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PHNOM PENH


1.ROYAL PALACE IN PHNOM PENH

The Royal Palace (Preah Barum Reachea Veang Nei Preah Reacheanachak Kampuchea), in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, is a complex of buildings which serves as the royal residence of the king of Cambodia. Its full name in the Khmer language is Preah Barum Reachea Veang Chaktomuk Serei Mongkol. The Kings of Cambodia have occupied it since it was built in 1860s, with a period of absence when the country came into turmoil during and after the reign of the Khmer Rouge.

The palace was constructed after King Norodom relocated the royal capital from Oudong to Phnom Penh in the mid-19th century. It was built atop an old citadel called Banteay Kev. It faces towards the East and is situated at the Western bank of the cross division of the Tonle Sap River and the Mekong River called Chaktomuk (an allusion to Brahma).

2. WAT PHNOM

Wat Phnom (Khmer: វត្តភ្នំ; "Mountain Pagoda") is a Buddhist temple (wat) located in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. It was built in 1373, and stands 27 metres (88.5 ft) above the ground. It is the tallest religious structure in the city. The pagoda was given the name of Wat Preah Chedey Borapaut. Wat Phnom is the charming central point of Phnom Penh.

 

History
Legend relates that a wealthy widow called Penh (commonly referred to as Daun Penh – Grandmother Penh – in Khmer) found a large koki tree in the river. Inside the tree she found four bronze statues of the Buddha. Penh constructed a small shrine on an artificial hill made by the people living in the village to protect the sacred statues. Eventually this became a sacred site and sanctuary where people would make blessings and pray.

Then it came to the year of the snake 1437 suggests King Ponhea Yat ordered His Excellency Decho Srei to raise the mount even higher when he finished building the new Royal Palace in the new city he then named Krong Chaktomok Mongkol or simply known as Phnom Penh. The prominent stupa immediately west of the sanctuary contains the ashes of the king and his royal family.

Wat Phnom is the center of celebration during Khmer New Year, and Pchum Ben.

Architecture
The sanctuary itself was rebuilt several times in the 19th century and again in 1926. The interior has a central altar complex with a large bronze seated Buddha surrounded by other statues, flowers, candles and items of devotion and worship. The walls are covered with murals, especially of Jataka stories of the Buddha's earlier reincarnations before his enlightenment. There are also murals depicting stories from the Reamker, the Khmer version of the Ramayana. The newer murals in the bottom tiers are somewhat balanced, traditional and modern.

The southwest corner of the vihear and stupa, is a small shrine dedicated to Lady Penh. The front is often crowded with the faithful bringing their prayers and food offerings to the woman deemed responsible for the founding of the wat.

3. NATIONAL MUSEUM

Courtyard of the National Museum
Established 1920s
Location Street 13, Sangkat Chey Chumneas, Khan Daun Penh, Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Type Art museum, Archaeology,and History
Director Kong Vireak
Website National Museum Website

The National Museum of Cambodia (Khmer: សារមន្ទីរជាតិ) in Phnom Penh is Cambodia's largest museum of cultural history and is the country's leading historical and archaeological museum.


1.Overview:
National museum phnom penh cambodia 02032011093.jpg
The museum houses is one of the world's largest collections of Khmer art, including sculptural, ceramics, bronzes, and ethnographic objects. The Museum’s collection includes over 14,000 items, from prehistoric times to periods before, during, and after the Khmer Empire, which at its height stretched from Thailand, across present-day Cambodia, to southern Vietnam.

The National Museum of Cambodia is located on Street 13 in central Phnom Penh, to the north of the Royal Palace and on the west side of Veal Preah Man square. The visitor’s entrance to the compound are at the corner of Streets 13 and 178. The Royal University of Fine Arts is located on the west side of the museum. The museum is under the authority of Cambodian Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts. The Museum buildings, inspired by Khmer temple architecture, were constructed between 1917 and 1924, the museum was officially inaugurated in 1920, and renovated in 1968.

2.History:

The bronze statue of reclining Vishnu, West Mebon, Angkor (National Museum, Phom Penh).
George Groslier (1887–1945), historian, curator and author was the motivating force behind much of the revival of interest in traditional Cambodian arts and crafts, and it was he who designed this building that is today ‘traditional Khmer’ architecture. It is perhaps better described as a building enlarged from Cambodian temple prototypes seen on ancient bas-reliefs and reinterpreted through colonial eyes to meet the museum-size requirements.

The foundation stone for the new museum was laid on 15 August 1917. Some two-and-a-half years later, the completed museum was inaugurated during Khmer New Year on 13 April 1920 in the presence of H.M King Sisowath, François-Marius Baudoin, Résident-supérieur, and M. Groslier, director of Cambodian Arts, and Conservator of the museum.

The original design of the building was slightly altered in 1924 with extensions that added wings at either end of the eastern façade that made the building even more imposing.

Control of the National Museum and Arts Administration was ceded by the French to the Cambodians on 9 August 1951 and following Independence in 1953, the then Musée National de Phnom Penh was the subject of bilateral accords. In 1966 Chea Thay Seng was the first Cambodian Director of the Museum and Dean of the newly created Department of Archaeology at the Royal University of Fine Arts. This university that form its foundation as the Ecole des Arts Cambodgiens in 1920 was intimately linked with students, artisans and teachers who worked to preserve Cambodian cultural traditions, can still be found to the rear of the museum.

During Khmer Rouge regime of 1975-79—devastated all aspects of Cambodian life including the cultural realm. The Museum, along with the rest of Phnom Penh, was evacuated and abandoned. The Museum, closed between 1975 and 1979, and was found in disrepair, its roof rotten and home to a vast colony of bats, the garden overgrown, and the collection in disarray, many objects damaged or stolen. The Museum was quickly tidied up and reopened to the public on April 13, 1979. However, many of the Museum's employees had lost their lives during the Khmer Rouge regime.

Collections:

Interior of the National Museum of Cambodia, Phnom Penh.

Stone head of the Khmer Empire period (National Museum, Phnom Penh).
Together with the adjacent Royal University of Fine Arts and its Department of Archaeology, the National Museum of Cambodia works to enhance knowledge of and preserve Cambodian cultural traditions and to provide a source of pride and identity to the Cambodian people. The Museum also serves a religious function; its collection of important Buddhist and Hindu sculpture addresses community religious needs as a place of worship. A permanent exhibition, Post-Angkorian Buddha, supported by UNESCO and a number of individuals and local businesses, opened in 2000 to extend the religious function of the Museum.

Under the auspices of the Cambodian Department of Museums, the Museum not only manages its own collection, staff, and premises but also supports and oversees all other state-run museums in Cambodia. Its activities are further supported by private individuals, foreign governments, and numerous philanthropic organizations. The activities of the Museum include the presentation, conservation, safekeeping, interpretation, and acquisition of Cambodian cultural material, as well as the repatriation of Cambodian cultural property. Looting and illicit export of Cambodian cultural material are a continuing concern.

Outside of Cambodia, the Museum promotes the understanding of Cambodian arts and culture by lending objects from its collection for major international exhibitions. This practice was in place before Cambodia’s recent decades of unrest and was reinstituted in the 1990s, starting with an exhibition held at the National Gallery of Australia in 1992. Subsequent exhibitions have been held in France, the USA, Japan, South Korea, and Germany.

4. SISOWATH QUAY

Sisowath Quay is a historic riverside located in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, parallel to Sisowath Boulevard in the Chamkarmon district. The quay is situated along the junction of the Mekong and Tonlé Sap River and is situated near the Royal Palace of Cambodia.

The portion in front of the palace was used for watching boat races during the Water Festival. The Foreign Correspondents' Club of Cambodia is located in this district. The quay is a 3km strip filled with vendors, locals, tourists and are lined with hotels, restaurants, bars, cafes and shops.

5. INDEPENDENCE MONUMENT

The Independence Monument (Khmer: វិមានឯករាជ្យ, "Vimean Akareach") in Phnom Penh, capital of Cambodia, was built in 1958 for Cambodia's independence from France in 1953. It stands on the intersection of Norodom Boulevard and Sihanouk Boulevard in the centre of the city. It is in the form of a lotus-shaped stupa, of the style seen at the great Khmer temple at Angkor Wat and other Khmer historical sites. The Independence Monument was designed by the influential Cambodian modern architect Vann Molyvann.

During national celebrations, The Independence Monument is the center of activity. A ceremonial flame on the interior pedestal is often lit by a royal or high official on these occasions, and floral tributes line the stairs. Every year, The Independence Monument is visited by foreigners and locals alike.

Behind the monument is the newly constructed Statue of Norodom Sihanouk.

Coordinates: 11.5564°N 104.9281°E

6. NEW MARKET

The Central Market (Khmer: ផ្សារធំថ្មី, "Psah Thom Thmey", "New Grand Market"), is a large market constructed in 1937 in the shape of a dome with four arms branching out into vast hallways with countless stalls of goods. Initial design and layouts are from French architect Louis Chauchon. Construction works were supervised by French architects Jean Desbois and Wladimir Kandaouroff.

It is located in Cambodia's capital city, Phnom Penh. When it first opened in 1937, it was said to be the biggest market in Asia; today it still operates as a market. From 2009 to 2011, it underwent a US$4.2 million renovation funded by the French Development Agency.

The market opens from 7:00 AM to 5:00 PM. It is, for tourists, a 'must see' stop. Most tourists visit this market because they want to see the extensive amount of products that are offered for bargain. The four wings of this gigantic yellow dome are teeming with stalls that sell goods ranging from gold and silver, antique coins, money exchange, men's and women's apparel, clocks, books, flowers, food, fabrics, shoes, souvenirs, fish, seafood, dessert, luggage, and countless other products.

The unique Art Deco building is a Phnom Penh landmark. Before 1935, the area was a lake that received runoff during the rainy season. The lake was drained and construction began in 1935. Since its completion in 1937, wet season flooding around the market has remained a problem and is vestigial evidence of the old lake. The entrance to the market is lined with souvenir merchants hawking everything from T-shirts and postcards to silver curios and kramas. Inside is a dazzling display of jewels and gold. Electronic goods, stationery, secondhand clothes and flowers are also sold. During the Franco-Thai war the market was bombed heavily by Thai aircraft, causing heavy damage, and it had to be temporarily closed. After the end of World War II the market was rebuilt in the modern style.

 

7.TOUL SLENG GENOCIDE

The Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum (Khmer: សារមន្ទីរឧក្រិដ្ឋកម្មប្រល័យពូជសាសន៍ទួលស្លែង) is a museum, chronicling genocide, in Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia. The site is a former high school which was used as the notorious Security Prison 21 (S-21) by the Khmer Rouge regime from its rise to power in 1975 to its fall in 1979. Tuol Sleng (Khmer [tuəl slaeŋ]) means "Hill of the Poisonous Trees" or "Strychnine Hill". Tuol Sleng was only one of at least 150 execution centers in the country,[1] and as many as 20,000 prisoners there were later killed.