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Phnom Penh

Phnom Penh is the capital, wealthiest and the largest city of the Kingdom of Cambodia. Its located at the confluence of the Mekong and the Tonle Sap rivers. The capital city of Cambodia has a population of one million people. Phnom Penh is a great introduction to Cambodia since its almost as dirty, dusty and chaotic as the rest of the country.

Travelers to Phnom Penh / Cambodia must understand, even for those who visited other Asian countries that there will be a culture shock. Forget about convenient stores, 7-11′s or a supermarket near your guest house. Once arrived in at the airport, a taxi ride in town with the airport taxi service will cost you $9 US. Since large or international hotel chains are rare it’s most convenient staying at a guesthouse. Cambodia does not seem to have many laws, for example it’s local gun range where tourists can fire a large variety of guns isn’t further than a few minutes from the Phnom Penh International Airport landing strip.

Transportation within the city is widely available. Choose to travel by motorbike, rickshaw, tuk tuk or a regular car taxi. It’s recommended to hire a taxi driver by the day rather than per individual ride. Cambodian people are referred to as Khmer. Khmer people love to be outside therefore the city has several spacious parks and markets, one of the most famous parks is Wat Phnom referred by tourists as “monkey park” where, as you can guess monkey walk freely in city center. There’s also a boulevard which goes along the Mekong river with several small restaurants and bars where both local Khmer & European food can be ordered. A specialty being served here is Marijuana Pizza which can be ordered in three “sizes” named, happy, super happy and super super happy pizza.

For travelers that enjoy cultural and spiritual Phnom Penh offers several museums, for example the National Museum of Cambodia, which is the country’s leading historical and archaeological museum. The museums houses the world’s largest collection of Khmer art, including ceramic, bronzes, sculpture and ethnograhpic objects. In total the museum’s collection is greater than 14 thousand items, from prehistoric times and periods before, during and after the Khmer Empire, swhich was strechted from Thailand, across today’s Cambodia, until southern Vietnam.

Travelers to Phnom Penh need a valid passport and visa. American Citizens will receive a visa upon arrival valid for 30 days in exchange for $20.00 US. There’s also an exit fee of $25.00 US when leaving the country. As petty theft and crime are common.