Practicalities

26.09.2017 - All you need to know for traveling to Angkor nd visiting the temples.

      Planning and Preparing the Travel

      17.08.2017

      Clima
      Clima (from visitangkor.org)

      Best Time to Travel

      The weather in Cambodia is dominated by the monsoon. From May to October, winds from the south-west bring humid air and rain. From November to April, winds from the northeast bring dry weather.

      Rainy season is from June to October, the maximum of rain is in September. Dray Season is from November to April or May.

      From June to December, the midday sun moves from the Tropic of Cancer (in the north) the southern tropic; from December to June it moves back. Midday sun is perpendicular in May and again July.  

      The cool season is from July to January. Hot Season is from February to June.

      Rainy season means fresh air and green vegetation. Rain is mostly in showers and in the afternoon. Earth roads may become marshy or under water.

      Dry season brings dust. The vegetation will dry up by and by.

      Airport Siem Reap

      Siem Reap has an international airport. If your hotel does not pick you up, you can book a car (10 USD) or tuk-tuk (9 USD) at the counter. Or you walk outside and find a cheaper tuk-tuk on the road; negotiate the price. 

      On the Land from Bangkok to Siem Reap

      At Suvarnabhumi Bangkok, find the free Shuttle Bus to the Bus Station, in the second line outside.

      Buses to Poipet Border run at 7:10, 9:10, 11:10 am, 1:10 and 5:10 pm. 200 Baht.

      At Poipet border: Free Shuttle Bus to the Taxi Station. Shared Taxi to Siem Reap, 160 km, 12(?) USD.

      Language

      The language is Khmer, “Cambodian”. You will come along with English. Ask a local for the courtesy set phrases.

      Money

      Officially, the currency is Khmer Riel (KHR), but you can pay everything in Dollars; 4,000 KHR = 1.00 USD.

      ATMs accept the usual credit cards. Fee $ 5.00 or more. The ATMs of the Canadia Bank are the most solid. 

      Visa

      Visa on arrival is available at the airport or at Poipet border.

      Requirements

      A completed visa application form; visa applications for processing in Cambodia will be distributed on the board of the plane.

      A Passport must be with at least 6 months validity.

      One recent photograph (2 inches x 2 inches).

      In order to be admitted into the country, tourists may need to demonstrate that they have sufficient funds for their stay and a return ticket.

      Have the exact fee in USD.

      Keep in a friendly way and firm. If an officer demands any extra fee, I use to ask: “You give me a receipt?” That's that.

      Tourist Visa

      For one month.

      35 USD.

      Extendable for one further month.

      Business Visa

      For one month.

      40 USD.

      Extendable as long as you like.

      Children under 12 years are free.

      Official Website

      Visa extensions best at local Travel Agencies.

      Hotels

      Select your hotel and book in advance. Consider if you want shady space to spend relaxing noon breaks at the hotel during hot days.

      Booking.com

      *Affiliate link. If you book your hotel here, we will have a small profit, for which you will not pay extra, of course. 

      From Siem Reap to Vietnam

      There are one-day or one-night busses to Saigon (HCM), ask at a travel agency.

      Dress and Equipment

      Wear light and airy clothes. To show respect in the temples, shoulders and knees should be covered.

      Have headgear.

      Check if your hotel or driver will provide umbrellas.

      At the end of the rainy season, ways can be under water.

      If you are sensible, have sun protection cream.

      The locals use Citronella Oil against mosquitos.

      Decent boots are warmly recommended for visiting Angkor; injuries or sprains of ankles use to happen quite often.

      Recommended

      • Ear plugs, as Cambodia can be pretty noisy.
      • Dust masks.
      • Torch (flashlight).
      • Rain protection for your luggage.
      • As toilet paper is unknown in Southeast Asia, take it with you.

      Healthcare

      The unsurpassed website of Dr Gavin Scott, Phnom Penh

      Best local clinic in Siem Reap: Angkor Santé Polyclinic, Phone 063 766 119 or 012 666 119.

      Royal Angkor International Hospital

      Safety

      Generally, Cambodia is not a dangerous country.

      Travellers will be safe of land mines.

      Never walk or drive alone on lonely roads, even in the Angkor Park.

      There are too many traffic accidents.

      Avoid any speed or express boats.

      There are no standards for transportation of any kind of vehicle. Generally, public transport companies don’t hold any insurance. Some companies are probably illegal.
      Buy your Bus Tickets at a solid Agency, where you can ask for a relatively safe Bus Company.

      Keep your passport in a safe and have a copy in your wallet.

      It is like everywhere in the world: What you put on the table may be forgotten or stolen. 

      If you have problems in Siem Reap and Angkor, call Mr Yut Sinnin, our friendly police officer, Phone 017 600 700 or 097 933 3869.

      If your hotel does not pick you up, you can book a car (10 USD) or tuk-tuk (9 USD) at the counter. Or you walk outside and find a cheaper tuk-tuk on the road; negotiate the price. 

      Visiting the Temples

      17.08.2017

      Code of Conduct
      Code of Conduct

      Avoid the Routine! Avoid the crowds. Avoid guided tours.

      Get informed before you start; design your own tour.

      Angkor is not a place to have comfortable holidays.

      You may engage a Tour Guide. He or she will show you temples. But Guides cannot give you any orientation and context.

      Angkor Archaeological Park Through the Eyes of Young Kids

      Timing

      Start early; Early morning is generally the best time, start at 7 AM, or even sooner. The locals take a noon break from 11 am to 2 pm, for good reasons, it will be hot!

      Visiting hours

      • General: 7.30 AM to 5.30 PM
      • Angkor Wat: 5 AM to 5.30 PM
      • Srah Srang 5.30 AM to 5.30 PM
      • Pre Rup: 5.00 AM to 7.00 PM
      • Phnom Bakheng: 5.30 AM to 7.00 PM

      Take care of you

      Visiting Angkor can be strenuous. Don't try to take on too much. Have rests, and drink plenty of water; you need 2 - 3 litres of water per day. Take enough water with you; water In Angkor is often of low quality and overpriced. I use to drink Kulen Mineral Water, available at good Supermarkets in Siem Reap. Ask your driver for toilets.

      Transportation

      Angkor Wat, the nearest temple, is located some 5 km north of Siem Reap.

      Various means of transport are available from bicycles to air conditioned cars.

       

      Prices per day

      Blue Electric-Cars (3 seats), cool!

       

      Taxis (3–4 seats),

      25–30 $

      Vans (12-15 seats),  

       ?

      Moped trailers, called tuk-tuks, 

      15–20 $

      Moped taxis, “moto doup”* 

      10–12 $

      E-Bikes*

      10 $

      Bicycles*

      2–3 $

      Additional fees for distant places. Negotiate the price with your driver.

      *Wear a helmet.

      The so-called tuk-tuks are very popular. But they are not what you may know from Thailand: The trailer is without breaks. Don't drive fast!

      Tourists are not allowed to rent a motorbike.

      Entrance Tickets

      Tickets for the Angkor Archaeological Park are only available at the Ticket Booth, located at Route 60, near the crossing with Apsara Road.

      Tickets for the next day, valuable also for the rest of this day, are available from 4.45 to 5.00 PM.

      USD cah or CredidCards. 

      External Link

      A photo is NOT required.

      Entrance fees

      1 day

      $ 37.00

      3 days in a week

      $ 62.00

      7 days within 30 days

      $ 72.00

      Children under 12 years are free.

      Begging

      People begging or hawking in Angkor or Siem Reap are not poor at all! Ignore them with friendliness.

      Inside the East Mebon temple, I watched some happy children, mostly girls, begging or trying to sell trinkets. They received three dollars. When the tourists had gone, they rendered the money to a police officer.

      "Think twice before buying anything from children on the street, beaches or at temples and refrain from giving money to begging children or parents with infants. It keeps them on the street and places them at risk."

      Itineraries

      Design your own tour

      Leave the trodden path!

      Take your time!

      Your own discoveries will be the best of your tours.

      Avoid the Routine! Avoid the crowds. Avoid guided tours.

      If you want to grasp Angkor, you should visit nine key monuments: Bakong, Phnom Bakheng, Baksei Chamkrong, Pre Rup, Ta Keo, Baphuon, Angkor Wat, Preah Khan, and Bayon with Angkor Thom.

      And don’t miss Banteay Srei, Ta Prohm, the Elephant Terrace and the Leper King Terrace.

      Your tour is not necessarily in chronological order, but I warmly recommend to start with the Bakong, “where a well turned-out tour begins.”

      Stay aware of the unexpected. Find “unknown” ruins.

      You may engage one of the Tour Guides. But Guides cannot give you any orientation and context. Their ready-made tours are absurd. Tell your guide firmly what you want to see.

      Suggestions

      • Day one
        Bakong, Preah Koh – Banteay Samré, Banteay Srei. Sunset at Pre Rup.
      • Day two
        Baksei Chamkrong, Baphuon – Angkor Wat
      • Day three
        Preah Khan, Neak Pean, North Gate of Angkor Thom, Royal Terraces, Bayon, East Gate of Angkor Thom, Ta Prohm.
      • Day four
        A second visit of Angkor Wat –free choice.
      • Further Temples
        Prasat Kravan, Thommanon, Ta Keo, Banteay Kdei, East Mebon, Ta Som. Ta Nei, Preah Palilay, Tep Pranam, Preah Pithu.

      Bicycle Tours

      • Start at the west entrance of Angkor Wat, view of the North Gate of Angkor Wat from across the moat, Prasat Rong Lmong, Baksei Chamkrong, Prasat Thma Bay Kaek, Lions at the northern stairway of the Phnom Bakheng, Prasat Bei, and Prasat Sok Kro op (3 km).
      • Circuit on the wall of Angkor Thom (12 km).
      • Start at Wat Damnak, Chreav Village, Wat L’ak, Prasat O Ka-aek, Prasat Prei Monti, Prasat Totoeng Thngai, Prasat Trapeang Phong (12 km)

      Trips

      • Kbal Spean – Banteay Srei – East Mebon – Pre Rup for sunset.
      • Phnom Bok, Chau Srei Vibol, Temples of Roluos.
      • Phnom Bok, Trapeang Khyangg.
      • Beng Mealea and Peung Komnou.
      • Prasat Preah Enkosei and Prasat Wat Athvea.
      • Prasat Prei Prasat, Banteay Thom, Prasat Char.
      • Phnom Krom.

      Museums and More

      Angkor Conservation
      Angkor Conservation

      Angkor Conservation

      "In the storerooms of the Conservation d'Angkor over 5000 valuable sculptures from the Angkor Area are stored, which originally stood in the Angkorian temples including stone heads from gods and demons, stone Buddhas, lingas as well as hundreds of wood statues." 

      Located near the river, opposite of Wat Preah Enkosei, the collection can be visited from Monday to Friday, 7 am to 3.30 pm, entrance fee $ 5.00. It is well worth a visit. 

      Preah Norodom Sihanouk-Angkor Museum 

      It is to preserve and exhibit the Buddhist statues discovered at Banteay Kdei temple. 

      Bayon Information Center

      An "exhibition facilities town home to Angkor Wat World Heritage Site ... Here, we are introducing easy-to-understand information about religion and art history and a number of temples around Angkor Bayon. We are also currently underway, on the activities of international research projects and repair, you can help you understand the state of the ruins of Angkor enjoy today such as through video and photo exhibition of artifacts. I hope that everyone will experience things in Angkor is more flavorful by this exhibition.

      At the old road to Angkor. Open Mo-Wed, Fri/Sat, 8 am to 4 pm. Admission $ 2. 

      An instructive brochure is on sale there: Temple for Gods BAYON, featuring comprehensive background information. 

      The so-called Angkor National Museum

      "… [T]he privately owned Angkor National Museum's collection is faulted by experts for being shallow compared with the National Museum in Phnom Penh. Be that as it may, the presentation is smart, hi-tech and informative. A worthwhile if expensive stop for those seeking some deeper Angkor context."
      (rustycompass.com) 

      8 May 2017