Luxury Cambodia Tours

Written by Helen Glenn Court
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As the country emerges from decades of war and isolation, luxury Cambodia tours are on the rise. It's no wonder, with the many ancient temples, rich culture, and French-era capital city that Cambodia has to offer. At the heart of its classical era, which flourished between the 9th and 14th centuries, are Angkor and the ruins of several vast temple complexes. Certainly luxury Cambodia tours are the best if not the only sensible way to travel this country and enjoy the riches of its ancient Khmer empire.

The capital city of Phnom Phen, established when the Thais defeated the Khmer in 1431 and destroyed the old capital of Angkor, still shows much of its old charm despite its tumultuous history. The colonial architecture of the French period is crumbling, but makes a scenic backdrop to a vital street life and redeveloped river front. Several temples--wat in Cambodian--are particularly interesting--Ounalam, the hillside Phnom, and the Lang Ka. The Silver Pagoda is especially notable for having survived, in large part, the ravages of the Communist Khmer Rouge in the 1970s and 1980s.

Angkor Wat, however, is the gem of luxury Cambodia tours. Still standing today are 100 or more surviving temples in the area of the old capital city. They're the remnants of what was once a series of complexes built over a couple hundred years by a succession of Khmer kings. Bayon, Ta Prohm, and Angkor Wat are the most spectacular.

Planning for Luxury Cambodia Tours

The monsoon season lasts from about June through November. The plus side to visiting Angkor Wat then is that the moats around the temples will be full and the jungle foliage lush and attractive. Humidity, however, is at its lowest and most bearable during December and January. Temperatures then are also cooler--running perhaps about 70° Fahrenheit--and the chance of rain minimal.

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