To make the most of a five-day trip to Cambodia, it's best to focus on one city or region—you'll save time and avoid spreading yourself too thin. On these three unique itineraries focused on Siem Reap and the Angkor UNESCO World Heritage Site, you'll be pleasantly surprised by how diverse the sights and activities can be as you cycle past ancient temples, plant rice with local farmers, and kayak among the floating villages of Tonlé Sap lake.

Itinerary #1: Siem Reap: Angkor Culture & Cuisine

Spend five days discovering Cambodia's fascinating culture and cuisine on this slow-paced itinerary around the colonial city of Siem Reap and the ancient ruins of Angkor.

Learn to cook the traditional Cambodian way
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Siem Reap, Angkor Wat Sunset Tour Siem Reap
Day 2 Visit Angkor Thom, Apsara Dance Performance Siem Reap
Day 3 Siem Reap Village Cookery Class, Phare Circus Siem Reap
Day 4 Angkor City Tour Siem Reap
Day 5 Depart Siem Reap  

Begin your five-day trip in Siem Reap, the gateway to the ancient Khmer capital of Angkor. Your afternoon exploration of the UNESCO World Heritage Site will focus on Angkor Wat with its 3,000 bas-relief Apsara (heavenly maidens). After sunset, visit Siem Reap's Night Market to taste delicacies like fertilized duck eggs. The next day, hop on a remork or Cambodian tuk-tuk (motorized rickshaw) to watch the sunrise over Angkor Thom, the largest of the Khmer Empire capitals. You'll explore sites like the Bayon temple and Terrace of the Elephants before ending your day with a delicious Khmer dinner and traditional Apsara dance show.

On day three, visit a village to learn about traditional food and farming; then make a three-course meal in a Cambodian cooking class. After a free afternoon, enjoy a mesmerizing performance by Phare Cambodian Circus. A sunrise visit to Angkor's Pre Rup temple on day four and an authentic Cambodian breakfast in a nearby village precede exploration of Ta Prohm—the "Tomb Raider" temple—plus an optional visit to Banteay Srei (Citadel of the Women). End with an aperitif of Sombai (infused rice wine), then a memorable journey through Cambodian cuisine at Siem Reap's famous Chanrey Tree restaurant. Learn more

Itinerary #2: Siem Reap: Bike Angkor & Kayak Tonlé Sap

Active travelers, in particular, will appreciate this five-day itinerary dedicated to exploring the world-famous ancient archaeological site of Angkor by bicycle and the "floating villages" of Tonlé Sap lake by boat and kayak. 

Kayak amid the "floating villages" of Tonlé Sap
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Siem Reap, Dinner & Traditional Dance Performance Siem Reap
Day 2 Angkor Temple Exploration by Remork (Full Day) Siem Reap
Day 3 Cycle to Hidden Temples (Full Day) Siem Reap
Day 4 Explore Tonlé Sap Fishing Villages by Kayak Siem Reap
Day 5 Depart Siem Reap  

Start with a free day to relax or explore this vibrant city at leisure before witnessing a memorable Apsara dance performance this evening. The next day, hop aboard a remork for a tour of Angkor Thom—boasting many of the finest temples in the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Your visit will include the Bayon temple and the Royal Bathing Pool of Sra Srang. On day three, bicycle to some of Angkor's more remote (yet equally fascinating) temples, including root-entangled Ta Prohm—nicknamed "Tomb Raider Temple"—and Preah Khan, with its "Hall of the Dancers" featuring exquisite carvings of seductive apsaras.

Day four is another active adventure as you head to Tonlé Sap—Southeast Asia's largest freshwater lake—for a day of kayaking to Mechrey or (depending on the water level) another of the famous "floating villages." Here, you'll interact with locals to learn about their waterborne lifestyle, visit the small hilltop Mechrey Buddhist pagoda, and enjoy the chance to spot many rare waterbird species of the Tonlé Sap Biosphere Reserve. Learn more

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Itinerary #3: Siem Reap: Bike Angkor, HeroRATS & Rural Life

This five-day itinerary provides an in-depth immersion in Siem Reap and the Angkor UNESCO World Heritage Site, combining exploration by remork and bicycle, plus a day experiencing countryside living and an evening of Cambodian circus.

Banteay Srei temple
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Siem Reap, At Leisure Siem Reap
Day 2 Cycle Angkor's Back Roads (Full Day) Siem Reap
Day 3 Trek Angkor Thom Walls, HeroRATS & Phare Cambodian Circus Siem Reap
Day 4 Experience Rural Life Siem Reap
Day 5 Free Morning, Depart  

Day one is for relaxing or exploring vibrant Siem Reap—a chance for a fish pedicure treatment. Spend the next day cycling to Angkor's top sites, including such lesser-visited temples as the 10th-century Prasat Kravan, plus the iconic Ta Prohm "Tomb Raider" temple, the Bayon Temple of Angkor Thom, and the vast Angkor Wat complex. On day three, return to Angkor Thom by remork to stroll atop the 7-mile-long (12 km) perimeter wall before an afternoon visit to the APOPO Visitor Centre to meet the African giant pouched "HeroRATs," trained to find landmines. End the day with a performance by Phare Cambodian Circus.

Your last full day is given to an experiential interaction with farmers, fishers, and villagers as you engage hands-on in rural life by helping in such activities as thatching, weaving wall panels, or transplanting rice. You'll also visit a community environmental project that converts waste plastic bottles into "eco-bricks," used for building medical centers, schools, and other community structures. Finally, enjoy free time to browse Siem Reap's markets, explore the Royal Independence Garden, or gain emotional insight into the horrors of the Pol Pot regime at the Genocide Museum or Cambodia Landmine Museum. Learn more

More Great Cambodia Itineraries

Looking for more inspiration for your trip to Cambodia? Check out these other Cambodia itineraries, with outdoor adventures, cultural trips, and best-of tours to hit the highlights. 


Map of 5 Days in Cambodia - 3 Unique Itinerary Ideas
Map of 5 Days in Cambodia - 3 Unique Itinerary Ideas