4D3N to gateway of Angkor Wat

It was a short trip. I wanted to plan a short getaway to end 2017, so I thought Cambodia (Siem Reap, Angkor Wat) would be a good choice. 

Most people like to visit Angkor Wat from November to March, that is when the rainfall in Siem Reap is lesser, so called the dry season, also the busiest time. With these reasons, I had planned to visit Angkor Wat in December. 

Day 1

Arrive in Siem Reap

We flew from Singapore and arrived Siem Reap in the morning 9 o'clock. The hotel we stayed, Tito Suite Residence, provided us complimentary airport transfer ... by tuk tuk. I didn't expect a tuk tuk as I thought a car would be there to pick us up. But I'm fine with tuk tuk and considering the price I paid, USD230 for 2 for 3 nights including breakfast, it was a pretty good deal. The journey from airport to Siem Reap town is not far, just a short 15 - 20 mins ride. By the way, we bought local SIM card from the telco shop outside arrival hall, USD10 for 6GB data only package.

Psar Chas old market

After we dropped our bag in hotel, we headed out to Psar Chas the old market.

Nothing much there and most stalls are selling the same thing you can see in Bali, Phuket those kind. If you want to see how local wet market is, go further into Psar Chas, you can see how local life is but be prepared, it's slippery, smelly and may not look appealing but it's a good place take pictures.

Address: Krong Siem Reap
Opening hours: 8am - 6pm daily

Chanrey Tree Restaurant

Located in the heart of Siem Reap town along the riverside, Chanrey has been a popular choice of Khmer restaurant among local and tourist.

This fusion Khmer restaurant had a beautiful atmosphere and great food. Service was excellent too. We ordered crispy prawn and calamari as starter, beef skewer and fish amok as main. 

Address: Pokambor Ave, along Siem Reap riverside
Opening hours: 11am - 2:30pm & 6pm - 10:30pm
Website: http://chanreytree.com/home/

Pub street

After dinner, we walked to the famous Pub Street. It's crowded, loud but an interesting place to visit. We had 60 mins foot massage there at USD6 (there are other cheaper options near night market) before walked back to hotel.

Day 2

Do not attempt a self guided tour to Angkor Wat, book a tour guide instead. It's the best way to understand history of Angkor Wat. So we engaged a guide from for 2 days in Siem Reap. 

Kampung Khleang

The first stop we went to Kampung Khleang floating village. It's 65km away from Siem Reap, about an hour drive. We took a boat and cruised along the lake to see how local live in this floating village, the boat ride is about 1.5 hours.

Peng Komnou

We took motorbike to there as it's not possible to access this place by car. It's some holy giant rock. Nothing much to see.

Beng Mealea (Indiana Jones temple)

I like this temple the most. Large, unrestored temple surrounded by jungle. It's less crowded in the afternoon, as if we own the temple. It's a nice place to take photograph.

Opening hours: 7am - 5:30pm daily

Malis Restaurant

We had fish amok. This restaurant has a lovely decoration and classy dining environment. The service was also impeccable. If you like a high class dining place, this is the one to go.

Address: Pokambor Ave, along Siem Reap riverside
Opening hours: 6:30am - 10pm
Website: https://www.malis-restaurant.com/siemreap/gallery/

Day 3

Angkor Wat

Our tour guide picked us from hotel at 4:45am and headed to Angkor Wat for the sunrise tour. We were there at about 5:15am and most good spots for pictures were taken but we still managed to find a pretty good place. We packed our breakfast from hotel so we ate it at the food stalls near sunrise viewing spot after that. Many tourists will go back to hotel after sunrise so it's a good time to visit Angkor Wat now as it's still not too crowded.

After Angkor Wat, we visited a few more temples like Ta Prohm, Ta Nei, Bayon and Phnom Bakeng for sunset. The sunset tour was an impromptu request as the sunrise was not good enough (too cloudy). The sunset was amazing, we could see the sun dipping down the horizon like a salted egg yolk. Do note that there is crowd limit of 300 at Phnom Bakeng, we queued for 30 mins just to get up there and almost missed the sunset. Those who queued behind us didn't get the chance to go up and probably they will have to come again the next day. So be there early if you want to see sunset there.

Bugs Cafe

This was recommended by our tour guide. We we re told that not to eat insect snack from night market as those may not fresh enough and could be cooked few days ago. We ordered discovery plate for 2 which came with different insect such as silk worm, cricket, tarantula, scorpion, grasshopper, water bug. Sound eerie? Trust me, they are delicious. It's an amazing dining experience. It's the way they cooked it and make these insect tasted so delicious.   

Address: Angkor Night Market street/ Bugs street, Siem Reap, Siemreab-Otdar Meanchey, Cambodia 17000
Opening hours: 5:00pm - 10:30pm
Website: http://bugs-cafe.e-monsite.com/

Day 4

Flew back to Singapore in the morning

Here's our short 3 minutes travel footage which summarize everything I mentioned above.

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