In just a matter of hours, you can now immerse in the colorful past of the Khmer kingdoms and marvel at the majestic structures of Angkor. Cebu Pacific, the country’s largest airline, now flies from Manila direct to Siem Reap, Cambodia. Cambodia’s Indochinese country is vast in ancient treasures and artifacts, making it a top destination for travelers who have a penchant for all things of historic value.
Since it has been declared a World Heritage Site by the UNESCO in 1992, the Angkor Wat complex has caught the attention of travelers all over the world. Its breathtaking temple ruins transformed the once sleepy town of Siem Reap into a bustling tourist hub. “For where are the words to praise a work of art that has no equal anywhere in the world?” wrote French explorer Henri Mouhot when he first set foot in the archeological marvel back in the 1800s. Sprawling in a 400-kilometer complex, the Angkor Archeology Park occupies what remains of the great Khmer Empire from as far back as the 9th century.
The most celebrated of Cambodia’s temples is the magnificent Angkor Wat, constructed in honor of the Hindu god Vishnu and said to be the largest single religious monument in the world. Visitors who come before five in the morning can watch the glorious sunrise by the main temple’s top tier, while those who stay until around five in the afternoon will be amazed at the breathtaking sunset.
Aside from the Angkor Wat, dozens of other temples such as the Bayon in Angkor Thom— with its giant stone faces that adorn the towers— and Ta Prohm—best known as the temple where trees have been left intertwined with the stonework—never fail to fascinate the millions who come to visit the complex every year. Those who have an extra day to spare after exploring the temple ruins and the mesmerizing moats surrounding them should also visit the Angkor National Museum, Old Market, and Central Market for more Khmer fascination.
In the Cambodian Cultural Village, visitors will find miniatures of famous historical buildings and structures of Cambodia. There are 11 unique villages, which represent different culture heritages, local customs and characteristics of 19 multi races. The Artisans D’Angkor also preserves the arts of carving metal, stone and wood, and produces some of the best high-quality souvenirs from Siem Reap. The town exudes a friendly vibe to all kinds of travelers, with a wide range of hotels, hostels, and inns catering to tourists and backpackers. To go shopping or out for drinks, it is imperative to visit the lively Pub Street and nearby Night Market, which fills up with tourists once the sun sets.
Take the entire family on an enriching cultural trip or invite friends to a captivating adventure to one of the world’s most fascinating archeological wonders. Pack your bags and fly to Siem Reap on Cebu Pacific.