If you ever get the chance to visit Angkor Wat, please do! It's one of the most amazing sites I have been to❤️ In my "Ultimate travel book", with Lonelyplanet 'list of the 500 best places to see... ranked', Angkor Wat was number 1. So I had to see it with my own eyes, and it definitely did not disappoint.

What to expect in this article

Background of the Angkor (Wat)

The Angkor (Wat) is is a temple complex in Cambodia and is the largest religious monument in the world!
It is 162.6 hectares and it was originally a Hindu temple, but gradually transformed into a Buddhist temple towards the end of the 12th century. 

It is one of the most important archaeological sites in South-East Asia, and it contains the amazing remains of different capitals of the Khmer Empire (9th to the 15th century).

Nowadays it’s UNESCO Word Heritage site, Cambodia’s main attraction and even appears on the national flag. 

Costs

There are different pricings depending on how many days you would like to visit the temples. 

Single Day Pass – $37
Three Day Pass – $62
Seven Day Pass – $72

Tickets can only be purchased at the official ticket center, and all other tickets are not valid. Your ticket will have your picture taken at the ticket office window.

When we visited Angkor Wat (July’22) we choose for a 1 day temple hunt and the second day was free for us. I am guessing this was because Covid just stopped and this is the way they wanted to attract people. Below you can find a time schedule of the temples that we visited during the 1.5 days. 

Also be careful that  you have to wear clothing that covers the shoulder and knees when visit Angkor Wat.

Again, I want to say that Angkor Wat has been one of my highlights on my 4-months trip through Asia. You definitely have to go here! 

Angkor Wat (Cambodia) Costs and 7 amazing temples you can’t miss! sunrise
Angkor Wat (Cambodia) Costs and 7 amazing temples you can’t miss! sunrise

Tuktuk tips

Next to buying a ticket beforehand, I also recommend you to hire a tuktuk driver for a day (or 2). The temples are all far from each other and using the Passapp might be costly. Hiring a tuktuk driver will cost you around 15 – 25 euros for a day. 

You can also hire a bicycle, but if you want to visit Banteay Srei, it only takes an hour by car, so by bicycle it might take two hours.
So if you are planning to visit temples that are near to each other, I can recommend it.
Especially because you get to see so much more than driving around with a tuktuk! There are multiple websites where you can hire a bicycle or join a bicycle tour. 

Finding a tuktuk driver is very easy if you are visiting Siem Reap first. Everywhere in Siem Reap, and especially in Pubstreet you will find many tuktuk drivers that will offer to take you to Angkor Wat for a day. 
I advise you to not go look for a driver while you are visiting Angkor Wat, as it might be difficult and the drivers are not allowed directly at the temples. 

Now my list of 7 amazing temples that you can not miss on your temple hunt! 

1. Sunrise at Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat is the most iconic and famous temple out of all the 7 temples. Whenever you look for photos online you will see the Angkor Wat. This giant temple covers an area of 1 square kilometre, which makes it the largest religious building in the world.

The ultimate way to start your temple tour is by visiting Angkor Wat during sunrise. Whether you see amazing colours in the sky, later on the light will be soft, which makes it the perfect time to take splendid photos. 
Ask your tuktuk driver, if you hired one, to take you from your hotel to this first site. 

Don’t leave Angkor without visiting this famous temple! 

Angkor Wat (Cambodia) Costs and 7 amazing temples you can’t miss! sunrise 2

2. Tonle Om Gate

The Tonle Om Gate is actually not a real temple, but a very beautiful gate that you have to visit on your way to the other temples. 

It is a decorative gate with 54 figures that lead up to the gate. On one side, you can see the giants with oval eyes and a casual smile, on the other side you’ll see round eyes and grimacing faces. Together they represent an endless tug of war between good and evil. If you want to read more about the history, click here. 

Don’t forget to ask your driver to stop here! 

Angkor Wat (Cambodia) Costs and 7 amazing temples you can’t miss! tonle om gate

3. Bayon temple

The third temple is one of my favorites.
Make sure you’ll do a tour at one of the temples to have a better understanding of everything you get to see.

We did a tour at the Bayon Temple and we found it super interesting.
Not only did our guide tell us everything about the sculptures on the wall (who are they, how important were they), he also told us a lot about the history of Cambodia: the Hindu influences, he showed us the bullet holes of when the Khmer Rouge was ruling the country and killed nearly 3 million Cambodians. 

We found it very impressive and this was a great addition to the tour we did at the Killing Fields in Phnom Penh. 

Angkor Wat (Cambodia) Costs and 7 amazing temples you can’t miss! bayon (2)

Two hours of fascinating information from our enthusiastic and funny guide, while being amazed with its other-worldly architecture.
The guide also loved that we were taking so many pictures (yay!) and his accent was very easy to understand (2x yay!).

I will add a photo of the guide, if you see him, give him my greetings and take him as your guide (we paid him around 7 dollars for the tour). Below you can also find 2 videos with an explanation from the guide 

Angkor Wat (Cambodia) Costs and 7 amazing temples you can’t miss! bayon (2)
This guide is awesome!
Angkor Wat (Cambodia) Costs and 7 amazing temples you can’t miss! bayon (2)

Want to read more about Asia?

4. Neak Pean temple

If you would like to visit a temple that is different as the others, you have to visit the Neak Pean temple. It is surrounded by water, which means that you have to first cross a lake to get to this temple. 

Although, Neak Pean is small and a collection of five ponds, it is definitely worth a visit.
Even if you would only go to stand in the middle of the beautiful lake. Some historians believe that this temple represents a mythical lake in the Himalayas, whose waters are thought to cure all illness.

Angkor Wat (Cambodia) Costs and 7 amazing temples you can’t miss! sunrise 3
Angkor Wat (Cambodia) Costs and 7 amazing temples you can’t miss! sunrise 3

5. Ta Phromh temple

The so-called ‘Tomb Raider’ or ‘Angelina Jolie’ is another very famous temple, all because the movie was shot here. 
It has to be on your list, if it would only be because of the amazing trees. You can find them at every temple, but here they are even more visible.

Has it been swallowed by the jungle or does it just seem like that? This is also the reason why this temple is different as the other temples. It has been left untouched by archaeologists except for clearing the path for visitors and structural strengthening. 

Ta Prohm is located southwest of the East Mebon and east of Angkor Thom.

6. Banteay Srei temple

Unlike Ta Phromh, Banteay Srei seems brand-new and wonderfully preserved. One of my friends recommended this temple to me, mainly because the colour is different as the other temples.
As you can see on the photos, the other temples are grey-ish, while Banteay Srei is more red, which makes it unique. 

Did you know that Banteay Srei means ‘Citadel of the Women?’ They say that it must have been built by a woman, as the carvings are apparently too fine for the hand of a man.

Banteay Srei is about 32km northeast of Siem Reap and 21km northeast of the Bayon temple. It normally would take around 45 minutes by car or tuktuk. 
This is one of the reasons we did not visit this temple on our one day temple tour, but on our second day. Early in the morning, before all tourists would come and before we would head to Thailand. 

Angkor Wat (Cambodia) Costs and 7 amazing temples you can’t miss! banteay srei
Angkor Wat (Cambodia) Costs and 7 amazing temples you can’t miss! banteay srei (3)1

7. Phnomh Bakheng temple

The last temple you have to visit is Phnomh Bakheng. This is a temple mountain in honor of the Hindu god Shiva.
Thanks to its location on a 60-meter high hill, this is a great spot for its magnificent sunset views over the Angkor Wat.

You do have to go up a hill to reach the temple, which takes around 30 minutes (depending on how fast you are). After a whole day of temples, I felt pretty tired, but seeing the views made me forget that instantly.

Phnom Bakheng is located 400 meter south of Angkor Thom. 

Angkor Wat (Cambodia) Costs and 7 amazing temples you can’t miss! sunset
Angkor Wat (Cambodia) Costs and 7 amazing temples you can’t miss! sunset

Temple hunt for 1.5 days

Do you also only have 1 or 1.5 days to visit all the temples and are you wondering if you can manage visiting all 7? 

We did not make any plans before, but trusted completely on our tuktuk driver to know which place to go to. This was our time schedule: 

  1. Angkor Wat: 05.30 (check sunrise on Google) – 08.30 
  2. Tonle Om Gate: 09.00 – 09.20 
  3. Bayon temple: 09.30 – 11.30 (You should have lunch after this)
  4.  Lunch: 11.30 – 12.30. There are some very nice stands nearby, if you are interested have lunch here instead of in Siem Reap, this way you know your money goes to the locals. 
  5. Ta Promh: 12.40 – 14.40 
  6. Neak Pean: 15.00 – 16.00 
  7. Phnomh Bakheng: 16.10 – … (Check sunset on Google)

    Day 2: Banteay Srei 

If you are planning on visiting all these temples in just 1.5 days, make sure you have enough snacks with you! 

Last tip

My last tip: if you find the guy from the photo, make sure you hire him as your tuktuk driver. His English is really good, he has a lot of knowledge and he showed us the coolest local places with amazing food and fruits. In English his name is Lenny.

I feel so jealous that you get to see the Angkor Wat for the first time! It truly is one of the most amazing spots I have ever visited and I can’t wait for Cambodia to attract more tourists again after Covid. The locals really deserve it, Cambodia has stolen a piece of my heart and I hope the same will happen to you! 

Angkor Wat (Cambodia) Costs and 7 amazing temples you can’t miss! tuktuk driver
Lenny, our awesome tuktuk driver

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