Have you ever wondered of the ancient civilizations that are now a part of history? If you wish to witness a few remnants of the glorious past in an actual frame with your own eyes, Cambodia tourism is calling you to have a look at the archaeological history of the Khmer civilization.
Situated in Southeast Asia, sharing its land borders with Laos to the north, Vietnam to the east and Thailand to the northwest, Cambodia meets the Gulf of Thailand on its southwestern side. The history of this country goes long enough – starting with the Khmer regime, then being colonised by French invaders after the fall of the Khmer empire, followed by the rule of the Japanese during World War II, the dominance of the Khmer Rouge, and finally independence and the establishment of a coalition government. Cambodia is mostly mountainous and has enough scope for an adventurous traveller in its deep mystical forests, serpentine rivers, heavenly beaches and spectacular lakes. If you are looking for a fusion of nature and history, this place is the right travel destination for you.
The most famous tourist attraction of Cambodia undoubtedly occurs to be the very famous Angkor Temples. The country is mostly visited by people from far and wide to a look at the vastness of the Angkor Archaeological Park, which houses these historical remnants of an ancient social structure. There are more than a hundred stone structures at Angkor, built by the Khmer civilization, which represent the architectural grandeur of the Khmers. Among them, the Angkor Wat Temple, the largest and well-preserved one, is the most marvellous piece of art made by Emperor Suryavarman in the 12th century. It is a huge building symbolizing the mythological Mount Meru and its five towers representing the cosmic ocean. This place is located at a 6 km drive from Siem Riep city and one can access it only through its western gate. No wonder, the UNESCO has declared this magically beautiful place as a World Heritage Site.
The capital of Cambodia, Phnom Penh, also known earlier as the "Pearl of Asia" is a beautifully constructed city with one of the finest kind of French architecture. The best place to visit in this city is the Royal Palace with the Silver Pagoda (Wat Preah Keo), known for its statues of Buddha, the best one being the Emerald Buddha. This monument, built with pure silver, is also the formal sacred place of the king of Cambodia. Other places of interest in Phnom Penh are the Wat Phnom, The Independence Monument & the National Museum.
Battambang is another favourite travel destination of the tourists in Cambodia. The cool meadows and tranquil surroundings of this place allure every nature-lover. Try out the unique bamboo trains in the city for some fun-filled moments. Kampot is one more city with an awesome ambience amidst the tall mountains and gushing rivers. You can get bicycles on rent over here to explore the beautiful surroundings in a wander-some, lazy manner. Kampot is also well known for plantations of Pepper and Durian fruit, which is a must-eat for every visitor.
A few more cities of tourist interest in Cambodia are Siem Riep, Sihanoukville and Pailin. Siem Riep is the gateway to the majestic Angkor temples and is famous for its Chinese style of buildings surrounding the Old Market. The beaches in Sihanoukville with white sand and a number of exotic resorts are an attractive package for tourists.
The Cambodian cuisine is relatively simple and light, comprising of Khmer foods like 'Pharok', 'Saik Ch'rouk Cha Kn'yei', 'Lok-lak', 'Pong Aime' and 'Tuk-a-lok' on the menu. Tourists can avail a comfortable stay in the chief cities at comparatively low prices than the west. You can shop for heritage articles over here, but make sure to check with the authenticity of the Heritage Friendly Business Logo. Just haggle a few times with local vendors, a very common scene in Cambodia, and you can get along with a whopping discount.
Cambodia has two international airports at Phnom Penh and Siem Riep, which makes for a good facility for tourists. One tip for those off to a vacation to this mystical country...don't forget to take along your camera, there are hundreds of things you can click & capture.