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Cambodia welcomes 2.36 million international visitors in first half of 2016

During the first six month of 2016, Cambodia recorded 2.36 million foreign visitors, according to the Tourism Ministry. The numbers increased by 2.6 per cent compared to the 2.3 million visitors for the same period in 2015. The majority of arrivals came from Vietnam, and Cambodia recorded a 13 per cent increase in visitors from China following improved relations with the country.

Cambodia welcomes 2.36 million international visitors in first half of 2016

Cambodia recorded an increase in foreign visitors during the first half of this year, following new data released by the Tourism Ministry. According to the results, 2.36 million foreign tourists visited Cambodian between January and June, 2016.

The visitor number were up by 2.6 per cent compare to the same period in 2015, which saw 2.3 million arrivals in Cambodia. The majority of tourists came from neighbouring Vietnam, but numbers were down by 4.5 per cent, and there was a 13 per cent increase in tourists from China with 378,740 tourists. Visitors from South Korea were down by 15 per cent, with 193,000 arrivals in the first six months.

Kong Sopheareak, the director of the statistics and planning department at Cambodia’s Tourism Ministry, said that improved relations between Cambodia and China, together with Cambodia's diverse tourism sites are attracting more Chinese holidaymakers. He added:

"In my view, China will overtake Vietnam in one or two years to become the first largest source of tourists to Cambodia."

Bordered by Thailand, Vietnam and Laos, Cambodia is a nation in South East Asia that has become a popular tourist destination over recent years. Its coastline faces the Gulf of Thailand and boasts white sand beaches that are sandwiched between tropical emerald jungles or forests and the warm sapphire sea. Visitors can go snorkelling or scuba diving in the waters surrounding Koh Rong Island, or relax on the palm-lined sandy stretches in the Sihanoukville province that sit on the edges of the Ream National Park.

Cambodia’s capital city Phnom Penh is home to the Royal Palace, the National Museum of Cambodia, the Sisowath Quay, Killing Fields of Choeung Ek, and the hilltop Wat Phnom Buddhist complex. Holidaymakers can visit the bustling Central Market which is located within a dome-shaped art deco building, and sells everything from gold and silver jewellery and antiques, to flowers and everyday electrical items.

Cambodia boasts an array of diverse attractions including the ancient sites such as Ta Prohm temple and Angkor Thom, and the UNESCO World Heritage Site Angkor Wat with its 12th-century temples and ruins in the Angkor Archaeological Park. For hiking and climbing, there are many nature reserves and national parks including Kep National Park with dense forests and pagodas; Phnom Kulen National park with waterfalls and mountains; and Ream National Park with its mangrove forests and pristine beaches.

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