Cambodia offers visitors a lot of allure and charm. There’s so much natural beauty in the Asian nation as well as history and tradition. It’s a rewarding and fascinating country to visit, these being some of the most interesting destinations to explore.
1. Bamboo Island
Bamboo Island lies in the warm waters off the coast of Sihanoukville. It’s about a 30-minute boat ride to get to the island which is inhabited by fewer than 50 people. There’s a lovely sandy beach with a couple of bars, restaurants and bungalow resorts.
The atmosphere is supremely laid back, making it an ideal location to relax and unwind with Mother Nature. Once night falls, it basically turns into a beautiful and serene deserted island.
2. Tuol Sleng Museum
This museum is located in Phnom Penh. It was originally constructed in 1960 and was used as a high school. However, the Khmer Rouge turned it into a prison and an interrogation and torture centre later. The site was used to extract confessions from citizens who showed anti-government sentiment. It’s believed that many children and women suffered here. Recovered documents have shown that more than 17,000 people were held in prison here from 1975 to 1978 and fewer than 10 of them are believed to have survived.
3. Ta Prohm
Ta Prohm is a monastery and temple located near Siem Reap. It’s quite a dramatic place and this ancient structure hasn’t been altered since it was discovered. There are huge silk cotton and fog trees here and the archaeological site will transport you back in time. Many people have seen this destination before in the ‘Tomb Raider’ game and film.
4. Phnom Penh Royal Palace and Silver Pagoda
This site was constructed back in 1866 and contains several fascinating buildings, including the Throne Hall, Napoleon III’s villa, and the Royal Treasury. The site was given as a gift to the Cambodian King. The Silver Pagoda was built from wood originally, but it was covered in thousands of silver tiles by King Sihanouk in 1962.
There’s an Emerald Buddha here which is constructed from Baccarat crystal which dates back to the 1600s. There’s another statue of Buddha which was built from gold and thousands of diamonds 1906.
5. The Angkor Wat Complex
The ruins of this amazing 12th-century complex are north of Tonle Sap Lake, which is one of the largest freshwater lakes in the world and sits in the jungle. It’s also close to the city of Siem Reap, which is an ideal base for those who want to visit Angkor Wat which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Hindi Phnom Bakheng temple is the heart of the site and features 108 towers that surround it. Angkor Wat is quite a large site which can be explored on your own or with the help of a local guide.
6. Tonle Sap Lake
Tonle Sap Lake is Southeast Asia’s largest freshwater lake. The flow of the water in the Tonle Sap River is reversed from June to October, which is Cambodia’s monsoon season. When the river’s flow heads in the opposite direction, it fills up Tonle Sap Lake. The river is the only one on the planet that flows in two different directions.
The best time to visit the lake is during the rainy season since most of the local mangrove swamps dry up during the rest of the year. There are many species of birds to be seen here at a sanctuary, with most of them being visible between December and April. The basin of the Tonle is beautifully green and lush when the water goes down in the dry season.