Thursday, July 25, 2013

Temples, temples, temples: 5 reasons to visit Angkor with kids

Should a visit to Angkor be part of a family trip? Are you wondering whether your kids will quickly get bored and exasperating? Frankly, I don't expect so. Here are 5 reasons why Angkor should remain on your list of top destinations with kids: 

1) It's free. Children under the age of 12 don't pay the entrance fee. You save 20 USD (1-day pass), 40 (3 days) or 60 (1 week). On the negative side, children under 12 are not allowed on some temples (Bankan and Baphuon) but there is still plenty to to see. If your child looks 12 or older, always carry his ID with you, validity of the passes is checked at the entrance of each temple.

2) It's fun. Mazes of stones. Low passages like secret doors. Strange statues. It makes you feel like Indiana Jones in the jungle. After all, this is the place where so many adventure movies have been filmed!

3) It's big. Like a giant playground. If you're annoyed by the crowds of tourist and merchants, just step aside and visit the less-know places.

4) It's beautiful. Children are also sensitive to beauty. Show them the statues, the carvings. Tell them the stories and the legends. They will love it.

5) It's full of variety. How would like to visit Angkor? By foot, by tuk-tuk, by bike? If you're not traveling on a budget, why not (literally) take an helicopter view on the site or jump in a balloon? And when the family finally grows tired of temples, the nearby city of Siem Reap is a westernized modern town, where it
will find everything a child's heart can desire.