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Destination Guide: Phnom Penh

Gilded palaces, elegant colonial architecture and riverfront walks
Walk shoulder-to-shoulder with saffron-robed monks through street markets thronging with hawkers. Escape Phnom Penh’s crowds in peaceful Buddhist temples where polished gold pagodas glint through smoky trails of incense. Across Cambodia, the Temples of Angkor have been reclaimed from the jungle.

Food and Drink

Feast on French victuals and Khmer traditions. Stroll up riverfront walkways to exclusive restaurants and enjoy French bread with pâté, and sweet pastries. Or sample fresh fish caught in the Mekong River cooked in citrus marinades and fresh herbs. Enjoy fragrant Cambodian Khmer dishes at restaurants on lively Street 278. If you are feeling adventurous, delve into vats of deep-fried locusts freshly cooked in Phnom Penh’s well-lit night markets.

Sightseeing and relaxation

Discover ancient pagodas and the darker side of Phnom Penh’s past. Visit the Royal Palace and dazzling Silver Padoga for a glimpse of what life was like before the Khmer Rouge regime. Come face-to-face with Cambodia’s horrific past in Tuol Sleng. Thousands of the prison’s torture victims were buried in nearby Choeung Ek where a pagoda of skulls forms a vivid memorial.

Shopping

Browse refined boutiques and bustling markets. Invest in luxury silks, custom furniture and Cambodian arts in the galleries and boutiques along Street 240. Peruse the stalls beneath the Art Deco dome of the Phnom Penh Central Market for T-shirts, flowers and bootleg copies of the latest books.

Nightlife and Entertainment

Visit the riverfront for tranquil evenings on land and afloat. As night falls the path lining the point where the Mekong River meets Tonlé Sap comes alive with relaxed strollers. Imitate journalists and diplomats with a Martini at the Foreign Correspondents Club and then dine aboard a brightly-lit boat as you cruise past pagodas and Phnom Penh’s floating villages.