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The highlight is the astonishing temple complex of Angkor, a legacy of the once thriving Khmer Empire. Visit it in the early morning to see the sun rise over Angkor Wat, a once in a lifetime experience. Nearby, the picturesque and welcoming market town of Siem Reap offers a wealth of local interest and markets.
Cambodia has some outstanding luxury hotels, spa resorts and beach hotels and are easily accessed by short flights from Bangkok.
Cambodia lies at the heart of Indochina and is bordered by Thailand in the west, Laos in the north, Vietnam in the east and the Gulf of Thailand in the south. It is a country that, despite its relatively small size and large, dominant neighbours, has managed to retain its unique Khmer identity.
Its cultural traditions predate those of Thailand and, unlike Vietnam, which expresses a marked Chinese influence, Cambodia’s cultural roots draw heavily from the Indian subcontinent.
Siem Reap / Angkor
The Angkor Wat temple complex in Cambodia is the worlds largest religious monument.
The temples at Angkor was built 879 – 1191AD and used for 400 years during the kings of the Khmer empire. The Khmers left the city in 1432, and after that it was lost in the jungle until a French explorer, Henri Mouhot, found it in 1860. He died of malaria one year later only 35 years old. A restoration project was started in 1908 and has continued since than except for periods in the 70′s and 80′s when military operations prevented archaeologists from working in the area. UNESCO made it a World Heritage site in 1992. The small nearby town of Siem Reap offers excellent luxury resort and hotel options.
The capital Phnom Penh was originally founded as a place of religious significance.
Its home to the magnificent Royal Palace and the famed Silver Pagoda. The city has a broad boulevard on the riverfront with avenues of trees and gardens. The gardens surround a small hill, called the Phnom, which is crowned by a Buddhist monument with a conical spire. Phnom Penh is a charming city where you will find boutiques, art galleries and quirky cafes have emerged in the French colonial mansions of old.
Koh Rong Archipelago
The second largest island archipelago in Cambodia, reached by a speed boat, is famed for its native virgin jungle and its corals supporting a kalaidoscopic array of exotic fish. Snorkelers and divers alike will appreciate the shallow depths of the surrounding reefs which support an astonishing variety of marine life.
When to go
Cambodia can be visited year round, although the ideal months to travel are from December to January when humidity levels are low, there is little rainfall and a cooling breeze is usually present. Temperatures rise from February to April before the monsoon in May brings rain and high humidity. The wet season lasts until October.
Approximate flight times
London to Bangkok: 11 hours 30 minutes/ London to Hanoi: 11 hours 30 minutes/ Cambodia is easily accessible via Bangkok and Vietnam, with flying times ranging from 1-2 hours.
GMT + 7 hours
Passports & Visas
British passport holders must purchase a visa on arrival.
Cambodia provide the perfect addition to a Thailand or Vietnam holiday, or can be visited as stand alone destination. A multi centre itinerary is recommended to cover the main cities and sights.