After spending a week in Vietnam, we spend 5 days in Siem Reap, Cambodia. Now Cambodia is well known for its countless temples and although it's definitely worth seeing a couple of them on your visit, we found that Cambodia has much more to offer. If you're going to spend a week or so in and around Siem Reap, this article might come in handy. So let's get straight to all the good stuff.
For a non-verbal, autistic 5 year old, visiting temples may not be the most exciting thing so mommy and daddy decided to limit our temple spotting to a single day. We got to visit 5 temples and I did great! The most famous temple of the ones we saw is undoubtedly Angkor Wat, one of the largest religious sites in the whole world. We arrived early so we could see the sunrise, which was stunning and a totally serene experience.
Among the other temples we visited was Angkor Thom (my favorite!) and Ta Prohm Temple, also known as 'Tomb Raider Temple', since the film starring Angelina Jolie was filmed there.
PHNOM KULEN NATIONAL PARK
As you all know by now: I love the water and therefor mommy and daddy decided to visit Phnom Kulen National Park. We first had a short visit at the Pagoda with The Reclining Buddha on Kulen Mountain before going to one of the most beautiful waterfalls Cambodia has to offer. I had a great time in the water and I was amazed by the endless stream of water coming from the skies!
MARKET AND PUB STREET
Siem Reap is a very friendly and charming place. We went one morning to the local market and spend an evening on Pub Street, the heart of Siem Reap's night life. Do you know people eat tarantulas, scorpions and snakes in Cambodia? It was interesting to see, but I chose to eat at Burger King instead.
KAMPONG PHLUK FLOATING VILLAGE
Floating villages are a popular tourist spot around Siem Reap and we visited Kampong Phluk. Take note however that we were visiting Cambodia during the dry season which is a totally different -but unique nonetheless- experience. During the dry season, you can see how the houses are constructed and how high they are situated.
But I saved the best for last. We stayed in the brand new Koulen Hotel and this was -by far- the greatest place I've ever stayed at. The staff was incredibly kind and helpful and the pool was beyond FANTASTIC. I learned how to swim better on my own, without any floating devices and I even dared to go underwater!
So there you have it: I had a great time in Cambodia, only if it was just five days.