Tara & I went for a weekend trip from Bangkok to Siem Reap on Christmas. It takes around an hour to get out of the Bangkok Metropolitan Area and than another three hours to the Thai-Cambodian Border Poipet. The road is very modern, there is not much traffic and scenic nature is just stunning!
After crossing the border you immediately feel the difference to Thailand. The roads are more dusty and besides the border town you have only tiny villages on the way to Siem Reap. The only things you will see for the next two hours to Siem Reap are rice fields and trucks filled with people and animals. There is a wonderful silence in Cambodia.
After a long day on the road we arrived in Siem Reap. We stayed at a wonderful wooden guesthouse very near to the river. The kitchen cooked delicious Khmer curry with fish or chicken!
Strolling around in Siem Reap city can be pretty boring after a while. Architecture and atmosphere are amazing but the beautiful part of the city including the market is very small and you can easily see the whole city on just a weekend.
We went to Angkor Wat the next morning. Its very near to Siem Reap & one of the oldest and largest temple remain in South East Asia. You can actually stay there for weeks if you want to see all the different temples but we just took a 1-day-pass. The World Heritage site is very crowded nowadays. Whole tourist groups (lots of Korean & Japanese) run through the sites and it becomes pretty annoying if you want to enjoy the atmosphere. Luckily there are still many little temple sites which are very nice and not crowded at all.
The temple complex was built in the early 12th century and still remains the largest religious building as well as one of the best preserved temples in Asia. It has a very typical Khmer Architecture and became the symbol of Cambodia (appearing in the national flag).
Overall it was a great trip and I can highly recommend doing it by Motorbike! If you have more than a weekend you can also drive down to the lake or see the outskirts of Siem Reap.
Some people were asking me if it was difficult to get the motorbike through the border and I have to say that it went very smooth! The whole process is just about temporary exporting and than importing your motorbike.
On the Thai side (Poipet) you need to get your exit-stamp in your passport and after that you show the legal papers of your motorbike to the guys at customs. These guys make a copy of your greenbook, passport & driver license (can be international, no need for a Thai license) and after filling out some forms your receive a customs receipt (dont lose it!).
Very similar procedure on the Cambodian side where you have to find the customs office on the left side (white building) and get a customs form. When you return it is even simpler because you just hand them the papers and pass through!