Siem Reap literally mean “the defeat of Siam” (in the past, there was a conflict between the Siamese and Khmer people). Siem Reap used to be capital of Khmer Empire in many centuries. From 13th century, Siem Reap is conquered and destroyed. The capital is burned but the stone architecture construction was preserved almost entirely in which typical relics are Angkor Thom and Angkor Wat. Siem Reap is the gateway to Angkor region.
Beautiful Siem Reap city
From Phnom Penh, you have to spend about 6 hours on bus passing 2 provinces Kongpong Cham and Kongpong Thom. The road is more than 300 kilometers long. Kongpong Thom province is homeland of Pol Pot, the leader of the “Khmer Rouge”. Or you go to Siem Reap by boat from Phrom Penh.
The boat from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap
Siem Reap was former French colony, therefore, this city still carried the French-style architecture. Coming to Siem Reap, you can find many interesting places. Besides stunning Angkor ruins, Angkor National Museum, you might enjoy sitting on tuk-tuk wandering. Tuk-tuks will take you to nearly any street corner with only $2-3.
Angkor National Museum
On the street, you can see an ad for “Free Apsara Dancing”. It is the traditional Apsara dance performances. There are also many souvenir and handicraft shops, silk farms. A very special thing in Siem Reap is you can get free public Wifi network covering the Pub St and Alley areas besides the internet cafés anywhere. However, it can be sometimes very slow.
Quiet and clean shopping street in modern Siem Reap
Pub street in Siem Reap
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Anyone who comes to Siem Reap can not forget to wander in Pub Street in the Old Quarter Area. Going here you would want to call it “Food Street”. In the alleys and streets, you can find many bars and restaurants. If you want to enjoy Western and Asian cuisines, you also have a number of restaurants along Sivatha Blvd (the main north – south road block of the market)
Pub Street in Siem Reap
Pub street is a few blocks of bars, cafes, shops, and small eateries. In the evening, you can walk down the street and smell everywhere food’s flavor, then find yourself a place to enjoy the impressive cuisine here.
Very unique thing in Siem Reap is you can get massage ANYWHERE. Massage shops are located almost anywhere inside or outside your hotel, hostel, guesthouse, lodging villa. The prices are very competitive in Siem Reap. Massages start at 1 dollar usually for foot massages on the street. In addition, doctor fish massage is worthy for you to try as long as you do not unluckily dip your feet into a piranha aquarium.
The little fish will eat the dead skin off your feet!
After relaxing moment with little fish, you can continue you explorations around the area with trying the local tasty crocodile pizza or hamburger.
Crocodile pizza in Siem Reap
The market area downtown is also a worthy-visit place. The huge Psar Chaa market here has a large number of stalls where you can find a lot of things: ceramic, wind chimes, pots, hats, clothing, handbags, jewelry, housewares… and even a food market.
Food market in downtown
Siem Reap nowadays is an attractive tourist destination. You can easily find comfortable accommodations for your trip to this beautiful province and not far from Siem Reap city, grandiose Angkor ruins – the most popular tourist attraction in Cambodia are still waiting for you to explore.
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