The Popular Sunset of Phnom Bakheng

Siem Reap, Cambodia – One of the highlights of our Angkor experience is watching the sunset on top of Phnom Bakheng temple. Situated on top of a hill, we got to see 360 degrees view of Siem Reap, including the Angkor Wat temple. Definitely the best spot to experience a true Angkor sunset.

Phnom Bakheng Sunset
Phnom Bakheng Sunset

Apparently, every tourist here knows about that.

We finished our big tour too early for sunset but it happened that we were just right in time.  Tourists can rent an elephant for a ride to the top of the hill for 20 USD. Though elephants sound fun, we opt out for the hike which is free. 😀

We were greeted by traditional music by local bands and started our way up at around 430AM. After hiking the dusty hill, we’ve climbed up at least 50 more narrow steps to get to the top of the temple. After that climb, we realized that we were lucky to managed to beat the crowds. How can you hike/climb such if you’re in a queue?

On top, we rested for a bit while people-watching, a thing that we always enjoy doing especially in a place like this where you get to observed people from different places.

The crowd waiting for Phnom Bakheng Sunset
The crowd waiting for Phnom Bakheng Sunset

After waiting for almost an hour, we got what we wanted, a panoramic view of Siem Reap during sunset. It was like the cherry-on-top of our day!

Phnom Bakheng Sunset
Phnom Bakheng Sunset
Phnom Bakheng Sunset

After getting our perfect sunset shot, we left the area.  We wouldn’t want to get caught in between with the crowd rushing down on the stairs and downhill in the dark. 😀

Note, besides wearing comfortable shoes for the climb, make sure you’re wearing also at least knee-length pants or long skirt as the guards won’t allow you to go up the temple. There are stores at the entrance where you can buy scarfs for cover-up if you don’t have one. Also, be early if you can. Only a couple of people are allowed to stay on top for conservation.

Stores outside the temples
Stores at the entrance of Phnom Bakheng


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