Looking for things to do in Siem Reap? With its amazing temples, delicious street food, and lively markets to explore, it’s no wonder why thousands of tourists travel to Siem Reap every year.
Siem Reap is a city that has a lot to offer its visitors, where the old city of Angkor is one of the highlights.
It’s definitely worth spending a few days in this city to visit all the amazing temples, enjoy the atmosphere, and taste the delicious street food. Below you can read more about the best attractions and the top things to do in Siem Reap as a tourist.
Go shopping at the night market
Do you want to buy some souvenirs? Then the night market is a must to visit.
Strolling around the night market is one of the most popular things to do in Siem Reap, and here you will find both Cambodian souvenirs and local crafts to Khmer artwork.
You can easily spend an hour or two in this market since there are plenty of things to have a look at and various places where you can eat delicious street food.
Spoil yourself at the spa
One of the best things to do in Siem Reap is to spoil yourself at the spa. Spending a day at the spa is so nice and relaxing.
Spa in Siem Reap is both cheap and good, so make sure to treat yourself with a treatment or two while you’re in the city. You can book both traditional massages and facial treatments in the spas of Siem Reap.
The large, impressive, and old city of Angkor attracts thousands of tourists to Siem Reap every year.
It was between 800 and 1400 that Angkor was a kingdom, and Angkor Thom was its center. Angkor Thom is today surrounded by both walls and a moat, where you can see several impressive temples. Angkor Wat, Bayon, and Ta Prohm (where the movie Tomb Raider was filmed) are three of the most popular temples to visit.
Both inside and outside the walls there are several impressive temples to see. It’s truly amazing to see all the details of the buildings that are so well preserved.
It’s also very exciting to be in a place filled with so many beautiful buildings and interesting history. This is no doubt one the best things to do in Siem Reap!
Party at the pub street
Siem Reap’s pub street is a popular place to visit during the day and night. As the sun goes down, the pub street lights up with neon signs that will guide you to both bars and restaurants.
Along the street there is something for everyone, whether you are looking for lively nightclubs, bars with live music, or nice restaurants where you can eat delicious Cambodian food.
Visit the floating village
Tonle Sap is the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia. Here you can visit a floating village to see how the fishermen live and also go on a boat tour around the lake.
It’s interesting to see how these houses are built above the water. They are built on long strong pillars that prevent the houses from sinking down into the water.
Tonle Sap is definitely worth a visit if you have a few days to spend in Siem Reap.
Take a pottery class at Angkor Pottery Center
If you like to participate in activities during your travels, I recommend visiting Angkor Pottery Center. Here you can learn the basics of making earthenware – like they did in ancient Angkor times.
They have an english-speaking class where you can learn to make both vases, bowls and pots. The item you create will make a perfect Cambodian souvenir that you can bring back home as a gift or a decoration for your home.
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Go hiking in Kulen National Park
If you like to be out in nature then you must go hiking in Kulen National Park. It’s one of the best things to do in Siem Reap for the nature lovers.
These hiking trails through the rainforests offer several cool attractions like ancient temples, beautiful waterfalls and cool statues. You hike until you reach the waterfall where you can jump in and cool down in the refreshing water.
On site there are vendors selling both snacks and drinks.
Bike around town
It doesn’t matter where you are in Siem Reap, you will see both hotels and shops renting out bikes all around town. Biking is a great way to explore the city, since you do not have a schedule to follow and will see several hidden gems along the way.
Renting a bike is no doubt one of the best things to do in Siem Reap to get some exercise and to get around the city smoothly.
Take a cooking class
If you like to cook, I recommend taking a cooking class in Siem Reap. Taking cooking classes abroad is both fun and educational if you like the local food.
After the cooking class you can bring your skills back home to cook Cambodian food for your loved ones. Invite friends and family over for dinner and tell them all about your adventures in Cambodia!
Go see an Aspara dance performance
Aspara is a beautiful traditional dance from Cambodia. Aspara means “beautiful girls” in Khmer and was originally performed by girls said to have supernatural powers. This dance goes back to the Angkorian period when Suryavarman II had power.
During this period, the women danced the aspara dance only for the royal family in Cambodia.
Today you can go see this traditional dance at various performances in Siem Reap. It’s really cool to see the dancers in their beautiful and detailed costumes.
Visit Cambodia Landmine Museum
The Vietnam War was a military conflict during the Cold War in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia between 1955 and 1975. It was a tragic time when many people died from both land mines and grenades.
Today it’s believed to be more than 3 million active landmines left in the ground in Cambodia, and at the Cambodia Landmine Museum you can see some of them that are active and detonated.
At this museum you can also learn more about the history and the landmines in Cambodia, as well as learning how the landmines have affected the locals throughout the years.
Eat unique local dishes
When it comes to Cambodian food, there are some dishes that you have to taste during your stay.
Lort Cha, Loc Lac, Kuy Teav and Nom Banh Cook are popular dishes to eat in Cambodia – among both locals and tourists.
If you’re a little bit more adventurous, I can recommend tasting Prahok which is fermented fish, as well as the dish Ongkrong saek koo which is cooked with large ants.
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Things to do Siem Reap with kids
There are several things to do in Siem Reap with kids. It’s a perfect destination to travel to with your family.
You can go explore old temples, see various shows, go on boat rides, go zip-lining, and much more.
- Play minigolf at Angkor Wat Putt
- Visit Sisters Srey Cafe
- Take a boat tour at Tonle Sap
- Go zip-lining
- Take a cooking class
- Explore Angkor
- Explore Kulen National Park
- Go climbing at Angkor Climbing Wall
- Take a pottery class
Things to do in Siem Reap when it rains
If you would happen be in Siem Reap during rainy season, I can tell you that there are several things to do when it rains. You can visit various museums, learn to cook local food, go shopping, go to the spa, and much more.
Below you have some recommendations of things to do in Siem Reap when it rains:
- Visit Angkor National Museum
- Take a pottery class
- Take a cooking class
- Visit Siem Reap Old Market
- Learn about Cambodia’s history at Cambodia Landmine Museum
- Go to the spa
- Go shopping in Angkor Trade Center
What are your favorite things to do in Siem Reap? Leave a comment below!
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