- The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new lands but seeing with new eyes. Marcel Proust
Easy to reach
If you find a cheap flight anywhere from Europe to Bangkok it is a great option to spend a few days in the big metropolis and than take the direct bus from Bangkok to Siem Reap. It is an 8-9 hours long journey, the ticket costs about 20 EUR. The other option is to fly from Bangkok or Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) into Siem Reap or to the capital Phnom Penh. Air Asia offers great rates (Bangkok – Siem Reap flight costs around 50 EUR).
If you are looking for quiet, laid back beaches without huge resorts and crowded beach bars you are at the right place. Head to Kep from the capital, and take the small boat from the pier to get dropped off on Rabbit Island. This small island has only a few huts and the electricity comes on for 4 hours a day. If you are looking for something louder check out Shinaoukville. Or take the speedferry to Koh Rong Island. Koh Rong Samloem is more quiet and in general the white sand and turquise water can be only found on the islands. You will feel yourself in Paradise.
Visit Angkor Wat
Visiting the amazing temple complex is the highlight for most people and the main reason for going to Cambodia. The temples are remains of the capital of the Khmer Empire from the 9th to the 15th century surrounded by jungle. It can be very crowded in the peak season so it requires some logistics which temple to start at. The sunset watching spot is overcrowded and also the sunrise at Angkor Wat. Probably the best idea is to buy the 3 day pass for 40 USD and do the small circuit, big circuit and go back to your favourite temples when they are less crowded. Generally said the big tourist groups go back to Siem Reap for lunch and return again in the afternoon. Make sure to start early in the morning this way there is a chance to see even Bayon without people. Bycicling is possible but you have to deal with the heat and the distances are big. Bargain with a tuktuk driver (usually 15 USD/day) to drive you from temple to temple.
Often called the land of smiles, Cambodia is truly about being very welcomed as a foreigner. The Khmer people make you feel at home and you will remember some smiles for long. If you are into photgraphy there is a great chance take some great shots of people.
Even for women traveling alone Cambodia is one of the safest destinations. In bigger towns it is impossible to stay alone as you will get to know so many other travellers in restaurants, hostels, tourist sights. If this is your first journey alone, it will be a great experience go for it!