Siem Reap attracts millions of visitors each year from all over the world. The small provincial town has grown into a big tourist hub and continues to grow each year. In the high season, hotels are full, and pub street is packed. Even in the low season, it’s difficult to escape the crowds at Angkor Wat. So, what draws people to Siem Reap? Here’s the run down.
- Angkor Wat
There’s only really one reason why so many people come to Siem Reap and it’s for Angkor Wat. The temple is the world’s biggest religious structure and its size is breath-taking. You have to remind yourself that this temple was built nearly 1000 years ago without any of the technology we have today. It’s not fully known how the ancient Khmer constructed such large temples with such precision.
Today, it’s become one of the world’s most famous buildings and is instantly recognizable. As Siem Reap is only a few kilometres away from the famous temple, it’s become the centre of tourism in Cambodia as the temple continues to draw large crowds.
However, Angkor Wat isn’t the only reason why you should visit Siem Reap!
- All the other temples!
The Khmer were prolific builders and built hundreds of temples during their time as rulers of the Khmer empire. Other famous and popular temples include Bayon which is where you’ll see the famous faces which look down on you from the towers. Bayon is in the centre of Angkor Thom and it’s a fascinating templet to visit all the nooks and crannies.
Ta Prohm, also known as the Tomb Raider temple, is another popular one on the tourist trail. The temple is instantly recognisable from scenes in the famous Lara Croft movie and many guests like to re-enact some of the famous scenes from the movie!
- The locals are lovely!
When you ask most visitors to Siem Reap why they love it here so much, nearly always the answer is the same. People will often tell you that “Cambodians are genuinely friendly” and they aren’t wrong. Like all places in the world, there are good and bad people everywhere. However, it seems that in Cambodia, everyone is nice!
You’ll make new friends nearly everywhere you go and it’s a genuine friendship. It’s common for your tour guide or tuk tuk driver to invite you back to his house for a party or a drink. You’ll end up having a great time, meeting some great people, and making new friends when you come to Siem Reap.
- The Weather
If you like the sun and like everything to be the same, then the weather is perfect for you! Days are roughly 12-13 hours long, all year round. There are two seasons, the dry season and the rainy season. Even in the rainy season, it doesn’t rain all the time. Most of the time, it’s just a quick but strong tropical shower in the afternoon. Sometimes it will rain throughout the night, but not very often.
It’s hot in Cambodia. Even in the cool season, it’s hot. If you’re not a fan of the cold weather and love temperatures in the 30s to 40s, then Siem Reap is the place for you. It’s sunny all year round. There’s a little period in December and January where it can get a bit cold and drop to as low as 15 or 16 degrees during the night. However, overall, Siem Reap is sunny. Very Sunny.
- The Prices are amazing!
Although prices in Siem Reap have risen over the last few years, it’s still a cheap destination for western visitors. Food, drinks, accommodation, and transport are all very cheap when compared to many western countries.
Even the Grand Bayon Hotel offers fantastic value for money. We often have large discounts which you can check out on our packages page. We try to maintain our high standards and offer fantastic value for money at the same time.
Siem Reap is a great place to visit and there are hundreds of reasons why you might want to come and see us in temple town. We’ve only listed five here, but after you’ve spend a few days exploring Angkor Wat and eating out in town, we’re sure you’ll have hundreds of reasons why you love it here too.