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Digital Magazine Jan. - March, 2011

Cambodian tourism on the cusp of a major boom...

Norodom Sihanouk... A Most Remarkable Man Siem Reap - Angkor... Beyond the Temples ATF 2011... Cambodia Geared to Host an Unforgettable Event

PUBLISHER’S NOTE Dear Readers, It’s hard to imagine anything that’s harder, more fun, and ultimately more satisfying, than completing the first year of a new venture still standing. This issue of Cambodia Insight is our fourth quarterly publication. It’s been, as the Navy promises, not a job but an adventure. Heartfelt thanks to our many readers. You’ve proven again and again that you’ll visit an online publication. We appreciate your attention, as well as your comments and suggestions. Every one of them was read, and many adopted. We’re grateful. Heartfelt thanks, too, to our advertisers. We don’t charge our many readers, and your generous support has made this possible. We hope that your business has benefited from the attention your ads garnered both locally and internationally. We’re grateful.

As we look ahead to the new year, we’re encouraged that we’ve weathered the initial growing pains and can focus now even more on producing the leading publication about Cambodian life, business, culture, and especially responsible tourism. What will future issues bring? We’ll continue to spotlight the growing numbers of visitors and investors from Russia, the important role of investment from China and Korea, relations with our neighbors Vietnam, Thailand, and Laos. And most of all we’ll continue to bring to our readers the wonders of the Land of Wonders, our adopted home. As always, your readership, your advertising support, and you comments will help us make this the leading publication of its kind on the internet. We’re truly grateful. Sincerely,

Heartfelt thanks, as well, to our contributors. You’ve supplied us with interesting – indeed fascinating – insights into this Land of Wonder and its warm, welcoming people. The quality of your work shone brightly. We’re grateful. Heartfelt thanks, finally, to our staff. You’ve worked tirelessly and without complaint under the pressures of deadlines. You’ve brought creativity to Cambodia Insight, along with a full measure of Credit: Lamai talent, hard work and good spirits. We’re grateful. 4

Charles R. Evans, Publisher Tel: +855 (0) 63.969.200 Fax: 63.969.201 H/P: 017.906.721

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Cambodia Tourism on the cusp of a Major Boom...

Charles R. Evans Jonathan P. Helms Don Finck Kanyapat Evans Savuth Sao


ATF 2011... Cambodia Geared to Host an Unforgettable Event


Russian Tourists find Bliss in Goa, while the Indian Government Tightens Visa Restrictions


Cambodia Rail Line Reopened to Help Regional Trade


Private English - language Schools Fill Void


Norodom Sihanouk... A Most Remarkable Man


Siem Reap - Angkor... Beyond the Temples


South Korea Shows the Way


Cambodia’s “Great Lake“


In Praise of the Tuk Tuk

A Quarterly Magazine on Business, Economy, Tourism, Culture and Society in English for Cambodia. Founded in Siem Reap City in January, 2010 by Evans Marketing

Atchariya Priabnan Seriya Chan Bunleab Hong Eric Larbouillat Peter Richards

Publisher and Managing Director Editor - in - Chief Senior Creative Director Creative Director Manager, Graphic Design & Print Production Graphic & Web Design Sr. Webmaster & Programmer Jr. Webmaster & Programmer Sales Executive Thailand Bureau Chief

Evans Marketing Business Adviser Co., Ltd., Wat Damnak Village, 0453 Sala Kamroeuk Commune, Group 4, Siem Reap - Angkor, 17000, Kingdom of Cambodia Tel: +855 (0) 63.969.200/201 Fax: +855 (0) 63.969.201. Advertising & Subscriptions E-Mail: E-Mail: @Copyright Evans Marketing Business Adviser Co., Ltd. All rights reserved. The name Cambodia, in either English or Khmer languages, its associated logos or devices and the contents of this publication and website may not be reproduced in whole or in part, in print or electronically, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without written permission of Evans Marketing Business Adviser Co., Ltd. Cambodia is a wholly owned publication and website of Evans Marketing Business Adviser Co., Ltd. Licensed by the Ministry of Information. Although every care has been taken in the production of this magazine and website, no responsibility for errors or liability is assumed through the use of the information contained herein. Cambodia is an independent publication dedicated to providing our readers with informative content presented in a positive light helping to boost business investment, tourism, cultural awareness and the image of the country.

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Cambodian tourism on the cusp of a major boom


or a small nation and a bit out of the way for main air traďŹƒc along the so-called kangaroo route from Australia to Europe or East Asia to Southeast Asia, Cambodia is doing rather nicely with its tourism industry. The temples of Angkor are easily the main tourist-puller, drawing more than a million of them each year and making the tidy little town of Siem Reap home to more than 10,000 hotel rooms of all star-categories. Temple tour guides are a rather specialised group and come equipped with many language 8

skills catering to the multiplicity of nationalities, making their trek to this historical wonder of the ancient world: English, French, German and, in growing numbers, Chinese, Koreans, Japanese, Vietnamese, Thais and Taiwanese. The East Asians will mostly be flying in direct into Siem Reap through regularly scheduled flights while the Europeans will most likely be flying in from the major regional hubs of Bangkok, Singapore and, increasingly, Kuala Lumpur, where there are now more than 20 flights each week into both Siem Reap and Phnom Penh. JAN - MARCH, 2011

The secretary of state in the Cambodian Ministry of Tourism, Sam Promonea, was thus understandably bullish about tourism prospects in his country when he sat down last month with this writer in Phnom Penh. Aided by a battery of senior oďŹƒcials, he showed how Cambodia is on course to attain more than two million tourist arrivals for this year. More gratifyingly, Phnom Penh has finally come up to be almost on a par with Siem Reap in terms of tourist drawing power, with both likely to chalk up a million tourists each this year.

This is largely attributed to the fact that the major casino resort in Phnom Penh has been phenomenally successful in drawing visitors from all over. But Cambodia’s tourism ambitions do not stop with just Angkor and the casino. The sea coast around Sihanoukville is slated to become Cambodia’s Riviera with eco-resorts, beach bungalows and spas catering to a luxury clientele. A backpacker paradise as it is, it will become Cambodia’s answer to Thailand’s Phuket and Koh Samui in the relatively more sheltered Gulf of Thailand once the Sihanoukville Airport opens for regional flights next year. Another unique tourism selling point for Cambodia will be its giant Tonle Sap lake, a stone’s throw by road from Siem Reap. The lake’s dimensions are gargantuan; it appears more like the open sea, with sheer nothingness but the horizon as one peers out into the distance. Its rich biodiversity is not just restricted to teeming fisheries but what is reputed to be one of the richest collections of bird life anywhere on its shoreline, feeding from life in the lake. Cambodia can draw out the best in many, taken in by its many charms. One only needs to make a cursory inspection of the many

multinational groups of conservationists doing their bit to help preserve Angkor’s ruins. A casual count will net quite an interesting mix: from the obvious ones of India and Japan to the former European colonial power, France and even relative minnows such as the Czech Republic. Individuals contribute in no small way as well to the great promise of Cambodian tourism. One of them is Chris Ho, the Malaysian general manager of the Royal Angkor Resort, an independently-managed fourstar property in Siem Reap. Ho, a long-time resident of Cambodia and pioneering “mentor” of a network of some 50 professionals based in Siem Reap, bewails the fact that Cambodian tourism, while raking in revenues for the country’s national treasury, has not done much to alleviate the poverty evident in the hinterland that surrounds Siem Reap. Together with several senior government officials, he has helped form the “Tonle Sap Learning Lab for Sustainable Tourism”, an innovative multidisciplinary body comprising select members from government, the private sector and academia dedicated to drawing up a 10-year master plan to ensure ordinary Cambodians benefit from the tourism industry, be-

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yond the obvious areas of direct employment in the various services catering to tourists. As far as Siem Reap is concerned, the most pressing need will be to look beyond the obvious attraction of Angkor Wat and seek to broaden the area’s appeal to tourists through its natural assets, its native cultures and its traditional agricultural and other economic activities. Cambodian tourism looks to be on the cusp of a major boom with a resurgent East Asia expected to give it a powerful boost. Its government is hungry for foreign investors to help the country realise that promise. It is, at the same time, highly receptive to ideas and any assistance it can get to ensure the industry develops on a fully sustainable basis. Malaysian tourism industry players will be looking at potential huge dividends if they seek to venture into Cambodia more aggressively while working seamlessly with our airlines that can turn Kuala Lumpur into an even bigger jumping-off point for Cambodia-bound long-haul tourists.

By John Teo/©NTS Malaysia


Cambodia Geared To Host An Unforgettable Event


hnom Penh, Cambodia, 13 December 2010 – This year’s ASEAN Tourism Forum (ATF) TRAVEX (Travel Exchange) 2011 registered an overwhelming response, with over 500 exhibition booths fully sold by end October 2010. All ten member-nations will be well-represented at this annual leisure travel trade event which showcases the largest contingent of ASEAN destination products and services.

While some 1,000 buyers have registered their interest to source at the event, only 400 have been selected to attend under a privileged hosting programme. Buyer profile this year includes delegates from Asia-Pacific (55 per cent), Europe (37 per cent) and the rest of the world. 10

A total of 1,600 delegates are expected at this year’s ATF 2011. His Excellency So Mara, Secretary of State, Ministry of Tourism, Cambodia remarked, “ASEAN is one of the few regions in the world that offers a lot of tourism value in the international market. Demand for ASEAN will continue to grow and we can see that in the increasing interest of international buyers and proliferation of ASEAN products and services at the upcoming ATF.” ATF 2011 marks the event’s 30th anniversary. ASEAN membernation Cambodia, will host ATF 2011 in Phnom Penh from 15 to 21 January. ATF TRAVEX, the 3-day travel trade mart component of the event will take place from 19 to 21 January at JAN - MARCH, 2011

the Diamond Island Convention & Exhibition Centre. His Excellency Dr. Thong Khon, Minister of Tourism, Cambodia and Chairman of ATF 2011 Host Committee, said “This year’s theme ‘A World of Wonders and Diversity’ embodies everything that Cambodia has to offer as a compelling destination. We look forward to welcoming all ATF participants and international delegates to the Kingdom of Cambodia. We have taken great pride to create plenty of opportunities for them to discover our country’s rich cultural, natural and historical heritage.” Business appointments and meetings which encompass the majority of delegates’ schedules over the 3-days are just some of the many highlights that ATF

2011 will offer. ASEAN Tourism Conference (ATC) – the educational front of ATF – will feature topics such as Ecotourism and Sustainable tourism in the ASEAN region as well as managing tourism in destinations which are home to Heritage Sites. Invited speakers hail from global institutions such as United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) and Global Sustainable Tourism Council and will engage the audience through thought-provoking sessions and interactive panel discussions on key issues in ASEAN tourism today. ATF 2011 is also poised as an event with bountiful networking opportunities, teeing off with the ever-popular game of golf at the Royal Cambodia Phnom Penh Golf Course. Hosted by The Ministry of Tourism, Cambodia, the ATF 2011 Opening Ceremony is set to be a spectacular event featuring some 500 local and foreign performers in traditional and contemporary performances. The Ministry is also pulling out all stops to ensure a feast for the senses with a strong play on the latest pyrotechnics and sound effects technology. Delegates can also look forward to a stunning 30 minutes fireworks highlight.

tions such as Siem Reap, Preah Sihanouk and Koh Kong are also available to hosted buyers

and media delegates. For full details of ATF 2011 and regular programme updates, visit www.

About ATC Invited Speakers and Topics Unleashing the Power of Ecotourism in the ASEAN Region Dr. Lee Choon Loong CEO, Discovery MICE Sdn Bhd Affiliate member, United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) Archaeology, Heritage Sites and Tourism: Partnerships for the Future Mr. Gordon Grimwade Adjunct Researcher of Atherton, Queensland Promoting Sustainable Tourism through a Global Common Language Ms. Erika Harms Executive Director of Global Sustainable Tourism Council Sustaining the Wonder and Diversity of Southeast Asia Mr. R.W. (Bill) Carter Assoc Professor, Heritage Resource Management Associate Director, Sustainability Research Centre Co-editor, Australasian Journal of Environmental Management University of the Sunshine Coast

About ATF 2011 ASEAN Tourism Forum (ATF) is a cooperative regional effort to promote the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) region as one tourist destination. ATF TRAVEX is the longest-running annual ASEAN

leisure travel trade event, showcasing the largest contingent of ASEAN sellers. This annual event involves all the tourism industry sectors of the 10 ASEAN member nations: Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Sin-

Over the 3 days, delegates can wine, dine and enjoy the company of their peers at several hosted luncheons, dinners as well as at 3 late night functions at Nagaworld, Raffles Hotel Le Royal and Sofitel Phnom Penh Phokeethra. Pre-show city tours of Phnom Penh and post-show tours to popular Cambodian destinaJAN - MARCH, 2011


gapore, Thailand and Vietnam. Each year, the hosting of ATF is rotated among the member countries. Cambodia will host ATF 2011 and is all geared up to welcome over 1,600 delegates which includes 400 international buyers and 100 international media. ATF 2011 marks the 30th anniversary of this event since its inauguration in Malaysia in 1981. 2011 TRAVEX Dates: 19 to 21 January 2011 Venue: Diamond Island Convention and Exhibition Centre, Phnom Penh, Cambodia Event Website:

About ATF 2011 TRAVEX Secretariat TTG Asia Media Pte Ltd is the region’s leading travel and tourism business information and access provider. With extensive industry involvement through a wide range of media products including publications, exhibi-


tions, database management and the Internet, the company provides its partners with integrated marketing solutions and effective platforms to showcase their products and services to the industry. TTG Asia Media is also a leading organiser and event manager of travel tradeshows in Asia, including IT&CMA (Incentive Travel & Conventions, Meetings Asia), CTW (Corporate Travel World) Asia- Pacific, ITS (International Travel Show) Thailand 2004 and 2005, Thailand Travel Mart (TTM) Plus 2005 and ASEAN Tourism Forum (ATF) 1998, 2001, 2003, 2006, 2009, 2010 and 2011. It also publishes four titles targeted at distinct sectors of the travel trade: TTG Asia, TTG China, TTGmice and TTGBTmice China. These tradeshows and publications provide the best marketing access to Asia- Pacific’s travel marketplace, in-

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fluencers and deciders. TTG Asia Media is a member company of Inc. which views Internet services as its core business and operates principally in China. It is listed on the Growth Market Enterprise (GEM) of the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong (Stock Code: 8006). For more information on TTG Asia Media, visit

Media Contact Cheryl Tan (Ms.) Marketing Manager Email: Sheetal Menezes (Ms.) Senior Marketing Executive Email: sheetal.menezes@ttgasia. com TTG Asia Media Pte Ltd 1 Science Park Road, #04-07, The Capricorn Singapore Science Park II, Singapore 117528 Tel: (65) 6395 7575 Fax: (65) 6536 0896 Web:

New Year 2011, Si


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iem Reap Photos by ....

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Russian Tourists Find Bliss in Goa, While the Indian Government Tightens Visa Restrictions Some see a shift toward the beaches of Sihanoukville as an alternative to snow and freezing rains back home.


ired of city life and the notoriously harsh winter weather, Russians are increasingly taking time out in Goa – and some aren’t going home. But now India has increased visa restrictions in an attempt to curb the influx.

“I felt like I lived in a cage,” says Solovyeva, relaxing in her Goa home, legs folded into the lotus position. “We smoked cigarette after cigarette in constant stress; I could never imagine raising children in that aggressive Moscow environment.”

Five years ago, Yulia Solovyeva’s life was like that of any other young professional coming from the provinces to Moscow in search of a career. Mornings began with a quick cup of coffee in a tiny rented room, a walk through slushy streets to the metro, carriages packed with tired faces, and on to the bleak office where she worked as an interpreter.

And so, like thousands of other restless young Russians unhappy with city life, she headed to the Indian state of Goa in search of shanti – inner peace. The Russian exodus to Goa has become a trend, and many are moving there for good. Cheap daily charter flights are now carrying thousands of Russians to the former Portuguese colo-


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ny famous for its beaches and laid-back mood that have been popular with British ravers and drop-outs for decades. The allure of India has even spawned a best-seller in Russia, The Goa Syndrome, a book about living and working in Goa by Alexander Sukhochev – also known as DJ Sa Shanti, a resident of the Indian state since 2003. Solovyeva’s husband Timofei prefers to describe the drift of Russians to Goa as a movement of “up-lifters” rather then “down-shifters”, the term used in the West. The Solovyevas’ two children were born in Goa. Their son’s name is Om and their daughter’s name is Uma after the Hindu god Shiva’s wife. There are already two Umas in the growing Russian community and more could be

on the way: the community has celebrated a baby boom in the last few years. Like many other Russian expats, the couple set up their own business in Goa. “Our yoga resort was the first business on this street five years ago, and now we have dozens of businesses along this shore,” says Timofei during a tour of his neighborhood in Arambol, in northern Goa. Flyers in Russian are pinned to palm trees advertising yoga, massage, traditional Indian music and dance classes for visitors. Ilya Demenkov, 27, grew tired of his work as a computer programmer at a Moscow IT company. He flew to Goa last year to realize his dream of opening a windsurfing school. “I came here to begin my own business and find a girlfriend,” he says. Alla Duhl, a St Petersburg painter, found that she could live on just over $500 a month in Goa, including rent for a studio and a room in a house with a tropical garden. “Maybe a British lady would find this environment lacking comfort, but we are used to crowded buses and dirty streets,” she says, “so Goa feels like paradise to us.”

Duhl, who paints portraits of local people on pieces of antique dark wood, says she planned to exhibit and sell her art pieces this summer, during one of her short visits to Russia. But the influx has also raised some concerns in India. Last year, 80,000 Russians flew into Goa, and, according to the Indian embassy in Moscow, 1,400 did not return home after their visas expired. “Some tourists decide to stay and live in India permanently,” says the Russian embassy’s secretary. “Some, we hear, even burn their Russian passports to break off all the connections with home.” However, as of February, 2010, visa rules have been tightened for Russians and Western Europeans visiting India. After suspects linked to terrorist attacks in Mumbai used tourist visas to spend extended periods in the country, now they are only issued for a month at a time. Even though the rules have been changed for everybody, the Russians still feel singled out.

Parsenkar, said that Russians should “have fun, spend money and go back home” rather than start businesses. Indeed, the highly popular city of Morjim seeks a ban on Russian businesses after a taxi driver was killed in a scuffle with a Russian citizen. On their return to the cold of Russia, some fans of India try to preserve their state of shanti. Increasingly, Russian cities have yoga clubs, and practice of the physical and mental discipline has taken off after being barely visible just a few years ago. A new chain of Indian stores, The Way to Yourself, offers everything from Indian tea to little tin kettles – good for washing nasal energy channels or watering flowers. Recently, fans of India gathered at Gazgolder, a hip Moscow night club, for a “Goa Memories” party. Clubbers in Ali Baba baggy pants and Shiva shirts, sun glasses and flip flops, with third eyes painted on their foreheads, danced to tam-tam music under a big video screen featuring Goan scenes: Indian women in bright saris on motor bikes, enormous palm trees, and golden sunshine.

The president of the Bharatiya Janata Party in Goa, Laxmikant

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Meanwhile, outside, the traffic was at a standstill on gridlocked Moscow roads after the latest snowfall. Some Russians have decided that if the Indian government won’t welcome them in Goa, they’ll find another warmweather destination where the local government appreciates them, and the money they spend there. And increasingly, they’re finding that destination in laidback Sihanoukville, Cambodia’s tropical beach resort area. As the buzz about Sihanoukville has started to filter back to Moscow, Russian investors have begun to make major inroads in the Cambodian development scene, leasing four islands off the coast of one of Sihanoukville’s largest beaches. A bridge is already under construction linking the first of those islands to the mainland, an upscale resort has been built there, and plans are underway for a well-funded marketing campaign targeted at affluent Russian tourists. So far, Russian tourist arrivals are fairly few, especially as there are no direct flights currently connecting Russian cities to Phnom Penh or Siem Reap, the two in-


ternational airports in Cambodia. But plans are underway to open the long-shuttered airport in Sihanoukville with the idea of making it easier for Russian tourists to visit the Kingdom. It seems certain that in the fore-

seeable future those links will be established, and more and more Russian visitors will discover the Kingdom of Wonder. About the author: Anna Nemtsova writes for the Rossiyskaya Gazeta in Moscow.

Koh Puos Sihanouk Vill Koh Puos to be one of the greatest Resorts in Asia The Cambodian government signed an agreement with a foreign Investment company to develop Koh Puos, one of the biggest among the 22 islands in Sihanoukville. The 300 million Euro project is designed to turn this ultimate island into a paradise island in 2010. The project will also feature concrete cement bridge connecting Koh Puos and Sihanoukvi.

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aR oa

Province Hospital




Ta Prohm Hotel


Ta Prohm Hotel


Old Market

Pokambor Street Siem Reap River

Pokambor Avenue, Mondul I , Sangkat Svay Dangkum Siem Reap-Angkor, Kingdom of Cambodia Tel: (855) 63 380 117 / 760 087 , Fax: (855) 63 963 528 Email: Website:

Cambodian Rail Line Reopened to Help Regional Trade

“The eventual plan is to link Cambodia with a full Trans-Asia rail line that will connect the region with the world.”


ambodia has reopened a stretch of railway destroyed during the country’s war and officials described it as a step towards boosting regional trade through rail links with neighbors. The Asian Development Bank is contributing $84 million to a $141 million project to repair 400 miles of railway linking Cambodia’s capital, Phnom Penh, to its borders with Thailand and Vietnam by 2013. Cambodia is providing $20 million, with Japan and Australia providing the balance. The first section officially opened in October runs 75 miles southwest from Phnom Penh to Touk Meas in Kampot province, near the border with Vietnam. Kunio Senga, director general of the Asian Development Bank’s Southeast Asia Department, told a news conference the rail link would lower the cost of staple commodities that poor Cambodian families depend on and would help position the country as a sub-regional transport hub. Tauch Chankosal, secretary of state at Cambodia’s Ministry of Public Works and Transport, 22

said a study was under way for a rail link between Phnom Penh and Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam, possibly with financial help from China. ‘’The estimate is about $600 million,’’ he said of the construction cost. ‘’The funding is not yet finalized.’’ Toll Holdings Ltd of Australia has signed a 30-year concession to operate and maintain the railway, which was frequently mined and attacked by Khmer Rouge guerrillas, leading to the deployment of cars mounted with machine guns in front of locomotives in the 1980s and 1990s. Wayne Hunt, CEO of Toll Global Logistics, said the priority was to get freight operating. He said the firm had already invested $5 million and planned to employ 600 people eventually. JAN - MARCH, 2011

The 75 mile section that opened in October runs south from Phnom Penh to the town of Touk Meas. Once it is completed in 2011, the full southern line, which is 200 miles long, will link the capital with the port of Sihanoukville. Reconstruction of the northern line, which runs 300 miles northwest from Phnom Penh to the Poipet border crossing into Thailand, is scheduled to finish in 2012. Once that is completed, the final link in the Singapore-Kunming chain will be the railway between Phnom Penh and Ho Chi Minh City in southern Vietnam. The Chinese government has committed $700 million to the project. The eventual plan is to link Cambodia to a full Trans-Asia rail line that will connect the region with the world.

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Private English-language Schools Fill Void “But the choice Cambodia’s young people face is stark: Learn a second language or risk losing out on any chance for a successful career.”


he bloody reign of the Khmer Rouge, and the subsequent war to expel the Vietnamese invaders who deposed them, had many horrific consequences for Cambodia, not least of which was the death or emigration of most of the educated class in the country – which included essentially all those able to read and write, and teach, English. Today, with English almost universally accepted as the international language of business and science, Cambodia’s struggling schools lack many of the essentials for preparing young people for successful careers, among which is the opportunity to learn English. There 24

simply aren’t enough Englishspeaking teachers available, and with teachers’ salaries set at $30-$50 per month, very few of that small number are willing to teach in public schools. Enter the private sector. Inside a dimly-lit shophouse in Phnom Penh’s Prampi Makara district, masses of young students are crammed into desks, their eyes glued to a young man speaking into a microphone. “In such a hard situation, we will have to find a way,” says Nget Dareth over and over again to his rapt listeners. With their eyes glued on Mr. JAN - MARCH, 2011

Dareth, his students repeat his words in unison like a mantra. What might sound like a religious sermon resonates with those in the room. They are there for one simple, secular reason: To find a way to improve their English-language skills. Mr. Dareth’s students come mainly from many of Phnom Penh’s elite universities. They swarm in from early morning until well into the night for an hour of extra tutelage at one of the informal language classes that have sprung up in recent years. There are many of these private class-rooms all over the city.

Both English and Chinese language instruction is offered, and there are many takers who pay from their own funds the typi-

can speak English in particular, but also have good opportunities for those fluent in Chinese, Vietnamese and Thai (Cambo-

cal 1,500 riel (less than a half a US dollar) for a one-hour class. In a land where as many as half the population subsists on less than $40/month, a half-dollar is not an inconsequential sum. But the choice Cambodia’s young people face is stark: Learn a second language or risk losing out on any chance for a successful career. Mr. Dareth says that “English is used everywhere – in the office, at school, everywhere”. Experts say that young graduates entering the job market can no longer rely on simply having a degree from a reputable university. Employers increasingly look for applicants with broad language skills. They’re looking for people who

She very quickly recognized that her preparation at a high school in Kompong Cham province, even though she had taken the English classes offered there, was inadequate for universitylevel classes. Her high-school teacher, she says, so lacked concern for her students that she often simply missed her appointed classes. So, in addition to her full schedule of classes at her

dia’s closes neighbors and trading partners), and also to an extent for those able to speak, read and write Japanese and Korean. Many of Cambodia’s colleges offer all their classes in the English language, but many of their students lack the basic language skills to keep up with the instruction – and with their betterprepared classmates. Like many students, Ms Sok Oun arrived at her university with minimal skills in English.

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university, she also attends Mr. Dareth’s informal English classes, often several evenings each week. Her ambition is to become a tour guide for foreign visitors, and she knows very well that fluency in their language is the key to success in her chosen field. Mr. Mo Risa, another teacher at the informal school where Mr. Dareth teaches, put it bluntly: “Those who have poor language skills will find it hard to get a job with a good salary.”


A Most Remarkable Man The Father of Cambodia, who ruled as King twice, never really wanted to be King. We join all Cambodians in saluting a most remarkable man in his 89th year.


ven the barest outline of his life story is remarkable. Born October 31, 1922, Norodom Sihanouk, twice served as king of Cambodia (1941–55 and 1993–2004). He also served as prime minister, head of state, and president. He attempted to steer a neutral course for Cambodia in its civil and foreign wars of the late 20th century. He was born the grandson of a king. Had he been born into a different family, he probably 26

would have devoted his career to his abiding love, film making. He was born in Phnom Penh but educated in Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh City) and Paris. As a youth he associated with artists and musicians. But Sihanouk was, on his mother’s side, the grandson of King Monivong (reigned 1927–41), whom he succeeded to the throne at age 18. At the time Cambodia was a French protectorate, and Sihanouk wielded little power. JAN - MARCH, 2011

Near the end of World War II, the occupying Japanese encouraged the young king to declare Cambodia’s independence from France. When French military forces moved back into the region, Sihanouk decided to wait until France’s retreat from Indochina, which occurred in 1954. Sihanouk soon became wellknown for his extravagant lifestyle. An unashamed ladies’ man, he finally chose to stay with his

sixth wife Monique, an ItalianCambodian he married in 1952. Fluent in three languages Khmer, French and English - he developed a taste for the high life, dabbling in amateur filmmaking, leading a jazz band, and editing magazines. The French had taken him for an easy-to-manage playboy but he confounded them when he revealed himself to be an ardent nationalist. Nor could the US later control Sihanouk, who rejected American “support” only to be subsequently toppled by the puppet regime of General Lon Nol. He founded the Sangkum Reastr Niyum (“People’s Socialist Community”) in January 1955, won a referendum in February approving its program, and on March 2 abdicated in favor of his father, Norodom Suramarit, becoming the new monarch’s prime minister, foreign minister, and subsequently permanent representative to the United Nations. Five years later, after the death of his father (April 3, 1960), he accepted the role of head of state (June 13). His acceptance was reluctant, because as a committed supporter of democracy he did not approve of a kingship. But when his country called, he answered. Sihanouk steered a neutralist course in his foreign policy. In return for a North Vietnamese pledge to respect Cambodia’s

frontiers, he allowed Vietnamese communists to operate covertly from bases inside eastern Cambodia. He subsequently rejected U.S. aid and assistance, relying on his immense popularity with the Cambodian people to keep radicals of both the right and the left under control. Under Sihanouk’s benign rule, Cambodia experienced 15 years of fragile peace and mild prosperity while much of Southeast Asia was in a state of upheaval. Sihanouk’s maintenance of Cambodian neutrality in the Vietnam War ended in 1970 when he was ousted in a U.S.-supported coup led by General Lon Nol. He fled to Beijing, where he acted as the titular head of a government-inexile under the protection of the Chinese Communist government. Following the Khmer Rouge takeover of Cambodia in 1975, Sihanouk returned home, only to be put under house arrest. Cambodia suffered terribly under dictator Pol Pot, whose four-year reign of terror ensued during which more than one million Cambodians were killed, while as many as a million more starved. Even the king did not escape tragedy during the genocide: five of his 14 children died as victims of Pol Pot’s harsh regime. Sihanouk was released in January 1979 because the Khmer Rouge regime was falling to Vietnamese military forces and JAN - MARCH, 2011

needed an advocate in the United Nations. After denouncing the Vietnamese invasion, he dissociated himself from the Khmer Rouge. From residences in China and North Korea, Sihanouk became president of an uneasy coalition government-in-exile made up of the three principal anti-Vietnamese Khmer forces — the Khmer Rouge, the anticommunist Khmer People’s National Liberation Front, and Sihanouk’s neutralist party. He retained his role as resistance leader until 1991, when he was elected president of Cambodia’s Supreme National Council, an interim administrative bod. In September 1993, following UN-sponsored elections the previous May, Cambodia’s National Assembly voted to restore the monarchy, and Sihanouk once again became king. His son, Norodom Ranariddh, served as first prime minister until 1997, when he was overthrown in a coup by Hun Sen, who nevertheless left Sihanouk on the throne. In later years Sihanouk retreated from politics to work as a filmmaker and composer. He abdicated on October 7, 2004, and his son Norodom Sihamoni was chosen to succeed him. Sihamoni was crowned king on October 29, and continues to reign until the present day.


Angkor Siem Reap Beyond

“The tale of it is incredible; the wonder which is Angkor is unmatched in A Nearly 2 million visitors will find their way to Cambodia’s north-west frontier this year, almost all coming to view and be amazed by the awesome 12th century temples of Angkor. They’ve been trekking here by bus, car, motorcycle, bike and plane for 100 years, and for all that time they’ve agreed that seeing the thousand-year-old temples is the experience of a lifetime. Even Titanic survivor Helen Churchill Candee, after viewing Angkor Wat, was moved to write “The tale of it is incredible; the wonder which is Angkor is unmatched in Asia”. Even the worldwide financial melt-down of the past several years has failed to make much of a dent in Angkor tourism. After a record number of visits in 2007 (2 million+), visits to the area have rebounded to some 1.7 million in 2010, and may return to pre-crisis levels next year. Several factors have contributed to the continuing popularity of Angkor over the past decade, certainly including the success of Angelina Jolie’s Lara Croft: Tomb Raider in 2003 and aided by the Cambodian government’s investment


in new roads that make reaching Angkor a more manageable task. Bangkok Airways offers 5-6 flights from Thailand every day, and air connections from Singapore, Seoul, and Ho Chi Minh city have made a visit to the area much easier than in years past. Regular service from Phnom Penh is also available from a number of air con bus companies running more-or-less hourly. But contributing, too, has been the growth over the past decade of the picturesque town of Siem Reap, just a few miles from the temples. Tourists need a place to stay, and Siem Reap is now home to well over 100 hotels and guest houses, ranging in price from $1,200/night 5-star resorts to $3/ night backpacker hostels, and everything in between. Many of the hotels provide pools – some lavish – for cooling off after a hot day of climbing up and down the temples’ stairways. Tourists also need places to eat, so Siem Reap now offers dozens of the best res-

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the Temples

Asia”. taurants in Cambodia, with an amazing variety of ethnic cuisines ranging from Khmer, to Indian, to Chinese, Italian, Mexican and French. There’s even a KFC fried-chicken emporium, although none of the international fast-food burger joints are to be found. Whether that absence represents a “plus” or “minus” for Siem Reap is left to the reader’s discretion. Tourists need places to shop, so chic boutiques and local market stalls stand side-by-side with everything from original art from local painters and sculptors to low-cost, mass-produced souvenirs imported from Thailand, popular with the flocks of tourists and honeymooners on package tours from Korea, China, and Japan who make up a major portion of visitors to the area. The bustling Night Market near the Old Market is a warren of pathways packed with small shops selling fabrics, artwork, food and drink after 5:00 pm.

of music and drinking establishments that keep the pedestrian-only Pub Street and its adjoining alleyways and lanes full from dusk ‘til well after midnight. There are even “adventure” oriented businesses offering quad bike tours and horseback riding for those who’ve “been there – done that” with temple tours. If there’s not “something for everyone” (there aren’t yet any casinos, and if there are any “girly bars” those are distinctly low key) there’s a great deal to see and do in Siem Reap, even beyond the temples. Jonathan Helms and his wife Jenny live in Siem Reap, where their new restaurant, River View Cafe, opens February 1. River View Cafe is located on the riverfront in the Old Market Area, between Kampuccino Pizza and the Body Tone Spa.

And tourists need someplace to go at night. Siem Reap’s Old Market area, the hub of the new town center (the old French Quarter) hosts a vibrant variety

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South Korea Shows the Way Koreans make up the largest share of tourists visiting Cambodia. How they got rich enough to become international tourists offers an interesting lesson

Hyundai equus limousine When I relocated from New York City to Seoul, South Korea’s capital, in 1996, I found the city vibrant and fascinating, but also surprisingly provincial. Koreans preferred their fermented kimchi over any other food, and though I certainly enjoy the spicy staple of my homeland, the feebleness of my digestive system occasionally demanded a respite from the chili-laden cabbage. In 1996, that proved challenging. Aside from some fast-food joints and wallet-straining restaurants at five-star hotels, foreign cuisine was hard to come by. A few weeks ago, I returned to my old neighborhood in Seoul for the first time in 10 years; it wasn’t the same place where I shopped in the 1990s. The results are striking. Thirty


years ago, Korea was poorer than Malaysia and Mexico. Since then, its GDP per capita has surged by a factor of 10 to $17,000, more than double the levels in those countries. GDP growth was 0.2% in 2009, when much of the rest of the world was contracting, and is estimated to be 6% this year. Yet when I left Korea in 2000, it was an open question whether its success could continue. The embarrassing memories of the 1997 Asian financial crisis were still fresh, and Koreans were worrying that they would lose out to a rising China. Over the past decade, however, Korea has reinvented itself — it’s an Asian miracle again. Korea has become an innovator, an economy that doesn’t just make stuff, but designs and develops products, infuses them with JAN - MARCH, 2011

the latest technology, and then brands and markets them worldwide, with style and smarts. Samsung and LG, not the Japanese electronics giants, are dominating the hot new LCDTV business. In 4G phone technology, Samsung is poised to become a leading force, while Hyundai Motor, an industry joke a decade ago, is a top-five automaker, its rising market share fueled by quality cars and nifty marketing. Politically as well, Korea is stepping out of Washington’s shadow and becoming an influential voice in its own right. Symbolic of that new role, Seoul hosted the G-20 summit on Nov. 11 and 12, the first Asian country to do so. This nation is a global leader-in-waiting. Part of Korea’s success is simple

commitment. Koreans spend some 3.5% of their GDP on R&D, compared with 1.5% in China and less than 1% in Malaysia and India. Innovation, however, isn’t something that can be conjured up in government offices or corporate boardrooms.

ans are breaking down the barriers that held the nation back, a process fostered by political freedom and a passionate embrace of the forces of globalization. Korea has gone from being a hermit kingdom, from a closed door, to open arms.

A Stranger No More Globalization has always been the engine behind Korea’s economic miracle. Beginning in the 1960s, a destitute Korea capitalized on its cheap labor to competitively export toys, shoes and other low-tech goods to consumers in the West. That jumpstarted income growth; as costs rose, Korea shifted into ships, microchips and other advanced products. Yet to Koreans, globalization was a one-way street. They were happy to sell things to the world, but wanted no more than the profits in return. Koreans didn’t care much for foreign cars, foreign investment — or Korea Looking forward to 5G Cellular Network foreigners. You can tell people to work harder or build a more modern factory, but you can’t order them to think better or be more creative. That change has to take place inside people’s heads. In Korea, it has. Koreans have become more accepting of diversity and outside influences and quicker to shed old prejudices. Such an outlook was brought about by a fundamental reformation of Korean society. Kore-

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Behind its crenellated walls, the Korean economy developed on its own dynamic, and boosted by their unexpected economic success, Koreans came to believe their system was special, even superior. But dangerous problems were festering. Companies were shielded from competition and heavily supported by tight links to the government and banks, allowing them to borrow and invest willy-nilly while building up frightening debt burdens. The normal rules of economics didn’t apply to Korea. That self-delusion evaporated during the Asian financial crisis of the late 1990s. As Korea’s most prominent companies collapsed into bankruptcy and the government endured a humiliating $58 billion International Monetary Fund bailout, Koreans had to rethink the ways they did business, managed their careers — even their entire economic system. The crisis was the catalyst for change. The old ways didn’t work. The 1997 crisis broke apart the cozy government-banking-cor-


Hyundai is even integrating foreign experts into its Seoul management team. Now the headquarters cafeteria offers salads, steaks, and other Western dishes at lunchtime.

Technology Advancements Thread porate networks, forcing the big companies to become truly profitable, independent and internationally competitive for the first time. That process was egged on by a new influx of foreign money, ideas and people. Foreign investors began to play a much larger role in the domestic economy, increasing competition. Korean companies brought low by the financial crisis in banking, autos and other industries were sold off to international giants.

companies fiercer competitors. Korean corporate offices used to be for Koreans only, but now firms like carmaker Hyundai Motor recognize they have to be more open to outsiders and foreign ideas to compete on a global scale. Nowadays, all the overseas subsidiaries are handled by local staff. It is a process of globalization. That’s made Hyundai much more responsive to local markets and creative in its sales efforts.

After Apple’s sudden success in a Korean economy where foreign handset makers had almost no presence — its iPhones claimed more than a quarter of the local smart-phone market in the first half of 2010, according to research firm IDC — Samsung was pressed to accelerate its own product development.

During the worst of the Great Recession in early 2009, for in-

The number of foreigners living in Korea has also exploded, from fewer than 250,000 in 2000 to more than 870,000 in 2009. That reality altered Korea Inc.’s view of the world, and made its 32

Breaking Down Barriers Other biases are evaporating. When I lived in Seoul, smart, young Koreans had a very narrow path to success: study your brains out in high school, pass the tough exams necessary to get accepted at one of a handful of elite universities, then join the government or a big company like Samsung or Hyundai. Anything else was considered an embarrassment in Korean social circles, and parents usually dissuaded their sons from charting their own course. Their daughters were encouraged to marry a bright young man working in one of the big companies or government. Not anymore. Koreans have become much more accepting of different life choices. That’s encouraged an army of young people to start their own companies, often in innovative IT or high-tech businesses.

stance, the U.S. operation offered to take back Hyundais from buyers who lost their jobs. The marketing coup was devised entirely by Hyundai’s U.S. managers and likely helped the company outperform its rivals during Korean Air’s Coach Cabin is as High-Tech as the downturn. Their Country JAN - MARCH, 2011

Businessmen complain that too much red tape clogs their way. The outdated education system is so rigid that parents flee the country in droves to put their kids into high schools in the U.S. and elsewhere. The Korean economy is still not a fair place where everyone is governed by the same rules. And North Korea hovers as a relentless threat.

Amusement Park Powers EVs Using Electric Toothbrush Technology Cry Freedom The country was largely ruled by dictators for 26 years, until massive street protests forced free elections in 1987, and even after that, the government still intervened heavily in the economy. But Korea has become a much more democratic society over the past decade, driven by Presidents Kim Dae Jung and Roh Moo Hyun, the first leaders to come from an opposition party, and the market-oriented economic reform made necessary by the 1997 financial crisis.

Now the government is smaller and intervenes less. People feel they can become successful, whatever company they work for. Above all, Korea offers a counterpoint to those political leaders - like China’s who believe “state capitalism” is superior to free enterprise, or that they can create an innovative economy without civil liberties. Of course, that doesn’t mean the Korean system is perfect. Despite its progress, Korean society still remains too wary of foreign influence and too biased against women in the workforce.

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However, the Korea I know is a country that confronts its challenges. With more and more Koreans gaining international experience, the great globalization of Korea will continue. South Korea has 75,000 students enrolled at U.S. universities - third highest, behind giants India and China, according to the Institute of International Education. Koreans will bring back more diverse ideas and backgrounds. Korea will continue to extend its presence globally, and especially in Cambodia.

About the Author: Lina Soon is a US-born journalist of Korean descent.


Cambodia’s “Great Lake” Cambodia’s “Great Lake” The Tonlé Sap is both a river and a lake. It is also unique among the world’s waterways. he Tonlé Sap (Khmer for “Large Fresh Water River,” but more commonly translated as “Great Lake”) is a combined lake and river system of major importance to Cambodia.


The Tonlé Sap is unique for two reasons: its flow changes direction twice a year; and the portion that forms the lake expands and shrinks dramatically with the seasons.

The Tonlé Sap is the largest freshwater lake in South East Asia, an ecological hot spot designated by the United Nations as a “biosphere” site in 1997.

From November to May, Cambodia’s dry season, the Tonlé Sap drains into the Mekong River at Phnom Penh. However, when the year’s heavy rains begin in June, the Tonlé Sap backs up to form an enormous lake. For most of the year the lake is fairly small, around three feet deep and with an area of 2,000 square miles. During the monsoon season, however, the Tonlé Sap


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River, which connects the lake with the Mekong River, reverses its flow. Water is pushed up from the Mekong into the lake, increasing its area to 12,000 square miles and its depth to up to 25 feet, flooding nearby fields and forests. The floodplain provides a perfect breeding ground for dozens of varieties of fish. The pulsing system with its large floodplain, rich biodiversity, and high annual sediment- and nutrient-fluxes from the Mekong makes the Tonlé Sap one of the most productive inland fisheries in the world, supporting an estimated three million people and providing over 75% of Cambodia’s annual inland fish catch, and 60% of Cambodians’ annual protein intake. At the end of the rainy season, the flow reverses and the fish are carried downriver.

Much of the nation’s psyche is connected to water. Every year, revelers flock to the capital city of Phnom Penh - where the Tonlé Sap and Mekong rivers meet - for the annual Water Festival. The festival draws more than one million people to the capital, and the rest of the nation all but shuts down. Rural Cambodians flood into the city, eager for a brief respite from the hardship of their daily routines. Journalist Kay Kimsong of the Cambodia Daily says the festival celebrates many things. “Thanks to the water, and thanks to the moon,” he says. “The water provides many things - water gives us life.” So intertwined are the Cambodians and their fish that the

country’s currency, the riel, is named after the small silver carp that is the staple of many diets here. Images of fish and fishermen are etched into the walls of stone buildings around Angkor Wat, the majestic temple complex that was once the center of an ancient empire more than 1,000 years ago. Environmental alarmists often claim that the Tonlé Sap Lake is rapidly filling with sediment. However, recent long-term sedimentation studies show that net sedimentation within the lake proper has been in the range of 0.1-0.16 mm/year since some 5,500 years ago. Thus, there is no threat of the lake filling up with sediment. On the contrary, rather than being a danger, sediment is an important part of its ecosystem, providing nutrients that drive the flood plain’s productivity. The reversal of the Tonlé Sap River’s flow also acts as a safety valve to prevent flooding further downstream. During the dry season (December to April)

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the Tonlé Sap Lake provides around 50% of the flow to the Mekong Delta in Vietnam. The lake occupies a depression created due to the geological stress induced by the collision of the Indian subcontinent with Asia. In recent years the building of high dams for flood control and electricity generation in both southern China and Lao has threatened the strength and volume of the reverse flow into Tonlé Sap; a phenomenon that many environmentalists have been slow to recognize. In the past several years, fish catches from the Tonlé Sap are significantly down, which led to the fears about sedimentation. The Tonlé Sap Lake and its surrounding provinces are part of the Tonlé Sap Biosphere Reserve. There are nine provinces that make up the Reserve, including Banteay Meanchey, Battambang, Kampong Chhnang, Kampong Thom, Preah Vihear, Pursat, Siem Reap, Otdar Meanchey, and Krong Pailin. The area is home to many ethnic Vietnamese, and numerous ethnic Cham communities living in floating villages around the lake.


Other local people live beside the lake in temporary thatched huts, which are dismantled and moved along the causeways to escape the flood waters; their lightweight homes are lifted onto trucks to take them on their journeys of 1 or 2 miles inland several times each year. Once the floods recede the homes are again loaded onto trucks and returned to their original positions. Some local residents build their homes permanently on stilts up to 30 feet high, to sit safely above the rising water. Visiting a floating village has become an important tourist destination in recent years. Canny villagers have begun to charge visitors for tours and photographs. It is also possible to boat from Phnom Penh up-river to Siem Reap during the months when the lake is navigable, a several-day trip.


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In Praise of the Tuk-Tuk Invented in Thailand in the 1960’s, tuk-tuks are now seen everywhere in Bangkok, but also in India, South Africa, in much of Europe, and occasionally even in America. We believe, though, that the tuk-tuk has reached its full flower in Siem Reap.


et’s start with the name. “Tuk-tuk” is the name given to any motorized rickshaw. It was first developed in Thailand in the 1960s when the government banned the human-powered “pedicab”, citing both the danger to its driver and passengers, and the traffic havoc created, when human-powered and gasoline engines tried to share busy city streets. There was also dismay from humanrights advocates who charged that peddle-powered pedicabs full of large Western tourists were an affront to the human dignity of their drivers. Whatever... “Tuk-tuk” is more-or-less the sound made by the original 2-stroke Thai motorized tricycles that replaced pedicabs. Their puttering motors made a sound that locals branded “tuktuk”, and the name stuck.


Why did tuk-tuks take off? Well, they’re relatively cheap to buy, and quite inexpensive to operate, especially compared to the costs of an automobile taxi. Those savings can be passed on to passengers, who pay about half the fare charged by a taxi. They’re also fun to ride. Depending on size (and some of the Thai models get quite elaborate, holding up to seven passengers), and open to the sights, sounds, and smells of the street-life through which they pass, they’re also superior for people-viewing, and easier to enter and exit. With so much going for it, the tuk-tuk caught on, favored by many visitors to Thailand who introduced the vehicle to countries around the world. JAN - MARCH, 2011

When the tuk-tuk made its way to Cambodia, Francophiles (who tend to hold intellectual sway wherever they are found) promptly renamed them remarques. Sounds classy, n’est pas? But tuktuk has the advantage of sounding like what it is, so tuk-tuk it is. It was in Cambodia that the lowly tuk-tuk reached its ultimate form, and nowhere more so than in Siem Reap. What’s so special about a Cambodian tuk-tuk? Well, it has all the advantages of the Thai tricycle described above, but in Cambodia a fullon motorcycle pulls a separate carriage (I always think of the song from the musical Oklahoma about “the surrey with a fringe on the top” when I see a tuk-tuk. I’m not 100% sure what

a “surrey” is, but it seems to me to be a small cart pulled by a horse.) With the Khmer tuktuk the horse is replaced by a typically small motorbike, but the image remains. Readers too young to remember Oklahoma can do a Google search. The carriage is attached to the motor-bike by a ball joint that allows the driver to make very sharp turns without discomfiting his passengers. It also detaches easily, allowing the driver to disconnect the carriage and have the use of his motorbike when not working. Not including the cost of the motorbike, a new tuk-tuk can be had for $500-$600. A typical 2nd-hand 100cc motorbike might add another $500.

While a lot of money to a young man (never a young woman, for reasons not clear), this is far less than the cost of a Thai tuk-tuk, much less than a car. And, considering that a day’s work pulling a group of foreign tourists around town or on a templeviewing outing can bring in $15$20, it’s a worthwhile investment. Half the residents of Siem Reap province live on less than $40 a month, so the money’s not bad if you can attract customers. Tuk-tuk drivers can be quite creative when it comes to marketing their services. Several have websites and Facebook pages that allow visitors to arrange their transportation in advance of arriving in Cambodia. Some have colorful paint jobs with slogans like “Funny Bat-

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man”. Hey, English isn’t their native language. There’s even one clever entrepreneur who’s outfitted his tuk-tuk with an auto-worthy sound system and who offers his customers their choice in musical selections. He calls his the “Rock & Roll Tuktuk”. And he does pretty well by all appearances. Tuk-tuks can also be found in Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville, but due to its relatively small size and the nearly 2 million visitors each year who arrive to see the famous temples of Angkor, tuk-tuks in Siem Reap are more ubiquitous and more colorful than those found elsewhere. And they’re lots of fun for tooling around town.


Angkor National Museum The Legend Revealed The Angkor National Museum is the most important museum dedicated to the Angkor civilization in Cambodia and Asia. It is located in Siem Riep City, in the exclusive Charles de Gaulle Avenue, at the north of the National Road.

Lintel Style: Banteay Srei Date : 10th Century Display in Gallery C

Its collection, exhibited in eight galleries (the Exclusive Gallery and the other ones identified from A to G), numbers several masterpieces of theAngkor temples and it is the most complete representation of the culture, history and archeology of the Golden Age of Cambodia. The Charles de Gaulle Avenue is not far from the temples itself (about two kilometers from downtown). The facade keeps the harmony of the Angkorian unique architecture. Comparable to any modern museum in the world, it has a fast ticketing service system (and it is possible to book online), a Guide Map and Audio Tour Set (personal translation device) with eight languages (Khmer, English, German, Korean, Japanese, French, Chinese and Thai.) It is a highly recommended place to complete visits to the temples. The combination of modern technologies with its multimedia presentations is ready to introduce the visitor into the magic of the Angkor world.

Wooden desk : The Museum Mall

The Museum is placed in 20 thousand square meters (65,616 sq. feet) surrounded with the Cambodian traditional gardens and the exclusivity of the northern area of Siem Riep City. The Museum is the product of a joint eort of the Royal Ministry of Culture and Fine Art, the APSARA Authority and the Museum Co., Ltd. on a 30 year concession period. No doubt, it is a world class museum dedicated to the preservation of the Khmer artifacts, collections and restorations of the fascinating Angkor Civilization. The Angkor National Museum is unique in Cambodia. It has its own style and its full inspiration in the ancient glorious time of the Khmer Empire, just at the doors of the temples. by A. Rodas


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Gallery 6 : Ancient Costume

Welcome to the Kingdom of Cambodia Hello my name is Vebol. I welcome you to the country of my birth and to the beautiful land that we Khmer people love. I will be happy to be your local driver, guide and assistant while you are in Siem Reap. Your business will be greatly appreciated! Telephone : (+855) / (+855) E-mail : Website : Face Book : Veboloung I have a lot of experience, I speak very good English. I am friendly, honest, helpful, reliable, and very knowledgeable about local culture. I can provide you with transport in my Tuk Tuk or if you prefer an air-conditioned vehicle. I charge very reasonable rates! My years of experience allow me to provide excellent itineraries. I look forward to making your stay in Siem Reap a most memorable adventure !

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Magazine & Website

Siem Reap City Map (Town Center) Restaurant & Bar

Shopping / Boutique

Tour/Travel Agent

Spa / Massage

Jayavarman VII Hospital Borei Speak Neak Inn (Performances by Beatocello) H

Hotel with restaurant

Bank / ATM

Sofitel Royal Angkor (Couleurs d’Asie Located Inside)







Tara Angkor Asia Craft Centre(ACC) Online D’mouj




Cathelic Church Golden Orange Angkor Discover Inn

Sivatha Blvd

Taphul Road

Lucky Mall (Lucky Supermarket lucky Department, Store, Monument Toys...) SBC

Prince d’Angkor

Kazna Hotel

Street 05

Cambodian Red Cross/ Angkor Panaorama


Street 21

La Résidence of Angkor

Wat Bo Area Wat Bo Road


Achar Sva Street

Curry Walla 1

14 Street

Nest Mekong Bank

Mekong Angkor Palace

European New Apsara Guesthouse Market Peace of MotherHome Guest House Angkor Tours Home Sweet Home GH Two Dragons

Home Cocktail Angkor World Travel Claremont Angkor and Street 20 East India Curry

Siem Reap River

hello point

Oum Chhay Street

Tany Khmer Family Kitchen

Paris Saigon Vong Street Samdach Tep

Viroth’s Restaurant

Wat Bo

Angkor Hospital Angkor Rivieara Hotel/Gingkgo Spa ANZ Royal Bank Charming Cambodia for Children Adidas Tours Common Grounds UCB Selantra Pich Reamker Asian Trails Central Boutique Frangipani Spa Street 22 Good Nah Hotel de la Paix Angkor ng Street Vo Tep Terre Cambodge Le Café The Villa Siem Reap Ivy Senhoa Nail Spa Samdach City River Hotel Phsar Guesthouse The Emerald Lotus Kandal Street 23 Boutique Hotel (Center Viroth’s Hotel MPA Naga Guesthouse Market) Bopha Angkor Soria Moria it Stands King AngkorVilla SBC Phnom Penh Fresh Fru Street 24 Sorya Transport Hong Kong Restaurant Canadia PROVINCIAL Shadow of Angkor II Happy 2 thHerb Pizza HOSPITAL Tany Family Lodge Wat Preah nou Street 25 Intra Co. Stre Prom Rath et Happy Special Pizza Relax Massage Khmer Butterflies Gardent Vattanac Bank Home Cocktail Happy Angkor Pizza Street 26 Blue 7 Massage Dead Fish Tower Bodia Spa Tell Restaurant U-Care Maharajah Singing Tree 7 Girls Khmer Massage Be VIP Khmer Massage Tourex Asia Café Brickhouse Bar Little Traditional Happy Angkor Pizza Pumpkin Banana Leaf India Kokoon/Blue Movie Mall Angkor Candles Angkor Trade Center Temple Club/Balcony Traditonal Curry CAB Bank Angkor Street 27 Island Massage Viva Khmer (Pizza Co., Swensens) Rajana Cambodian Walla 2 Night ViVa Khmer Family Champey Senteurs Shadow of Angkor BBG Market d’Angkor Le Grand Red Piano Rehab Craft Chamkar Amok Mekong Guilts Les Orientalistes Body Tune Massage McDermott Gallery Neak Garden Village Sao Mao Aha Krorhorm Kampuccino Guesthouse Molly Malone’s Cherry Blossom Boutique Baca Villa Sala Bai

Zone One Salina Hotel

Sam Veasna Center

Apsara Theater Angkor Village

St r

M O eet 9 A LD R K E T

St re et


St re et


Old Market Area

Leu Phsar Thom Thmey

Not to Scale Mom’s Guesthouse

Pokambor AV

Royal Day Camintel Inn Angkor POST Casa Angkor Resort OFFICE Oum Khun Street L’Escale des Shinta Mani Arts et des Sens

Angkor Market Master Suki Soup

Green Garden Home

Angie’s Villa

Yaklom Lodge & Sawasdee Food Garden

MC Dermott Gallery Red Gallery Visaya Spa FCC Angkor

Street 03

Not to Scale

La Noria Hotel and Restaurant

Park and Promenade

Old French Quarter

Obriot Gallery

Golden Mango Inn (150 meters) Dara Reang Sey Hotel (350 meters) Bus Station (800 meters) Roluos Group (12km) Phum Stoeng Trocheat (13km) Phnom Penh (314km) Reaksmey Star Travel/CTV Phsar Samaki Freedom Hotel

Angkor Wat in Miniature (Artist Dy Proeung) Borann I’Auberge des Temples

Royal Residence

Ya-Tep Shrine

Street 02

Khmer Inn Angkor

Taphul Village Area


Caltex Ta Som Guesthouse

Mysteres d’Angkor

Wat Po Lanka

Angkoriana Hotel Tonle Chaktomuk and Chaopraya Coffee Tourism Department

f An

Royal Independence Preah Ang Chek Gardens Preah Ang Chorm Shrine

Victoria Angkor Angkor Shopping Center National Route No 6 Panida CAB Bank

Airport Road

Jasmine Lodge

ple o

Wat Kesararam

Bou Savy Guesthouse

e tem

Angkor TK

Wat Preah An Kau Sai

Suki BBQ

to th

Jasmine Lodge

Wat Preah An Kau Sai

River Village Manor Morokat Mart & Coffee Shop The Emerald Lotus Boutique


The Museum Mall (Monument Books) Angkor M National Museum Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor

La Villa Mona d’Angkor Shining Angkor Boutique

Dragon Royal 7 Makara ECU (Office)

Royal Yoga Madamsachiko: Angkor Cookies & Café Puka Puka

Not to scales


Hidden Cambodia Adventure (workshop)

Not to Scale

Angkor Village Resort

Hidden Cambodia Adventure Tours(office)

Le Méridien




Peace of Angkor Palm Garden Lodge

Artisans d’Angkor Ancient Angkor Inn Tanei Questhouse Angkor Trek Tour


Golden Banana IKTT Five Star Villa Siem Reap Reverside (50 meters) Sayon’s House (300 meters)

Wats Up Golden Banana Boutique Resort

Green Village Palace

or t Phnom Dei

Phokeethra Country Club (5km Past Baray) National Silk Center (16km from town) Dragon Rayal City - Puok Dragon Royal City - Kralanh

Phnom Bok

Wat Bakong Loley Prasat Preah KoPrasat Prei Mont

Prasat Banteay Samrae

Prasat Banteay Srey

1 km.

Prasat Touch Prei Prasat

Eastern Baray (dried up)

E Reaksmey Crystal

GSO Travel Senteur d’Angkor (workshop)

First Travel Reasmey Tep Pranom Diethelm Apsara Angkor New Market Angkor Total

Khiri Travel

66 A

Prasat Ta Ney

Te m Ar p ea le

Dragon Royal Hotel

Healthy Hand Massage The One Massage Bangkok Airways Angkor Home

Kroi koPrasat Prey Neakpean

Banteay Kdei 66 B

Prasat Ta Prum

Prasat Takaeo Thommanon Chao Say Tepda

Angkor Oasis Vietnam Airlines

Angkor Wat


Prasat Banteay Thum

Angkor TK

Airport Road National Route #6 between town center and the Siem Reap International Airport


Ta Prohm Ke Prasat Baksei Cham Krong Baphuon

To To

Phnom Bakheng Prasat Reaob Kanda

nle S a

p La



Prasat Prey Prasat Patri

Prasat Kraom Prasat Ta Noreay Siem Reap Airport Western Mebon Prasat Kaoh Ho Western Baray Pralay

Prasat Kouk Pou

Prasat Ak Yum

Prasat Phnom Rung

The Kool Hotel

66 A

Nokor Krau

Cambodia Angkor Air


Preah Enteak Kosei

Prasat Prey Khan Kraol Romeas Angkor Thom Bayon





Prasat Dounso Tram Neak

Prasat Banteay Prei

The Sothea


Prasat Toep



Kuk Talech

Prasat Kravan

Royal Angkor Resort Empress Angkor

Angkor Palace Resort & Spa

67 Prasat Leak Neang



Prasat Prey Roup Prasat Ta Som Eastern Mebon Prasat Bat Chum

Pacific Hotel Royal Angkor Inn Hospital

Angkor Miracle Resort & Spa

Prasat Kamnap

To Po ip


To Ph nom Kule n/Kb al Sp ean

Ecole d’Hotellerie at de Tourisme Paul Dubrule/ Le Jardin des Délices

Cambodian Cultural Village

Prasat Ou Koek

To Phno m Penh

p Air

Mandalay Inn Divine Lotus Inn Angkor Friendship Inn Angkor Spirit Palace

Siem Reap Hospital

Alliance Café

Passaggio Boutique Hotel

Wat Damnak

Pr o H hm ot el

Sawasdee Angkor Inn

250 m. 500 m.

Old Market Bridge

E M van ar s ke tin

Stre Wanderlust V & A Encore Angkor Neng Sinath Europe-Asia Tours/ et 10 Tattoo Machine Massage Sok San Red Piano Khmer Taste StreAmary Golden Guesthouse et 1 TNT India Gate Temple 1 Terrasse des Villa Elephants

Prasat Prel Wat Chedei


Explore the World Heritage Angkor Temples and immerse yourself in the Khmer empire. The Victoria Angkor Resort & Spa, inspired by 20th century colonial architecture and design, provides a sense of serenity with the nostalgic comfort and elegant reĮnement of the French Art de Vivre. In total harmony ha ny with w its natural surroundings, roun ndings, the the resort is situated in the heartt of Siem hear m Reap, opposite o posite the th Royal Park. Locate Located to Park d within cclose ose proximity prox old the Angkor Angko Temples, Temples the quaint qua market town tow wn of SSiem iem Reap and 7 km. (4 from the InternaƟonal Airport. m miles) In ernaƟonal A Transport with Transp port yourself yoursel into the past p three limousines, our thre ee vintage Citroen lim ousines, for personalized personalized airport transfers, tran nsfers, a trip tr around the the town or a visit to the Temples. ples. VICTORIA ORIA ANGKOR RESORT & SPA al Park, P.O. B Central Boxx 9314 93145, m Reap Town, Siem Kingdom of Cambodia Tel: +85563 760 428 Fa +855 63 760 350 Fax: re resa.a

Cambodia Insight - Issue 5  

Norodom Sihanouk... A Most Remarkable Man Siem Reap - Angkor... Beyond the Temples ATF 2011... Cambodia Geared to Host an Unforgettable Even...

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