Cambodia is a country full of culture, jungle, ruins, and a dreamy coast line. There are a lot of cool places to visit in Cambodia that you won’t be disappointed with your time spent in this southeast Asian nation.
Millions of people flock to Cambodia every year to explore the iconic Angkor Wat, Bayon Temple and Ta Prohm. These ancient ruins scattered through the jungle isn’t the only reason to visit Cambodia though.
Phnom Penh, the capital, is full of history, chaos, markets, and a somber past. The coastal towns of Kep and Kampot charms with its relaxed vibes and pepper plantations.
In this article, I’ll go over all the top places to see in Cambodia and at the end of the post, I’ll add any necessary tips that will aid you in your travels to Cambodia.
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With so many amazing travel destinations in the world, you may be wondering is Cambodia worth visiting? Short answer, yes. Long answer, what’s not to love about Cambodia.
After visiting Cambodia on three separate occasions, here are a few of the compelling reasons to consider going to Cambodia.
- 🐒 Ancient Temples: Explore the magnificent Angkor Wat Archaeological Park.
- 💦 Natural Beauty: Discover the natural wonders, including Tonle Sap Lake and pristine beaches in Koh Rong.
- 💀 History: Cambodia has a dark past but it shows the country’s resilience.
- 🧶 Cultural Diversity: Witness the traditions and customs of Cambodia, from traditional Apsara dance performances to lively festivals and markets.
- 🌋 Adventure Opportunities: Can we say exploring remote jungles, trekking to waterfalls, or going on a off-the-beaten path river cruise.
- 🙂 Friendly Locals. Cambodian people are known for their hospitality and welcoming nature.
- 💰 It’s affordable! Cambodia is known for being a budget-friendly destination, allowing travelers to enjoy a range of experiences without breaking bank.
- 🫔 The food! Indulge in Cambodian cuisine, featuring dishes like Fish Amok, Lok Lak, and Khmer noodles.
Best Places to Visit in Cambodia Quick List
Below I have listed the best places to visit in Cambodia for easy viewing. If you would like more information about a specific place in Cambodia, click on the blue links below for more details.
9 Unbelievable Places to See in Cambodia
As the largest religious monument in the world, this ancient temple complex is the main reason that visitors travel to Cambodia. That’s why it made the number one spot on the best places to visit in Cambodia list.
Once the capital of the Khmer Empire this ancient city contains hundreds of temples ready for you to explore. One of the best things to do in Angkor Wat is to book a sunrise tour.
The iconic silhouette of Angkor Wat against the sunrise creates a breathtaking spectacle. The sheer scale and detail of Angkor Wat, coupled with its mystical ambiance, make it a must-visit destination in Cambodia.
The Cambodian Islands
You might not think of crystal clear blue waters or white sand beaches when you think of Cambodia but if you head south there are untouched, white sand beaches filled with hammocks waiting for your arrival.
The Cambodian islands are a paradise of pristine beaches, turquoise waters, and a laid-back atmosphere. They offer a serene escape from the bustling mainland.
Koh Rong and Koh Rong Sanloem, the most popular islands in Cambodia, boast powdery white sands, vibrant coral reefs, and crystal-clear seas. Snorkeling, diving, and exploring bioluminescent plankton at night will only add to the adventure.
Kampot is a tranquil riverside town nestled at the foot of the Bokor Mountains. Renowned for its French colonial architecture, Kampot exudes a laid-back charm that seamlessly blends with the landscapes.
This is one of the best places to visit in Cambodia for a touch of nature in the nearby Bokor National Park and a riverside promenade in town. Kampot is also famed for its pepper plantations, where you can savor the world famous Kampot pepper.
Siem Reap | A Top Place to Visit in Cambodia
Siem Reap is the gateway city to exploring Angkor Wat, but you’ll want to carve out a few days in your itinerary to explore Siem Reap. It’s a journey into the heart of ancient wonders and modern delights.
Beyond the historical marvels, Siem Reap’s vibrant markets, street life and luxury hotels make Siem Reap one of the best places to visit in Cambodia.
Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s bustling capital, is an immersive journey into a city that intertwines history and modernity. The Mekong and Tonle Sap rivers frame the city, offering scenic riverfronts and bustling markets.
The Royal Palace and the Silver Pagoda showcase Cambodia’s rebel past, while the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum and the Killing Fields provide poignant reflections on the country’s more recent history. Phnom Penh should not be missed when exploring Cambodia.
Another must see place in Cambodia is Battambang. This charming town is steeped in history and artistic allure. Nestled along the river, Battambang invites travelers to explore its French colonial architecture, traditional Khmer houses, and markets at a leisurely pace.
The renowned Bamboo Trains offers a unique way to traverse the countryside, providing scenic views of rice paddies and local life. Battambang is a delightful destination for those seeking authenticity and a slower pace in the heart of Cambodia.
Tonle Sap Lake
Tonle Sap Lake is the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia. The lake, surrounded by floating villages and stilted houses, provides a unique glimpse into daily lives.
The “floating villages” found here is a very impoverished part of Cambodia. Experience Tonle Sap on a tour to learn about the unique ecosystem and the simple farming and fishing lifestyles of the locals.
Kep Crab Market
Kep is a small seaside fishing village and the main attraction of the town is the Fresh Crab Market. The Kep Crab Market is known for its abundance of fresh crab and other delectable seafood. In the mornings, local fishermen showcase their catches.
The adjacent waterfront restaurants offer a unique dining experience and is a must do when exploring this part of Cambodia. This is the best place to get affordable, delicious fresh crab.
The next place to visit in Cambodia on our list is Ta Phrom, a place where Mother Nature is taking back her rightful spot. You might recognize this ancient ruin from the Tomb Raider Movie.
The temple’s serpentine roots and towering trees engulf the stone structures, creating an ethereal and haunting ambiance. As sunlight filters through the canopy, you’re transported into a scene straight from an archaeological fantasy.
Cambodia is a small country and you can cover a lot of ground in a week, especially if you have someone work out the transportation, accommodations and logistics for you.
Going on a group tour through Cambodia is a great way to see the highlights, meet a group of like minded travelers and experience the culture of Cambodia.
📌 Here are a few great Cambodia Tours to check out:
Cambodia Travel Tips
- Sunscreen – This is my go to reef safe sunscreen I use daily.
- Make sure to apply Mosquito Spray if you don’t want to get eaten alive.
- Book your accommodations in advance if you are traveling here during high season.
- Get an eSIM for your phone to stay connected with a local high-speed data network while you travel.
- Tap water is not safe to drink in Cambodia (or most Southeast Asian countries for that matter).
- Travel Insurance – It’s very affordable when you consider the alternative.
Final Thoughts on These Places to Visit in Cambodia
Cambodia is a country that is visited often but most don’t see anything past Angkor Wat. From white sand beaches to sleepy fishing villages, there are some amazing places to visit in Cambodia.
Cambodia is a destination for the dreamer and wide eyed wanderer. If you found this article useful, let fellow travelers know in the comments below 👇.
Southeast Asia Travel Guides ↓
Planning a trip through Southeast Asia? Check out the travel guides below to help plan your travels through the region.