Cambodia tourist guide – highlights

Angkor Wat is a wonder of the ancient world

There are a large number of places to explore in Cambodia and the main problem can be knowing where to start. Many people head straight to the touristy town of Siem Reap, which is located close to the Angkor temple complex. There are plenty of excellent hotels and guesthouses in Siem Reap, with restaurants serving just about every type of food imaginable.

Tickets to the Angkor Wat complex are available for one, two or three days and visitors should allow at least two days to fully explore the magnificent temples here.

Phnom Penh is also a popular place to hang out and the capital city offers a large number of tourist attracts such as the Royal Palace. This is also a good place to learn about Cambodia’s past as the National Museum contains a large number of ancient artefacts, while the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum offers an insight into the country’s violent history. A number of touts also offer to take visitors to the Killing Fields from Phnom Penh.

Those who want to soak up the sun on the beach for a while should head to the resort town of Sihanoukville, which is located in the southwest of Cambodia. There are several beaches to choose from here, all offering plenty of bars and restaurants. One of the main attractions here is the picturesque Ream National Park, which can be visited on a daytrip from Sihanoukville.

Popular with nature lovers, the colonial town of Kratie is located in eastern Cambodia on the bank of the Mekong River. Surrounded by natural beauty, Kratie is a sleepy town and the pace of life is slow and gentle.

Most people travel to Kratie to spot the Irrawaddy Dolphins playing in the water of the Mekong River. A large number of travel companies in the town arrange boat trips for visitors, which usually last for around an hour. Also on the outskirts of Kratie is the 100-pillared Sasar Moy Roy pagoda and a great way to get to this and a number of other interesting attractions is by hiring a bicycle in Kratie.

Despite being one of the most beautiful provinces in Cambodia, many tourists somehow manage to miss Kampot while exploring the region. However, this province is home to a large number of stunning natural attractions such as Bokor National Park, uninhabited tropical islands and pristine sandy beaches. The town of Kampot is also a good place to spend a day or two as it features charming colonial restaurants, plenty of accommodation options and some excellent bars and restaurants.

Those who want to relax and unwind for a while will find plenty of peace and quiet in Kep. Featuring dense jungle on one side and the Gulf of Thailand on the other, Kep attracts a fair number of nature lovers. A good way to get a feel for the area’s natural beauty is by climbing to the top of Kep Hill, while daytrip options include taking a boat trip to Koh Tonsay (Rabbit Island).

Located in northwest Cambodia, Battambang is the country’s second largest city and makes an excellent base for exploring the surrounding countryside. Many people choose to spend several days here, as there is a wide range of things to see and do including visiting the Angkorian temples of Wat Ek Phnom and Wat Banan.