Known as a popular city on the backpacking route, Siem Reap is also the link to the world wonder, Angkor Wat temple. While it does boast one of the world’s treasures, there’s also some pretty great bars in Siem Reap. In fact, it’s popular among travellers as having one of the best drinking scenes in South East Asia.
Hit up Pub Street in Siem Reap for some bright lights and dirt cheap beers, or go a little fancier with some specialty speakeasy-style cocktails and rooftop terraces. Here’s our pick of the city’s best watering holes.
The Best Bars In Siem ReapHow do these rankings work?
While the rowdy bars on Pub Street might call your name, it would be a real shame to miss out on this incredible cocktail bar in Siem Reap. Its vibe is that of speakeasies of the roaring 20’s or modern hideaway bars of Melbourne, Bangkok and Hong Kong.
A creative cocktail menu includes a twist on Raffles Hotel’s original Singapore Sling recipe and other great tipples. Easily one of the best bars in Siem Reap.
Natural Sky Lounge is located on the rooftop of a hotel, with a pretty view of Siem Reap city and is ideal for catching a nice balmy, tropical breeze. Take the spiral stairs up the roof, where you’ll be sitting underneath colourful lights that are inspired by Singapore’s Gardens By The Bay. It’s a lovely spot to sit and watch the sunset and the city light up below.
Only a few steps away from Pub Street, this old market house has been transformed into a unique bar. Asana – which means ‘old wooden house’ in Khmer – has a rustic interior with rice sacks filled with feathers for floor cushions. They serve a creative cocktail menu of Khmer-inspired drinks. Think ‘The Lane’, with white rum, kaffir leaf, pepper, galangal, and sugarcane juice.
Siem Reap’s only proper speakeasy, Menaka is a beautiful cocktail lounge. The cocktails list is separated into three eras of Khmer History, which represent distinct flavours: Angkor Era, Sangkum Era, and the Great Era.
How to enter? You’ll go through a coffee shop, with another secret door from a side alley also granting access to the hidden bar.
Look, you can’t have a list of the best bars in Siem Reap and not mention the bar that started the infamous Pub Street. The Angkor What? Bar was the city’s first backpacker bar, opening in 1998. It’s famous for its huge buckets of boozy cocktails and loud music. If you want to come meet other travellers and get loose, this is the place for you.
If you want to try some local beer that’s a little more gourmet than the Angkor Beer you’ve been drinking, Siem Reap Brewpub is ideal. It’s a great microbrewery with its own restaurant and bar right in the heart of Siem Reap. Beers are made onsite by a brewer from Singapore, malt from Germany, and hops from Australia.
There’s six craft brews to sample, including a Honey Weiss and India Pale Ale.
You’ll soon see that once you get out of the chaos of Pub Street, there’s some beautiful bars. Experimental is a prime example. It’s a classy cocktail garden with lush greenery and an expert mixologist with over 10 years experience working in bars in Paris. The result? Delicious drinks such as Pisco Apple Sours and the use of local and seasonal herbs and ingredients.