Khiri Travel Insider Tip — Explore Cambodia Beyond Angkor Wat
Get adventurous and go exploring Cambodia outside of the Angkor World Heritage Park. Cambodia’s advantage is its compact size. There are many other tourist sites that offer adventure, relaxation, urban culture as well as remote but equally enticing ancient architecture. Jack Bartholomew – who was recently promoted to Regional Director Indochina and now looks after Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam – explores Cambodia beyond Angkor Wat.
Angkor Wat and the surrounding temples certainly top the list for tourism in Cambodia. Indeed the ancient Angkor complex is a world famous icon. There are constant reminders such as the name of the country’s national beer and many other brand items including hotels and restaurants. While Angkor is incredible and a “must see” destination, there is so much more to see and do in this small but dynamic country.
Likewise, Siem Reap is much more than Angkor’s gateway and hotel room location. Your travelers can do activities as varied as cycling in the countryside, taking a sunset cruise on Tonle Sap Lake, observing local livelihood projects or visiting a local fishing community in Kampong Khleang. I recommend to advice for some extra time in Cambodia and for travelers to go beyond Angkor Wat and Siem Reap to see other wonderful options the country has to offer.
Cambodia’s tourism advantage is its compact size. With two weeks in the Kingdom, your clients can pretty much cover most key places. Don’t be afraid to offer something different! Visit Kratie in Cambodia’s northeast. This sleepy town on the Mekong can easily be combined with a trip to or from Laos. Exploring the seacoast is another rewarding experience. Kampot and Kep are the kind of places where your travelers become immersed in the culture and history of the countryside. Cambodia’s second city, Battambang is an artsy retreat and is easily combined with an off-the-beaten track border crossing into Thailand.
If your travelers are looking for temples with a twist then a trip to Cambodia’s more remote temple sites is a great idea. Banteay Chhmar close to the Thai border and Preah Khan Kompong Svai won’t fail to disappoint. Another great place is the contested temple of Preah Vihear – officially confirmed as Cambodian as of last year. Phnom Penh is a great base from which to explore the south and central parts of the country.
Angkor is fantastic, but your travelers should definitely allow themselves the time to see much more of the country, get immersed in Cambodia’s unique culture and learn more about the people. From beaches, remote temples and local village life – travelling in Cambodia and taking the time to go beyond the highlights at Angkor will certainly prove a rewarding experience.
Regional Director Indochina, Khiri Travel