Cambodia offers visitors a chance to experience true isolation on its 30 untouched beaches and several secluded islands along with some of the most impressive ancient structures in the world. Siem Reap is one of the major cities in the north and the gateway to the Angkor Archaeological Park. This park is among the top archaeological sites in Southeast Asia and contains many examples of the Khmer Empire from the 9th – 15th centuries.
A UNESCO World Heritage site, Angkor Park covers about 400 kilometers with buildings and forested area. There is several ways to visit the park. The most common are tour buses and hired cars, but bicycles are a great way to see almost everything. There are tours that take you and your bicycle to the remote areas of the park where you can begin your ride to visit the less-seen temples. You can ride an elephant from certain locations and take an up and down hot air balloon to get a bird’s eye view.
Phnom Penh is the capital city and the largest. Considered the Paris of the East at one time, it was virtually destroyed when it was vacated in 1975. However, it is recovering and there is a pleasant park along the riverfront and a beautiful Royal Palace. It’s a good place for rest and relaxation before starting your sightseeing around the country. You can get a bus to almost anywhere in Cambodia and you can take a boat ride to Siem Reap with the possible option of sitting on the roof. Just make sure you have a hat and enough water.
Sihanoukville is a seaside town that has the most popular beaches in Cambodia. The town was also virtually destroyed in the 1970s, but is making a comeback, and today is well on its way to being one of the top beach destinations in Asia for a fraction of the cost of the more famous places.
Keep your smartphone close by after installing apps for visiting Cambodia. For example, you can get mobile phone features on your Galaxy s5 mini or other smartphone to access an interactive guide that works offline and see photos and read about different sites and cities before you go. No Internet access is required once the app is downloaded. You’ll get a GPS map of your present location with the nearby attractions marked. They have lists of restaurants, important destinations and city maps. There are also guides for less-seen destinations. You get access to the top travel sites online from one place, and can completely plan your trip right from the palm of your hand. The people are very friendly but don’t speak much English. This shouldn’t be a problem with your downloaded phrasebook that contains the most common words and phrases.
There is a lot to see and do in this newly emerging tourist destination. You can relax on uncrowded beaches or take a motorcycle tour into the interior of the country for a trip that no tourist bus could take.