Bag a bargain
There’s never a dull moment during a visit to one of Siem Reap’s many markets, but prepare to be bombarded with the sounds, smells and sights that await as you set off on your shopping mission.
The Old Market (Phsar Chas) is one of the town’s most popular markets and is full of character, colour and bizarre items. Souvenir stalls sell everything from Khmer
art, crafts, and jewellery to bags, trinkets, carvings and statues. Venture inside and you’ll get lost in the rabbit warren of endless aisles flogging everything from pots and pans to homeware, and mountains of clothes. If you plan to buy a souvenir here, however, keep in mind that many supposedly Cambodian handmade products are in fact mass produced in factories overseas.
Long-running Angkor Night Market is the original night market in Siem Reap and offers a little bit of everything for everybody, from shops to bars to a small cinema! So not only does it have a good range of shopping, it also offers a host of entertainment to give shoppers some respite. The Noon to Night Market is clean and bright, but lacks the character of Old Market. Prices are roughly the same as the Angkor Night Market across the more than 100 stalls, though the latter offers a more pleasant shopping environment.
The Art Centre Night Market, located across the river from the Old Market in the Wat Damnak area, features various NGOs selling their wares in a bid to raise awareness, with many of them training and employing disadvantaged youths, women or men in a variety of skills.
Visitors to Siem Reap can now check out the Temple Container Pub Zone, a beer garden and open market area made using shipping containers. It’s the first of its kind in the town and is well worth a look to grab some cheap T-shirts, sunglasses and other souvenirs.