Don't bother changing for riels. You'll get what you need in change. The US dollar is the de facto currency in Cambodia and most prices are quoted in dollars. Thai baht can be spent here but the rates are generally not favorable. Most of the Khmer-businesses give okay rates on baht, but many western-owned establishments especially of the bar and restaurant variety offer atrocious rates of 40 and even 45 to 50 baht to the dollar. If you have baht, you would do better to change some in town rather than try to spend it as you go.

The best place to change money is at any of the number of money changers scattered around town. There is always a concentration around the markets. Rip-offs are rare. More common currencies (Japanese yen, euros, Aussie dollars, Brit pounds, Thai baht) usually pose no difficulties, though rates may vary slightly from changer to changer and a little bargaining is sometimes necessary. However, the more obscure the currency is, the less likely the money changer will know the actual rate nor be willing to offer a fair rate as it may be more difficult for them to reconvert the notes later. It's also been my experience that the money changers will offer a better rate than the hotels regardless of what currency you're changing. Banks are generally not in the currency changing business here and don't be surprised if they send you out to a street money changer if you try.Khmer Riel

ATMs that accept international cards and dispense US dollars are all over the place, there are several in the Old Market area and several more scattered about town. Alternatively, the old-fashioned system of getting cash off a Visa or Master Card via a bank remains an option - and this can be done at any number of local banks with rates at around 2% or $5, whichever is greater. There is also a Western Union near the intersection of Sivatha and Route 6 next to the old police station.

For what it's worth, which isn't much, the riel exchanges at about 4,200 riels to one US dollar. The currency in non-convertible and any riels you leave the country with will become souvenirs.

Condition of money - For Cambodian riels you will see some bills so worn and torn you might have trouble figuring out what denomination it is. US dollars, however, are a different story. Though in general the acceptance of overly worn money isn't as problematic as it used to be (don't know why, really), in general, the higher the denomination of the bill, the more condition matters with rips in particular the biggest barrier to passing off a bill. For US $50s and $100s you'd do well to make sure all your bills are prisitne and new. $20s can be a bit ugly, but shouldn't have any rips, a minor rip in a $10 probably won't keep you from spending it but a big rip will. $1s and $5s nobody cares for the condition, but watch for large rips.Dollar

Also becoming problematic are what they call "small portrait" bills. This is the older US currency design where the portraits are smaller (mid 1990s I believe is when they were replaced?). 5s and 10s are spendable without too much fuss, 20s can be a little difficult to spend and 50s and 100s can be quite difficult to spend as quite a few businesses will flat out not accept them and two of the three counterfeits I have seen, or bills I was 90% sure were counterfeits, were "small portrait" notes.

Why so difficult to spend worn or torn bills? Two reasons. One of course, is improved counterfeiting technologies. As banks are scrutinizing money much more carefully than before, a lot of businesses are becoming much more careful about the money they accept. The second reason is that as the US dollar is not an official currency there is no central bank to clear out old bills so as they become excessively worn they eventually become worthless.

The best course of action is to see that your US dollars are new and crisp. Then everyone will be happy to accept them.

If you are receiving money from a bank or money changer, check every bill and don't be shy to turn one back if you don't like the appearance of it. And don't assume because you got cash from an ATM that the notes are fine. Knowing that residents will hand back questionable bills, banks often put their dodgiest money in the ATMs thereby dumping them on tourists who might not know any better.

Siem Reap, located in northwestern Cambodia, is the gateway to the world-famous Angkor temple complex, which includes the magnificent Angkor Wat. The province also contains a vibrant capital city boasting many luxury hotels, beautifully-aged colonial buildings, a buzzing Pub Street, silk farms, markets, and much more.

The city of Siem Reap, also the capital of the province, is a ‘must-visit’ destination for all visitors to Cambodia. This is where the glorious 12th Century Angkor Wat temple, the largest religious building in the world, is located. Situated on the northern bank of the Tonle Sap Great Lake, this mesmerizing eighth wonder of the world can be easily accessed by plane, land, and boat.

The ruins of Angkor, located in thick jungle, are now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There are over one thousand temples ranging in scale from nondescript piles of rubble scattered through rice fields to the awe-inspiring Angkor Wat--the best-preserved temple.

Angkor Wat Temple

Apart from the legacy of the vast Angkor temple complex, Siem Reap has a lot more to offer to tourists, from the spectacular floating village on the

 Tonle Sap Lake to the heritage site of the Kulen Mountain, to the recently discovered Koh Ker ruins.

In town, there are a bevy of ethnic craft shops, galleries, cafes, eateries and top-notch restaurants serving every type of cuisine. The famous ‘Pub Street’ and the night markets of Siem Reap are now renowned tour destinations in their own rights. Additionally, siilk farms, rice-paddy countryside, fishing villages and a very rich bird sanctuary near the Tonle Sap Lake make Siem Reap one of the most captivating places in the world.

Location

The province of Siem Reap is conveniently situated 314 km northwest of Phnom Penh, along National Road No 6. It can be reached all year round by National Road No 6 from Phnom Penh, Poipèt Border Checkpoint from Banteay Meanchey, Kampong Cham Province and Kampong Thom Province, and by National Road No 5 and 6 from Kampong Chhnang province, Pursat province and Battambang province.

How to reach Siem Reap?

Siem Reap is accessible by direct flights from many major cities in the region including Bangkok, Danang, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh, Paksé, Vientiane, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Hong Kong, Kunming, Taipei, etc. From the capital of Phnom Penh, Angkor Air operates several direct flights per day to and from Siem Reap.

There are also speedboats operating along the Tonlé Sap from Phnom Penh and Battambang Province.

Shopping

Shopping is perhaps the other best thing to devote time to besides sightseeing. It is always good to take home a souvenir or two and for that, you would want to consider something native or perhaps something you can start a conversation over.

Cambodian fine silk pieces and textile materials are world renown. Moreover, Cambodia is a treasure trove for sculptures, carvings, silverwork and paintings. There are just so many things to shop for here in Cambodia.

Transportation

The best way to see the country at a leisurely pace is to hire a car with a driver. You can of course drive yourself around, but it probably wouldn’t be as pleasant as having someone else to drive you especially on unfamiliar roads and through heavy traffic. Renting a motorbike is great for short distances within the city and for touring rural areas. In Phnom Penh, the cyclo and motordops (motorcycle taxi) are popular means frequently used by locals. Metered taxis are also available; your hotel counter staff can help to order one which will usually take about 10mins to arrive.

Tourists can travel to all parts of Cambodia by bus, taxi, motorbike, boat and aeroplane. Within the capital of Phnom Penh, Siem Reap Province and Preah Sihanouk Province, sightseeing can conveniently be enjoyed on a Reumork. Buses are available from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap, Preah Sihanouk, Pursat, Battambang, Poipèt, Banteay Meanchey, Kratie, and Preah Vihear.

Boats are very popular means of transportation along the Tonlé Sap, Bassac, and Mekong rivers. These boats remove the hassle of meandering along the highways yet offer some spectacular scenery along the way. Cambodia Angkor Air, the National Flag Carrier operates to and from Phnom Penh and Siem Reap daily.

In the capital of Phnom Penh and the province of Siem Reap, a Cyclo including a driver can be hired at a reasonable price; do agree on a price before the ride.

Restaurant

Siem Reap is a comparatively small town with a lot of happening. The Angkor temples being the main activity provider by day but comes nightfall, the electrifying pub street and the night markets have a great deal to offer as well. Speaking of food, it is not only because we need to fill ourselves, but it is always a pleasure to feast and Siem Reap is never short of food offerings. While the main local cuisines are the Khmer fares which are widely available across town; at restaurants and even on the side of some streets in town, Asian and other European cuisines including Italian, Thai, Germany, Vietnamese, Indian, Chinese, Korean, and Japanese are also well presented in this bustling tourist city. And of course French food - given Cambodia’s long relationship with France’s gastronomical traditions, it is no surprise that many of the town’s finer venues offer French cuisine as well.

Some restaurants offer also Khmer fusion and contemporary cuisines, which are unique to Cambodia.

In Siem Reap, restaurants are scattered all across town and none is more than a 5 minute ‘Tuk-tuk’ ride away or you can just stroll down the old market area, where there are many reasonably priced eating places which all offer Khmer cuisines and other western or Asian foods.

Pub Street is a very popular place and as the name suggests, there are not just food, but a huge offering of pubs and night life activities. Some restaurants at Pub Street also offer traditional performances for entertainment as you dine and wine.

While the main local cuisines are the Khmer fares which are widely available across town; at restaurants and even on the side of some streets in town, Asian and other European cuisines including Italian, Thai, Germany, Vietnamese, Indian, Chinese, Korean, and Japanese are also well presented in this bustling tourist city. And of course French food - given Cambodia’s long relationship with France’s gastronomical traditions, it is no surprise that many of the town’s finer venues offer French cuisine as well.

Some restaurants offer also Khmer fusion and contemporary cuisines, which are unique to Cambodia.

In Siem Reap, restaurants are scattered all across town and none is more than a 5 minute ‘Tuk-tuk’ ride away or you can just stroll down the old market area, where there are many reasonably priced eating places which all offer Khmer cuisines and other western or Asian foods.

Pub Street is a very popular place and as the name suggests, there are not just food, but a huge offering of pubs and night life activities. Some restaurants at Pub Street also offer traditional performances for entertainment as you dine and wine.

Ministry of Tourism

E-Visa Make Your Trip Happen To The Kingdom Of Wonder!

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation has launched e-Visa, which enables you to apply for a Cambodia tourist visa online. Instead of applying through Cambodian Embassy, all you need to do is to complete the online application form and pay with your credit card. After receiving your Visa through email, print it out and bring it along when you travel to Cambodia.

Tourist Visa

Entry Type Single entry only
Fees USD20 + USD5 (processing charge) + USD3 (additional bank charge)
Validity 3 months (starting from the date of issue)
Length of Stay 30 days (more)
Processing time 3 business days
Requirement A passport validity of more than six months balance at time of entry, a recent passport-size photo in digital format (JPEG or PNG format), a valid credit card (Visa/MasterCard).
Visa Exemption Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia
Countries not supported Afghanistan, Algeria, Arab Saudi, Bangladesh, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Nigeria (Please apply your Visa from your nearest embassy or on-arrival at all major checkpoints).

Free Swimming PoolVisa Card Master Card Free WiFi Free Pick Up


Bookmark and Share