We wanted to pack in the most sight-seeing we possibly could on our last day in Siem Reap, so we created a custom, full-day itinerary and hired a driver to help us make it happen. We began at the Angkor Center for the Conservation of Biodiveristy, a conservation area dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation, breeding and release of vulnerable and endangered local species back into to the wild. Pictured above is a female pileated gibbon, now identified as endangered in the region due to habitat destruction and wildlife smuggling. After learning about the various animals at ACCB we hiked to an ancient site called Kbal Spean, visited Banteay Srei (the 'Pink Lady' temple), learned a ton about the rise of the Khmer Rouge at the Landmine Museum (an absolute must-see), and finally ended our tour at a sunset visit to Beng Mealea.
Beng Mealea was our favorite temple that we visited during our entire time in Cambodia. An hour drive from the main tourist areas, the temple crumbles gradually as tree roots wrap around its massive stones for stability. An air of tranquility surrounded Beng Mealea as the crowds we had become used to faded from our minds and our full attention turned to the majesty of the structure in front of us. Anyone looking for what an ancient temple visit should really feel like definitely should not miss Beng Mealea.