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Phnom Penh

Overview

Location: South-Central region of Cambodia

Area: 678.5 km²

Nearest Railhead: Phnom Penh Royal railway station

Nearest Airport: Phnom Penh International Airport

How to reach: Air, road, rail

Famous for: Palace, Museum, Temple, Field of Khmer

Months Open: All year

Best time to visit: November-March



Introduction

The capital city of Cambodia, Phnom Penh functioning as the nation’s economic, political, industrial, and cultural center and it has a personified image of the oriental exotic. Phnom Penh has served as Cambodia’s capital since the days of the French colonization of Cambodia. The city is situated on the banks of the Tonlé Sap, Mekong and Bassac rivers, and acts as the main centers of tourist attraction alongside Siem Reap and Sihanoukville in Cambodia. Once known as the ‘Pearl of Asia’, Phnom Penh’s luster went through an unfortunate low phase due to the impact of war and revolution. However, the city has since risen from the ashes to claim its rightful position among the notably attractive capitals of the region, with an alluring cafe culture, bustling bars, and a world-class culinary scene.




What to see

Royal Palace, Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, Wat Phnom, Choeung Ek Memorial




Details

Choeung Ek Memorial

Choeung Ek is a mass graveyard where the Khmer Rouge regime executed one million people between 1975-1979 and that’s why it is also known as ‘the killing fields’. Around 8895 bodies were discovered from this mass grave after the fall of the Khmer regime. This site is located 17 km south of Phnom Penh Cambodia. Many of the dead bodies belong to political prisoners who were kept in Cambodian detention centers during the Khmer Rough Regime.

Today a Buddhist stupa is built at this place as Choeung Ek memorial. This stupa has 5000 human skulls kept in the transparent glass cabinets and visitors can see them while visiting this place. Apart from the stupa, the graves are kept open for visitors to see the sight of human bodies litter here and there.

The National Museum of Cambodia

The national museum of Cambodia was built between 1917 to 1924 has the world’s largest collections of the artifacts of the Khmer regime. It has Khmer ceramics, bronze, and ethnographic art pieces. There are 14000 artifacts belonging to the prehistoric era before and after the Khmer regime.

The museum is located in central Phnom Penh near Royal Palace. The museum is looked after by the Cambodian Ministry of culture and fine arts and the design of the building is influenced by the Khmer temple architecture.

The Royal Palace

The Royal Palace in Phnom Penh Cambodia is a residence of the king of Cambodia. This Palace is also known as Preah Barum Reachea Veang Chatkomuk Serei Mongkol, It is the Khmer name of this palace. The palace was built between 1866 to 1870 after the relocation of the royal capital from Oudong to Phnom Penh. It is located on the western bank of Tonle sap river but the palace is an east-facing building.

Wat Phnom

Wat Phnom is a Buddhist temple that was built in 1372. It is the tallest religious temple in Phnom Penh Cambodia with a height of 27 meters. Wat Phnom was constructed in the 19th century and reconstructed in 1926 and its Pagoda was named Wat Preah Chedey Borapaut. In its central altar complex large statue of seated Buddha made up of bronze is placed surrounded by things used for worshipping like candles, flowers, and etc. The walls are decorated with murals depicting the Buddha’s reincarnations before attaining enlightenment. The murals also portray the Khmer version of Ramayana described in the stories from the Reamker. A small idol dedicated to Lady Penh is also placed in the southwest corner of the stupa.

Culture

Cambodia has one of the richest cultural heritage. The Khmer culture is influenced by the cultures of Indian religions like Hinduism and Buddhism and French to some extent. The traditional attire of the people here is a sarong, krama, and hammock. The handicraft of the Angor wat Cambodia is very famous. The most popular works include weaving, ceramics, stone carvings, wat murals, and silversmithing, etc. Music and dance are an integral part of the culture. The traditional pin peat can still be heard during religious and traditional occasions. There are classical, folk and vernacular dances. Khmer classical dance is in the list of UNESCO’s Masterpieces.

Cuisine

The visitors can relish authentic Cambodian food in Phnom Penh Cambodia. The food here is very similar to that of Southeast Asian countries. Most of the dishes revolve around rice and are usually served with curry, fish, soup, and vegetables. The deserts too are made of rice. There is a unique blend of spices, herbs, and sauces to add delicious flavor to the food. The most popular dishes are noodle soups, stew, hotpot, Chha, Nhoam (salads), etc.

Fish Amok

This is the signature dish of Combodia prepared by fish, eggs, coconut milk, fish sauce, and palm sugar.

Kuy Teav

This is popular street food in Cambodia. It is a noodle soup prepared by pork, fried shallots, bean sprouts, green onion, herbs, and rice vermicelli

Khmer curry

Khmer curry is prepared by using a lot of herbs rather than spices. Its ingredients are chicken, fish sauce, coconut milk, herbs, sweet potatoes, garlic, ginger, and turmeric. This curry is slightly sweeter in taste.

How to reach

Phnom Penh Cambodia has an international airport and has good connectivity with the major countries of the World. Visitors can reach here via Flight.




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