Phnom Penh

The capital of Cambodia is Phnom Penh, a city that marries the elegance of the old French colonial architecture with the frenetic pace of modern Asian life. You can explore its sights and museums by rickshaw, eat in its lovely restaurants off the central boulevards and explore the markets and shopping areas.

Situated on the banks of the Mekong river Phnom Penh used to be known as the Pearl of the Orient. The Pol Pot regime took its toll but the city has recovered much of its earlier grandeur and its relaxed culture. One of the most iconic places in the city is the Royal Palace, its traditional architecture and extensive gilding making it a landmark on the banks of the river. You can visit some areas but it is still the home of the King so other areas are closed. One place you can see is the Silver Pagoda or Temple of the Emerald Buddha. It gets its name from its floor, tiled in silver said to weight over five tonnes.

As well as buildings displaying Cambodia's rich material culture there are also places you can go to learn about its tumultuous and tragic recent history. The Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum is a raw window into the horrors of the Pol Pot regime, its buildings once a prison that tortured its occupants before shipping them off to the killing fields at Choeung Ek. Detailed records were kept and reading them and looking at photos of the victims is a sobering insight into the history that Cambodia has endured in recent times.

You can also visit the killing fields themselves, only a few kilometres from the City Centre

Safaris visiting this attraction

13 days
From £1905
Cambodia in Style

Put your finger on the pulse and enjoy special experiences that your fellow travellers haven’t even heard of yet.

14 days
From £2105
Cambodia: Beyond the Ordinary

Meet minority villagers and rescued elephants in the country's remote north-eastern provinces, and see fresh sides of Angkor, Siem Reap and Phnom Penh.

36 days
From £6488
Ultimate Indochina

Travelling through Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos and Myanmar, you’ll get to appreciate how diverse and unique each country is. There will be plenty of opportunities to meet the locals, sample the varying cuisine, and explore the ever-changing landscapes.

19 days
From £2686
Ultimate Vietnam & Cambodia

Enjoy the cuisines, the culture, the trekking, the beaches, the journey, the vibrant cities, the temples, the warmly hospitable people... oh, and the little matter of Angkor Wat, along with lesser known, far less visited but equally impressive temples!

Map

Phnom Penh