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Places to visit in Phnom Penh

Phnom Penh City

Phnom Penh City
travelers, in this post I will describe about Phnom Penh, the capital city of
Cambodia. Phnom Penh City is located at the confluence of three great rivers,
also known as “CHAKTOMOUK” meaning FOUR FACES. Phnom Penh is a city of about
2.5 to 3 million people. With millions of population this city becomes commercial,
economic, political hub, and also travel destination. Well, what you should do
and visit in Phnom Penh? The main places for sightseeing in Phnom Penh are
suggested for travelers to visit such as:
– Royal
– Wat

National Museum

Toul Sleng Genocide Museum

Choeung Ek Killing Fields

Phsar Tmei (Central Market)/Toul Toumpong Market (Russian Market)
1-Royal Palace
Royal Palace 

Royal Palace was built in 1813 situated in front of
The Tonle sap River-Now is opened for tourists. The palace grounds contain several
buildings, the Throne Hall of Prasat Dhevea Vinichhay which is used for the
coronation of kings, official receptions and traditional ceremonies, the Chan
Chhaya pavilion is a venue for dance performance; the king’s official residence
called the Khemarin and the spectacular Silver Pagoda. The Throne Hall is the
first building you’ll come to after entering into the Royal Palace complex. The
Khmer name for the Throne Hall is Preah Thineang Dhevea Vinnichayyeaah -meaning
the “Sacred Seat of Judgement”. Another attractivebuilding is Silver
Pagoda. This pagoda is worth exploring. It owes it to name 5.000 silver tiles
weighing 1kgeach which cover the entire floor. In front of the Dias stands a
life-size Buddha made of a solid gold and weighs 75kg. it is decked with
precious gems including diamond, the largest of which is 25 carats. Also on display at the sides are the
coronation apparel and numerous miniatures Buddha in gold and silver.

2-Wat Phnom

Wat Phnom, The Heart of Phnom Penh
Wat Phnom is set up on top of a manmade hill about 27m
height. This hill was erected in 1373 to house four statues of Buddha deposited
here by the water of the Mekong River and discovered by a woman named “PENH” .The
main entrance to Wat Phnom is via the grand eastern staircase, which is guarded
by lions and naga balustrades.

Nowaday, many people come here to pray for good luck
and success in school exams or business affairs. When a petitioner’s wish
is granted, he or she returns to make the offering (such as a garland of
jasmine flowers or bananas, of which the spirits are said to be especially
fond) promised when the request was made.

3-National Museum 

National Museum

The National Museum was built 1917 located in the central of Phnom Penh
city, next the Royal Palace. The main activities of the National Museum of
Cambodia include exhibiting, safeguarding and promoting understanding of
Cambodia’s cultural and artistic treasures. Keeping objects safe and working to
ensure the repatriation of pieces stolen from Cambodia are important aspects of
the museum’s work; particularly as looting and illicit exports of cultural
material are a continuing concern. In addition, the Museum strives to engage
its visitors through its exhibitions and to fulfill its role as an integral
part of the community. The Museum believes that Cambodia’s cultural heritage is
of great value and can provide a source of pride and identity to the Cambodian
people who have lost so much in recent decades. The availability of
multilingual Museum tour guides and Publications, as well as the Museum’s
public library, all serve to increase the accessibility of the collection both
for local and international visitors.

Opening hours are
from 8.00am until 5.00pm daily.

Admission costs
are $3 for foreign visitors, 500 riels for
Cambodians. Children and school groups are free

Guided tours can
be arranged for individuals or groups at the museum entrance. Tours are
available in Khmer, English, French and Japanese. A one hour group tour costs $3

4- Toul Sleng Genocide Museum

Toul Sleng Prison 21 or S-21

Toul Sleng Genocide Museum is located in Phnom Penh
city. This site is a former Toul Svay Prey high school was taken over by The
Khmer Rouge’s (Pol Pot) security force and turned into security prison 21 or
S-21 in 1975. The Khmer Rouge renamed the complex “Security Prison
21” (S-21) and construction began to adapt the prison to the inmates: the
buildings were enclosed in electrified barbed wire, the classrooms converted
into tiny prison and torture chambers, and all windows were covered with iron
bars and barbed wire to prevent escapes.

From 1975 to 1979, an estimated 17,000 people were
imprisoned at Tuol Sleng (some estimates suggest a number as high as 20,000,
although the real number is unknown). At any one time, the prison held between
1,000-1,500 prisoners. They were repeatedly tortured and coerced into naming
family members and close associates, who were in turn arrested, tortured and
killed. In the early months of S-21’s existence, most of the victims were from
the previous Lon Nol regime and included soldiers, government officials, as
well as academics, doctors, teachers, students, factory workers, monks,
engineers, etc. Later, the party leadership’s paranoia turned on its own ranks
and purges throughout the country saw thousands of party activists and their
families brought to Tuol Sleng and murdered. Those arrested included some of
the highest ranking communist politicians such as Khoy Thoun, Vorn Vet and Hu
Nim. Although the official reason for their arrest was “espionage,”
these men may have been viewed by Khmer Rouge leader Pol Pot as potential
leaders of a coup against him. Prisoners’ families were often brought en masse
to be interrogated and later murdered at the Choeung Ek extermination center.

In 1979, the prison was uncovered by the invading Vietnamese army. In
1980, the prison was reopened by the government of the People’s Republic of
Kampuchea as a historical museum memorializing the actions of the Khmer Rouge

The museum is open to the public, and receives an average of 500 visitors every

5- Choeung Ek-The Killing Fields

Choeung Ek, Mass Grave

The Killing Fields is about 14km out of Phnom Penh city.
Between 1975-1978 about 17,000 men, women, children, and infants also including
9 foreigners, detained in S-21 were transported to the extermination to death
to avoid wasting bullets. The remains of 8985 people, many of worm are bound
and blindfolded, were exhumed in 1980 from mass graves in this one time long an
orchard; 43 of the 129 communal glares here have been left untouched. Fragment
of Human bone and bits of lots are scattered around the disinterred pits. Over
8000 skulls, arranged by sex, are visible behind the clear glass panels of the
memorial Stupa, which was erected in 1988.

6- Phsar Tmei (Central Market)/Toul Toumpong Market (Russian Market)

Central Market or Phsar Tmei

Central Market was constructed in 1937 with four wings filled with
shops selling gold and silver jewelry, antique coins, fake name-brand watches
and other such items. Around the main buildings are stalls offering Krama
(checked scarves) stationery, household items, cloth, flowers and second hand
cloths, usually from Europe and the US. For photographs, the fresh food section
affords a lot of opportunities. There are a host of good value food stalls on
the structure’s western side. Central Market is undoubtedly the best of Phnom
Penh’s markets for browsing. It is the cleanest and has the widest range of
products for sale. Opening house is from early morning until early evening.

– Russian Market is the best place in town for souvenir shopping,
having a large range of real and fake antiquities. Items for sale include
miniature Buddha, silk, silver jewelry, gems, video and a host of other
goodies. It’s well worth popping in for a browse.

Source: Cambodia Today’s Hubpage
Categories: Travel
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