Eating Vegan in Siem Reap & Angkor Wat
Only spending a few days in Siem Reap we did not get to try too many of the resturants. Since Siem Reap in generally is very tourist oriented there are many western style eateries offering full pages of vegetarian food with many vegan options. We found the prices to be much over local norms and tended to eat elsewhere.
Curry Walla / Khmer Chef:
This popular Indian and Khmer restaurant draws a crowd at all times of the day. Dishes are around $3.50-$6. They offer mostly Indian and Thai dishes and it is a bit overpriced but the quality is high. The dishes are cooked behind a glass wall and you get a front row view into the kitchen action. We ordered the Khmer curry and a Pad Thai. Both were very fresh and good.
Using the Happy Cow app we located Maharajah due to its proximity to our guest house. The reviews do not do this place justice. What we really loved was that the portion size is perfect for hungry people like us which is rare when eating out. The indian curries are flavourful and not oily which we also appreciated. Both visits I had the channa masala which I can highly recommend and we ordered two different vegetable curries. The local rice served here is so much better than basmati rice so make sure to order that! We also got take out rice from here as a snack one day for 50 cents.
Along the old market there is a stretch of budget restaurants with many offering vegan eats. Curries with tofu, Stir-fry, smoothies, and vegetable dishes will set you back only $2. Be prepared to wait a little while for your food though.
There seems to always be an abundance of corn on the streets of Cambodia. We enjoyed boiled corn on the cob quite often during our days in Siem Reap. Make sure to bargain though! You should get 1 for 25 cents. Smoothie stalls are absolutely everywhere in Siem Reap. Especially at night many vendors congregate around the old market area off Pub Street. The drinks are $1 each absolutely everywhere you go (I tried to find one cheaper for fun, I dare you). Another street snack that we brought to keep us 'carbed up' and happy on the bus from Siem Reap to Bangkok was roasted bananas. These little guys are roasted on a stick and sprinkled with salt. They are a strange mix of sweet and salty but also tough and creamy. A must try for the banana lover. Lastly, of course my love for sugar-cane was fulfilled. If you find yourself at the border crossing into Bangkok there are a few sugarcane vendors while you wait in the grueling line to exit Cambodia. Make sure to spend all your extra Riel! 1 sugarcane juice should cost around 1000 Riel ($0.25)
There was limited information available online about the food in or around Angkor Wat. As a vegan you have to expect the worst most times and we decided to pack our own lunch. The night before our big day at Angkor we bought some bread, vegetables, peanut butter, and fruit. We packed sandwhiches and fruit and brought it with us in the Tuk Tuk the next morning. I am beyod thankful we did this. Arriving to Angkor Wat for sunrise was all part of the experience but you really under estimate what a solid 6 hours of walking before lunch can do to you. We were fading pretty quickly and neded to get some food into us. Our driver dropped us off at one of the larger parts of the archeological park Angkor Tom and we rushed to find somewhere to eat our lunch. We oddly decided to sit at the Terrace of the Leper King and have a picnic. I wonder how many peoples photos have me and Colin just casually eating sandwhiches sitting on the ledge at the front of the temple. We never really found any more food options while we were walking around, I'm afriad it would have been a few more hours of sightseeing before we were able to eat if we had not brought our own food. Although the bread tasted legitimately like cake and we were invaded rather quickly by ants, we were happy we had food.