Once you purchase your daily or 3-day pass, you can wander around any of the temples, which are separated into two different circuits. The most interesting temples on the small circuit for us are: Ta Prohm, Bayon, Angkor Wat and Banteay Kdei. On the grand circuit we really enjoyed Preah Khan, Ta Som and Banteay Srei which is even further (about 40km) from Siem Reap.
This temple has been left largely unrestored, with numerous trees and other vegetation growing among the ruins. It is quite large and reminded us of Ta Prohm temple. Again, there were many opportunities to incorporate large fig trees with the ruins of the temple into the picture.
Banteay Kdei is not as impressive as the other temples in the vicinity, except for the giant fig tree on the west side. This was also the only temple that had souvenir stalls inside, which was quite annoying.
Ta Som is a small temple north-east of Angkor Thom. It is worth the visit to see the tree that has completely overgrown the eastern gate. This temple is very quiet and there are not as many tourists around. We feel that it is still worth a visit even if it is a little bit further out.
Banteay Srei is quite a distance (nearly 40km) from the main temples at Angkor but well worth the journey. Banteay Srei is on a small scale and has been lovingly restored, especially the detailed work above the doors and the beautiful statues of the monkeys.The carvings at this temple have the most incredible detail, they really stand out on a sunny day!. Even though it is further from Siem Reap, you will pass through local villages and will enjoy the scenery around you. The Butterfly Farm is not far away from this temple.
Banteay Samre is a nice and quiet temple. There were no people around even when the other temples were crowded The only person around was the guard who walked everywhere with us. It was hard to tell if he was afraid that we would take something or was just bored.
Neak Pean is another temple on the grand circuit but in our opinion not worth stopping by. It is a long boardwalk from the car park to the temple through the swamps and when you get there, you realise that the temple is behind the fence and you can't walk around or inside. Not impressive for photography either.
Pre Rup & East Mebon temples didn't impress us either. They are built from bricks and reminded us of old factory sites, but it's personal preference. Some people really like East Mebon as it gets nice colours in the evening
Bapoun temple is on the left hand side when you walk from Bayon temple towards the Elephant Terrace. There is a dress code you have to adhere to when visiting this temple