Siem Reap is the gateway to Southeast Asia’s largest freshwater lake. Surrounded by lush rice fields, lotus flowers, and flooded forests, the lake is an ideal launching point for a visit to traditional Cambodian floating villages. Here are your options for boat tours.
Angkor Village Apsara Theatre
Angkor Village Hotel Wat Bo Road, Siem Reap, 17254
It’s worth booking ahead for the Angkor Village Apsara Theatre, as the shows are popular with tour groups and can get quite full. Helpful booklets explain the stories behind the dances and the meanings behind the different gestures, so you won’t need a guide to understand what’s going on. As the location is some way out of the city center, many travelers prefer to book packages that include round-trip transfers as well as dinner and the show.
Things to Know Before You Go
Fans of dance and cultural performances will appreciate the dinner shows at the Apsara Theatre.
Drinks are additional to the ticket cost. Order them to your table and pay at the end.
Most seating is at ground level in sunken pits, so may not be suitable for travelers with mobility issues or back problems. There are also tables in the upstairs galleries.
The Angkor Village Apsara Theatre has steps and is not wheelchair-accessible.
How to Get There
The Angkor Village Apsara Theatre is located within the Angkor Village Resort in the northern suburbs of Siem Reap, about 2 miles (3 kilometers) from downtown. There’s no public transport, so many travelers opt for tour packages that include door-to-door transfers from Siem Reap hotels.
When to Get There
Dance performances with dinner happen every evening, with the exception of holidays such as Khmer New Year in mid-April. There’s little point in arriving early, as the theater only opens shortly before dinner.
What Is Khmer Classical Dance?
Just as the Hindu traditions of Angkor Wat began in India, so too did Khmer classical dance. Many of the stories the dancers tell with their slow, graceful movements come from India’s Ramayana epic, which tells the story of Prince Rama and his wife Sita, stolen by a demon king. The apsara, a delicate, women-only dance, dates from the mid-20th century, when a princess combined Khmer dance with ballet.
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