Though often known for the indescribable significance of Angkor Wat or unbelievable horror of the Khmer Rouge, the Kingdom of Cambodia is much more than its two most prominent pieces of history. Sandwiched between Thailand, Laos, Vietnam and the Gulf of Thailand, Cambodia has a long and complicated history ranging from the power of the Khmer kingdom centuries ago to the destruction of the Khmer Rouge mere decades ago. Today, the country is still rebuilding itself with most of its inhabitants working in rural agriculture. While the past is still present, modern-day Cambodia is not chained by its hardships and is home to a unique blend of simplicity and sophistication, age-old practices, and avant-garde art and culture that is fueled by the country’s creatives reclaiming their heritage while looking ahead to the future.
The average length of stay for tourists in Cambodia is only three days as Cambodia is often sold only as an extension of Siem Reap to travellers coming from Thailand, Laos or Vietnam. Although Angkor is certainly essential, one cannot miss visiting the Angkor Archaeological Park, there is so much more to the country than Angkor Wat and Siem Reap!
A recurring lament we hear from travellers crossing into Cambodia from Vietnam and Thailand is that they regret not having spent more time in Cambodia. Cambodia has a lot to offer and its authentic, friendly atmosphere found throughout the country stands out even for seasoned travellers.
Even more temples
The temples of Angkor aren’t the country’s only historic ruins. An array of remote temples scattered across the country are worth a detour including two other UNSECO World Heritage sites: Sambor Prei Kuk and Preah Vihear temple.
While some of the country is dry, other parts boast the lush jungles, well-preserved national parks, teeming wildlife and tumbling waterfalls travellers have come to expect from tropical Southeast Asia.
Cambodia’s paradisiacal islands have all the appeal but none of the crowds you’ll find in neighbouring countries.
The Thai smile may have gained international fame, but the Cambodian people are just as charming and gladly welcome guests with genuine hospitality.
Besides the growing cities of Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Sihanoukville, the rest of the country is still very undeveloped offering an authentic look into both Cambodia’s past and current way of life.
Excellent value for money
Restaurants and nightlife offer great value for money…even more so if you dare to Go Local.