Cambodia :Your Guide to the Top Attractions

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Cambodia :Your Guide to the Top Attractions:table of contents

This travel guide has compilation of practical sightseeing destinations in Cambodia and we hope it will help you better prepare for your sightseeing tour in Cambodia. Most of these sightseeing attractions are in Siem Reap province, located in northwest Cambodia which is a major tourist hub in Cambodia, because of the world famous Angkor Temple Complex found there. Read further for specific details on these sightseeing places in Cambodia.

1. Angkor Archaeological Park

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Your sightseeing tour in Cambodia will obviously feature a tour to the monumental and impressive Angkor Archaeological Park which is a testament of the great history of Cambodia. It's one of the most important archeological sites not only in Cambodia but also in Southeast Asia. For centuries, the Angkor complex was the center of the Khmer Kingdom, and features iconic Temples such as Angkor Wat, Bayon, and Ta Prohm are emblems of Khmer architecture. Most of the sightseeing temples here were originally built as Hindu temples but have since been converted to Buddhist temples. Today, the park is famous not only as a top sightseeing destination in Cambodia but as a place of worship. The park provides a perfect setting to take photographs on your sightseeing tour. In fact scenes of the Tomb Raider movie were shot here. You must purchase an admission pass for a sightseeing tour of the temples and sites in the part of Cambodia.

2. Angkor Thom

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Angkor Thom is a vast area, which forms part of the Angkor Complex, in Siem Riep, Cambodia. The fortified Buddhist city, which was the last capital of the Khmer Empire, also enclosed residences of priests and the military. The city has five monumental gates on each side of its exterior square wall, which is decorated with stone elephant trunks and the king's favorite motif, the four faces of Avalokiteshvara. The south gate is the most popular with sightseeing tourists in Cambodia because it also leads directly to Angkor Wat, the largest Temple in Cambodia. It is a popular sightseeing destination in Angkor, Cambodia, with several great interesting sights including the grand Bayon Temple. You can also go on a sightseeing walk of the Terrace of the Elephants, which served as a viewing platform for royal parties, to see elephant-like structures and a mythical bird-like creature.

3. Angkor Wat

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The iconic Angkor Wat Temple is a top sightseeing site in Cambodia and the largest monument in the Angkor Temple Complex. It is also the largest ancient Hindu temple not only in Cambodia but also in the world and was built as a royal temple dedicated to a Hindu deity. Angkor Wat is the best preserved structure of Khmer architecture in Cambodia and is so grand in design that it’s considered one of the wonders of the world. Angkor Wat, which appears on the Cambodia national flag, has been a pilgrimage site for centuries and even today a lot sightseeing tourists come to Cambodia to experience the aura of this remarkable landmark. So, don’t miss a visit to this architectural masterpiece on your sightseeing tour in Cambodia.

4. Bayon Temple

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The Bayon Temple, which dates back to the 12th century, is a located north of the famous Angkor wa, in Angkor, Cambodia. The spectacular temple stands at the center of Angkor Thom and represents the intersection of heaven and earth. The Bayon Temple is a largely a Buddhist temple though it features several elements of Hindu cosmology and imagery. This sightseeing destination in Cambodia is famous for its amazing bas-reliefs and huge, mystical smiling stone faces of Avalokiteshvara, with one facing outward for keeping watch. On your sightseeing tour, you will there are 51 smaller towers surrounding the Bayon Temple, each with four faces of its own. The Temple’s outer wall also features more than 11,000 carved paintings. Sightseeing tourists can include this monument as part of their sightseeing tour in Angkor, Cambodia.

5. Ta Prohm

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Ta Prohm, also known as jungle temple, is located in Angkor, Cambodia. It was a Buddhist temple built in honor of King Jayavarman VII’s mother. The Temple is a favorite for many sightseeing tourists in Cambodia because of its dynamic interaction between nature and man-made art. Gigantic trees have grown through the structure with their massive roots tearing apart stones and probing walls and terraces apart. Ta Prohm has been extensively ruined over the years but you can still explore part of its 39 towers which are connected by narrow corridors and numerous galleries. For a perfect sightseeing tour of the temple, visit in the early morning hours and maybe bring a torch and a compass with you. You can enjoy lunch or snacks at the open-air cafeterias just outside Ta Prohm’s main entrance, where you can savor the delicious dishes offered in Cambodia.

6. Banteay Srei

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Banteay Srei in Cambodia, also known as Citadel of Women, is the only Temple in the Angkor complex which was not built by a King, and also the only Temple decorated using hard pink sandstone carvings. It is located about 37km Northwest of Siem Reap, Cambodia. It is not as grand as the other Temples in the Angkor Complex but its sophisticated decorations and remarkable state of preservation has made it a popular sightseeing destination in Cambodia. Its bas-relief carvings specifically are an illustration of artistic perfection making it to be referred as the little jewel of the Angkor temples, in process attracting many sightseeing visitors touring Angkor, Cambodia.

7. Baphuon Temple

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The Baphuon is a temple located in Angkor Thom, Angkor, Cambodia. The three-tiered temple was built in the mid-11th century as homage to the Hindu god Shiva. It is enclosed by a spectacular wall and features an impressive entrance causeway on one side that has the characteristic ambience of a royal palace. It was the largest Temple in its time but the feat was taken away by the grandiose Angkor wat in the following century. Over the years, it was converted into a Buddhist Temple. The temple has gone through a lot of restoration works recently and you can pay a visit there in the course of your sightseeing tour in Angkor, Cambodia.

8. Banteay Samre

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Banteay Samre is a Hindu temple located in Angkor, Cambodia, but a bit far away from the other Temples in Angkor Temple complex. It is named after the Samre, an ancient ethnic Indochinese tribe. The Temple is located in a stunning area which is surrounded by beautiful rice paddies and a vast coverage of trees making it perfect sightseeing destination for eco-tourism. Sightseeing tourists will love to take lunch or drinks under the cool shade of the trees. The temple hosts an art gallery perfect for a perfect sightseeing experience in this area of Cambodia. The Temple is considered to be the jewel in the crown of Angkorian art in Cambodia. On your sightseeing tour of the temple, you will note that is well-preserved and decorated using exquisite colors. Many of its carvings are also three-dimensional and are cut from stone of a pinkish hue.

9. Choeung Ek Genocidal Center

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The Choeung Ek Genocidal Center, otherwise known as Killing Fields, is probably the best sightseeing site in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. The Killing Fields are a constant reminder of the horrors that faced the citizens of Cambodia some decades back. Khmer Rouge and his murderous regime conducted cruel on the people of Cambodia. About 20,000 Cambodians were brutally executed under orders from the Khmer Rouge who wanted to enforce his communist agenda on the people of Cambodia. Plan a sightseeing trip to this site to understand firsthand, the nightmare of fear and violence that the people of Cambodia experienced. Visit the stupa which houses skulls and other bones belonging to thousands of victims. You will also notice that human teeth and bones as well as pieces of clothing are still scattered all over the ground. Rent an audio guide which puts everything that happened in this part of Cambodia into perspective.

10. Battambang Bat Caves

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As you wind up your sightseeing tour in Cambodia, a visit to the Battambang bat caves will be an icing on the cake. The caves are in the Sampeou Mountain and you can visit the site on bikes or Tuk Tuks. Around 6 p.m. each evening, thousands of bats stream out of the caves in search of food. They continue streaming out the caves for around one and half hours making extended lines on the sky. It is a pretty impressive sight especially when watching from the road below the caves. Sightseeing visitors can also hike to the mountain to have a perfect view of this exodus of bats. The top of the mountain also provides spectacular views of rice paddies and surrounding countryside. Don’t miss a sightseeing visit to this site to witness this natural phenomenon in Cambodia where you can also take a few pictures.

◎ Closing

Cambodia is a country of great heritage and culture no matter its sorrowful history. The astounding Angkor Temple Complex together with a couple of other sightseeing destinations are reason enough to plan for a sightseeing tour in Cambodia. Furthermore, the people in Cambodia are some of the friendliest you’ll ever meet while the food in Cambodia is cheap and delicious. We hope the list of top sightseeing places in Cambodia will help you prepare for a trip of a lifetime in Cambodia.

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