Cambodian people making crafts in Siem Reap, Cambodia. Artisans d'Angkor, an artisan group trained by the Chantiers-Ecoles de Formation Professionnelle.


Artisans Angkor – Les Chantiers Écoles

Top choice in Siem Reap

Siem Reap is the epicentre of the drive to revitalise Cambodian traditional culture, which was dealt a harsh blow by the Khmer Rouge and the years of instability that followed its rule. Les Chantiers Écoles teaches wood- and stone-carving techniques, traditional silk painting, lacquerware and other artisan skills to impoverished young Cambodians. Free guided tours explaining traditional techniques are available daily from 7.30am to 6.30pm. Tucked down a side road, the school is well signposted from Sivatha St.

On the premises the school runs a beautiful shop called Artisans Angkor, which sells everything from stone and wood reproductions of Angkorian-era statues to household furnishings. There’s also a second shop opposite Angkor Wat in the Angkor Cafe building, and outlets at Phnom Penh and Siem Reap international airports. All the profits go back into funding the school and bringing more young Cambodians into the training program, which is 20% owned by the artisans themselves.

Les Chantiers Écoles also maintains Angkor Silk Farm, which produces some of the best work in the country, including clothing, interior-design products and accessories.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Siem Reap attractions

1. Wat Dam Nak

0.31 MILES

Formerly a royal palace during the reign of King Sisowath, hence the name dam nak (palace), today Wat Dam Nak is home to the Center for Khmer Studies (www…

2. Wat Preah Prohm Roth

0.37 MILES

A traditional Buddhist temple in the heart of Siem Reap, this is the easiest one to explore for the casual visitor.

3. Wat Bo

0.69 MILES

This is one of the town’s oldest temples and has a collection of well-preserved wall paintings from the late 19th century depicting the Reamker, Cambodia…

4. Royal Residence

0.77 MILES

The official royal residence for King Sihamoni and family when they travel to Siem Reap is an austere building that has long since been overshadowed by…

5. Preah Ang Chek Preah Ang Chorm

0.79 MILES

Located just west of the royal residence is this shrine. Said to represent two Angkorian princesses, these sacred statues were originally housed at the…

7. Angkor National Museum

1.06 MILES

Looming large on the road to Angkor is the Angkor National Museum, a state-of-the-art showpiece on the Khmer civilisation and the majesty of Angkor…

8. Cambolac

1.11 MILES

Cambodia has a long tradition of producing beautiful lacquerware, although the years of upheaval resulted in some of the skills being lost. Cambolac is a…