The Kingdom of Cambodia formerly known as Kampuchea is a country in South East Asia with a population of over 13 million people. The kingdom`s capital and largest city is Phnom Penh. Cambodia is the successor state of the once powerful Hindu and Buddhist Khmer Empire, which ruled most of the Indochinese Peninsula between the eleventh and fourteenth centuries.
The successor-state of the mighty Khmer Empire – which ruled much of what is now Vietnam, Laos and Thailand – Cambodia boasts a rich culture, French-era capital and impressive natural scenery. The peace is young but relatively stable, and the country is slowly attracting the tourism currently sweeping neighboring Vietnam. However, the proliferation of land mines and banditry in remote areas means the picture isn’t all rosy, and for now the beaten path remains by far the one best traveled.
Cambodia sits on the Gulf of Thailand and so you will find many unspoilt beaches as well as coral islands basking just offshore in the warm tropical sea. A day at the beach can be followed by a sumptuous meal of fresh seafood at an Oceanside restaurant. Cambodia can also boast many rivers offering unique tourist experiences and for those who want to get close to nature the forest reserves and parks offer hikers the opportunity to enjoy luxuriant flora.
Cambodia might be one of South East Asia’s smallest countries, approximately 2 million tourists visit the country each year. Cool bars and decadent hotels have popped up in Cambodia’s main cities Siem Reap and Phnom Penh to serve this growing industry. Meanwhile, the up and coming beach town Sihanoukville offers a laid back Asian beach vibe, golden sands and opaque waters to those seeking solace, away from the chaotic cities. The people of Cambodia enjoy many festivals that reflect their culture and religion, and the foreign visitor is always welcome to share the occasion.
For all its natural beauty and rich heritage, Cambodia is optimistic, tenacious and, to visitors, endlessly welcoming.