Angkor Wat Temple, Cambodia
Posted Dec 17, 2012
If you're looking to stray from the beaten path on an Asian cruise vacation, you might want to think about booking a trip that calls in beautiful and exciting Angkor Wat, Cambodia. Docking at the nation's sole deepwater port at Sihanoukville, you'll have access to many of Cambodia's ancient temples, incredible jungles, pristine beaches and exciting excursions. Here are some of the must-see destinations to explore on your Cambodian vacation.
The Ruins of Angkor
Considered one of the most significant archeological sites in all of Asia, the ruins of Angkor date back to the reign of the Khmer Empire between the 9th and 15th centuries.
Angkor Archaeological Park is a protected UNESCO World Heritage location, which spans hundreds of square miles and includes a vast assortment of impressive monuments, temples and capital buildings. In particular, the famous Temple of Angkor Wat stands at the center of the park along with other architectural marvels like Bayon, Preah Khan and Ta Prohm. You can also interact with residents from the local villages that still call the ruins of Angkor home.
Psar Lu Market
If you're interested in gaining an up close look at how contemporary and historic cultures merge in Cambodia, there's no better place to do so than Psar Lu Market. Located outside the city of Siem Reap and considered the gateway to the Temple of Angkor Wat, this bustling marketplace is a local hub of culture and commerce. As you wander the streets of Psar Lu Market, you'll see vendors selling all sorts of unique wares, ranging from handmade local crafts to tourist souvenirs perfect for remembering your Cambodian vacation.
Wat Krom and Wat Leu
Located just outside of Sihanoukville, the two well-preserved Buddhist temples Wat Krom and Wat Leu are among the most important religious structures in the area.
Wat Krom translates to "lower wat," and is situated on a tiny hill on Santipheap Street overlooking the coastline. Alternately, Wat Leu - the "upper wat" - sits on a taller mountain nearby and offers picturesque views of the town below. Both of these incredible sites feature impressive stonework and are decorated with statues of elephants and the Buddha.
Located north of Sihanoukville, the nation's capital and largest city of Phnom Penh provides vacationers with an array of cultural attractions, commercial centers, government complexes and beautiful parks.
The city features heavy influences leftover from French colonization during the late 18th and early 19th centuries, and you can still hear French and Cambodian spoken side by side in Phnom Penh. That's not to mention the delicious combination of Asian and French foods that comprises the local cuisine in restaurants and hotels throughout the city.
Travelers looking to explore a mysterious and beautiful land on an Asian cruise vacation should start planning your trip to Cambodia for the trip of a lifetime.