Discover bustling markets, rich and preserved Khmer culture, awe-inspiring architecture, a lively nightlife and a fascinating and leisurely river life.
The Kingdom of Cambodia, formerly known as Kampuchea, is a beautiful country with a warm, proud and friendly people that belie their tragic past. Thanks to a surge in popularity, more tourists have been travelling to Cambodia in the past decade or so than ever.
The jewel in Cambodia’s crown is without a doubt the incredible Angkor Wat – an expansive complex that in reality is so much bigger than you’d imagine. You can experience the magical beauty of its premier tourist attraction from Siem Reap, while remnants of the heartbreakingly tragic side of the country’s history can be found from the capital of Phnom Penh. Cambodia however, offers much more than magnificent temples and horrific vestiges of war.
You can still find rustic accommodation and relatively isolated palm-fringed beaches on the islands off the coast – for now anyway. Delight in soft white sand beaches and turquoise coloured waters from the islands of Koh Rong or Koh Tonsay. Saturated with rich coral and marine life, the crystal clear water is perfect for snorkelling and diving. Dance the night away, enjoying the heady nightlife in the beach town of Sihanoukville. On the south coast, it is Cambodia’s premier beach location and the perfect place to stop, relax and feast on seafood.
Take a boat trip on the Tonle Sap Lake, cruising past the fascinating floating and stilted villages where you can appreciate the simplicity of life for the hardworking villagers. Home to rare and endangered water birds, the lake can expand up to 12,000 square kilometres during the wet season and provides half of Cambodia’s fish supply. Experience small-town life in the peaceful and quaint Kampong Cham and explore the superb Wat Nokor.
See some of the best preserved colonial architecture in Cambodia’s second largest city, Battambang. A lovely laidback place, where you can hire a pushbike to explore the quieter parts of the city and discover its charming rural life. Catch a tuk-tuk out to see the Bamboo Train, the Killing Caves of Phnom Sampeau and a serene monastery on the top of the hill affording spectacular views of the countryside below.
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