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This section covers many valuable resources on Cambodia such as the travel guides or tips to travelers. Some of the topics contain links to the other related sites of similar subjects. In certain topic, we include lists of useful contacting address for your information.

Fact File:
Country Name:  The Kingdom of Cambodia
Country Name in Khmer language: Kampuchea
Motto: Nation - Religion – King
Capital City: Phnom Penh
Language: Khmer (Cambodian). Some English, French.
Government: Multy-party democracy under a constitutional monarchy
Important/Major Cities: Siem Reap (Gateway to the temples of Angkor). Sihanoukville (port and beach town). Battambang, Kampong Cham.
Major Rivers/Lakes: Tonle Sap River, Mekong River, Bassac River, Tonle Sap Lake
Ethnic Groups: Khmer (90-95%), ethnic-Chinese, Cham, ethnic-Vietnamese, several ethnic-minorities in the northeast.
Boring Countries: Thailand, Laos, Vietnam
International Airports: Phnom Penh (PHN), Siem Reap (SEP)
Religion: Theravada Buddhism (95%), Islam, Christianity, Animism.
Population of Cambodia: 14.2 million (est.)
Land area of Cambodia: 181.035 km2
Land area of Siem Reap: 10.299 km2
Currency: Riel (US$1=4200R). US dollars are as commonly used as riel
Voltage: 220v/50Hz
Time: GMT +7 hours
Country Calling Code: 855
Internet LTD: kh
Business Hours: 7:30-11:30 / 2:00-5:00 Closed Saturday afternoon and Sunday.

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Travel Guides » Events & Festivals

There are many interesting traditional religious and cultural ceremonies and festivals throughout the year. They provide a great opportunity to participate in a centuries old tradition of Khmer society. Some of the major festivals and ceremonies are listed below:

Full Moon Day (Meak Bochea)
30 January 2010.
It is a religous celebration day in Buddhism when all Buddhism -disciple and monks gather nearby Buddha who informed and foreseen that Buddha will die within near future and on Full moon.

Khmer New Year Day
Cambodian New Year, April 13th 14th 15th. Also for Laos, Myanmar, Nepal, Bangladesh, India,  Sri Lanka, Thailand, Iran and China (Yunnan province.)

First Day - Maha Songkran

The first day of the Khmer New Year is called 'Maha Songkran'. Similar to the Tamil tradition, it is believed that this was the day of creation. In Khmer tradition, the world was created by God's angels and to welcome the angels, people will clean their houses and illuminate them with candles. Families will place an idol of Buddha on an altar.

Second Day - Vanabot

Also known as Virak Wanabat, the second day of Khmer New Year is a time to think of the less fortunate. People offer charity by helping the poor, servants and homeless. Families may go to monasteries to pay respect to their ancestors, and it also a time for family members to exchange gifts.

Third Day - Leang Saka

On the third day of New Year celebrations, Buddhists wash and clean statues of Lord Buddha with scented water. This cleansing is done to ensure that Cambodia will receive all the water it needs in the coming year. Another tradition is that children wash and bathe their parents and grandparents in return for blessing and good advice for the future.


Full Moon Day (Visak BoChea)
28 April 2010.
It is a great celebration day according to Buddhism religion dedicated for Buddha's birthday, enlightens, death illuminations day and gone away to Nirvana.

Royal Ploughing Ceremony
2 May 2010.
It is a Royal Ceremony Day which the King or His representatives inaugurate and ploughing field as symbol to remind people that rainy season arrives and starts stimulating paddy-field to produce rice. This celebration day is usually held in Meru Area close to Royal Palace.

Birthday of King Boromneath Norodom Sihamoni
13-14-15 May 2010.
It is also great holiday for King Birthday that usually held in Royal Palace.

Birthday of Majesty Queen-Mother Norodom Monineath Sihanouk
18 June 2010.
Birthday of Majesty Queen-Mother Norodom Monineath Sihanouk is usually held in the Royal Palace.

Preah Vihear Temple Rememberance Day, a world heritage site
7 July 2010.
A great Celebration Day in which the temple of Preah Vihear was listed as a world heritage site by UNESCO in 2008.

Constitution Day
24 Semtember 2010.
Rememberance Day of the contitution was issued.

Pchum Ben Day
7-8-9 October 2010.

The importance ofKann Ben:
Cambodians believe that although most living creatures are reincarnated at death, due to bad karma, some souls are not reincarnated but rather remain trapped in the spirit world. Each year, for fifteen days, these souls are released from the spirit world to search for their living relatives, meditate and repent. The fifteen-day observance of Prachum Benda, or Ancestors’ Day, is a time for living relatives to remember their ancestors and offer food to those unfortunate enough to have become trapped in the spirit world. Furthermore, it is an important opportunity for living relatives to meditate and pray to help reduce the bad karma of their ancestors, thus enabling the ancestors to become reincarnated and leave the torment and misery of the spirit world.

The period of Prachum Benda:
Prachum Benda, better known colloquially as Pchum Ben, may be translated as “gathering together to make offerings” (prachummeaning “gathering together” and benda meaning “offerings”). The observance usually begins in mid-September and lasts an entire lunar cycle, constituting the fifteen days that ancestral spirits are given to visit their living relatives. In the year 2010, the specific dates for its commencement and conclusion are September 24th and October 9th, respectively.

Pchum Ben and the days leading up to it:
Pchum Ben is the fifteenth final day of the observance and consist of a large gathering of laity for festivities at local Buddhist temple. Each day leading up to the fifteenth, however, is also important and special. Different families host services at the temple on each of the fourteen days prior to the final celebration. The days leading up to Pchum Ben are known as Kann Ben (kann meaning “hosting or holding”) and are numbered one through fourteen accordingly.

The importance of Kann Ben:
Prior for the day a family or families are scheduled to host a kann ben, relatives and close family friends will go to the temple to make preparations. During the preparations, urns of ancestors, traditionally kept on the temple grounds, are polished and brought to the viheara (the main chanting room). Also, the names of ancestors are recorded onto an invitation list. This is important because spirits cannot receive offerings unless they are first invited to do so by living relatives. In the evening, the host family and other participants will join the monks in the viheara for meditation and chanting. The monks will then pass on the Buddha’ s teachings, as well as offer blessings and guidance to those present.

The early morning of Kann Ben and the proceedings:
Before sunrise on the morning of the Kann Ben, special food is prepared for the ancestral spirits to enjoy. Favorite dishes of various flavors and colors are offered. They range from the simple and traditional nom ansom (sticky rice wrapped in banana leaves with assorted fillings) to the more elaborate and rich amok (steamed fish fillet marinated in a complex mix of spices and herbs). As a gesture of kindness, the host also prepare bai ben (steamed sticky rice mixed with sesame seeds and then formed onto balls) to be thrown into shaded areas about the temple grounds. This mixture is an offering to the hungry souls who have been forgotten or no longer have living relatives to make them offerings.

Late morning of Kann Ben and the proceedings.
Before noon on Kann Ben, candles and incense are lit and the various dishes are offered to the monks. The prepared list of names is then recited and burned. The reading and burning of the list is a ritual performed to alert and direct the wandering souls to the location of their families. It is an invitation for the ancestral spirits to join their living relatives as they commemorate life. After consuming the proffered meal, the monks continue to chant blessings, sprinkling (or showering) holy water onto the families and their visiting ancestral spirits. The Kann Ben is a time of remembrance and an opportunity to accumulate good karma on behalf of one’s ancestors.

Reason why Pchum Ben is the most important day:
The rituals of Kann Ben continue for fourteen days. On the fifteenth day, the traditionally observed Pchum Ben, families in the local area gather to perform the same ritual of ancestral remembrance and offer an immense communal feast. This day is especially important because if any ancestors are unfortunate enough to have become Priad spirits, it is the only day that they may receive offerings of food and benefit from the good karma earned by their relatives. Priads are the most miserable of all souls due to their exceptional bad karma. Unlike other spirits, Priads fear light and can only receive prayers, food and be reunited with their living relatives during the darkest day of this lunar cycle, the day of Pchum Ben.

The importance of Pchum Ben:
Participating in the Pchum Ben, whether as a host or participant, is a very important aspect of Cambodian culture. It is a time of reunion and commemoration. It is a time to express love and appreciation for one’s ancestors. By offering food and good karma to those possibly trapped in the spirit world, living relatives help assuage their misery and guide them back into the cycle of reincarnation. After the ancestors are reincarnated, they have the opportunity to accumulate good karma on their own and look forward to attaining a peaceful inner spirit, which is the best blessing a living relative can wish for their ancestors.

King Coronation's Day
29 October 2010.
Rememberance Day when the King was coronated.

His Majesty King Father Birthday
31 October 2010.
It is also great holiday for King Birthday that usually held in Royal Palace.

National Indepence Day
9 November 2010.
It is a national holiday to remember the time when Cambodia was declared independent from the French colony in 1953.

Water Festival
20-21-22 November 2010.
It is a great Traditional Holidays that on this season water flows back from Tonle Sap river to Mekong river. It last 3 days ceremonies with racing boat on Tonle Sap River in front of Royal Palace presided first day and end of ceremony by King or His representative. There are also 3 night’s corteges of boat-light of each ministry after ending of each racing day till early morning on the next day.

Human Rihgts Day
10 December 2010.
It is a very important day and the most interesting one. People are very happy with this holiday and its meanings.

International Half Marathon (Late December)
This International Half Marathon is held at Angkor Wat and attracts competitors from all over the world. Thousands of people come to see this international event held in the spectacular setting that is Angkor.