Visitor's Guide

Travel

We’ve compiled some useful tips about the different ways of getting to and around Siem Reap!

VISAS

Most nationalities can get a visa-on-arrival at the airport in Phnom Penh/Siem Reap, or at the border crossing of Poipet between Thailand and Cambodia. A tourist visa costs $30 (valid for one month). Most ASEAN nationalities do not require visas unless you are planning to stay for a longer duration. You can also apply for a visa online. (E-Visa Online: https://www.evisa.gov.kh)

However, visitors from certain countries (Iran, Bangladesh etc.) cannot apply for visa-on-arrival or an e-visa, and must obtain a visa from a Cambodian embassy before arriving in Cambodia. (Note, these nationalities also cannot arrive through border crossings and must enter via an airport.)

AIR TRAVEL

Many airlines fly to Siem Reap, including budget airlines Jetstar Asia and AirAsia. The Siem Reap airport is only about 15 – 20 minutes away from the town centre. When you arrive, hire a tuk-tuk or taxi to bring you directly to your hotel/guesthouse.

Tip: Get yourself a local sim card at the airport for internet access to use ride-hailing apps Passapp and Grab for tuk-tuks!

PHNOM PENH TO SIEM REAP

Cheaper to fly to Phnom Penh? There are domestic flights and buses travelling daily from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap, leaving almost every hour from 6am to midnight. Minivans cost (US$8-10) and take about 6-7 hours. Big buses are cheaper but may take up to 7-9 hours. We do NOT recommend travelling at night, as the roads are dangerous. To book a ticket, go into any travel agency to ask about the different bus companies and available timings. Be sure you get a seat number!

(Tip: We recommended: Larryta (Minivan) / Giant Ibis (Bus) and please avoid Vireak Buntham at all costs!)

Useful Links (Move to Cambodia blog): How to get from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap (and vice versa)

BUS/TRAIN FROM BANGKOK

Find your way from Bangkok either by bus or train to the border crossing of Aranyaprathet (Thai side) / Poipet (Cambodia side). The customs close at around 10pm daily.

BUS FROM BANGKOK (ABOUT 8 HRS)

There is now a direct bus service from Mochit bus station to Siem Reap! It departs at 0900hrs daily and cost about 750Baht. The same bus will take you from Bangkok to the border, and wait for you in Poipet to continue the journey to Siem Reap.

Most travel agencies on Khao San Road offer deals with mini-buses leaving early in the morning. You can also go directly to the Mochit bus station where buses travel from Bangkok to Aranyaprathet every half-hour.

Once at Aranyaprathet, cross the border on foot. Get through the Thai customs, walk past the strange hotels and casinos, and head to the Cambodian Customs Office if you need a Cambodian visa-on-arrival. Once through Cambodian customs, you’re now in Poipet!

Catch a bus or a shared taxi to Siem Reap. The best way is to share a taxi with other travellers, and it will cost about US$35 for the whole car, or around US$9 for a seat on a minivan.

TRAIN FROM BANGKOK (ABOUT 8 HRS)

Coming by train is the cheapest way of coming to Siem Reap from Bangkok, but it isn’t always the easiest! From Hualamphong Train Station (near Khao San), you can buy a train ticket for 50Baht from Bangkok to Aranyaprathet (free seating). Trains leave at 0555hrs and 1305hrs daily and the journey is typically about 6 hours.

At Aranyaprathet, you need to take a short tuktuk ride to the border (share a tuk-tuk with fellow travellers for about 70Baht in total). Cross the border on foot. Get through the Thai customs, walk past the strange hotels and casinos, and head to the Cambodian customs office if you need a Cambodian visa-on-arrival. Once through Cambodian customs, you’re now in Poipet!

Catch a bus or a shared taxi to Siem Reap. The best way is to share a taxi with other travellers, and it will cost about US$35 for the whole car, or around US$9 for a seat on a minivan.

SCAM ALERT!!

* Some buses from Bangkok will stop at a private office before Thai customs, encouraging you to apply for your Cambodian visa in advance. Just ignore this and stay on the bus. THIS IS A SCAM. Apply only at the official building which is AFTER Thai customs. * When you arrive in Cambodia, some tuk-tuk drivers will try to bring you to a recommended guesthouse (even if you tell them not to). Be firm and clear about where you want to go.

Where to stay?

LUB D

www.lubd.com
Lub d Cambodia, Siem Reap, the largest new hostel in the centre of Siem Reap! We have an awesome swimming pool, a co-working space. And it’s located in just a few minutes walk to Pub Street and many historical temples! It is indeed revolutionary, with an exceptional exterior and interior concept design, merging features of the Khmer lifestyle and culture to contrast our Lub d concept. Combine this all together for all travelers, and even those living in Siem Reap, we promise the most unique experience in the latest, most exciting place to stay in Siem Reap!

ACCOMMODATION PARTNERS

BUTTERFLY PEA

www.thebutterflypea.com

The Butterfly Pea, a Boutique Hotel is located along the Siem Reap River, close to the heart of Siem Reap city. Following a tropical design of modern Asian architecture, the Butterfly Pea offers 14 beautiful rooms, each unique in its own charming way. Enjoy the outdoor pool, relax while having a cocktail in our lobby bar or enjoy a wonderful meal in the restaurant. You will be served by our welcoming and friendly staff. We offer Deluxe King and Deluxe twin rooms in 4 categories. Whether you choose the Allure, Relax, Serenity or Captivate room, a restful and peaceful night is ensured.

BELMOND LA RESIDENCE D’ANGKOR

www.belmond.com

One of the first luxury hotels to open in Siem Reap, we boast an enviable position on the river moments away from the mystifying temple complexes. Traditionally-designed suites spread out among lush flora. Retreat to the salt-water pool, or indulge at Kong Kea Spa. After a day of adventure, we’re the perfect welcome home. 

ANANTARA ANGKOR RESORT

www.anantara.com

Luxury inspired by royalty and feminine beauty. Anantara Angkor is a sanctuary for the senses and pays tribute to Khmer culture in thoughtful ways. The collection of 39 exquisite suites unfold in eight categories of between 48 and 140 square metres are designed in contemporary Cambodian style, with handcrafted teak wood furniture, rich textiles and a unique local artwork. A mere five-minute drive from Siem Reap International Airport, the resort can also be reached by land from Thailand, Laos or Vietnam, as well as via the Mekong River. The prime location also places Anantara Angkor within a 10-minute drive of Siem Reap, where travelers can investigate a charming town of bustling markets, ambient riverside attractions and a French colonial quarter.
Delve into the mysteries of Angkor and the traditions of Cambodian life with Anantara Angkor Resort.

SALA LODGES

www.salalodges.com

Sala Lodges capitalises on its simplicity to create a sense of absolute luxury, ideal for welcoming guests with exacting yet relaxed standards. The eleven wooden houses on stilts were spotted in villages in the Cambodian countryside, dismantled, transported and beautifully restored to offer the ultimate comfort to guests.

IBIS STYLES

www.accorhotels.com/ibis-styles

The new Ibis Styles Siem Reap is the perfect combination of Indochina charm and the contemporary Ibis Styles design.
In your room, you will have the unique sensation to take your shower between the walls of Angkor Wat. In our restaurant, French style tiles and white brick walls, mixed with lights who’s design reflect the temple bells create the perfect harmony for an urban dining experience.
After a hard day exploring the city of the wonders of Angkor relax by our swimming pool overlooking the river with a cool coconut juice in hand. Only moments away from all the nightlife and dining of downtown Siem Reap, you can enjoy the town at only a minutes walk back to your room.

BABY ELEPHANT

www.babyelephant.asia

With two artists-in-residence, regular yoga and cooking classes, silversmith workshops and other events, Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel is one of the most dynamic up-and-coming independent hotels in Siem Reap. The award-winning 25-room hotel provides lush and relaxing accommodation with all the facilities and services of an international hotel including an acclaimed restaurant and bar. Guests enjoy the inclusive, family-friendly and LGBT-welcoming environment, only one kilometre away from the centre of town. Baby Elephant is an ethical hotel focused on creating sustainable employment and training opportunities for our staff, contractors and the micro-businesses in our local community. Book direct on our website for the best deals.

RAMBUTAN HOTEL & RESORT

www.rambutans.info

The Rambutan Hotel & Resort in Siem Reap, located in a quiet paved lane just 5 minutes walk from Phsar Cha (the old market), right in the middle of the historical center of Siem Reap town and features lush tropical gardens and two oasis salt water pools, plus a restaurant, bar and spa. The accommodation focuses on comfort and privacy, with all Deluxe Terrace and Deluxe Rooftop Terrace rooms having their own private terrace with outdoor bathtub and splash shower. A stylish design coupled with a little local culture, ranging from the contemporary artwork to the locally-made furniture and silk textiles which are in abundance. Rambutan Hotel & Resort is a social and eco-responsible property that is hip, happening and gay friendly.
E-mail: [email protected]  
Bookings: +85511355534 – Front Desk: +85563766655

Venues

Our favourites places

BAMBU STAGE

www.bambustage.com

Bambu Stage is a platform for performing arts in Cambodia— Siem Reap’s newest creative centre focusing on light and dark, shadow and light, photography and classical culture. Bambu Stage is a performance venue with daily shows, a workshop space for Cambodian puppeteers, and a gathering space for artists and art lovers. They operate as a social enterprise and collaborate closely with NGOs, other social enterprises, and ethical businesses in the community.

For show times and tickets, visit the website or call 09 77 26 11 10.

ONE ELEVEN GALLERY

www.oneelevengallery.com

Siem Reap’s only international contemporary art gallery, the newly relaunched One Eleven Gallery is the latest addition to Siem Reap’s emerging art scene. Boasting a vast array of high calibre, internationally renowned artists, One Eleven Gallery is also the cheery younger sibling to San Francisco’s quirky and iconic 111 Minna Gallery. With regular rotating exhibitions, showcase artists and special guests, One Eleven Gallery is as diverse as the bold and colourful works on show.

HERITAGE HUB

www.cambodianlivingarts.org/heritage-hub

The Heritage Hub is the Siem Reap branch of Cambodian Living Arts, a non-profit organization that has been working in Cambodia for twenty years. Set in the leafy grounds of Wat Bo, the Heritage Hub is a center for artists, researchers, and other people interested to learn more about Cambodia’s living heritage.The Heritage Hub has the mission to strengthen living arts and culture to bring cultural, creative and economic value to Cambodia, especially Siem Reap. They run regular talks and demonstrations, stage occasional performances and festivals, and provide rehearsal space for local groups, and space for traditional music teachers to hold classes every Saturday and Sunday morning. From December 2019, the Heritage Hub will stage a public performance three nights per week by Medha – a groundbreaking all-female drum troupe that formed in January 2017. Stay tuned for more information about the upcoming show!

MIRAGE CONTEMPORARY ART SPACE

www.miragesiemreap.com

Founded in 2016, MIRAGE is an arts organization that has demonstrated a broad-minded cultural vision and a collaborative philosophy. While MIRAGE mission is focused on the rediscovery, presentation, and preservation of Khmer culture, it is equally determined to operate in a multicultural and inclusive manner, promoting artists and performers that fully reflect the cultural diversity of Cambodia.

MY CARGO

www.facebook.com/MyCargo

A unique Khmer-owned restaurant and bar with delicious local cuisine and high quality drinks, come explore the different levels and spaces! 

KHEMA ANGKOR

www.khema-restaurant.com

Khéma Déli Restaurant is all about great feelings and memorable experiences. Khéma offers a collection of gastronomic choices: from imported artisanal cheeses, house-made cold cuts, grills, in-house signature dishes to delightful pastries, freshly baked breads and more… at a really reasonable price. Definitely a great value for money!

Weekly events not to be missed:

  •   Free-flow Breakfast (Monday-Friday) from 6.30 am to 11 am
  •   Free-flow Brunch (Saturday-Sunday) from 6.30 am to 3 pm
  •   Free-flow Wine & Dine (Thursday) from 6 pm to 8 pm

Feel free to book at [email protected] or call +855 (0)15 416 888

Team’s Picks

These are the places we love, and we know you’ll love them too!

THE REPUBLIC BAR

www.facebook.com/theRepublicSiemReap

The Republic Bar and Kitchen is located a mere two minutes walk from Wat Damnak. Situated in the heart of Old Town Siem Reap, it is perfect for a relaxed lunch, and invariably buzzing nights. The atmosphere is fantastic due to the combination of friendly and attentive service and modern artistic ambience and relaxed tropical gardens. The menu can be best described as ‘South American fusion cuisine’, with a variety of specials available each day which are a little more daring. The Republic Bar and Kitchen also boasts a private upper level which can be used for special events such as art exhibition and interactive performances.

Eat and Drink For Good!

The following businesses are all social enterprises that not only have fantastic food and drink, they also contribute back to the community in significant ways through various initiatives. We highly recommend them!

Sister Srey

www.sistersreycafe.com
A long-time favourite amongst the expats in Siem Reap, Sister Srey cafe now works closely with APOPO, a unique NGO which trains southern giant pouched rats to detect landmines and tuberculosis. A percentage of their profits are donated towards landmine clearance with APOPO here in Cambodia!

Footprints Cafe

www.footprintcafes.org

Fantastic coffee and a fantastic menu featuring lots of vegan and vegetarian options! Footprint Cafe’s mission is to harness the financial power of tourism for the benefit of the local community by donating 100% of net profits back to the local community as grants for educational projects.

Marum

www.marum.com
Take a break from temple touring and enjoy creative local cuisine, delicious cocktails and fruit shakes, made using only the freshest ingredients. Marum is run by Kaliyan Mith, an NGO that has been working with street children and other marginalized young people since 2005 in Siem Reap, Cambodia.

New Leaf Book Cafe

www.newleafeatery.com

Opened in 2013, New Leaf Book Cafe is the perfect place for brunch and a book! Each month 30% of New Leaf’s profits are donated to a chosen charity or project and 20% is shared among our Cambodian staff. To date, they have donated over US$ 40,000. We are currently donating profits to PEPY Empowering Youth and SeeBeyondBorders.

Haven Restaurant

www.havencambodia.com
HAVEN is known for its delicious food and a favourite dinner spot. It is also a training restaurant for vulnerable young adults from shelters and orphanages, as well as underprivileged young adults from very poor rural areas. While enjoying a dish from our special selection of flavourful Asian and Western food – including many vegetarian tidbits – you are supporting our training program and are thereby helping disadvantaged young adults to achieve a secure and independent future.