For most people the Kingdom of Cambodia evokes images of a glorious and mysterious past. This small country with a rich cultural heritage located in the southwest of the Indochinese Peninsula. The entire territory lies within the tropics, the southern sections of the country down practically to the equator. International borders separating Cambodia from Thailand and Laos on the West and North, Vietnam to the East. In the South-West the country is washed by the Gulf of Thailand, the coastline is 435 km.
Features of the Cambodian landscape are dictated by the largest fresh-water lake of Tonlesap and the great Mekong River in the center of the country. This region is mostly plains, occupying whole three-quarters of the country, and is the most densely populated areas. Cambodia is like a bowl, the bottom is a huge plain. The walls of the bowl covered with a jungle of different types sparsely populated mountains: the Elephant Mountains and Cardamom Mountains in the southwest and Western regions of the country; the Dangrek Mountains in the North and the plateau of Ratanakiri in the East.
In Cambodia, as in any country with tropical climate, there is a brightly expressed dry season which occurs in winter in the Northern hemisphere. To visit this exotic country, the most suitable period is from November to April. The winter months are the best for travel. The rainy season occurs during the southwest monsoon in May-October, when there is about 80 percent of annual rainfall. The temperature at this time of the year varies from +26 to +40, in the winter months – from +22 to +26. High humidity persists all year round and over 90%.
The many facets of the Kingdom are attracting more tourists every year. The preserved splendor of the Khmer civilization will fascinate any traveler. And people themselves who are very friendly and welcoming to all visitors. The Cambodian government today is doing everything possible to preserve the integrity of traditional Khmer culture. The legendary Angkor Wat built between the 9th and 13th centuries is the witness of Magnificent Empire. It now maintains a mysterious and symbolizes the greatness of this country.
This country will be able to offer anyone who would like to get acquainted with Cambodia not only numerous palaces and temples, but also beautiful nature, mild climate and superb sandy beaches. A small port city of Sihanoukville may boast the best beach in the country. White sand, warm sea water of the Gulf combined with the relaxing beach atmosphere and fresh seafood will give a great tropical vacation.
Everybody should definitely visit the capital of Cambodia – Phnom Penh which underwent tremendous changes over the past four years. It is worth saying about the attractive residential area in the Northern part of the capital. Also noteworthy is the southern part of the city, for its French heritage, with a variety of banks, colonial houses, ministries. And of course the center or the heart of the city with its narrow lanes, markets, food stalls and shops. Among the monuments, symbolizing the independence of Cambodia from France stands the Independence Monument. A must visit in the capital is the Royal Palace, famous Silver pagoda, and national Museum.