Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Tourists flock to beaches, temples

Tourists flock to beaches, temples

Tourists flock to beaches, temples

While the streets of Phnom Penh were quiet this holiday period after the Water Festival was cancelled, numbers swelled in the provinces as tourists flocked to Cambodia’s temples and beaches, provincial officials said yesterday.

Chhoeuy Chhorn, director of the Siem Reap Provincial Tourism Department, said Angkor Wat received more than 63,000 visitors over the three-day national holiday, a 17 per cent increase compared to the same period last year.

While two days of small-scale boat racing in a Siem Reap commune attracted some tourists, most came to see the temples and “enjoy the night life on pub street,” according to Chhom.

Less than a week after the International Court of Justice clarified Cambodia’s sovereignty over the entire promontory that the 11th-century temple sits on, Preah Vihear temple attracted more than 400 visitors per day during the break. On any normal day the site receives about 100 people.

You Sovan, director of the Provincial Tourism Department in Preah Vihear, said the long weekend saw a “huge increase” in tourist arrivals.

“There are around 400 rooms available in Preah Vihear Province, and 80 to 90 per cent of hotel and guesthouses were full,” he said, adding that the majority of tourists were local.

Cambodia’s beaches too were a popular destination during the break.

Sihanoukville attracted more than 71,000 visitors during this year’s holiday, a 27 per cent increase to last year.

“Accommodation and food prices have slightly increased, but overall people enjoyed the holidays there,” Seng Kha, director of the Preah Sihanouk Provincial Tourism Department said.

Some 19,500 of close to 30,000 visitors coming to Kampot province during the three days went up to Bokor Mountain, according to figures from the provincial tourism department. The remaining headed to Kep and Nataya seaside destinations.

For the third time running the Water Festival was cancelled, this year due to nationwide floods that killed over one hundred people.

The last time the festival took place was in 2010, when over 300 people died tragically during a stampede on a suspension bridge connecting Diamond Island.

MOST VIEWED

  • Massive stingrays may live in Mekong’s deep pools

    US scientists have suggested that unexplored deep pools in the Mekong River in an area of Stung Treng could potentially be home to significant populations of giant freshwater stingrays, one of the world’s largest freshwater fish species. This comes as a fisherman hooked a 180

  • CCC team off on US business trip

    The Kingdom’s leading economists and private sector representatives have called on the US to renew its tax preferential status for Cambodian exports, as a Cambodia Chamber of Commerce (CCC) delegation departed for a weeklong business visit to the US, where they will meet with

  • PM takes time to meet, greet Cambodians living in the US

    After landing in the US ahead of the ASEAN-US Special Summit, Prime Minister Hun Sen was received by over 1,000 Cambodian-Americans including political analysts who welcomed him with greetings, fist bumps and selfies. Hun Sen also met with analyst Mak Hoeun, who had allegedly spoken ill

  • Khmer cinema classics back on big screen for free at WB Arena’s outdoor movies series

    On a recent Saturday evening at WB Arena, Bunsong was enjoying a tasty BBQ meal with his family after work on the long tables that had been arranged out in front of the restaurant as they watched a Khmer action movie on a big outdoor

  • PM heads to Washington for ASEAN-US special summit

    Regional and international issues and how to bring the ASEAN-US partnership to another level will be discussed at length as Prime Minister Hun Sen and his ministers arrive in Washington, DC, for a special summit on May 12-13. During the trip, Hun Sen and ASEAN

  • National Assembly refutes EU resolution

    The National Assembly (NA) has hit back at a European Parliament resolution condemning the political and human rights situation in Cambodia, calling it another display of the Parliament’s “double standards”. Key points of the resolution include a warning that the Parliament could exclude the