Cambodia is justly famous for its magnificent temples, but will soon be renowned for its abundant natural attractions and empty beaches. The tourist infrastructure in Cambodia has developed tremendously in recent years, including the opening of quality hotels and restaurants and the upgrading of roads and transport links, both within the country and to neighboring countries. Cambodia is more accessible today than at any time in the past three decades and a journey here is a journey to a land of timeless grace and charm
Bring two small photos and $25 US. You will get two forms to fill out on the airplane. On the form you must identify your visit as a tourist visit or a business visit. It's $20 for a one-month tourist visa, or $25 for a one-month working visa. The only difference is that the working visa can be renewed without leaving the country; so if you might stay more than a month, choose that one. There has been no requirement to prove you are working for anyone. Tell the truth about your job, especially if you are not a human rights worker or similar troublemaker. Actually they don't seem to care.
After you land you will walk into the terminal, if you are prudent, and join a crowd of people at the visa counter. They will ask you for your passport and your forms. They will ask you for the photos as well. If you don’t have your photos with you, don't worry, they can take photos of you right there then just hand your passport over, and move down to the other end of the counter to pick it up and pay the fee.
Keep in mind that if you overstay your visa, you will be charged $3 for each day you overstayed. You pay when you leave; it's hassle-free.
International Flights: 25 USD per person from Phnom Penh and Siem Reap
Domestic Flights: 5 USD from all airports
Business hours & local time
Offices are usually open from Monday to Friday from 07:30 or 08:00 until 17:00 or 18:00 and often close for lunch between 12:00 and 14:00. Shops open early and close any time between 18:00 and 22:00. Most shops are open 7 days a week. Local time is Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) plus seven hours
Comfortable lightweight clothing in natural fabrics such as cotton is most suitable for traveling in , , , and . The dress code is casual as in most parts of the tropics but it is advisable to cover arms and legs in the evenings against biting insects. A lightweight raincoat is a good idea in the rainy season. During the winter months warm clothing is needed for visiting the north of, , and . Visitors to Buddhist countries should not wear shorts, short skirts or other skimpy clothing when visiting religious buildings and shoes should be removed before entering a private home.
All urban areas have minimum electricity (220 volts).
Rice and fish are the staple diet for most Cambodians. Local specialties include curries, a variety of soups, and traditional beef, pork and poultry dishes. Fresh seafood is also available. Chinese and Vietnamese cuisines are also common to Cambodia, as is a variety of western cuisine that can be found in abundance in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap.
No vaccinations are required except for yellow fever if you are coming from an area where the disease is present. However visitors should be inoculated against typhoid, cholera, hepatitis A & B, tetanus and polio. Malaria is present in most of the region and it is advisable to take precautions especially if travelling off the beaten track. It is essential to purchase your own travel insurance covering air evacuation before traveling. Please kindly visit our Travel Insurance for being instructed.
Hours Of Business
Offices are usually open from Monday to Friday from 07:30 or 08:00 until17:00 or 18:00 and often close for lunch between12:00 and 14:00. Shops open early and close any time between 18:00 and22:00. Most shops are open 7 days a week
There are now two international gateways to the Kingdom of Cambodia. Phnom Penh International Airport serves the capital of Phnom Penh and Siem Reap International Airport acts as a newly popular portal to the temples of Angkor. Both airports are being comprehensively upgraded.
Airlines currently servicing Cambodia include local carriers PMT Air and Siem Reap Airways, as well as international carriers Thai Airways, Bangkok Airways, Silk Air, Malaysia Airlines, Dragon Air, Lao Aviation, Shanghai Airlines, Eva Air and Vietnam Airlines. There are also several budget airlines, including Air Asia and Jetstar Asia.
Direct flights to Cambodia are available from Bangkok, Saigon, Hanoi, Vientiane, Hong Kong, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Guangzhou, Taipei, Shanghai and Seoul.
Cambodia's national language is called Khmer and unlike the other languages of the region is not a tonal language. The written script originated in southern India. English is the first language among young students, while French is spoken by older people.Outside the major centers of Phnom Penh and Siem Reap most people speak only Khmer.
The Riel is Cambodia's official currency (US $1 = 4000 riel), but US dollars are widely accepted. Most hotels accept international credit cards such as Visa and MasterCard and travelers checks can be easily cashed. It is advisable for guests to use a combination of cash and travelers cheques for convenience.
Population & People
Cambodia's population is more than 14 million and growing fast. Khmers make up 90 percent of the population, while a variety of other ethnic groups make up the rest. They include a diversity of peoples, Chinese, Vietnamese, Cham, and a number of tribal groups such as the Kreung, Tampuon, Kuoy and Jarai among them.
Public Holidays & Events
ü January 1 New Year's Day
ü January 7 Vietnamese Liberation Day
ü March 8 Women's Day
ü April Khmer New Year (three days in mid-April)
ü April 26 Visak Bochea Day
ü April 30 Royal Ploughing Ceremony
ü May 1 Labour Day
ü June1 Children's Day
ü June 18 Queen's Birthday
ü September 24 Constitution Day
ü October 6-7 Pchoum Benh's Day
ü October 23 Paris Peace Accords
ü November1 King Sihanouk's Birthday
ü November9 Independence Day
ü November Water Festival (three days in mid-November)
ü December10 Human Rights Day
Most hotels now have IDD phones in rooms and it is possible to send faxes from hotels and post offices although be warned these services are expensive in all four countries. Away from the major cities it may not always be possible to make international calls. Internet cafes are becoming popular in the major cities in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos (not yet in Myanmar) and many travelers now prefer to keep in touch by e-mail. Postcards can be bought at all the main tourist sites and stamps are available from post offices and some hotel reception desks. It is not permitted to bring mobile phones into Myanmar. Even if they are not connectable in Myanmar to an international network such as GSM, they will be confiscated upon arrival at Yangon International Airport and released only upon departure. A few hotels in Yangon have an e-mail service, however, it is not possible to connect to the Internet and consult your own e-mail account
Cambodia's official religion is Theravada Buddhism. It was introduced in Cambodia in the 12th century. It is enhanced by traditional animist beliefs and Brahmanist practices long imported from India to form a very Cambodian religious system. There are also 500,000 Muslims, mostly of Cham origins. Buddhism was reinstated as the national religion in the late 1980s having been banned, like all religions, under the reign of the Khmer Rouges. Nearly 95% of the populations today are Buddhists with the remainder made up of Catholics, Muslims and Cao Dai followers.
Traveling in Cambodia is generally very safe. Incidents of petty theft and bag snatching are more widespread in Phnom Penh. Elsewhere in the country these events are almost unheard of. Most hotels have either a safety deposit box at the reception desk or in the rooms, or both. Just to be on the safe side when traveling anywhere in the country you should exercise common sense. The other concern often voiced is that of unexploded landmines. It is advisable not to stray from paths in remote areas and have a local guide with you at such times.
Cambodia offers a wide range of handicrafts, such as beautiful silverware, pottery and jewelry. Religious themes and scenes of daily life feature strongly in oil paintings and intricate carvings made from sandstone, marble and some of Cambodia's tropical hardwoods. Perhaps most attractive to visitors are the wide range of traditional silk and cotton cloths which can be made into fine clothing by local tailors at a low cost. In true Asian tradition, open marketplaces are an integral part of Cambodian life. These markets sell everything from mainstream and exotic foods, clothes and electrical appliances, to hundreds of krama, the multi-purpose scarf worn by many Cambodians. Even for non-shoppers, the markets offer a fascinating glimpse of Cambodian daily life and culture
Tipping for good service is not expected but is always appreciated in these developing nations. It is customary, though not compulsory, to tip tour guides and drivers at the end of a tour. Hotel and station porters should also be tipped a small amount for their troubles.
Travel insurance is not included in all of our tours/service. We highly recommend you purchase your own one including air evacuation in your country before traveling.
One-month tourist visas are issued upon arrival at international airports, costing US $20. A valid passport and one passport photograph is required.
It is not advisable to drink tap water in Cambodia but bottled mineral water is safe and available everywhere. Ice in drinks is generally OK in good standard hotels and restaurants but it is best to avoid it on street stalls or in country areas.
Cambodia has two monsoons, the southwest monsoon from May to October brings heavy rains and the northwest monsoon from November to April spreads dry weather throughout the country. Temperatures vary from around 24 oC-35 oC with the coolest period between November and January and the hottest from February to April
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