Siem Reap, a resort town in northwestern Cambodia, is the gateway to the ruins of Angkor, the seat of the Khmer kingdom from the 9th–15th centuries. Angkor’s vast complex of intricate stone buildings includes preserved Angkor Wat, the main temple, which is pictured on Cambodia’s flag. Giant, mysterious faces are carved into the Bayon Temple at Angkor Thom.

Siem Reap is the second-largest city of Cambodia, as well as the capital and largest city of Siem Reap Province in northwestern Cambodia.

Siem Reap has French colonial and Chinese-style architecture in the Old French Quarter and around the Old Market. In the city, there are museums, traditional Apsara dance performances, a Cambodian cultural village, souvenir and handicraft shops, silk farms, rice paddies in the countryside, fishing villages and a bird sanctuary near Tonlé Sap, and a cosmopolitan drinking and dining scene. Cambodia’s Siem Reap city, home to the famous Angkor Wat temples, was crowned the ASEAN City of Culture for the period 2021–2022 at the 9th Meeting of the ASEAN Ministers Responsible for Culture and Arts (AMCA) organised on Oct 22, 2020.

Siem Reap today—being a popular tourist destination—has many hotels, resorts, and restaurants. This owes much to its proximity to the Angkor Wat temples, Cambodia’s most popular tourist attraction.


The ruins of Angkor, located amid forests and Farland, are now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There are over one thousand temples ranging in scale from nondescript piles of brick rubble scattered through rice fields to the magnificent Angkor Wat which is said to be the world’s largest single religious monument. There are dozens of temple ruins in the Siem Reap area and it depends largely on how much time one has and one’s level of interest to determine how long one should spend to explore them.

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