Corporate life has its benefits — it gives a steady paycheck, it provides perks and benefits, and can give one a sense of accomplishment. But corporate life is often very draining, and leaves many employees routinely burnt out. But while there are several ways to recover from burn-out, one of the most interesting can be to go on a cruise.
Taking a Cruise in Cambodia: What to Know
Although most people think of Europe or the Caribbean when planning their next cruise trip, there’s a lesser-known yet equally intriguing variant: Southeast Asia!
Indeed, the region has recently popped up on intrepid travelers’ radar thanks to the stunning pagodas, tropical nature, and unique mix of cultures — and what better way to see a country than taking a relaxing cruise?
One of the most popular countries in Asia to enjoy a cruise is none other than Cambodia. If you’re planning a trip to this ‘Kingdom of Wonder,’ don’t forget these important travel tips — and your Cambodia visa.
What to Know Before Taking a Cruise Through Cambodia
Before planning your once-in-a-lifetime adventure, it’s a good idea to do a little research and get the facts.
One of the most important travel tips — in regards to Cambodia or any other country — is to get the proper visa first.
Thankfully, Cambodia has a very simple and lax visa policy: nationals from nearly 200 countries are eligible to apply for the Cambodia electronic visa (also known as an eVisa). The list of eligible nationalities includes travelers from the European Union, Canada, Australia, Hong Kong, Japan, Turkey, and the United States, among others.
The process of obtaining a Cambodian eVisa takes less than 15 minutes and is done over the internet. Best of all, the Cambodia eVisa can be used for tourism, which includes cruises.
Types of Cruises in Cambodia
While South America may have the Amazon and Europe has the Danube, Asia has its own unique river: the Mekong!
This winding river is the twelfth-longest in the world and flows through six countries: China, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, and, of course, Cambodia. More than 60 million locals travel, work, and live along the Mekong, making it the most important river in the region.
There are many different ways to cruise along the Mekong, whether it’s a leisurely two-week cruise from the source to the delta, or a compact three- or four-day journey.
Travelers who have a tight itinerary shouldn’t worry, as there are even some companies that offer quick one-day cruises.
Likewise, there is sure to be a Cambodian cruise to suit your needs, whether it’s a luxury journey with magnificent amenities (such as an infinity pool, rich interiors, and bespoke service) or a practical cruise with adventurous expeditions and intrepid fellow travelers.
What to See in Cambodia
If your Cambodian cruise has a stopover at one of the country’s two main ports of call — Sihanoukville or Phnom Penh — be sure to take a few hours and visit some of the country’s biggest attractions:
The Angkor Wat temple complex is the main pride of Cambodia. Built in the early 12th century, the complex is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List as it has both historical and architectural value.
This sprawling complex — the largest religious complex in the world — was built during the Khmer Empire and perfectly shows the architecture of such ancient civilizations.
Angkor Wat is truly amazing and a must-visit: the whole territory is surrounded by a moat filled with water and there are only two ways to enter the territory.
Especially worth paying attention to is the temple of Ta Prohm, which is just a short tuk tuk drive away from the Angkor Wat complex.
This temple truly embodies the power of nature and its strength over man-made structures, as the temple has been ‘taken over’ by vines and roots from nearby trees, creating a truly unique atmosphere. The site has been the background for many films and video games, including Lara Croft: Tomb Raider.
The National Museum of Cambodia
The National Museum of Cambodia is a must-visit for every traveler interested in learning about Cambodia.
The museum is located in a jaw-dropping building influenced by traditional Khmer architecture.
The museum has an incredible collection of various historical artifacts from different eras of the country’s history, including sculptures, ceramics, art, and much more.
The main ‘superstars’ of the museum include a huge royal wooden ship, a ceramic elephant vessel, and a magnificent sculpture of King Jayavarman VII from the 12th century.
After exploring the collections, be sure to relax in the stunningly beautiful inner garden of the museum.
The Royal Palace of Cambodia
The Royal Palace is one of the most luxurious buildings in Cambodia, and it’s no wonder why: the palace was built for the royal family! No detail has been spared, from the golden statues to the well-manicured lawns.
Visitors can appreciate the palace’s grandeur with a visit to the Throne Hall, which is decorated with a huge 59-meter spire tower. Other interesting rooms include the Napoleon Room (which used to be a reception hall) and the Chan Chhaya pavilion (used for receiving guests and dance performances).