Name: KINGDOM OF CAMBODIA
181,035km2. It is bordered to the North by Thailand and Laos,
to the East and the South by Vietnam, and to the South and the
West by the Gulf of Thailand.
City Phnom Penh (Population approx 2 Million, 290 square
kilometers). It is considered the center of Industry, Administration,
Commerce, and Tourism.
13,124,764 Million (2003 est.) (90-95% Khmers) the balance being
ethnic Chinese, Cham, ethnic Vietnamese and hill-tribe people.
Khmer, secondary languages: English and French
95% Theravada Buddhist with the balance being Muslim, Christian
and Drink Rice and fish are the basic foods enjoyed by
Cambodians. Delicious noodle soups are available at cafes. Fresh
seafood is plentiful at Sihanouk Ville. In major cities a wide
range of culinary fare is on offer including; Chinese, Thai, French,
Korean, Japanese, Indian, Vietnamese and Middle Eastern.
Cambodia has four seasons:
1. Nov-Feb, cool/dry
2. Mar-May, hot/dry
3. Jun-Aug, hot/wet
4. Sep-Oct, cool/wet
RIEL (USD1 approximately 4000 Riels). US dollars are widely accepted.
Tipping isnít obligatory but is widely practiced in hotels
and restaurants in addition to the service charges shown on bills.
Can be obtained at Royal Embassies and Consulates of Cambodia
A visa on arrival, valid for 30 days, is issued at Phnom Penh
International Airport, Siem Reap International Airport. Poi Pet,
O'Smach and Cham Yeam at the Cambodia-Thailand international border
checkpoint and Bavet, Kaam Samnor at the Cambodia-Vietnam international
Taxi For visitors entering Cambodia through Phnom Penh
International Airport, a taxi into the city will cost USD7 and
will take approximately 15 minutes. Most hotels and better guesthouses
provide airport pickups for booked guests. A (non-metered) taxi
from Siem Reap International Airport into town, 8km away, costs
about USD5 and takes 10-15 minutes.
Transport Cars and mini-buses are readily available for
touring the temples at Angkor or for day trips in and around Phnom
Penh. The cost of a car and driver is US$20+per day.
and Guesthouses There are many of each in Phnom Penh,
Siem Reap and Sihanoukville. Accommodation ranges from guesthouses
charging from USD5/night to luxurious 5-star hotels. In Siem Reap
there are several small hotels along the road between the airport
and the town. (These are peaceful as they?re set among rice fields
and palms but require a taxi ride for each venture outside).
Plenty available, but take your own driver or "motodop"
(motorbike taxi driver) for the evening.
Country code: 855, Phnom Penh code: 23. Phone cards are
available, and can be purchased at many outlets. There are also
several mobile phone systems. Mobile phones can be rented from
booths on the street on a pay-per-call basis.
Hours Government offices: business hours are from 7:30am-11:
30am and 2:30pm-5pm, Monday to Friday. Banks are open from 8am-3pm
Monday to Friday. Markets are open from early morning to late
evening, including Sundays and pubic holidays.
service Airmail to Europe takes 4-5 days, and to the
USA 7-10 days
English dailies: The Phnom Penh Post and The Cambodia
services The Internet and E-mail are available in city
and all the provinces.
information Ministry of Tourism. Tel.: (855)23 211 593,
Fax: (855)23 212 837
There are emergency services in Phnom Penh. Call 119 ambumlance,
Call 118 fire truck, Call 117 polices.
- Phnom Penh International Airport
- Siem Reap International Airport
- Sihanoukville Port (Visa on Arrival)
- Airport Tax:
- Foreigner: USD25
- Cambodian: USD18
- Foreigner: 6USD
- Cambodian: 5USD (Effective from 5th January 2004)
- Bavet (Svay Rieng Province)
- Kaam Samnor-Koh Rokar (Kandal-Prey Veng)
- Cham Yeam (Koh Kong Province)
- Poi Pet (Banteay Meanchhey Province)
- O'Smach (Oddar Meanchhey Province)
- Phnom Den (Takeo Province): No Visa on Arrival
- Dong Krolor (Stung Treng Province): No Visa on Arrival
Most international visitors arrive by air at the airports in either
Phnom Penh or Siem Reap. These airports are serviced by an increasing
number of airlines. A growing number of tourists are also entering
overland from Thailand and Vietnam.
six airports at Battambang, Mondulkiri, Phnom Penh, Rattanakhiri,
Siem Riep and Stung Treng. All flights pass through Phnom Penh
arts and crafts are abundant in Cambodia. Scuptures., paintings
and curving done with great care and attention. One can view such
antiquities in market place, shop or museum.The
variety of arts and crafts are large in range and include such
item as: silver and gold jewellery, wicker were furniture, fine
hard wood furniture, silks, marble sculptures, high quality China,
leather ware and much more. There is a sharp eye for detail here
and much of the products will be intricately carved especially
the furniture, sculptures etc.Unfortunately,
much of these works completely ceased to exist during the Khmer
Rouge dictatorship. Artisans ware instead forced to work in labour
camps, where most of them died painful deaths. Many arts and crafts
also purposely perished during that time.Today
there has been a revival, due to a great deal of restoration work,
which has been initiated by foreign governments. Now many centers
have been established to keep the ancient methods of the craftwork
alive. You can see examples of this throughout the country.
security is a very difficult subject to write about. Advice that
is too conservative or too cavalier both do a disservice to the
potential visitor, Cambodian tourism and the reputation of the
country. This said, bear in mind that the following words about
safety in Cambodia come from personal experience and observation.
It is not to be taken as official, gospel or the final word. As
a matter of fact, if there is one truism about security advice
it is that it all comes from limited information, a particular
perspective and contains bias of some sort. When seeking information
about safety and security, seek out multiple sources, look for
common threads and try to take into account the bias that each
source may be conveying. For example, advice from embassies and
international organizations tends to be conservative and politically
driven. Advice from tourist books and guides is almost always
seriously out-dated. On the other hand, advice from fellow travelers
is up to date and first-hand but comes from narrow, individual
experience and is often cavalier, springing from the specious
"I didn't get hurt or killed so it must be safe" rationale.
In short, understanding safety and security requires your active
participation. You must think about and evaluate the advice received.
And regardless of the advice, you must apply it with reason and
comparison to other major tourist destinations around the world,
Cambodia is currently a relatively safe travel destination. Provincial
destinations in Cambodia such as Siem Reap and the temples of
Angkor are exceptionally safe by comparison. Significant security
concerns include: 1) traffic/transportation safety; 2) petty and
sometime violent street crime in Phnom Penh.
Rouge:The Khmer Rouge, as a viable political, military
or even criminal force in Cambodia, is dead and buried, and their
resurrection is very unlikely. The Khmer Rouge is no longer a
the topic is landmines, Cambodia is usually one of the first countries
to be mentioned, but fortunately, mines are not a concern for
the average tourist in Cambodia. Mines are concentrated in border
areas (particularly the Thai border), some mountain areas, and
old war zones. There are no mines in major cities and towns where
most tourists frequent. The areas around heavily touristed temple
ruins in Siem Reap were demined long ago, though for safety's
sake it is best to stay on established routes.
If you plan
to visit less-frequented, distant temple ruins such as Phnom Kulen,
Kbal Spean and Beng Melea, stick strictly to paths. Do not walk
though untouristed jungle, mountain or paddy areas without a guide.
Do not cross international borders except at established border
crossing points. Adventure travelers to remote sections of Cambodia
need to take extra mine safety precautions.
disease concerns see the Visas and Vaccinations page. Remember
that AIDS/HIV and Hepatitis B are very prevalent amongst Cambodia's
accidents: are not uncommon in the chaotic traffic of
Cambodia, particularly Phnom Penh. The most common form of public
transportation is the motorcycle taxi. Unless you buy your own,
there are no helmets and the moto drivers are usually not licensed.
Car taxi is the safest way to move around the city. For taxi contact
Phnom Penh.Transportation: Siem Reap.Transportation:
In Phnom Penh,
cyclos (bicycle rickshaws) also offer a slower, somewhat safer
(though not as safe as a car) alternative to mototaxis. If you
insist on using motorcycle taxis, try to select your driver carefully.
If he appears drunk, reckless or drives too fast do not hesitate
to get off (pay him a bit) and get another moto. There are plenty
to choose from.
who choose to rent a motorcycle and drive themselves, be forewarned
that traffic in Phnom Penh is chaotic in the extreme. Between
cities, road conditions are poor and taxi and truck drivers are
reckless, taking little heed of motorcycles. Only very experienced
riders should attempt driving in Cambodia.
to Siem Reap The safety of the popular ferries that ply
the Tonle Sap between Phnom Penh and Siem Reap may be of some
concern. Though by third world standards the public ferries are
relatively fast and modern, they in no way meet international
safety standards. Little or no safety equipment is available.
If you are looking for international standards of safety, do not
take the local ferry. If you are accustomed to traveling on ferries
in southern Asia, you will probably find the Siem Reap ferry to
be a rather tame adventure.There are now a couple of companies
(Compagnie Fluviale du Mekong and Mekong Express Tours) offering
deluxe/luxury ferries that meet international safety standards.
See the Siem Reap Transportation page.
Activity:Like most countries around the world, criminal
activity is probably the greatest threat to the tourist after
traffic accidents.Outside of Phnom Penh, violent criminal activity
directed against foreign tourists is almost unheard of. There
have been a few night-time robberies and assaults in Sihanoukville
and now Siem Reap but, at least at this point in time, these are
exceptions rather than the rule. Generally speaking, provincial
capitals such as Siem Reap, Battambang and others are exceptionally
Penh Armed robberies of tourists in Phnom Penh are not
uncommon. Although there have been some daytime robberies, most
occur at night, often near popular tourist destinations and almost
always to tourists on the back of a motorcycle taxi or on foot.
The robbers are usually young men armed with a handgun that confront
the tourist directly and demand money. Though the robbers generally
avoid applying violence, they will become violent if challenged.
The best way
to avoid robbery is to take a car taxi when traveling after dark.
Robbery of people in cars, though not unheard of, is very rare.
If you choose to take a motorcycle taxi, it is best to stay on
main roads rather than dark side streets. It is best not to travel
by foot after dark. If you are confronted by robbers, do not resist,
do not challenge them, do not try to bargain. Be cooperative.
Give up your money quickly and they will probably leave as quickly
as they showed up.
that when riding a motorcycle taxi, keep your bag or backpack
directly between you and the driver, or let the driver place it
in front of him. There have been reports of people pulled off
of motorcycle taxis when thieves grabbed their backpacks.
Night clubs that cater primarily to Cambodians (not including
foreigner-oriented bars and clubs such as Martini's and Riverhouse
Lounge in Phnom Penh, the casinos in Sihanoukville and other tourist-oriented
places) often draw a large police/military clientele and young
gang members. The mixture of alcohol and guns can lead to violent
confrontations, sometimes involving gun-play, inside and immediately
outside the clubs.
non-violent, non-confrontational crime does occur, but
should almost go without mentioning. Do not leave money or valuables
in your hotel room unattended. Do not leave money or valuables
unattended on the beaches in Sihanoukville. Do not leave your
bags in a taxi or on a motorcycle or cyclo while you go into a
hotel to check in. Be very careful of your belongings if you take
a prostitute to your hotel room. Be careful of pickpockets in
crowded discos and clubs, particularly clubs filled with prostitutes,
and at the traditional Asian markets (often over-friendly children).
Embassies in Phnom Penh
Villa 11, Street 254
#8, Street 352
Villa 11, Street 254
#156, Mao Tse Toung
#98, Street 214
#8, Street 352
#76-78, Street 214
#15-17, Mao Tse Toung
#5, Street 242
#10, Street 370
#33, Street 294
#64, Street 214
#8, Street 352
#53D, Street 242
#27-29, Street 75
#27, Street 240
Donít purchase historical artifacts in Cambodia.
Buy only the replica ones.
Donít take home pieces of stone from the temples
and tourist sites no matter how small and undecorated they are.
Donít touch someone on the head. Head is considered
Donít point or gesture with your feet or put your
on the furniture. Feet are considered the lowest form of the body.
Donít give children vendors in the temples candies
if you do not intend to buy their products.
Donít be foul-mouthed in middle of lake or jungle.
It is considered bad omen.
in narcotic drug consumption and sexual exploitation of children.