The awe-inspiring temples of Angkor are undoubtedly one of the most impressive and important historical sites in Southeast Asia. Many assume that there is just the one temple “Angkor Wat” but in fact there are well over 40 monuments to explore, they are not technically all temples but rather the remains of an ancient city and include places of worship, learning and healing to name but a few.
Your base for exploring the complex is the nearby town of Siem Reap, located just a few kilometres from the complex. The town itself is of little historical importance and is really just a base for tourists. Hotels, of all standards, are being constructed at an alarming rate and there are many restaurants and bars to service the increasing tourist numbers. Even taking into account increased numbers, the Angkor complex is a real highlight on any Asian trip.
Oasis guides know where and when the majority of larger tour buses will be visiting the temples and itineraries can be arranged with this in mind. Angkor provides wonderful photographic opportunities so we can also arrange for your itinerary to catch the temples in the best photographic light or, if you prefer, to visit them in the chronological order that they were built, just let us know your preferences when discussing the itinerary.
To the north of Siem Reap it is possible to visit the remote temples such as Preah Vihear and the “Palace of the Cat” Banteay Chhmar. The road out to these remote ruins is a rough dirt track and there is no fixed accommodation but it is possible to stay in safari tents (with free standing beds and separate toilet band shower tents). These jungle safaris allow you to enjoy the unique splendour of the temples away from other tourists, something that is increasingly difficult at the Angkor complex.
Another way to enjoy the temples in solitude, if only for a short while is to take a hot air-balloon trip for a birds eye view. As all our tours are tailor made we can accommodate your interest levels by designing a specific itinerary to match your needs.
We would suggest at least 3 days around the Angkor region with at least two days at the main complex; in our experience any less than this and you will only leave regretting having not spent longer exploring these ancient man made wonders!
If you suffer from “temple fatigue” a visit to the moving Mr Aki-ra’s land mine museum or an engaging half day trip to the floating villages on Tonle Sap, Asia’s largest freshwater lake or are good ways to break up seeing the ruins. If you are interested in handicrafts the best place to buy them is at Artisans d’Angkor, where all the products are made by locals from a professional training school, which was founded to help young Cambodians rediscover traditional handicrafts and give them the opportunity to take part in the rebuilding process of their country following the dark years of the Khmer Rouge. There is also a new Nick Faldo designed golf course - Angkor Golf Course - opening mid 2008 to compliment the excellent Sofitel Phokeethra Country Club course.