Are you looking for your next big adventure? Do you long to see the world off the beaten track? Are you searching for a place full of culture, beautiful temples, amazing beaches, and wonderful food? If the answer to these questions is yes, it’s time to look at Cambodia.
Cambodia is the place for an adventurous vacation of a lifetime. With its wealth of attractions and beautiful places to visit, this country should certainly be on your travel list. Take a look at the possibilities: explore the bustling capital city Phnom Penh with its cultural life, fabulous food, and amazing architecture. Take a trip to the wonderful ancient site of Angkor Wat – surely a must-see, and something you will never forget. Relax on beautiful beaches, and look deeper into the complex history of this interesting country. You will encounter a wealth of sights, scents, and situations.
Plus, Cambodia is an economical country to visit, meaning you can afford to see the sites and afford some lovely accommodation. If you have been backpacking in Thailand and want to experience a different country with a different vibe, Cambodia is the ideal location.
For more inspiration, whether you are traveling on a large or small budget, take a look at these ideas for the best places to visit on a Cambodia vacation.
1) Phnom Penh
The capital of Cambodia is a sprawling, chaotic city full of pagodas, French colonial architecture, amazing food, and a wealth of history and culture. Phnom Penh is a place with much history, and you will encounter it at every turn. You will also be able to enjoy world-class food and relax with cocktails overlooking the banks of the Mekong River.
Plus, staying in Phnom Penh is surprisingly affordable. You can splash out on a private room with a pool for not very many dollars, or go cheap at a hostel where you can afford to eat out every night.
2) Angkor Wat
This UNESCO World Heritage Site is one of the best and most amazing tourist attractions in the whole of Asia. Quite simply, this place is stunning. The temple complex sprawls over the jungle just outside of the town of Siem Reap. You will want to see the sunrise over the main temple, and then explore the temples hidden in the jungle in varying states of preservation. Ta Prohm is one of the most famous attractions within the site and was featured in the Tomb Raider movies.
3) The Killing Fields
If you have any sense of history then you simply must visit this important site in Cambodia. This is a sobering site, which is hardly likely to fill you with much cheer, but it is intensely moving to visit this site of the mass killings during the Khmer Rouge regime. You will get some insight into Cambodia’s troubled past, and it is certainly worth visiting.
4) Siem Reap
In order to reach the site of Angkor Wat easily, the best place to stay in Siem Reap. This is a small, attractive place that has developed into quite a hub for tourists. As well as being able to visit the temples, you can relax in one of the many bars and pubs, or take a trip to Wat Bo Village or go on a floating village tour.
Stay on Pub Street to be close to the action if you are backpacking, or you can find affordable guesthouses south of the river with big rooms and pool access.
The best reason to come here is to lie on the beach. Not as crowded as the beaches in Thailand, these beaches are just as beautiful and you will always be within easy reach of a beach bar, café or small restaurant. There are many opportunities to try out windsurfing or other water sports, and there are some nice markets for shopping. Beach huts are the most economical place to stay, but there are some better hotels close to the beach.
6) Koh Rong
Koh Rong is a tiny little island you can reach by taking a local ferry. There are so many gorgeous beaches here on this island you will be spoilt for choice. Plus, you can go snorkeling, hiking, and diving. Plenty of places here to stay in a range of budgets.
This is a beautiful, small town by the river where not much happens – but it is a charming place to spend a few days. Sit by the river, wander through the markets, or simply enjoy a good meal. Or you can visit the ghost town of Bokor Hill Station, which was originally a colonial town but was abandoned during the Khmer Rouge regime. There are plenty of places to stay here in Kampot, from small budget guesthouses to basic huts where you can bed down for very little cash.
For more Asia inspiration, visit PhuketOn. Find out more about travel in Thailand, Cambodia and many more places with the help of PhuketOn – accommodation, food, travel, advice, and resort choices.
Photo credits: Mike Behnken and Staffan Scherz via Flickr