Header Notice

Winter is here! Check out the winter wonderlands at these 5 amazing winter destinations in Montana

The Best Time To Visit Angkor Wat Is Right Now


Modified: December 27, 2023

by Rafaela Rhee



Welcome to the enchanting world of Angkor Wat, a place where ancient history and stunning architecture come together to create a truly magnificent destination. Angkor Wat, located in Siem Reap, Cambodia, is the largest religious monument in the world and a UNESCO World Heritage site. With its intricate carvings, mystical atmosphere, and breathtaking sunrise vistas, it’s no wonder that Angkor Wat is a bucket-list destination for travelers from around the globe.


Steeped in rich history, Angkor Wat was built in the 12th century by the Khmer Empire. It was originally constructed as a Hindu temple but was later converted into a Buddhist monument, adding to its cultural significance. The temple complex spans over 400 acres, comprising numerous temples, bas-reliefs, and impressive architectural features, all of which showcase the remarkable craftsmanship of the ancient Khmer people.


Visiting Angkor Wat is like stepping back in time. As you wander through the labyrinthine corridors and explore the intricately carved facades, you can’t help but be in awe of the architectural mastery and the stories that unfold before your eyes. Witnessing the sunrise over Angkor Wat is a truly mesmerizing experience as the golden rays illuminate the temple’s intricate details, creating a picture-perfect moment that will stay etched in your memory forever.


Whether you are a history enthusiast, an architecture aficionado, or simply a traveler seeking awe-inspiring experiences, Angkor Wat offers something for everyone. However, to make the most of your visit, it’s important to understand the weather patterns and choose the best time to explore this magnificent site.


The significance of Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat is not just a stunning architectural marvel; it holds immense cultural, historical, and religious significance. As the largest religious monument in the world, it serves as a symbol of Cambodia’s rich heritage and a testament to the ingenuity and creativity of the Khmer civilization.


Angkor Wat was originally built as a temple dedicated to the Hindu god Vishnu, reflecting the religious beliefs of the Khmer Empire at the time. The temple’s design follows the traditional Khmer architectural style, with its towering spires, intricate bas-reliefs, and expansive courtyards. The bas-reliefs depict various mythological stories and historical events, showcasing the Khmer people’s deep connection to their gods and their reverence for their rulers.


Over time, Angkor Wat transformed into a Buddhist temple, reflecting the shift in religious beliefs within the region. Today, it remains an active place of worship where Buddhist monks conduct religious ceremonies and visitors can find solace and spiritual enlightenment.


Besides its religious significance, Angkor Wat also played a crucial role in the political and cultural development of the Khmer Empire. It served as the capital city during the Khmer rule, and its grandeur and opulence demonstrated the empire’s power and prestige. The intricate carvings and architectural details found throughout Angkor Wat also reflect the empire’s dedication to artistic expression and its commitment to showcasing the Khmer people’s talent and creativity.


Angkor Wat’s significance extends beyond its historical and cultural value. It holds a deeply emotional place in the hearts of the Cambodian people. Despite enduring centuries of abandonment and neglect, Angkor Wat has survived and thrived, symbolizing the resilience and tenacity of the Cambodian people. It is a source of national pride and serves as a reminder of Cambodia’s rich past and its bright future.


Today, Angkor Wat welcomes millions of visitors each year, drawing people from all corners of the globe who are captivated by its beauty, mystique, and profound significance. It stands as a testament to human achievement, a reminder of our shared history, and a beacon of hope for future generations.


Weather and Climate

The weather and climate in Angkor Wat play a significant role in determining the best time to visit this ancient wonder. Understanding the seasonal patterns can help you plan your trip more effectively and ensure a pleasant and comfortable experience.


Angkor Wat experiences a tropical climate, characterized by two main seasons: the dry season and the wet season. These seasons offer distinctive weather conditions, each with its own advantages and drawbacks for visitors.


The dry season, which runs from November to March, is the most popular time to visit Angkor Wat. During this time, the weather is generally sunny and dry, with clear blue skies. The temperatures are cooler, ranging from the mid-20s to low 30s Celsius (mid-70s to 90s Fahrenheit), making it more comfortable for exploring the temple complex on foot. The dry season is also ideal for capturing stunning photographs, with the sunlight creating a beautiful contrast against the temple’s intricate details.


On the other hand, the wet season, which lasts from April to October, brings frequent rain showers and higher humidity. While the weather can be unpredictable, with sudden downpours, this season has its own unique charm. The rainfall transforms the lush greenery surrounding Angkor Wat into a vibrant and refreshing landscape. The crowds are also significantly smaller during this time, allowing for a more tranquil and intimate experience. Additionally, the wet season offers the advantage of lower accommodation rates and fewer tourists.


However, it’s important to note that visiting Angkor Wat during the wet season requires extra preparation. Be sure to pack appropriate rain gear, such as a waterproof jacket and umbrella, to stay dry during sudden showers. It’s also advisable to plan your temple visits in the mornings when the weather is usually clearer, as the afternoon showers are more common.


Overall, the best time to visit Angkor Wat depends on your personal preferences and priorities. If you prefer pleasant weather and want to avoid the rain, the dry season is the ideal time to visit. On the other hand, if you don’t mind occasional showers, the wet season offers a quieter and more affordable experience.


Regardless of the season you choose to visit, it’s important to stay hydrated, wear sunscreen, and dress comfortably. Exploring the vast temple complex requires a substantial amount of walking, so comfortable shoes and lightweight clothing are essential.


Now that you’re aware of the weather patterns in Angkor Wat, you can plan your trip accordingly to make the most of your visit to this extraordinary historical site.


Peak and Off-peak Seasons

Angkor Wat attracts visitors from all over the world, and as a result, it experiences peak and off-peak seasons throughout the year. Understanding these seasons can help you plan your trip more efficiently and make the most of your visit.


The peak season in Angkor Wat typically falls between November and February when the weather is dry and pleasant. During this time, the temple complex sees a significant influx of tourists, resulting in larger crowds and longer queues at popular attractions. It’s important to be prepared for larger crowds and to plan your visits to the temples accordingly. Arriving early in the morning or later in the afternoon can help you avoid the largest crowds and enjoy a more serene experience. Additionally, booking your accommodations and tour guides well in advance is recommended during the peak season to secure your preferred options.


The off-peak season, on the other hand, occurs during the wet season from April to October. This period sees fewer visitors compared to the peak season, offering a more tranquil and intimate experience. The smaller crowds allow you to explore the temples with more ease and have quieter moments to appreciate the beauty and history of Angkor Wat. Moreover, the off-peak season often comes with lower accommodation rates and discounted tour packages, making it a budget-friendly time to visit. However, it’s important to note that the weather during the off-peak season can be unpredictable, with frequent rain showers. Be prepared with appropriate rain gear and plan your temple visits accordingly to avoid getting caught in heavy rain.


There is also a shoulder season that occurs in March and October, which marks the transition between the peak and off-peak seasons. During these months, you can enjoy a balance between smaller crowds and favorable weather conditions. The shoulder season can be an excellent time to visit if you prefer a more moderate climate and fewer tourists.


It’s important to consider your travel preferences when deciding between the peak and off-peak seasons. If you enjoy a vibrant atmosphere and don’t mind larger crowds, the peak season can provide a lively experience. On the other hand, if you prefer a more serene and budget-friendly visit, the off-peak season may be more suitable.


Regardless of the season you choose, it’s recommended to plan your visit to Angkor Wat strategically. Arriving early in the morning or later in the afternoon can help you avoid the busiest times and make the most of your time in this awe-inspiring destination. With careful planning and consideration, you can create unforgettable memories at Angkor Wat, regardless of the season you visit.


Benefits of Visiting Now

If you’re considering a trip to Angkor Wat, there are several benefits to visiting now that make it an ideal time to experience this ancient wonder.


1. Smaller Crowds: As the world is slowly recovering from the impact of the pandemic, tourism numbers have decreased, resulting in fewer visitors to Angkor Wat. This means you can explore the temples and appreciate their beauty with fewer crowds, allowing for a more immersive and intimate experience. You’ll have more space and time to take stunning photographs, absorb the tranquil atmosphere, and connect with the rich history of the site.


2. Enhanced Safety Measures: In response to the pandemic, Angkor Wat has implemented enhanced safety measures to ensure the well-being of visitors. These measures include temperature checks, mandatory mask-wearing, and social distancing protocols. With these measures in place, you can have peace of mind knowing that your safety is being prioritized during your visit.


3. Affordability: With the decrease in tourist numbers, many hotels and tour operators are offering competitive prices and attractive deals to attract visitors. This makes it an opportune time to explore Angkor Wat on a budget without compromising on comfort or quality. Take advantage of discounted rates on accommodations, tour packages, and even airfare, allowing you to maximize your travel budget and enjoy more experiences during your trip.


4. Unspoiled Natural Beauty: The decrease in tourist activity has also had a positive impact on the surrounding natural landscape. With fewer visitors, the flora and fauna around Angkor Wat have been able to rejuvenate and thrive. You can witness the lush greenery, vibrant flowers, and beautiful wildlife in their natural splendor. Take a moment to appreciate the serenity and peacefulness of the site, undisturbed by large crowds.


5. Support Local Communities: By visiting Angkor Wat now, you are contributing to the local economy and supporting the livelihoods of the people who depend on tourism. Your visit helps to sustain jobs and businesses in the area, ensuring that the local community can continue to thrive and preserve the cultural heritage tied to Angkor Wat.


Visiting Angkor Wat now presents a rare opportunity to experience this iconic destination in a more exclusive and rewarding way. With smaller crowds, enhanced safety measures, affordability, unspoiled natural beauty, and the chance to support local communities, there are numerous advantages to exploring Angkor Wat at this time. Don’t miss the chance to create lasting memories and immerse yourself in the captivating history and beauty of Angkor Wat.


Tips for Visiting Angkor Wat

Visiting Angkor Wat can be a truly remarkable experience, but proper planning and preparation can enhance your trip even further. Here are some essential tips to help you make the most of your visit:


1. Research and Plan Ahead: Before your trip, research the history and significance of Angkor Wat to gain a deeper understanding of what you will encounter. Familiarize yourself with the layout of the temple complex and create an itinerary of the temples you want to visit. Planning ahead will ensure that you don’t miss any must-see sights.


2. Dress Appropriately: Angkor Wat is a sacred site, so it’s important to dress respectfully. Ensure your shoulders, knees, and chest are covered when visiting the temples. Loose, breathable clothing and comfortable shoes are recommended as you will be doing a fair amount of walking and climbing stairs.


3. Start Early for Sunrise: Watching the sunrise over Angkor Wat is an unforgettable experience. Arrive early to secure a good spot and witness the temple as it is bathed in golden light. Consider hiring a local guide who can share insightful stories and ensure you don’t miss any important details.


4. Stay Hydrated: Cambodia’s climate can be hot and humid, so staying hydrated is crucial. Carry a refillable water bottle and drink plenty of fluids throughout the day. There are several shops and vendors near the temples where you can purchase cold drinks and snacks.


5. Respect the Rules and Customs: Angkor Wat is a place of worship, so it’s important to be respectful of the rules and customs. Avoid touching the intricate carvings, be mindful of your behavior, and keep noise to a minimum. If you encounter monks or locals engaged in prayer, give them space and observe silently.


6. Capture Magical Moments: Don’t forget your camera to capture the magical moments at Angkor Wat. From the stunning architecture to the intricate details, there are countless photo opportunities. Consider bringing a wide-angle lens to capture the vastness of the temples and a tripod for stable shots, especially during sunrise or sunset.


7. Explore Beyond Angkor Wat: While Angkor Wat is the main highlight, don’t limit yourself to just this temple. Angkor Thom, Ta Prohm, and Banteay Srei are equally captivating and offer different perspectives of Khmer architecture and history. Allocate time to explore these lesser-known temples to get a more comprehensive experience.


8. Be Mindful of Scams: Like any popular tourist destination, there may be scams or touts trying to exploit visitors. Be cautious of anyone offering suspiciously cheap tours or trying to sell you unnecessary items. Stick to reputable tour operators and always agree on prices and services beforehand.


9. Take Breaks and Pace Yourself: Angkor Wat is expansive, and exploring the temple complex can be physically demanding. Pace yourself, take regular breaks to rest and recharge. There are rest areas and cafes where you can relax, enjoy a refreshing drink, and soak in the atmosphere.


10. Respect the Environment: Help preserve the beauty of Angkor Wat and its surroundings by disposing of trash appropriately and not littering. Avoid touching or damaging any part of the temples or the surrounding nature. Leave no trace and ensure that future visitors can enjoy the site just as much as you did.


By following these tips, you can make your visit to Angkor Wat a memorable and enriching experience. Immerse yourself in the rich history, marvel at the incredible architecture, and create memories that will last a lifetime.



A visit to Angkor Wat is a journey into the heart of ancient civilization, where history, architecture, and spirituality intertwine. This majestic temple complex offers a glimpse into the remarkable achievements of the Khmer Empire and provides a truly awe-inspiring experience for travelers.


Whether you choose to visit during the peak season, the off-peak season, or the shoulder season, Angkor Wat promises to leave a lasting impression. From the intricate carvings and the awe-inspiring sunrise vistas to the serene atmosphere and the cultural significance, every moment spent in this remarkable destination is filled with wonder and amazement.


By understanding the weather patterns and planning your visit accordingly, you can make the most of your time at Angkor Wat. Take advantage of the smaller crowds during the current time to explore the temples with a sense of intimacy and tranquility. Embrace the unspoiled natural beauty, support the local community, and cherish the unique experience of this ancient wonder.


Remember to dress respectfully, stay hydrated, and be mindful of the rules and customs. Engage with the history and significance of Angkor Wat by researching ahead of time and hiring a knowledgeable guide to enhance your understanding. Capture the magic with your camera, but also take the time to immerse yourself in the captivating atmosphere and appreciate the magnitude of this extraordinary site.


Angkor Wat offers a journey of discovery, a chance to connect with the past, and an opportunity to appreciate human achievements in architecture and spirituality. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a photography lover, or a seeker of cultural experiences, Angkor Wat is a destination that will touch your soul and leave you with a profound sense of wonder.


So, why wait? Plan your trip to Angkor Wat, delve into its ancient mysteries, and create memories that will last a lifetime. The time to visit Angkor Wat is now, and the experience awaits you with open arms.