Phnom Penh, once known as the ‘Pearl of Asia’, is the capital and largest city of Cambodia. It is now an economic, commercial, cultural and tourist center.Tourists can experience a fresh wave of Cambodian hospitality in this city of more than 2 million people. Cambodians are by nature cordial and friendly. Here in the capital city, people are more enterprising. The city is now a center of diverse economic and urban development.
Phnom Penh is now architecturally developed with several new high rise buildings including a 30 storey business centre. More high-rise buildings are being developed. Hotels catering to every level of desire have also mushroomed all over the city.
The riverfront is lined by chic pubs, bistros and boutique hotels. Smart little silk boutiques and galleries dot the side streets. A building arts scene and a heady dusk-to-dawn nightlife; such are what this pearl has now to offer.
Around Phnom Penh
There are many places to visit when in Phnom Penh. Visitors can visit the Royal Palace and the Silver Pagoda located just next to the palace grounds, then stroll down about l00m to visit the National Museum. After which, walk along Sothearos Boulevard to patronise some neat ‘antique’ shops that sell silver trays, betel boxes, belts, ancient coins, silver or wooden statuettes and famed marble carvings from the province of Pursat.
It is pleasant to take leisurely strolls around Phnom Penh, browse the shops and take in the city. Boulevards peppered by beautiful colonial buildings and a park-like riverfront with cafes and restaurants together make this a beautiful city to visit. The art galleries on Street 178 between the National Museum and Wat Sarawan are a real treat.
The ‘Phsar Toul Tum Poung’ or The Russian Market as its most commonly known, offers antique pieces and the opportunity to buy factory over-run designer clothes at huge discounted prices. For the visitor who prefers air-conditioned comfort, there are a few modern shopping complexes; the Sorya Shopping Centre, Sovanna Centre and the City Mall.