It’s seventeen years since I last visited Cambodia’s sprawling temple complex of Angkor. So, it’s no surprise that the UNESCO World Heritage site is a bit busier than it was last time I was here.
Bus loads of tourists pour into Angkor Wat and the other famous temples of Bayon and Ta Prohm. Yet, there are still plenty of places to escape the crowds in the 400 square km site.
The colours of Angkor Wat are at their best at sunset. You’ll be sharing the temple with hundreds of others, but the scene is still magnificent, especially at the end of the rainy season when there are fewer tourists and the countryside is lush.
The pink temple of Banteay Srei is 37 km from Siem Reap, but definitely worth a visit. Watch out for green ants on the rope barriers!
A few other things to note:
Dress modestly for the temples – covered shoulders and long shorts or pants.
Wear comfortable, study footwear. There is a lot of uneven stonework in the temples.
The temples of Angkor Wat, Bayon and Ta Prohm get very busy but other places are surprisingly less crowded.
We found the east entrance to Angkor Wat almost deserted. So was the beautiful Pre Rup.
A three day pass to the Angkor archeological park (that can be used over one week) costs $40 and is an ideal option for exploring the ruins. Pace yourself to avoid temple fatigue. There are plenty of restaurants in the park and places to take a break.
Cambodia is the setting for my YA romance Lust and Found. The story follows Sienna as she travels from one end of the country to the other, looking for her lost brother. Along the way she finds herself falling for her brother’s hot friend flatmate Guillaume and also discovers something about herself amongst the ruins of Angkor Wat.
‘I really loved this book. I read it one sitting. So much going on in this book. A great love story, a mysterious subplot, and you can literally feel the humidity of Cambodia. This is one of fave books I have read this year. So, so good.’ Kate Forster