Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Phnom Penh - Cambodia

PHNOM PENH is the capital and largest city of Cambodia. Located on the banks of the Mekong River, Phnom Penh has been the national capital since the French colonized Cambodia, and has grown to become the nation's center of economic and industrial activities, as well as the center of security, politics, economics, cultural heritage, and diplomacy of Cambodia.

Once known as the “Pearl of Asia”, it was considered one of the loveliest French-built cities in Indochina in the 1920s. Phnom Penh, along with Siem Reap and Sihanoukville, are significant global and domestic tourist destinations for Cambodia. Founded in 1434, the city is noted for its beautiful and historical architecture and attractions. There are a number of surviving French colonial buildings scattered along the grand boulevards.

Situated on the banks of the Tonlé Sap, Mekong and Bassac rivers, the Phnom Penh metropolitan area is home to more than 2 million of Cambodia’s population of over 14 million. The city is the wealthiest and most populous city in Cambodia and is home to the country’s political hub. - Wiki

We start our tour in late afternoon, we board a local boat for sunset cruise on the river. we sat off on the Tonle Sap River which famously direction each yearacting as the world's largest natural flood barrier for Mekong river. We cruise past the Royal Palace compound and arround Chrouy Changvar Peninsular on to mighty Mekong River.

...And enjoy Aspara Dance show (Khmer classical dance) and night scenery while having our dinner at Bopha Phnom Penh restaurant.


Afterwards, see the splendor of Cambodia's royal heritage by visiting the ROYAL PALACE, still the official residence of King Norodom Sihamoi, the adjacent SILVER PAGODA, also known as the Pagoda of the Emerald Buddha, and the elegant NATIONAL MUSEUM, which contains a comprehensive collection of Khmer art.

The 'Silver Pagoda'

The 'Silver Pagoda' sits next to the Royal Palace, separated by a walled walkway, but within the same larger walled compound. The Silver Pagoda's proper name is Wat Preah Keo Morokat, which means 'The Temple of the Emerald Buddha,' but has received the common moniker 'Silver Pagoda' after the solid silver floor tiles that adorn the temple building. The pagoda compound as a whole contains several structures and gardens, the primary building being the temple Wat Preah Keo Morokat and other structures including a library, various stupas, shrines, monuments, minor buildings and the galleries of the Reamker.

Wat Preah Keo Morokat is unique in several ways. It is the pagoda where the King meets with monks to listen to their sermons and where some Royal ceremonies are performed. It houses a collection of priceless Buddhist and historical objects including the 'Emerald Buddha.' And, unlike most pagodas, no monks live at the pagoda. The temple building, library and Reamker galleries were first constructed between 1892 and 1902 under King Norodom. The equestrian statue of King Norodom was set in place in 1892. Other structures such as the stupas of King Ang Doung Stupa King Norodom (1908), the Kantha Bopha memorial sanctuary (1960) and others were added later. The temple received major reconstruction in 1962 and further renovations 1985-1987, particularly to the Reamker fresco murals. Many of the temple treasures were looted during by the Khmer Rouge 1975-1979, but fortunately the Khmer Rouge chose to keep much of the collection intact for propaganda purposes.

Stupa of HM King Norodom containing the ashes of the King Norodom (1834-1904). Constructed in 1908..

Stupa Of Princess Kantha Bopha

Stupa of Princess Kantha Bopha The memorial sanctuary of the beloved daughter of the former King Sihanouk. Princess Kantha Bopha passed in 1952 at the age of four, succumbing to leukemia. The stupa was built in 1960.

Other activities is enjoying shopping at Factory outlets , Central Market and Russian Market (Toul Tom Pong Market) the only place you can get branded textile from factory and various selection of quality handicrafts and silk as well as original artistic creation -painting ,sprints, carvings and especially jewellary and Cambodia stone with reasonable prices


People Of Phnom Penh

Cambodian people and culture are great. They do a lot of their living outdoors.
It is very interesting and much fun to watch the people selling and buying, taking a walk and enjoying the mild air and the golden sun of the evening.