Phnom Penh is the capital and largest city in Cambodia and also its major business, political and cultural hub. This city has a wide selection of tourist attractions including the elegant and opulent Royal Palace that is home to the reigning King of Cambodia. One of the highlights on a visit to the palace is the Silver Pagoda, which houses an impressive collection of Buddhist treasure and has over 5,000 silver floor tiles creating an absolutely shimmering atmosphere. The National Museum is located opposite the Royal Palace and is definitely worth a visit as it contains a fabulous collection of beautiful art from Cambodia and Khmer.
Shopping enthusiasts will find that the Phsar Thom Thmei offers fantastic shopping opportunities. The market provides a vast selection of products including elegant silk, silverware, traditional handicrafts and clothes. Visitors can get around by renting motorbikes, taxis, tuk-tuks. A fun way to travel is by taking three-wheeled cycle-
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A small hill with temple was last built in 1926 crowned by an active wat (pagoda) marks the legendary founding place of the Phnom Penh. The hill is the site of constant activity, with a steady stream of the faithful trekking to the vihear, shrines and fortune tellers on top, and a constellation of vendors, visitors. Wat Phnom is the busiest pagoda in town the night of Chinese/Vietnamese New Year’s Eve.
The distinctive rust-red National Museum next to the Royal Palace was dedicated by King Sisowath in 1920. Over 5000 objects are on display including Angkorian era statues, lingas and other artifacts, most notably the legendary statue of the ‘Leper King.’ Though the emphasis is on Angkorian artifacts, there is also a good collection of pieces from later periods, including a special exhibition of post-Angkorian Buddha figures.
ROYAL PALACE AND SILVER PAGODA
The Royal Palace was constructed in 1866 by King Norodom to serve as the residence of the King of Cambodia, his family and foreign dignitaries, as a venue for the performance of court ceremony and ritual and as a symbol of the Kingdom.The Silver Pagoda It is known for the 5329 silver tiles that cover the floor. The building contains over 1650 precious objects. A 90 kg golden standing Buddha is the biggest highlight encrusted with 2086 diamonds including a 25 caret diamond in the crown and a 20 caret diamond embedded in the chest.
Inaugurated in November 9, 1962 to celebrate Cambodia’s independence from foreign rule. The Independence Monument now also serves as a monument to Cambodia’s war dead. It is the site of colorful celebrations and services on
holidays such as Independence Day and Constitution Day.
THE KILLING FIELDS
The killing fields were essentially ad hoc places of execution and dumping grounds for dead bodies. The
memorial at Choeung Ek just outside Phnom Penh was an orchard and a Chinese cemetery prior to 1975. During the Khmer Rouge regime it became one of the killing fields – this particular killing field is the site of the brutal executions of more than 17,000 men, women and children, most of whom first suffered through interrogation, torture
and deprivation in the S-21 Prison (Toul Sleng) in Phnom Penh. Choeung Ek is now a group of mass graves and a memorial stupa containing thousands of skulls. It’s about a 30-40 minute drive from the center of Phnom Penh.
Toul Sleng Genocide Museum (S-21)
Prior to 1975, Toul Sleng was a high school. When the Khmer Rouge came to power it was converted into the
S-21 prison and interrogation facility. Inmates were systematically tortured, sometimes over a period of months, to extract confessions, after which they were executed at the killing fields of Choeung Ek. S-21 processed over 17,000 people, seven of whom survived. The building now serves as a museum, a memorial and a testament to the
madness of the Khmer Rouge regime. The prison kept extensive records, leaving thousands of photos of their victims, many of which are on display.
NAGA CASINOThis is the largest casino in Phnom Penh. 70 year Casino license (1995- 2065), Gambling and International class Hotel (700 rooms), Retail / shopping area, Grand
Ballroom, Restaurants, bars, discotheque and karaoke lounge.
Russian Market (Psah
Toul Tom Poung)This market is of far less architectural
interest but has a larger and more varied selection of souvenirs,
curios and silks than the Central Market. Like the Central Market,
it has a good selection of silver, gold and jewels, but also carries
huge selection of curios, silks, carvings, etc. The Russian Market
offers the largest selection of bootlegged VCDs, DVDs and CDs of all
of the traditional markets. Most of the CD vendors are located on
the south side near the southeast corner of the market. It’s also a
good place to buy fabric for business and casual cloths to take
River CruiseShort river cruises along the Phnom Penh
riverfront are becoming more popular. A short cruise typically takes
about 1 hour and runs up the Tonle Sap River along the central
riverfront area providing a view of the Royal Palace, National
Museum, parks and Phnom Penh skyline, and then across the Tonle Sap
and up the Mekong River to view floating fishing villages.
Central Market (Psah
Thmei)This unique, art-deco building is a
Phnom Penh landmark. Prior to 1935 the area was a swamp/lake that
received the runoff during the rainy season. The lake was drained
and the market constructed in 1935-37. Wet season flooding in the
area around the market of the market is a vestige of the old lake.
The entrance to the market is lined with souvenir merchants hawking
everything from T-shirts and postcards to silver curios and kramas.
Inside is a dazzling display of jewels and gold. Electronic goods,
stationery, secondhand clothes and flowers
The first and largest and modernized
shopping complex in Cambodia nowadays. It is situated in the heart
of Phnom Penh which is the City’s center of trade. It is where you
can find more varieties such as, Jewelry Shops, Men’s Clothes and
Apparel, Women’s Clothes and Apparel, Children’s Clothes and
Apparel, Electronic Shops, Music and Movie Shops, Fast Food Chains,
Food Court, Restaurants, Household and Appliance Shop, and Service
Circus & ShowsTraditional performances are now
available at a couple of venues in Phnom Penh. The Sovanna Phum Art
Association hosts traditional performances every Friday and Saturday
at 7:30PM – dance, shadow puppetry, circuses and music. The Apsara
Arts Association hosts traditional performances every Saturday
evening at 7:30PM – traditional dance and music.
Go-CartingKambol Go-Carting offers go-carting fun
for individuals and groups. Explorer, 6.5hp go-carts for rent. 990
meter track with 11 turns, a small hill and a 150 meter straight
away. Open 9AM-6PM, 365 days a year. Located in Kambol Village, off
Route #4, about 7km past the airport.
Cambodia Golf and
Country ClubCambodia’s first golf course, opened in
1996, and the most popular in the Phnom Penh area. 18 holes golf
course spread over 120 acres, palm trees, several water features.
Clubhouse, restaurant, swimming pool, tennis courts.
Located on along the national #4, 35km south of Phnom Penh
Horseback Riding The Cambodian Equestrian Center is an
international standard riding school and club established in 2003.
It offers riding lessons for adults and children, pony lead rides,
club memberships and riding, jumping shows and exhibitions and even
horse camp for kids. Located within the Northbridge International