Cambodia is an unusual destination in Southeast Asia in that some travellers go here just to see one attraction, namely Angkor Wat, a vast and ancient temple complex that is officially the world’s largest religious monument. While it is without doubt a must-see, it would be a mistake not to also get to know the rest of the country as Cambodia has quite a bit more to offer and there are many other things to do in Cambodia.
Source : visitcambodiatravel
Hit up the markets in Phnom Penh. Phnom Penh is perhaps not quite as compelling as other capitals in Southeast Asia with fewer things to do, but an enjoyable activity here is to visit the food markets during the day or at night. If you love to see a lot of hustle and bustle, you will love these markets. At the central Night Market you can purchase some great inexpensive food, and in what I think might be unique for a market in Southeast Asia you can eat your food while sitting down on blankets, picnic-style. It’s a fun way to enjoy some local food with your traveller friends.
Eat crab at Kep. Kep is on the coast of Cambodia, about a 4 hour drive from Phnom Penh, an is famous for it’s crab. The crab is so fresh that when ordering crab at one of the restaurants along the shore, you can often see staff wading into the water to fish out a crab from one of their many traps bobbing away in the ocean. Now that is fresssssssssh. This is one of Ryan’s favourite things to do in Cambodia.
Discover the countryside. Why not head out the cities and away from the beach resorts? The sleepy Mekong river town Kampot is a traveller favorite. Battambang is another popular destination thanks to its many nearby temples and the infamous bamboo railway. The railway is no longer in actual use, but you can still take a ride on a limited section of its tracks. During my visit I admittedly had limited time to explore the other parts of Cambodia. I have heard good things about the northeast areas towards Laos; Kampong Thom is said to offer a real taste of village life in Cambodia, while the small city of Kratie near the Mekong River is a laidback place where you can spot Irrawaddy dolphins. While I covered the highlights in Cambodia I would have liked to explore the countryside more, and I hope to come back someday on a second trip.
Source : Pixshark
Drop by at Bokor Hill Station. Incidentally, when a larger and more aggressive group of travelers, the French military, made their way through the country, they also found the weather brutal and unforgiving. As the unfamiliar temperatures began killing off French troops, the occupying European power needed to create artificial respite. Their answer to the tropical problem was Bokor Hill Station, a small resort town for French soldiers in the region. Construction finished in the early 1920s, and the result was jungle chic. Instead of building a small outpost to keep soldiers cool and dry, the French opted for opulence, and a small elegant city was born. Bokor Hill was built with the basic amenities of a post office and church. It was also featured the over-the-top Bokor Hill Hotel and Casino, which stands as a monument to French occupation in Cambodia. When civil war broke out in the 1940s, the French headed back to Paris, leaving the station abandoned and open for use by various military regimes including the Vietnamese and Khmer Rouge. Continuous war throughout the 20th century left the station gutted and eerily decaying in the center of Phnum Bokor National Park. Only one completely ruined road leading to the relic still exists, and is a bumpy ride up more than 3,500 feet to the station. Recently, a private investment group has outlined a plan to rebuild the road and restore the area, creating a larger Bokor Hill city complete with a casino and golf course, making Bokor once again a stop for invading foreigners in the southern jungles of Cambodia. The project is scheduled to be completed in the next 15 years. We suggest you try and visit before this happens.
Party it up in Siem Reap or Sihanouksille. I’m not quite sure how to segway from genocide to tequila shots, so I’m not going to try. Siem Reap and Sihanouksille are typical party backpacker places, and yes they can be a lot of fun. Drinks are very cheap in Cambodia, and alcohol is at times sold by the bucket as in Thailand. To my amusement, I found a whole street of pizzerias in Siem Reap all competing to offer the best marijuana-enhanced pizzas. I passed one establishment advertising ‘happy pizza’, followed by another offering ‘VERY happy pizza’, and finally one claiming to have ‘ecstatic pizza!!!’. Welcome to Cambodia. Sihanouksville has a main strip of bars including Utopia and Monkey Republic where you can party to your heart’s content. The beaches are decent; not the best in Asia but decent enough, and there’s cheap and good food available right on the beach so you can stay there all day. Sihanouksville is unabashedly for tourists but also not entirely unpleasant: all the development is low-rise and along the beach you will mostly just find bamboo huts. While it’s probably the kind of place that will look radically different in ten years, it still has character today.
Catch a giant Ibis bus. To get to many places around Cambodia the only option is to catch a bus, especially if you don’t want to pay $150 for a 30min flight. Most bus companies are mediocre but I’m happy to say there’s a new kid in town. Giant Ibis Bus Service is a new luxury bus company. The buses are new, spacious, clean, have free wifi and there’s no karaoke in sight. The bus drivers seem like they don’t have a death wish and it’s rumoured they may even hold drivers licenses. All this must be pretty pricey right? Wrong. You can travel in style for just $1 more than any other bus company. Now that’s a bargain in anyone’s books.