Attractions in Cambodia

Recommended attractions in Cambodia

 

Battambang

Battambang province lies in the far western region of Cambodia; the south by the Cardamom mountains and it’s bounded to the west by Thailand, , the east by Pursat and Tonle sap lake, and to the north by Banteay Meanchey province. With a rich architectural heritage, an increasingly confident art scene providing a cradle for many of Cambodia’s top talents, and stunning surrounding countryside, Battambang is a tranquil respite from the boom and hustle of Siem reap and Phnom Penh .

And with talks underway for listing Cambodia’s second city as a UNESCO World Heritage City (most likely in 2016), Battambang’s status as a somewhat peripheral destination looks set to change. As the number of tourists who are catching on to its charms continues to grow, so too is it slowly waking up to the benefits of tourism, not just economically, but also for its role in cultural and heritage promotion and protection (by some anyway).

The landscape, often picturesque and highly varied in this large province, morphs from vast marshes and wetlands around the lake’s rim into extensive rice paddies dotted with limestone outcrops and then rolling orchard-blanketed hills around the Pailin enclave, before finishing with rugged forest-clad slopes abutting the southern mountain ranges. Battambang is home to the kingdom’s best farming land and the provincial capital was traditionally a wealthy trading town as well as being the second largest city of the kingdom. The landscape it`s stunning.

The city itself is split into two by the Sangkar river with the compact central area and main market on the left bank. The series of narrow parallel streets numbered imaginatively 1, 1.5, 2, 2.5 and 3 are home to an increasing number of bars ,cafes, and restaurants. This is where you’ll find most of the old Chinese shophouses and a smattering of French colonial-style buildings as well.

Battambang was an important province in the Angkor period so several temple ruins and historical sites can be found within a 30 kilometre radius of town, providing convenient day trip opportunities.

The central shopping area is home to a mix of Chinese shopfront-style buildings, Khmer 1960s structures and the liver-spotted remains of French colonial-era buildings. The principal flies in the ointment now are developers who would rip down what remains of the lovely town centre buildings and replace them with ugly, modern edifices while they still can. Hopefully, they won’t get too far with their plans.

 

Tonle Sap

Five provinces circled the area of Tonle Sap Lake, more than three million of population inhabited around the bank of the Lake and 90% of them earn a living by agricultures and catching fish . As you can see on the map of Cambodia It stretches across the northwest section of the country.

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The Lake is the largest fresh water in South East Asia. Its dimension changes depending on the monsoon and dry season. During raining season from June to October, the lake is filled by water flowing from the Mekong with 14 meters in depth and expands the surface of 10,000 square Kilometers. In dry season from November to May its size 3,000 square kilometers with two meters in depth and water flows out from the Lake to the Mekong, in and out flowing is the natural phenomenon occurrences. The flooded forest surrounding the edge of the lake is the best shelter and also very important for all kinds of fishes spawned and breeding babies. This lake providing many of biodiversities, over 300 species of fresh water fishes, as well as snakes, crocodiles, tortoises, turtles and otters. More than 100 varieties water birds including storks, pelicans, etc

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Chong Khneas is the name of famous floating village at the edge of the lake. It locates at Southern part of Siem Reap town about 15 Km, and takes only 30 minutes by vehicles to the boat dock where there are always boats waiting for visitors. The boat trip through the floating village takes approximately two hours. You will explore the different of Muslim ,Khmer and Vietnamese floating households and the floating markets,clinics, fisheries,basketball course, schools, pigsty and other boatloads of tourists.

If you are looking for a hotel or guest house check out this website :

http://www.tonlesapguesthouse.com/

Telephoon number :  +855 (0)23 986722.

 

Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat is an ancient city in Cambodia that was the center of the Khmer empire that once ruled most of Southeast Asia. This cilvilazation went extinct, but not before building amazing temples and buildings that were reclaimed by the jungle for hundreds of years. Though this place is packed with tourists, it’s still breathtaking to see. The most popular temples are Angkor Wat,Ta Phrom, Bayon, and Angkor Thom. I would recommend getting a multi-day pass so you can visit some of the outer temples where there are less crowds. The closest major city and launching pad for tours here is Siem Reap. This travel guide to Angkor Wat has information about the temples and transportation.

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In the 12th century, King Suryavarman ordered the construction of Angkor Wat as his official temple and royal capital city. In the Khmer language, Angkor Wat means temple city. The location was central, strategic, and fertile, and it fit into celestial alignments. The arrangement of the structures relates to the positions of the earth, the sun, moon and the stars, and to the seasonal equinoxes. The central temple symbolizes Mount Meru, the Hindu home of the gods. The surrounding moat represents the sea. The four sides face the cardinal compass points.

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Angkor Wat is one of many temple complexes near the modern city of Siem Reap. These include: Angkor Thom,Bayon Temples ,Ta Prohm and , Phimeanakas, and the Terrace of Elephants. Ta Prohm Temple is instantly recognizable. It was a key setting in the hit movie, Tomb Raider, chosen for its exotic, overgrown state. Tourists love to pose for photos before the gnarled jungle roots and branches that have grown into the carved rock over the centuries, disassembling the work of ancient artists and masons. The temples are a circuit of several miles that could take years to fully explore. Seam Reap (the city nearest the temples) in the Khmer language means “defeat Siam,” the enemy of the Khmer for a millennium. They overran Angkor Wat in 1431, and the site was forgotten by the outside world. During French colonial times, explorer Hermi Mouhot publicized the ruins. Restoration of the site has continued ever since, interrupted by War and reign of the Khmer Rouge. Today Angkor Wat draws half a million visitors a year. The Angkor Archeological Park (A World Heritage site) has one day admission fees of just $20. The site is open from 5:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Read more: http://www.budgettravel.com/blog/budget-travel-vacation-ideas-touring-tips-for-angkor-wat,28659/#ixzz3j9h6xhRy.

S-21 prison and museum

In 1975, Tuol Svay Prey High School was taken over by Pol Pot’s security force and turned into a prison known as Security Prison 21 (S-21). It soon became the largest such center of detention and torture in the country. Over 17,000 people held at S-21 were taken to the extermination camp at Choeung Ek to be executed; detainees who died during torture were buried in mass graves in the prison grounds. S-21 has been turned into the Tuol Sleng Museum, which serves as a testament to the crimes of the Khmer Rough.

Between 12-18,000 people were murdered or died at S-21. Some of the few survivors included a few Khmer guards,children, two painters and two mechanics. You can tell in what year a picture was taken by the style of number board that appears on the prisoner’s chest. Several foreigners from Australia, France and the USA were held here before being murdered. Their documents are on display. As the Khmer ‘revolution’ reached ever-greater heights of insanity, it began devouring its own children. Generations of tortures and executioners and were in turn killed by those who took their places. During the first part of 1977, S-21 claimed an average of 100 victims a day. When the Vietnamese army liberated Phnom Penh in early 1979, they found only seven prisoners alive at S-21. Fourteen others had been tortured to death as Vietnamese forces were closing in on the city. Photographs of their decomposing corpses were found. Their graves are nearby in the courtyard.

Altogether, a visit to Tuol Sleng is a profoundly depressing experience. There is something about the sheer ordinariness of the place that make it even more horrific; the suburban setting, the plain school buildings, the grassy playing area where several children kick around a ball, ousted beds, instruments of torture and wall after wall of harrowing black-and-white portraits conjure up images of humanity at its worst. Tuol Sleng is not for the squeamish.

Book your tickets online for Tuol Sleng Genocide museum, Phnom Penh.

Adress: Corner of Street 113 & St 350, Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

 

Royal Palace in Phnom Penh

The Royal Palace in Phnom Penh was constructed over a century ago to serve as the residence of the King of Cambodia, his family and foreign dignitaries, as a venue for the performance of court ceremony and ritual and as a symbol of the Kingdom. It serves to this day as the Cambodian home of King Norodom Sihamoni and former King Norodom Sihanouk.

Except for the area of the actual Royal residence, the Khemarin Palace, most of the Palace grounds and Silver Pagoda are open to the public. Enter from the gate on Sothearos Blvd about 100 meters north of Street 240. Guide pamphlets and tour guides are available near the admission booth. Guided tours are recommended. Multi-lingual tour guides available. Admission: 25,000 Riel (US$6.25). Open everyday, 7:30-11:00 / 2:00-5:00. The Palace grounds are closed during official functions.

The Royal Palace complex and attached ‘Silver Pagoda’ compound consist of several buildings, structures and gardens all located within 500×800 meter walled grounds overlooking a riverfront park. Marking the approach to the Palace, the high sculpted wall and golden spired Chanchhaya Pavilion stand distinctively against the riverfront skyline. Inside the Palace grounds, street sounds are silenced by the high walls and the various Royal buildings sit like ornate islands rising from the tranquil, manicured tropical gardens.

For more information go to : http://www.tourismcambodia.com/travelguides/provinces/phnom-penh/what-to-see/18_royal-palace.htm

 

City of Siem Reap: an insight into traditional artwork
Sihanoukville

The main body of Siem Reap town stretches about 3km north/south along the Siem Reap River and roughly 4-5km east/west along Rte. #6. The airport is 6km west of town, a 15 minute ride from town center. The Angkor Park entrance lies 5km north of town and there are no hotels within the park. Almost all of the hotels and other tourist services are in or near town and are spread relatively evenly across the area, though there are some particularly popular areas: 1) the Old pub/Market Street area is the tourist center of town, with a wide range of hotels, shopping,dining,shops and nightlife; 2) several restaurants, and 3-5 star hotels on ‘Airport Road’ and the road to Angkor; 3) two areas with a cluster of budget accommodations: one in the Wat Bo area and the other in the Taphul Village area, and; 4) a large variety of mid-range hotels, shopping and restaurants along Sivutha Blvd through town.

More info : http://www.cambodia-hotels.com/siem-reap/artisans-angkor.htm

 

 

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