Perfect 2 Day Siem Reap Itinerary | 2023

Perfect 2 Day Siem Reap Itinerary | 2023

Siem Reap is the second largest city in Cambodia and the capital of Siem Reap Province in northwest Cambodia.

It is just 5 miles from the incredible temple complex of Angkor Wat – a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the largest religious monument in the world.

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Filled with countless temple ruins and monuments dating back over a thousand years, this archaeological site is worth exploring and gives you an insight into the daily life of Khmer citizens in the past.

if you are lucky enough to spend Siem Reap 2 days You may be wondering which temples to put on your “must see” list.

After all, the site is so large that it’s easy to spend a week in the area without fully exploring everything!

So we’ve put together this handy guide explaining what to do in Siem Reap in 2 days and the most important sites to visit. We’ve also included some additional sights and things to do in town and nearby areas.

You can buy passes to visit the temples at the Angkor Ticket Office. Do not buy tickets that may be available elsewhere, as only tickets purchased at the box office will be accepted.

Since you are visiting a religious temple, you need to dress appropriately. This means shoulders must be covered and skirts and trousers must be lower than the knees.

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first day

On the first of two days in Siem Reap, you’ll see some of the grandest temples at the Angkor Archaeological Park.

It may be tempting to visit as many temples as possible during your tour, but we recommend visiting only the best temples and spending a little time at each one.


The main way to get around the temple complex is by bicycle, tour bus or tuk-tuk.

Don’t try to walk – this area is huge, spanning over 400 square kilometers. Also, you will do a lot of walking inside the temple.

One of the most popular options is a tuk-tuk, which can be arranged by your hotel. Alternatively, you can mark one up on the street and agree on a price.

First head to Angkor Wat temple. The ticket office opens at 4.30am. Yes, it’s an early start, but it’s worth it if you can pull it off. There is nothing better than watching the sunrise from a temple!

Planning your upcoming adventure? Travel by bus! (Very cheap!)

Expect it to be busy – it’s one of the favorite things for tourists to do – but it’s still an unforgettable experience not to be missed.

After sunrise, explore the temple itself. There are no limits to where you can walk and the grandeur of the interior cannot be overstated!

You’ll see sweeping staircases, stunning doorways, and richly decorated platforms at every turn—in fact, this temple is considered a pinnacle of Khmer architecture and art.

From there, continue to the Bayon Temple within the walled and moated Angkor Thom. Although it is mostly swallowed up by the jungle, Angkor Thom was once one of the largest cities in the region.

cambodia angkor wat temple

Considered by many to be the real highlight of the complex, the Bayon Temple is the state temple built by King Jayavarman. It has 54 towers, each of which has a giant smiley face carved into its side (216 faces in total!).

Some believe the faces depict Avalokitesvara—the bodhisattva who represents compassion—while others believe they are portraits of the king himself.

There are other interesting carvings worth seeing as well, some depicting the everyday life of the townspeople at the time.

Next, head to Ta Prohm Temple.

Famous as the home of Lara Croft (Tomb Raider), this fascinating temple is almost swallowed up by giant tree roots that wind around it.

The way man-made structures and natural roots come together is striking.

Dating back to 1186, the temple was originally a Mahayana Buddhist monastery and university. It’s now one of the most popular and photogenic spots in the complex, so expect it to be busy.

The last stop in the morning is Ta Som Temple. It features some of the most intricate stonework in the entire complex, and its east gate is surrounded by a massive strangle fig tree.

Now stop for a bite to eat at one of the many small stalls dotted around the complex. You can buy a meal washed down with fresh juice for a few bucks.


South of Ta Som, you’ll find Neak Pean, which is a monument rather than a temple.

Situated on an artificial island in the middle of East Baray, it is sometimes referred to as “The Coiled Serpent” and is believed to have been built in the late 12th century.

Some say it may have been built for medical purposes, as the waters around it have so-called healing powers.

Healed or not, the waters are beautiful and the reflections in the water are spectacular.

Next, head to Prasat Kravan Temple. It consists of five brick towers dedicated to the Hindu supreme god Vishnu.

It is well preserved and surrounded by a moat, and the interior of the central sanctuary is carved with three bas-reliefs of Vishnu.

Neak Pean in Cambodia

Towards the end of the afternoon, head to Wat Phnom Bakheng to watch the sun set.

This is one of the oldest temples in the area and a great place to watch the sunset as it sits on a hillside 60 meters higher than the rest of the park.

Because it’s divided into seven floors – each representing the seven heavens of Hinduism – there are plenty of great vantage points to enjoy the view!


After a long day of sightseeing, it’s time to relax. And what better place than Pub Street?

This famous road is a ‘must visit’ on weekends in Siem Reap, lined with bars and restaurants serving a variety of Asian and Western cuisines.

It’s loud and lively, with neon signs, blaring music and clubs that stay open until the early hours.

If that’s not your scene, soak yourself up in the atmosphere, enjoy a roti (flatbread) from a street stall, or even get a makeshift henna tattoo.

day 2

On the second day of your 2 days in Siem Reap, you’ll visit Southeast Asia’s largest freshwater lake, relax with a massage, and explore the sights of the city’s vibrant markets.


First head to Tonle Sap Lake, the name roughly translates to “Great Lake”.

It is home to the Cambodian Vietnamese minority who have worked and lived in the area for many years. In fact, Vietnamese people are the main suppliers of fish to restaurants and markets in the country.

The lake is so unique that its flow changes twice a year, and its overall size can increase or decrease dramatically with the seasons.

Tonle Sap in Cambodia

The Vietnamese and Cham communities that live around it occupy the incredible floating village. Their homes tower above the water on stilts that are visible during the dry season.

The villages even include amenities like basketball courts, police stations, and churches! They are stunning and best visited on a half-day tour while you enjoy the spectacular bird life in the area.


Return to Siem Reap for lunch, then enjoy a traditional Khmer massage at one of the many massage parlors and spas around the city.

Practiced in Cambodia for centuries, this unique rejuvenating treatment is used to open energy points – known as Sen Sip – to restore harmony to the body.

Afterwards, head to the Angkor Night Market along Sivatha Avenue. It opens at 4pm and is an essential part of any visit to Siem Reap!

Established in 2007 to preserve traditional Khmer handicrafts, it now has more than 200 bamboo houses selling clothing, ceramics, handbags and more.

Siem Reap, Cambodia

This is a great place to buy all your souvenirs – be prepared to haggle for the best deals!

When you’re here, don’t forget to check out the street food – some of it is eye-opening, to say the least!

From fried bugs to giant spiders, there’s something for the most daring eaters – and even if you don’t want to participate, the exhibits are a great photo opportunity!


The perfect way to end 2 days in Siem Reap is to watch a spectacular show that will give you an insight into Khmer beliefs and culture.

The Apsara dance show is a good example, and tickets include a fantastic buffet dinner.

Is two days in Siem Reap enough?

You won’t be able to visit all the ruins in the vast Angkor Wat temple complex, but you can still see a lot of Siem Reap in 2 days and visit the best historical sites.

Keep in mind that this trip takes 2 full days, so if you arrive late or leave early on the last day, consider staying an extra night.

Where to Stay in Siem Reap

Here are some of our favorite places to spend the weekend in Siem Reap.

Best Budget Accommodation

Onederz Siem Reap is next to Angkor Night Market, 350 yards from Pub Street, and has two swimming pools (one on the rooftop). It offers dormitory accommodation and private rooms.

Best mid-range accommodation

Hari Residence and Spa is ideally located just 5 minutes from the Night Market and 15 minutes from the Angkor Wat temples.

Guests love the amenities here, including the spa, outdoor pool and well-equipped fitness area. All rooms are air-conditioned and offer garden or city views.

The on-site restaurant serves Asian, European and local Khmer dishes, and provides 24-hour room service.

Best Luxury Accommodation

For a real treat, spend your weekends in Siem Reap at the opulent Royal Angkor Resort & Spa, a high-end hotel set in five hectares of tropically landscaped gardens.

Housed in a 20th-century colonial-style Khmer building, Royal Angkor features a large outdoor pool and 6 restaurants.

Rooms are beautifully furnished with handcrafted carved furniture and local fabrics sourced from families of Cambodian artisans.

Final thoughts for two days in Siem Reap

We hope this itinerary to see the best of Siem Reap in 2 days was helpful for you.

With fascinating historical sites to explore during the day and fast-paced nightlife at sunset, this is a unique destination that offers something for every visitor.

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