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Cambodia: a now peaceful corner of Indochina.
Cambodia, bordering Thailand, Laos and Vietnam, has, in the past two decades, redrawn its identity and transformed its tourism infrastructure. Eco tourism is getting off the ground, with undisturbed jungles, wild elephants, tigers and leopards and some of the most remote islands in South-east Asia on offer.
For pristine forests and grassland, head east for remote Ratanakiri province, recommends the Independent . Visit Kratie, a beautiful location where you can see the endangered irrawaddy dolphin in the Mekong river, then continue on to Virachey National Park (adventure-cambodia.com/vnp). Visitors can go deep into its 3,325sq km wilderness, home to gibbons, wild elephants and vultures.
Cambodia is abundant with beautiful, jungle-infested temples and the sublime 12th-century temple complex of Angkor Wat cannot be missed. Hewn out of the jungle 1,000 years ago, the magnificent city of Angkor was probably the world's most populous at the time, with around a million inhabitants. Captured by Thai invaders in 1431, it was abandoned until rediscovered in 1860 by French archaeologist Henri Mahout.
There are plenty of massage spas in Siem Reap, Angkor’s nearest town, with Boutique hotels by the river. Local tour operators offer trips to Tonlé Sap, a giant tidal lake. It is home to the Prek Toal bird sanctuary, regarded as the most important breeding ground in South-east Asia for endangered water birds.