Phnom Penh, Cambodia – Sightseeing

[ 0 ] July 22, 2012 |

After a full and emotionally draining morning at the Genocide Museum and Killing Fields retracing the historical events that transpired under the reign of the Khmer Rouge, JB Alison and I were ready to cut loose a bit and move on to some of the more touristy sights.

National Museum

Our first stop was the National Museum. A beautiful red Khmer temple style building, the National Museum is the world largest repository of Khmer art and artifacts. After decades of looting, may of the statues found at various temple from all over Cambodia were replaced with concrete reproductions and the original stone sculptures housed here. While some of the pieces here are very impressive, the flow of the museum could use some work. As a novice to the history and importance of various Khmer periods, the museum totally failed to pull me into the story through its use of the artifacts it houses. After 45 minutes we were bored and decided to move on.

The Cambodian National Museum

Exterior of National Museum

Interior Corridor of the Cambodian National Museum in Phnom Penh

Interior Courtyard of National Museum

National Museum


Royal Palace 

Next up was the Royal Palace. Conveniently located next door to the National Museum, the Royal Palace is both the official residence of the King of Cambodia as well as home to most of the royal ceremonies conducted in Cambodia. Similar to Bangkok’s Grand Palace in terms of architecture, Cambodia’s Royal Palace complex even has its own “Emerald Buddha” which is located in the Silver Pagoda – aptly named because the floor is made entirely of square silver plates (which click really loud if you step on them with a little force – fun game).

The Throne Hall

Moonlight Pavilion

Silver Pagoda

Patio of the Silver Pagoda

Roof Line

Model of Angkor Wat

Closeup of Lotus Flower

Angkor Style Monument

Appalled by the slap dash finish to most of the buildings and complete lack of architectural attention to detail, the ever perfectionist JB started snapping photos of all the grating design blunders that seemed to be everywhere.

Slap Dash

Similar to the National Museum, we found the Royal Palace a bit boring as well (maybe a result of our exhausting morning), and started goofing around a little bit.

Buddha Buddy

I’m a Little Tea Pot

After being run off by security after sneaking a snapshot of the Royal Residence, we decided it was time to go.

The Royal Residence


Independence Monument

Built in 1958 to celebrate Cambodia’s freedom from French colonial rule in 1953, we decided to stop and take a few pictures in front of the Independence Monument.

Independence Monument


Central Market

Last but not least, we made a pit stop by Phnom Penh’s Central Market.  Built in 1937, this massive structure was the largest domed structure in Asia for 23 years after it was built. Now home to an endless array of street vendors and small shops, we did a little perusing, eventually finding some matching sunglasses and throwback Casio watches to top off our geek gear.

Central Market

Synchronize Your Watches



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Category: Blog, Cambodia, Destinations, Pat's Blog

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