Upon arrival you will be met by your guide, who will transfer you to your hotel. The remainder of your day is at leisure.
Siem Reap is the base for exploring the fabled temples of Angkor, the ancient capital of the Khmer empire. Over 100 temples are spread over a vast area and the site easily lives up to its status as one of the seven wonders of the forgotten world.
Siem Reap has expanded at a phenomenal rate in recent years, with another hotel seemingly opening every other month. However, the old town retains much of its original charm and there are a number of sites of interest such as museums, galleries and the local market. The town also has a wide choice of restaurants and bars, with something to suit every taste.
Overnight in Siem Reap.
During any visit to the Angkor temples, we ensure your day(s) remain both flexible and personal. Having met with your guide, you will be able to discuss in detail what you are looking to achieve from your time at the temples. Whilst some wish to explore as many temples as they can during their stay, others like to travel at a slower, more relaxed pace.
Maximum experience, minimum crowds
Whether it’s sunrise at Angkor Wat or sunset at Pre Rup, climbing through the snake like roots that engulf Ta Prohm or swimming in the quiet waters of the West Baray Reservoir (or a combination of these), you can be sure that your visit to one of the seven wonders will not be easily forgotten. Unlike some archaeological tours, the Angkor temples never seem to lose that initial ‘wow factor’. Every site is as outstanding as the last, and it will be with a mixture of regret and excitement that you'll get back into your air-conditioned transport to visit the next site. We do still appreciate that some visitors are wary of becoming ‘templed-out’ and to combat this we can create more varied days with visits to other sites such as floating villages and flooded forests on the Tonlé Sap Lake, museums and exhibitions, cooking schools or simply time at leisure to explore Siem Reap or laze by the pool.
All our guides are highly experienced Angkor specialists, fully trained and licensed to work at the temples. Along with their exceptional knowledge of each temple and the civilisations that built them, Selective Asia’s guides know how best to avoid the bus-loads that descend on any given temple at certain times of the day, and know every trick in the book when it comes to getting the best photos and the most tranquil moments.
If you have any specific requirements or special interests, be sure to let us know and we will arrange the guide with the most suitable expertise.
You may also wish to consider visiting some of the further lying such as Beng Melea & Koh Ker, Sambor Prei Kuk or Preah Vihear. Excursions to these less-visited temples always enhance your experience however they do change things logistically and therefore visits must be arranged well in advance of your arrival.
Overnight in Siem Reap.
Click for further details on the Angkor Temples
We appreciate that before witnessing the scale of the temple site for yourself it is hard to grasp what’s achievable in a day. Along with including any temples on your wish list, with the assistance of your experienced guide, you will also be able to dictate the amount of time and the hours of the day you are at the temples. This is very advantageous when you consider it can be hot work clambering amongst the incredible structures and your hotel pool is just 15 minutes away! By travelling with Selective Asia you truly have free reign of your programme whilst at the Angkor Temples.
6 temples in focus
Angkor Wat – certainly the most famous of all the Angkor temples and, some would argue the most impressive. The temple, built in the early 12th century by King Suryavarman II contains three storeys of libraries, galleries and towers surrounded by a thick retaining wall and an imposing moat. Many visitors aim to visit the temple at sunrise to capture one of the most iconic Angkor photos.
Ta Prohm - a temple left in much the same condition as when it was found - creating one of the most photogenic and atmospheric temples of the entire Angkor site. The tree roots of enormous fig trees and gigantic creepers can be seen breaking through the walls and stone carvings. Any visit is truly an adventure.
The Bayon - built in the 13th century as the state temple of King Jayavarman VII, standing at the centre of his capital - Angkor Thom. The Bayon’s most distinctive feature is the multitude of huge faces carved into large towers which rise up to form the central peak. The Bayon sits at the exact centre of Angkor Thom and roads lead to it from each of the city's cardinal points.
Beng Mealea - the size and scale of Angkor Wat but utterly swallowed by the jungle. Clambering about this titan of temples it’s easy to imagine what it must have been like for early explorers. Having travelled the 65 km’s to Beng Mealea it would be a shame not to continue a little further and visit Koh Ker. This 10th century capital, abandoned over 1000 years ago, actually consists of 96 temples spread out over a large site and many are now buried.
Due to the distance from Siem Reap both temples are far less visited than Angkor Wat and you will be able to explore the temples in more solitude.
Banteay Srei - one of the most unusual and widely recognisable temples of Angkor. Built largely of red sandstone, it is covered with elaborate and deeply carved decoration. All the buildings are miniature in scale and it is this, along with the beautiful carvings, that have made it such a popular temple.
Morning transfer to the small port of Mé Chrey where you will board a private boat for your cruise across the Tonlé Sap Lake. Initially you will pass many rice paddies before the lake widens and a floating village comes into sight.
Upon arrival into the village your guide will explain how people live and work in this unique setting.You can either choose to remain on the boat or switch to a kayak, allowing you to make your own way back onto the lake to enjoy the scenery and spot for birdlife. Depending on the water levels, you may also be able to kayak through an area of flooded forest.
In the early afternoon, transfer back to Siem Reap where the remainder of your day is at leisure until 6pm when you commence your evening tour with a difference. Riding pillion on a Vespa, you’ll experience Siem Reap by night from a local perspective, enjoying authentic Cambodian food and brews along the way.
Your evening starts in a chic bar where you will meet your fellow vespa passengers and local guide and enjoy a cold beer. Over the next 4.5 hours you will visit a food market and learn about the ingredients that can be found in Cambodian cuisine; sample street food, including the country’s infamous bug snacks, at a buzzing local night market and enjoy a picnic style dinner. Although food is the focus of the evening, a stop will also be made at a popular local shrine. Finish the evening at a winery, where you will have the opportunity to taste Cambodia’s famous (and quite potent!) rice wine.
Overnight in Siem Reap.