October 2, 2007

Visit Angkor Wat for Free
Siem Reap, Cambodia

Far less complicated than sneaking into Machu Picchu, visiting Angkor Wat (or any of the temples of Angkor) for free has more to do with timing than playing Rambo.

What few people seem to be told is that every Angkor temple becomes free of charge from dusk until dawn (17:30–05:30). Tickets for the next day can be purchased the evening prior, starting around 14:30, which has the added bonus of granting the next day's visitors access to the temples as soon as they're purchased. This gives the visitor enough time to explore a place like Angkor Wat, or take in an extra sunset at the temple of their choice.

Entry into the temples of Angkor is regulated by friendly Cambodians (who snip or punch holes in one-day passes upon entry), but appear to only be present at some of the more popular temples (out of dozens). Taking advantage of the of the limited ticket enforcement, it's quite possible to spend an entire day exploring the temples for free (plus transport, of course).

Angkor Wat Three Day Pass example

Current prices for admittance into the temples of Angkor are:

  • US$20 for a one-day pass
  • US$40 for a three-day pass
  • US$60 for a one-week pass

If I was asked to pay any more than US$20 to visit these sites, I'd probably start looking for ways to sneak into them, or forge a ticket. Three-day and one-week passes have a digital mugshot imprinted on plastic cards, to prevent transference. Single-day passes could easily be duplicated if someone in town had a color photocopier handy.

Comments:

Anonymous

November 3rd, 2007

Your reference to your entrance to Macchu Picchu on the sly put a smile on my face. I work for the same company that Shoel travels with (Travel CUTS) and remember someone asking me, just shortly after reading your Macchu Picchu posting, what I could tell them about getting into the site for free. Being that I was in the business of selling travel at the time (I've since moved to a different position within the company), I was torn about what to do…so I did what any good agent should do - give them options. I told them what I could offer, but also referred them to your site so they could see for themselves whether they were up for the challenge. To be honest, I can't remember what came of it, but it reminds me how long I've been following your travels!
I'm glad to hear that getting into Angkor wasn't as involved as getting yourself into Macchu Picchu - especially for Tatiana's sake!
Safe and happy travels.

JR

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