We don’t want to be dramatic or anything, but a trip to Cambodia could totally change your life. From the jaw-dropping temples and hectic cities to ancient history and the heart-breaking Killing Fields of Phnom Penh and beyond – Cambodia is an experience you’ll never forget! Check out some of the top things to do, and some super interesting facts for your holiday in Cambodia.
If you go to Cambodia and don’t visit Angkor Wat – can you really even say you went at all? Seriously, this massive religious temple is one of the biggest attractions in the whole of Cambodia. Located just outside of Siem Reap, this colossal structure wows with its sprawling temple galleries, pavilions, libraries and beautiful bas reliefs featuring scenes from Hindu lore. Don’t miss sunrise or sunsets over the temple!
Did you know? The Angkor Wat is such a big deal in Cambodia, they’ve even named their national beer after it.
This high-energy city along the banks of the Mekong River is everything you’d expect from a bustling Asian capital. Whizzing motorbikes and tuk tuks, bustling markets and street vendors, wandering Buddhist monks, glimmering palaces and more. Check out the magnificent Royal Palace. Sneak a peek at the glittering silver-tiled floor of the Silver Pagoda. Marvel at amazing artworks at the National Museum. Then get some sobering insights at the Genocide Museum (intensely emotional but a must-do to really appreciate the people and history of the country).
Ta Prohm Temple
Also known as the ‘Tomb Raider Temple” where Angelina Jolie strutted her stuff as Lara Croft, this stunning temple has plenty of star appeal. Incredibly atmospheric with walkways along crumbling stone walls, a massive tree (great for selfies) and beautiful carvings – it’s well worth a visit.
Did you know? There’s an infamous ‘dinosaur’ drawing hidden on one of the temple walls. Some think it’s proof that dinosaurs lived alongside humans at one point – others or pretty sure it’s just a stylized buffalo. Take a look and decide for yourself!
Phare Circus of Battambang
This famous show features talented young acrobatics, dancers and musicians who bring to life traditional Cambodian folklore in a new, modern and breathtaking performance. It’s usually sold out, so try to book way ahead of time.
Did you know? Fried tarantulas are a delicacy in Cambodia – some say they taste like soft-shell crabs. Try them if you dare!
This sleepy island is a great place to chill out with a few chilled beers and laze around in the sun. But at night, the beach transforms into a glittering wonderland with glowing plankton creating magical lights on the water. Take a dip and watch as the plankton react to the moving water. Feeling brave? Grab a snorkel for a close-up view.
Did you know? Birthdays are not a big deal in Cambodia. Many older people don’t even know the day or month they were born!
BONUS DID YOU KNOW FACTS:
- Cambodia is famous for its gentle Asian elephants. But there’s a much better way to experience these beautiful creatures up close. Skip the cruel elephant rides and circuses, and head to the Elephant Valley Project in Mondulkiri. Here you can roam with the elephants in the forest, feed them and even bathe them in the river!
- There has never been a McDonalds in Cambodia. It’s one of the few countries in the world that aren’t Loving It. The closest to a Big Mac you’ll get is from “Lucky Burger”.
- The Cambodian flag is the only flag in the world with a building on it – unsurprisingly it’s the Angkor Wat.
- The Buddhist New Year, known as Chaul Chnam Thmey, is celebrated in April. It’s a lot like Songkran in Thailand – a huge party where everyone throws water and talcum powder at each other. Messy but super fun.
Want to get in on all the action? Check out these amazing Cambodia holiday packages here.