Visiting the temples of Angkor should be on anyone's bucket list. One of the world's greatest historical sites and the subject of films and fiction, there's a magical element to Angkor that captures the imagination and plunges you headfirst into an ancient world. Visiting Angkor Wat and the other temples of Angkor in Siem Reap is one of the top things to do in Cambodia. Visiting temples should be part of any Cambodia itinerary but if you have limited time, spending it at the right temples can make all the difference.
The awe-inspiring ancient city of Angkor in the Siem Reap Province, near modern-day Siem Reap north of the Tonle Sap Great Lake. There are some unique things to do in Siem Reap but exploring its temples is something you really shouldn't miss. Between the 9th and 15th centuries Angkor was the largest city in the world and capital of the Khmer Empire. It was home to approximately 1,000,000 people in its heyday and stretches over 400 square kilometres, encompassing over 1000 temples.
Effectively, successive Khmer rulers fought to outdo their predecessors, designing and constructing continually greater temples of Angkor and venues in their bid to dominate the landscape and stamp their claim on history. This process culminated in the World's largest religious monument, the famed and glorious Angkor Watt, which is now proudly positioned on Cambodia's national flag.
Understandably so, Angkor is one of Cambodia's most popular tourist destinations, drawing two million visitors to its temples every year. Situated in the midst of rich Cambodian forest and farmland, this huge conglomerate of architectural and historical wonder feels like a lost and secret world. Angkor is a place of awe and sublimity that should be on everyone's bucket list.
The most important part of exploring Angkor is to take your time. If you only have 24 hours, then, of course, that’s fine – embrace them but, if you can at all spare a few days then you should really consider doing it.
If you can, spend a whole afternoon in one location, ambling around this unparalleled place. This remarkable place is truly a world treasure. Anyone spending time in Cambodia would be foolish not to go and have a look around.