In other posts is a lot of information given about Siem Reap as a town and things to do and see. In this post the remaining things of Siem Reap. Of course you can visit a park and there are several temples to see or visit. One of the temples is right at the edge of Pubstreet. You can’t really miss it. The entrance gate is at the road along the river. The story of this temple dates from 1500 A.D. and is about a monk who used to travel to Long Vek by boat to ask for food. Long Vek was the ancient capital of Cambodia. Located near the current capital Phnom Penh.
One day some sharks attacked the boat and the boat broke in two. He held on to one piece and floated to Kampong Chang province. The Buddhists there built a standing Buddha statue of one part of the broken boat, while the monk floated back on the second part and built a reclining Buddha of it in this temple. Now, 500 years later it’s still in one building and as the story goes, it brings you happiness and merit when you enter it with a salute and respect. As in most temples in Cambodia, you’ll find stupa’s. Temple grounds are at the same time cemeteries. Probably only for rich or influential people. Otherwise there won’t be enough space to place stupas for ordinary citizens. In these stupas you’ll see a photo of a person and a name on it.
Temple at Park
Another temple is located at the park in Siem Reap. Opposite the palace building. A busy road is passing it and in the middle of that road stands a big tree that splits the 2 lanes around it. In front of that tree you’ll find a small but very important temple or statue. It might be meaning Buddha and the Bodhi Tree. Buddha reached enlightenment under the Bodhi Tree in Bodhgaya, India.
The main temple at the park is within a compound that is usually visited by both many locals as well as tourists. In particular buses full with Chinese tourists. Around the statue room which is relatively small, you’ll find sitting monks to give you blessings. Opposite the monks there is a band of traditional instrument players. The monks and the band will act on donation. In front of the temple is a huge jar to burn incense and on either side of that you should leave your shoes. Even a hairdresser is available on the compound busy shaving heads of what looks like monks or monks to become.
The Buddha room with statues is small but crowded with people doing prayers, burning incense, putting flowers and other blessing attributes. Not too far from this place, at the other side of the river, you can find Wat Bo Temple. As you notice, there are plenty of temples in the area nearby alone. Not to mention the temples of Angkor which are of different designs.
In front of the Royal residence in Siem Reap lies a big park. The park is also called the Royal independence gardens. Standing in front of the palace facing the park, you have the temple on your left side and the river on your right side. Along the river is a parking area for buses with tourists. The park exist mostly of fields. walking paths and a relatively small square shaped fountain space. The fountains come together with colored lamps and both only work in the evenings. It does give a great scenery in the evenings. A popular hangout place and space for jogging. The fountains are protected by big concrete lion statues.
As mentioned, on the short side of the park and opposite hotel Grand ‘d Angkor on the other short side of the park is the Royal residence located. There is not much to say about it. A big size portrait of a queen on the corner with the river road. In front of the gate you’ll find two old style canons and a statue, while on the walls of the building above the doors is an emblem and on either side of the doors are Khmer styles statues attached. The trees and garden are well maintained. The Royal residence is not a spectacular building but in the bigger picture with the park and temple it fits pretty well.
Phnom Krom is an outing area that is for a big part under construction as per June ’19. Located around a 20-30 min. drive from Siem Reap, by car or motorbike. The main gate is one of a few things that is done regarding construction. That counts for the resort too. Left of the resort you walk to another what seems artificially created pond. Several platforms look nice but offer nothing. In the pond are no water activities to be found. The whole area is still under construction, although a lot has been accomplished.
When the whole area has been done and ready and when activities will be added, it can become a great hangout area for locals and expats. Not really a place where tourists will spend there little time. Watercycles, fishing, swimming, boating are some things that can make it a more interesting place. Maybe it will be added overtime. Even the resort is empty most days. Weekends and public holidays will bring lots of people to this area in the near future but overall it seems to add nothing that’s already around Siem Reap, like Kulen Mountain. Just another picnic spot. The entrance fee as per June ’19 is $0,50
An impression video can be seen here https://youtu.be/EIpMoACwcB8