Interested in learning a few fun facts about Cambodia?
Whether you’re traveling to Cambodia in the near future or just curious to know more about this small country in Southeast Asia, this article is for you.
Here’s our roundup of the most interesting Cambodia facts:
1. Cambodia is a relatively smaller country in Southeast Asia located on the Indochina Peninsula. The country borders Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, and the Gulf of Thailand. As of 2020, Cambodia has a population of around 15.3 million.
2. Phnom Penh is the capital of Cambodia, as well as its largest city. Phnom Penh is the center of Cambodia’s commerce, industry, and economy, known at one time as the “Pearl of Asia.” It is home to about 2.2 million people, which is a large portion of Cambodia’s population of 15.3 million.
3. Angkor Wat, located near Siem Reap, is the largest religious monument in the world. Built in the 12th Century as a Hindu temple to Vishnu, it quickly transformed into a Buddhist temple. It is the most important symbol of Cambodia, with its image even located on the national flag, one of the few world flags with buildings in their emblems.
4. The United Nations ran Cambodia for about a year and a half in the 1990s. After the 1991 Paris Peace Accords, following a period of Vietnamese occupation, the UN established the United Nations Transitional Authority in Cambodia (UNTAC) from 1992-1993, the first time the global body has run the administration of an entire country. UNTAC was made up of police, troops, volunteers, and other people from 46 different countries, and they organized the election for the new government structure and constitution still in use today.
5. Cambodia has changed its official times many times over the years. Today its official name is the Kingdom of Cambodia, but one of the most interesting Cambodia facts is that it has changed its name almost a dozen times in the 20th Century alone:
- Kingdom of Cambodia (1993–present)
- United Nations Transitional Authority in Cambodia (1991–1993)
- State of Cambodia (1989–1991)
- People’s Republic of Kampuchea (1979–1989)
- National Government of Cambodia (1990–1993)
- Coalition Government of Democratic Kampuchea (1982–1990)
- Democratic Kampuchea (1976–1982)
- Kampuchea (1975–1976)
- Khmer Republic (1970–1975)
- Kingdom of Cambodia (1953–1970)
- French Protectorate of Cambodia (1863–1953)
6. Cambodia is made up of Khmer people, primarily. The Khmer people are an ethnic group native to Cambodia, making up about 97% of all the Cambodian people. Khmer is also the name for their language, as well as the script (alphabet) to the Khmer language. The demonym (what you call someone from a certain place) for a person from Cambodia is Cambodian, as they may not necessarily be Khmer. However, since the country’s name stems from a meaning of “land of the Khmers,” some people might refer to all Cambodians as Khmers, as well.
Well, that’s all our Cambodia facts for now, and we hope you’ve found this post interesting and informative! Do you have any questions, feedback, or other facts about Cambodia we should include on our list? Let us know below in the comments, and thanks for reading!