a cultural thing and is thought to be a essential part of trade.
The district surrounding the old market is filled with restaurants, bars, hotels and cafes, some of which offer internet service. Many tourists make this an enjoyable place to spend an afternoon, Siem Reap Travel, but this part of city certainly transforms into a celebration heaven at night.
“Pub Street” is a central street in Siem Reap which is made available to pedestrians during the nighttime, which supplies a fun road atmosphere with souvenir shops, restaurants, pubs and many of the most popular nightclubs in Siem Reap. As there is not any traffic, many of the parties kicked out into the street, where vendors and beggars are at a minimum. The most well-known clubs in this street include the Temple Club for drinks, music and other entertainment, or the Angkor What? Bar that caters to the backpacker crowd. Both are full every night of the week. Pub street is definitely worth a trip and no trip is complete without a night on the town in Siem Reap.
If you enjoy siem reap, There Are Lots of other attractions round cambodia, with the beach party scene of Sihanoukville, and the riverside restaurants in Phnom Penh.