Phnom Penh HolidaysReference WW40620
Legend has it that the city of Phnom Penh, the exotic 'Pearl of the Orient', was founded in 1372 by a local widow named Penh. It is said that she discovered four Buddha statues that had been washed up by the waters from the Mekong River and erected a temple on the hill to house them, believing that their arrival was a sign of great luck and prosperity to come. And so the city grew around this structure, becoming known as the Hill of Penh (Phnom Penh).
Phnom Penh boasts a number of Wats (temple-monasteries), museums and other places of interest for tourists, as well as sunset cruises on the Mekong and Tonlé Sap Rivers, and a bustling marketplace. The city is known for having a fun nightlife, with a proliferation of cheap and cheerful bars. The cafe culture and tasty Cambodian cuisine also ensure that foodies are well-catered for. There has been a recent boom in development, with new hotels, restaurants, bars and nightclubs springing up to cater for Cambodia's growing popularity with travellers, and the city is increasingly seen as a worthy travel destination in itself rather than just the most convenient entry point for a Cambodian holiday.
A day or two of traditional sightseeing is very worthwhile in this old and exotic city, but travel itineraries should also include some of the popular activities on offer: river cruises are a must; some people come from very far away to test out heavy weaponry at the famous shooting ranges, and cooking classes are a fond favourite with foodies wanting to learn a new skill. Phnom Penh also lends itself to leisurely hours spent soaking up the cafe culture on the banks of the river, watching the world go by.
Top Phnom Pehn Hotels
Top 5 Things To Do
When to Visit
- Currency The official currency is the riel
- Flying time from the UK The average flight time from London to Phnom Penh is around 14 hours
- Primary Language Khmer
- Passport & Visas Your passport should be valid for a minimum period of 6 months from the date of entry into Cambodia. Tourist visas are available on arrival at the Phnom Penh or Siem Reap international airports. You can also get an eVisa online before you travel.