Cambodia:10 reasons to visit Nam Nguyen Reporting for the Web
Angkor Wat sunrise Photo source: http://bit.ly/l5uNuI 1. Angkor Wat : is a temple complex at Siem Reap, Cambodia, the modern name, Angkor Wat means "City Temple" was built for the king Suryavarman II in the early 12th century. It is the world's largest religious building. Hands-down Southeast Asia's most magnificent archaeological treasure Angkor Wat has become a symbol of Cambodia, appearing on its national flag, and it is the country's prime attraction for visitors.
Buddhist monks in front of Angkor Wat Photo source: http://bit.ly/j3V34M 2. Religion: As in neighboring Thailand, Laos, and Vietnam, Buddhism is the predominant religion in Cambodia. But animism and superstition continue to play strong roles in Khmer culture and society. Many people believe in powerful neak ta. Neak Ta followers believe in sacred soil and sacred spirits. It remains the dominant belief of the hill tribes.
Photo source: http://blog.worldfriends.tv “Killing Field” Photo Source:http://bit.ly/iK1LOw 3. History: An estimated 1.7 million Cambodians died by Khmer Rouge. Toul Sleng Genocide Museum(also known as S21), ironically a former school, located in a quiet Phnom Penh suburb, this was the infamous Khmer Rouge prison / torture centre. 'Killing Fields'of Choeung Ek where Toul Sleng prisoners were forcibly marched and then executed.
Chaul Chnam Thmey Festival Photo source: http://bit.ly/jEHywR: 4.Festivals: There are many festivals in Cambodia that show special Cambodian culture and customs. Bon Om Tuk (The Cambodia Water Festival, November 23) is the largest festival and an amazing sight to behold. It is truly a national event, many villagers throughout the country have spent almost a full year preparing their villages boat – elaborately and brightly decorated dug out canoes with large eyes on the prows to ward off evil spirits. The origins of the Water Festival dates back to the powerful navy of King Jayavarman II, the 9th century founder of the great Angkorian Empire, and the main purpose is to make the god of the river happy so he will provide many fish and the rice crop will be plentiful. Bon Om Tuk Festival Photo Source: http://bit.ly/9taonR
Questions & Answers 5. Food: Along the Gulf of Thailand lie some of Southeast Asia's most unspoiled beaches and unpolluted (for now) waters. You'll eat some of the best seafood of your life here. Photo Source: http://bit.ly/koVlQV
6. Apsara: one of the most popular Cambodian classical dance pieces, described as 'dance-drama' in that the dances are not merely dance but are also meant to convey a story or message. Apsara is just one character portrayed by these highly skilled dancers. Apsaras are beautiful, supernatural women. They are youthful and elegant, and proficient in the art of dancing. Fairy Dance- Apsara Photo source: http://bit.ly/lwfxtb
Tonle Sap village kid Photo Source: http://bit.ly/b8BSBb 7. Floating villages: On the Tonle Saplake, the largest lake in South East Asia where the traditional floating village of Chong Khneasand witness the residents going about their daily life. It is quite a sight seeing a whole bamboo village complete with homes, gas stations, schools, hair dressers, and even karaoke bars floating on a lake.
8.Bamboo Train: Enterprising locals in Battambang, the bamboo train in Cambodia is one of the world's all-time classic rail journeys. It’s made from recycled tank wheels, small motorcycle engines and lashings of bamboo. Cambodia’s main train service only runs four times a month and derailments are common. ‘Norries’ are little more than bamboo slabs with wheels and run on the state-built track. With a top speed of 50 km per hour, the norry network is far superior to the train. As one driver explains; “People like these because they’re fast and on time”. (Source: http://bit.ly/jnXT0 Photo source:http://bit.ly/lIYUeH)
9. Philanthropy: Work with street kids, give blood, buy a cookie to support the arts—if you're looking to do good while you travel, you'll find plenty of interesting opportunities here. (Photographs: Nam Nguyen)
Cambodian smiles Photo source :http://bit.ly/mvJGJn 10.Cambodians: With a population of over 14.8 million, Cambodia is the 65th most populous country in the world. However, one of the best features of Cambodian culture is the warmth of the Cambodian people. They are super charming and super friendly.