Eclectic, creative and pragmatic, the Khmer cuisine is one of the most prominent in South East Asia. Severely overlooked by its heavyweights neighbours (Thailand and Vietnam), Cambodian cuisine is starting to find the international recognition it deserves.
Khmer cuisine is an aesthetic pleasure, where the presentation of the meal is as important as its ingredients. Heavily influenced by its french colonial background, Cambodian cuisine has undertaken some of the French specialties, such as the widespread production and consumption of baguettes. Typically chinese products, such as dumplings and have also been absorbed by Cambodian cuisine.
The staple food for Cambodians is rice. Influencing language and culture, rice is consumed with all meals, using a great variety of cooking styles and techniques.
Here are two Cambodian dishes that will delight any hungry traveller:
Fish Amok : This fish curry delight is considered the national meal. Beautifully presented and carefully elaborated, gets its magical flavour from Kroeung, an aromatic curry paste made with lemongrass, galangal, shallots, garlic and chili. Served in a banana leaf cup, Fish Amok is an essential choice for food lovers.
Bai Sach: One of Cambodia’s most popular breakfast dishes and one of our all time favorites. This recipe diverges a lot depending on the cook and region, but they all feature marinated pork, soy and coconut milk, accompanied by green tomatoes, cucumbers and rice. Cheap, healthy and creative, Bai Sach is the perfect food to start the day with.
To visit Cambodia you are required to have a working tourist visa, which has a cost of US$35 and a passport valid for more than six months. For most nationalities, visas can be obtained upon arrival at both Phnom Penh and Siem Reap International airports, but most tourist purchase online visas through the E-visa website. It is advisable to apply for your visa for Cambodia with a few weeks in advance in order to prevent potential delays in the application process.
If you are planning to travel to Cambodia for business, you are required to apply for a business visa
In order to obtain a valid visa, both tourist and business travelers are required to have a passport sized photo and a passport valid for more than six months. All visas have a duration of 30 days and are valid for a period of three months from the issue date. Both tourist and business visas offer the possibility of extending your permit up to one year. If you wish to extend your stay in Cambodia, you must visit the Immigration Department of the National Police.
A departure tax is charged on all domestic and international flights, and ranges from US$6 to US$25 depending on the type of flight.
Applying for a visa to Cambodia for US citizens can also be arranged by ordinary mail. For additional information, contact the Royal Embassy of Cambodia in Washington . In order to visit Cambodia, visa requirements for US citizens are not hard to meet. Should you have any issue during your stay or application process, do contact your closest consulate.