Travel is all about having new experiences within new cultures, alongside new people, whilst capturing new memories. Now, hopefully these will all occur in the shadow of some pretty mesmerising backdrops. Luckily for those of you that are Southeast Asia bound, the Cambodian sights will not leave you hanging.
Wherever you fall on the spectrum from, camera-shy to selfie-stick-fiend, don’t you worry yourself one little bit…
These 13 Cambodian sights are an absolute shoe-in for a hearty dose of ‘social recognition’ on whichever media platform you choose to share them on.
Rack up them likes… Max out those followers… Maybe even grab a few cheeky comments here or there…
The bottom line is, social media aside, these 13 Cambodian sights are all completely unique in their own way we hope you get the chance to experience each of them in the flesh.
Without further ado, let me introduce you to the 13 experiences that make up the Cambodian “sights of the round table”…
13 Cambodian Sights That Will Send Your Instagram Followers Insane
Some of these Cambodian sights will be recognizable from the more generic lists out there, like ‘Top 5 Places to Visit in Cambodia’ or ‘Fun Things To Do in Cambodia’. They’re staples, and it would be rude not to include them.
However, within this list there are also a couple of hidden gems that we’ve been teased out especially for your eyes (& your oh-so-lucky Instagram followers).
Here we go…
Cambodian Sight #1: Angkor Wat
Image courtesy of unesco
The first Cambodian sight you must see is a bleedingly obvious one. Arguably the most recognizable set of turrets in all of Asia. Of course, it’s the one and only Angkor Wat.
This visual enigma is steeped in a legacy that goes well beyond your imagination. It’s located a short journey from the Mad Monkey Hostel Siem Reap. If you’re lucky enough to swing by, be sure to get a snap for your travel scrapbook.
Word of warning…
The selfie-stick-wielding fiends will be out in force here! Be sure to get down as early as you can to squeeze all the magic you can out of this Cambodian sight. For our full tips on how to beat the crowds and savour the sights, check out our Angkor Wat Temples Guide for Backpackers.
Cambodian Sight #2: Bokor Hill Station
From one massive abandoned complex to another. Perched eerily on top of a hill, just a short scooter ride from the Mad Monkey Hostel Kampot, is the Bokor Hill Station.
Once, this was an elegant mountaintop resort for the French colonists. It was abandoned and left to waste during the 1970s genocide. All that remains are the uninhabited remains, in all their crumbling glory.
The building in the photo above is the centre piece of the site: an old casino. The front face of the building is well worth a snap, as are the vista views from the balconies inside. Just don’t expect anyone to deal you into a round of black jack – the interior is ghostly empty.
Cambodian Sight #3: Irrawaddy Dolphins
Image courtesy of world wildlife fund
Breaking the mould within the dolphin scene, the Irrawaddy Dolphins are seemingly pioneering the aquatic world of nose jobs.
These dolphins only exist in small populations off the coast of Southeast Asia – AND in the Mekong River along the banks of the charming Cambodian town Kratie. These waters are a mecca for these slippery fellows.
Whether you want to saddle up on the shoreline for a snap, or practice your butterfly stroke alongside them, an epic photo is in your future!
Cambodian Sight #4: Kompong Phluck Floating Village
A world away from the hustle and bustle of the streets of Siem Reap (yet only a few kilometres as the crow flies), you’ll find an array of incredible floating villages.
The most famous of these is Kompong Phluck. This aquatic dwelling is hoisted up above the vibrant waters of Tonle Sap Lake.
Not only does this village provide endless photographic opportunities, it also offers insight into one of the most unique ways of life that the man-made world`has to offer.
Cambodian Sight #5: Ta Prohm
Image courtesy of triphobo
Hey ho, let’s go. We’ve got another beauty that’s just outside of Siem Reap. Like #1 on this list, this entry is another small (yet glorious) piece of the 400km squared Angkor Archeological Park.
Ta Prohm is the temple that was made famous by Angelina Jolie’s skimpy shorts and the Tomb Raider blockbuster film. Have a look at our Tomb Raider Temple Guide for all the details you need on how and when to visit.
Here’s your chance to recreate that movie magic. Throw on your skimpiest attire (actually don’t, because it’s hugely disrespectful on this religious site) and stand underneath the beautiful temple that has been intricately swallowed by the surrounding treeline. Record likes guaranteed, or your money back.
Cambodian Sight #6: Bou Sra Waterfall
Image courtesy of far east vacation
Forget the lyrical malarkey that TLC came out with. When you’re in Cambodia, you’ve got every right to make sure you ‘DO Go Chasing Waterfalls’. Especially when they’re as bountiful as Bou Sra Waterfall.
This supercharged slip ‘n slide is located in the Mondulkiri Province and as you can see from the photo above, it’s a hot spot for bathers on their best Instagramming behaviours.
For that extra slice of visual magic, time your arrival with sunset to guarantee that extra glimmer of glowing goodness.
Cambodian Sight #7: Kerfuffle
Right, so we’re just over the halfway mark. It’s about time we delved into our box of tricks to unveil this extra special treat. Not only is this a fairy tale well worth snapping, but it’s also one of the greatest parties in the country.
Kerfuffle is a secret jungle shindig that takes place a short ride into the wilderness from Sihanoukville. Banging beats, free spirited individuals, and a fiesta that will go down in your history books.
To discover exactly where and when this magic happens, get the full inside scoop from our ‘Sihanoukville Nightlife Guide‘.
Cambodian Sight #8: The Royal Palace
Image courtesy of phnom penh cambodia
Certainly the belle of the ball when it comes to the Phnom Penh architectural scene. The Royal Palace is a glorious Cambodian sight dressed up in yellow and blue.
This stunner was built in the 1860s and serves as the royal residence of the king of Cambodia, only a few regal strides away from the Mad Monkey Hostel Phnom Penh.
Word of warning…
If you’re planning a visit (which you darn well should be), be sure to wear shorts that extend beyond the knee and an upper decker that extends beyond the elbows. Otherwise you’ll have your Instagrammable magic carpet immediately pulled from underneath you.
Cambodian Sight #9: Yeak Laom Volcanic Lake
Image courtesy of places city
Whether it’s truly volcanic or it’s the remains of a footprint from a prehistoric, super-sized porcupine is still yet to be determined.
Either way, this lake is a glorious coming together of land and water. It forms an almost-perfect circle that’s embedded in a thick circumference of forest.
The lake is located about 5km southeast of Banlung and is great spot for swimming, and of course a chance to snap a couple of winners (especially if you’ve got a drone handy!).
Cambodian Sight #10: Koh Rong Samloem
This isn’t just one Cambodian sight, but a tropical island made up of visual humdingers that will leave your jaw scraping along the sand in amazement.
Koh Rong Samloem is a tiny paradise that’s located just off the coast of Sihanoukville. An experiential treasure hunter’s dream come true.
Beach parties, fire shows, bioluminescent plankton, and a whole lot more await all those who take the short boat journey across to this nirvana.
Whilst you’re here, come and say aloha to us at Mad Monkey Hostel Koh Rong Samloem.
Cambodian Sight #11: Koh Ker
Koh Kher has historically been know as one Cambodia’s most remote and inaccessible temples, banished to the depths of the jungle, but the opening of a new road has opened up endless possibilities for the visually adventurous.
Koh Ker is within a day trip’s distance from Siem Reap, and boasts a whole host of glorious temples that are awaiting your lenses.
The most striking of these is Prasat Thom (in the photo above), which was constructed somewhere between 928 and 944 AD. If heights don’t get the better of you, climb to the top for a mesmerizing panoramic view.
Cambodian Sight #12: Popokvil Waterfall
Image courtesy of sokha hotels
The second in the installment of today’s waterfall selections: the glorious Popokvil Waterfall, ladies and gentlemen. Just like the Hill Station we mentioned earlier, this Cambodian sight is located on Bokor Hill just outside of Kampot.
That’s two photographic gems killed with one stone!
Into the wilderness you go…
Because many of the bridges have worn away in recent years you’re going to have to go gung ho with your makeshift machete to hack your way through to this aquatic wonder.
Cambodian Sight #13: Syn Absinthe Distillery
Last, but certainly not least. In fact it’s probably right at the other end of the spectrum…
If you’ve managed to snap away at all the previous 12 spots you deserve a hearty alcoholic toast to both you and your camera. And there’s nothing heartier than a dance with the green fairy, our good friend Absinthe.
Deep in the jungle on the island of Koh Ta Kiev is one of the most unsuspecting occurrences you could imagine. The Syn Absinthe Distillery.
Discover how to get there and the alcohol magic that’s awaiting you in ‘Cambodia’s Ultimate Island Hopping Guide‘.
More Articles On The Best Cambodian Sights
If our list has whet your visual palate and you’re craving some more… Check out these other pieces on the best sights and attractions in Cambodia! We only recommend bloggers we read often and love:
- How To Take Amazing Travel Photos In Cambodia by Wendy Wu
- The Best Of Cambodia In 25 Instagram Photos by Culture Trip
- Angkor Wat Photography Tips by Alex In Wanderland
- Best Photography Locations In Cambodia by Location Scout
Best Cambodian Sights 2017 – How Did We Do?
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