Captivating Cambodia is a land of beautiful temples, wild jungle and unspoilt countryside, yet still bears the scars of years of conflict.
For so long off limits to the tourist trail, Cambodia began to open up to visitors again in the late 1980s. Travelers poured into the gritty capital Phnom Penh and marvelled at the jungle temples of Angkor as the Khmer Rouge militia dissipated.
An extensive landmine clearing program has made other areas of Cambodia accessible, and visitors should take the time to discover the hill tribes around Banlung,
the colonial architecture of Battambang and the sandy beaches of Sihanoukville.
Today's tourists can expect to mix luxurious hotels and restaurants with traditional markets and ramshackle side streets in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap.
Intrepid foodies can look forward to sampling deep fried spiders and cockroaches which have become delicacies in northern Cambodia, despite being a reminder of the food crisis endured by Cambodians under the Khmer Rouge.
With the road network improving, it's time for visitors to start exploring this delightful country beyond its imposing temples.
Cambodia shares borders in the north with Laos and Thailand, in the east with Vietnam and in the southwest with the Gulf of Thailand. The landscape comprises tropical rainforest and fertile cultivated land traversed by many rivers. In the northeast and southeast areas rise highlands. The capital is located at the confluence of the Mekong, Bassac and Tonle Sap rivers. The latter flows from a large inland lake, also called Tonle Sap, situated in the center of the country. There are numerous offshore islands along the southwest coast.