Cambodia is found in Southeast Asia near its south-eastern tip. For most of the previous century Cambodia has been an unstable area especially after a civil war in 1970. However, after 1993 when the UN sponsored elections in the country, Cambodia once again began to stabilize.
Today there are a handful of tourist destinations that boast luxury hotels, beaches, historical temples, and the city of Sihanoukville which is referred to as the one of the upcoming top beach holiday locations in Asia. Despite this fact, outside of the tourist areas of Cambodia, the country is still an adventure and not often travelled by tourists although that is changing rapidly.
Currently, Cambodia’s economy is dependent on tourism and textiles, with tourist numbers increasing exponentially each year.
Cambodia is split into four different regions, but tourists generally only travel to the areas of North Western Cambodia where there are beaches, a large lake and the mountains and to Mekong Lowlands where the capital city, Phnom Penh, is found.
The country has two airports for international travellers, the Phnom Penh International Airport and the Siem Reap- Angkor International Airport. While those travelling to Angkor Wat the main tourist site will find that Siem Reap is the closest option to their destination, many discount airlines fly to Phnom Penh making it cheaper to use the capital airport and then take a bus over to Angkor.
Getting around in Cambodia is by using the bus system which operates out of the city’s and towns market squares. There are several different bus services that will transport you from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville if you want to get a few different cities in during one holiday. You may also want to consider booking a hotel a night in each city for convenience purposes.
Additionally, you may want to take advantage of motorcycle taxis which cost less than a pound and are east to catch if you want to move from one side of town to another. Simply wait on a corner and usually within a few minutes someone will offer you a lift.
Although there are motorcycle rentals available in most of the tourist towns outside of Siem Reap, it is best not to attempt to drive on your own in Cambodia. Driving rules are quite different, and the method behind driving is largely indefinable compared to developed countries.
While in Cambodia the two historical stops you should make are at the Angkor Wat temples and the capital city Phnom Penh, which is the best representation of Cambodia’s colonial past.
Holiday makers will want to spend at least a few days on the beach of Sihanoukville which is the best place to get a tan and a gorgeous stretch of coast.
When shopping keep your eye open for a logo in the store windows called the Heritage Friendly business Logo. These logos symbolize that you are purchasing goods from retailers who are socially responsible.