The Angkor Handicraft Association Market
Souvenirs straight from the craftspeople
What we say:
Many of the "Cambodian" souvenirs sold in the Old Market and elsewhere are made in China. If you want to be sure you're buying something genuine and directly support the local economy, make your way to the 'Made-in-Siem Reap' craft market.
Opened in 2012, the space is a crafts studio as well as a market. Artists can be seen in 28 different stalls creating handmade goodies like sandstone sculptures of dancing apsaras, leather shadow puppets, traditional ceramics, wood carvings, paintings, Khmer-style checked scarves or kramas, haunting statuettes made from recycled leaves and rubbish, and purses pieced together from recycled rice sacks. All are stamped with the Handicraft Association's gold sticker of authenticity, and shipping is available in case you want to have that two-metre long sandstone tortoise wrapped up to go.
Although the crafts are of a far higher standard than what you'll typically find elsewhere, one of the best aspects of the market is the opportunity to chat face-to-face with genuine craftspeople rather than barter with (and be pestered by) hardened tourist tat vendors. Note that the market is often near empty at midday -- it's best to arrive between 16:00 and 19:00 when the majority of stalls are occupied.
More detailsOff 60 Metre Rd, Siem Reap
Opening Hours: Daily 10:00-19:00
How to get there: To get here, take River Road East in a northerly direction from Route 6 for about two kilometres. Go past Rosy Guest House, the Catholic Church, the Ecole Francaise d’Extreme Orient and L’Oasi Italiana Restaurant. When you see the new “60 Metre Road” ahead of you, which crosses the river on the Naga Bridge to the left, turn right onto the unmade road immediately before you hit 60 Metre Road itself and you will find the market about 75 metres further on, on the right. Most tuk tuk drivers still haven't heard of the market, and if they find out you're looking for handicrafts they'll probably want to take you to any old souvenir stand where they'll get a commission on anything you buy. To avoid this, you might go on your own steam or ask your guesthouse to help arrange transport.
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