A diverse country with the French grace of Indochina, Cambodia is becoming an increasingly popular destination in South-East Asia, sharing borders with Thailand, Vietnam, and Laos. Despite being one of the poorest countries in the region, Cambodia still has a lot to offer – from exotic tastes and gorgeous temples to untamed jungles. Its fascinating history from the era of the great empire has remained preserved around the city of Siem Reap, where the temple complex of Angkor Wat is among the most visited sites in the country. The capital, Phnom Penh, once nicknamed the “Pearl of Asia”, is home to traditional Khmer and French architecture. The stunning silver pagodas in the Royal Palace will fascinate every traveller who ventures there. History buffs should not miss the Genocide Museum, documenting the tyranny of the Khmer Rouge led by Pol Pot between 1975 and 1979. The war lasted five years, eight months, and twenty-five days. More than two million people perished during this cruel period, some of them dying of hunger or various illnesses, but also of exhaustion after working up to 16 hours a day in labour camps. Executions were no exception. The Khmer Rouge turned Cambodia into a huge extermination camp, going down in history as the worst genocide against one’s own nation, unprecedented in human history. After several days of adventures, the sandy beaches with crystal-clear water are the right place for relaxation.
Weather and location
Cambodia is characterised by dry and rainy seasons. The dry season lasts from October to April, caused by the dry, north-eastern monsoon with hot winds. The rainy season starts in May with the advance of the south-eastern monsoon, and the highest rainfall is in August and September. Average temperatures range from 24 °C in the colder months to 35 °C in the hottest, usually April, May, and June, when city hotels offer lower prices.