Flying High over Angkor Wat

Looking down on the temples of Angkor Wat

I cannot say that the best way to explore the Angkor temple complex is from above. Being on the ground and getting up close with the temples is far more rewarding. But flying over them in a helicopter is spectacularly cool, too.

Sitting at a café drinking beer and eating some lunch after our day of hiking through the ruins I spotted an ad for a helitour on the back of a tuk tuk. We got back to the room and called HeliStar Cambodia and were fortunate to be able to book a ride for the following morning, shortly before our flight departed. It was perfect timing and a wonderful experience, showing the true scale of the temples and just how many there are; lots are under repair and not generally open to the public, according to our pilot/guide.

Looking down on the temples of Angkor Wat
Looking down on the temples of Angkor Wat

Some incredible visuals of the temples from above.

More aerial Angkor Wat temple views
More aerial Angkor Wat temple views

The 15 minute tour comes in at $150/person. It is not cheap. But that’s also roughly what helicopter tours typically cost in my experience; I don’t know that I’d want to be on one much cheaper than that as it would raise questions in my mind about maintenance practices and such. And, hey, we’re probably not going back any time soon so a little splurge on the way out was a good idea.

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Seth Miller

I'm Seth, also known as the Wandering Aramean. I was bit by the travel bug 30 years ago and there's no sign of a cure. I fly ~200,000 miles annually; these are my stories. You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.


  1. Is the video supposed to be an overview of flight? Marked as private right now.

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