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Cambodia

CAMBODIA TOURS

Cambodia, long isolated from the international community, has today become one of Southeast Asia's most interesting and rewarding tourist destinations. A wonderful mix of traditional Khmer culture, stunning Hindu influenced architecture, beautiful jungle landscapes, and some of the warmest, and friendly people in the world, all help to make Cambodia a perfect holiday destination.

Phnom Penh - the countries modern capital - wonderfully combines a bustling, commercial heart with Buddhist temples, majestic palaces, shady avenues and colonial style building. Various museums and sites of interest in and around the city chart Cambodia's past - from the glories of the Khmer Empire to the darker recent history of genocide by the Khmer Rouge. Hidden in dense jungle around Siem Reap, the vast complex of temples of Angkor, that made up the empires former capital, still stand today as a true and lasting testament to the greatness of the Khmer god-kings. Cambodia's countryside is a picturesque patchwork of rice paddies dotted with small villages. National parks have been opened covering large tracts of dense, unspoilt jungle - and the mighty Mekong River cuts the country in half. Tonlé Sap (Great Lake), a large freshwater lake is one of UNESCO's World Natural Heritage Sites, and supports a unique ever changing ecosystem. To the south of the county there are the lovely sandy beaches and clear warm waters of the Gulf of Thailand. Several National parks have been set up to preserve the fragile ecology of the mangrove swamps.

Cambodia works perfectly as a destination in its own right, or more often as an extension to a Thailand holiday itinerary or as part of a longer multi destination tour of Southeast Asia. Our suggested Cambodia holiday itineraries will provide you with a good starting point, and can be adapted to your own requirement or combined with other suggested holiday itineraries to nearby counties.

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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

When is the best time of the year to visit Cambodia?

The best time to visit Cambodia is from November to February as the weather is cooler and there is a breeze.

Is it safe to visit Cambodia?

Generally, the country is safe to visit, but you should avoid the remote areas of Phnom Penh at night.

What is the official currency of Cambodia?

The official currency of Cambodia is the Cambodian reil, and the American dollar is the country’s unofficial currency.

What should you wear in Cambodia?

Given the year-round warm temperatures, lightweight and loose-fitting clothing are good options. Shorts are acceptable, but we suggest covering up when visiting temples and religious sites.

Can you drink the tap water in Cambodia?

The tap water in Cambodia is claimed to be safe, but a lot of chlorine is added so it does not taste good. It is recommended to only drink the bottled water that is sold everywhere.

TOUR REVIEWS

Excellent from the initial planning to every step along the way on the trip! Worry free in every way! Islam, Hussein and Mahmoud were the greatest! Please check out my review on Trip Advisor! FIve stars from this girl!
Excellent

There was a lot of communication from the beginning. The encounters staff was very responsive and the tour guide was great and very accommodating. Encounters was also able to help me with last minute changes to my itinerary while I was on the trip.

My experience with Encounters was excellent from start to finish. The Tour Guide, Sheriff, was the most passionate, enthusiastic and professional guide I have ever had on a tour and his love for Egypt really made me enjoy my time so much more.
I was cautious about arriving in Egypt given the current circumstances about the country, but felt safer that I did living in London as soon as I arrived. All of the Encounters staff are very professional.

Took care of every single detail from prior to our arrival in Cario until we we're dropped of at the airport a week later. Our hotels, tours, meals, and tour group we're all wonderful. Our tour guide was wonderful!
The price was great and the people wonderful!

Conscientious in early communication; knowledgeable, humorous and caring tour guides; an exemplary itinerary that was well organized yet flexible; an overall extraordinary experience. I'd recommend them enthusiastically.

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Cambodia Country Guide

Cambodia Country Guide Flag

Factfile


Time: GMT+7
Dial Code: +855
Area: 181,035 km²
Elevation: The lowest point in Cambodia is the Gulf of Thailand 0 m (0 ft.) | The highest point in Cambodia is the Phnom Aural 1,810 m (5,938 ft.)
Population: 29,624,035 (2018)
Capital: Phnom Penh
Governemnt: Parliamentary system, Unitary state, Elective monarchy, Constitutional monarchy, One-party state
Language: Khmer

Cambodia, officially the Kingdom of Cambodia, is a sovereign state in the southern portion of the Indochina Peninsula in Southeast Asia. It is bordered by Thailand to the northwest, Laos to the northeast, Vietnam to the east and the Gulf of Thailand to the southwest.

The official religion is Theravada Buddhism, which is practised by approximately 95% of the population. The minority groups in the country include Vietnamese, Chams, Chinese and 30 hill tribes. The capital and largest city is Phnom Penh, the economic, political and cultural centre of Cambodia. Cambodia has one of the fastest growing economies in Asia, and agriculture remains the dominant economic sector.

The landscape of Cambodia is characterised by a low-lying central plain that is encircled by uplands and low mountains. The highest peak of Cambodia can be found in the area of Phnom Aural. Cambodia's climate is largely affected by monsoons, like the rest of Southeast Asia.

Cambodia has two main seasons: the rainy season, which runs from May to October and the dry season, which lasts from November to April. The biodiversity in Cambodia is mainly based on its seasonal tropical forests, home to 180 recorded tree species and 212 mammal species.

Khmer is the national language of Cambodia. French, the former language of government in Indochina is still spoken by many older Cambodians and is used in some schools. English is taught in many universities in the country and street signs are now bilingual in Khmer and English.

Highlights

  • Angkor Wat – a temple complex from the 12th century and the largest religious monument in the world.
  • Silver Pagoda – this building by the Royal Palace is also called the Temple of the Emerald Buddha.
  • Toul Sleng Museum – a museum in Phnom Penh chronicling the Cambodia genocide, housed in a former school.
  • Skuon – a district capital of Cheung Prey District and market town known for its spider markets.
  • Siem Reap – a resort town in northwestern Cambodia and the gateway to the ruins of Angkor.
  • Bayon – positioned in Angkor, this temple depicts the face of the Mahayana Buddhist King Jayavarman VII.
  • Banteay Chhmar – one of Cambodia's most important temples from the Angkorian period and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Prasat Preah Vihear – a Hindu temple built during the period of Khmer Empire sitting atop a 525-metre cliff.

Tips

  • Avoid wearing swimsuits or beachwear around the towns in Cambodia, even along the coast.
  • When visiting temples, cover up your knees, elbows, shoulders and head to show your respect.
  • Bargaining is expected in marketplaces and smaller shops. You can bargain for Tuk-Tuks and taxis.
  • Learn some Khmer phrases and greetings so that you can interact with the locals.
  • Keep an eye out for scams and look after valuables when walking through busy areas.
  • Be wary of eating meat or fish that hasn’t been cooked in restaurants and markets.
  • Don't consume ice in drinks and stay away from salad, raw fruit and vegetables.
  • Tipping is customary, and it is polite to leave a donation when visiting a temple.

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TAILOR-MADE Cambodia TOURS

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Our tailor-made tours seek to create a personalised experience – one that is completely exclusive to you. By taking all your interests and requests into consideration, we design an itinerary that ticks off your specific boxes. If you are after adventurous exploration, cultural immersion, a relaxing escape or a balanced blend of everything, we can make it happen.

A highlight of our tailor-made tours is that the itinerary is flexible and incorporates plenty of free time – so you can do some exploring on your own. Our local, friendly guides, experts in their country’s history and culture, will be happy to adjust the activities or your schedule as you travel.

If you are a group of friends, a large family or a company, our tailor-made tours are an ideal, stress-free option. You can even select your own hotels or make use of our recommended accommodation. We have a varied selection of sample holiday itineraries to choose from, either as they stand or as a base for inspiration.

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