Photo Essay: The Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

When I crossed the border into Cambodia from Vietnam, I applied for my visa on arrival. When I got my passport back, I opened it up to check my visa to make sure that the dates were correct, as I always do. When I found the page, I instantly saw the words “Kingdom of Cambodia” at the top of the visa. I had been so long in the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, that I had completely forgotten that Cambodia was in fact a Kingdom. When I arrived in Phnom Penh, the country’s capital, I knew that the first thing that I should do is head to the Royal Palace.

Compared to the long history of Cambodia, beginning with the Khmer Empire in the 9th century, the Royal Palace and the capital of Phnom Penh are relatively new, first being established in the 1860’s. The Royal Palace complex of buildings was built throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, but the extravagance and grandeur that befits a royal residence is certainly there, and it has been the residence of the Royal Family of Cambodia for all of this time, apart from the short period of the Khmer Rouge rule in the 1970’s.

I found the art and architecture to be very beautiful and well worth checking out. I hope you enjoy this photo journey through the Royal Palace.

Throne Hall in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Walking up to the Throne Hall

Throne Hall in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

The Throne Hall

Statues at the throne hall in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Statues at the entrance to the Throne Hall (No photos allowed inside)

Moonlight Pavillion in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

The Moonlight Pavilion

Hor Samrith Phimean in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Hor Samrith Phimean

Wall details in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Wall detail

Gardens in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Well manicured gardens in the Royal Palace

Pochani Pavillion in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Pochani Pavilion

Ceiling in Pochani Pavilion in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

The ceiling in Pochani Pavilion

The Ramayana Frescoes in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

The Ramayana Frescoes near the Silver Pagoda

A Buddha statue in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

A Buddha statue near the library at the Silver Pagoda

Silver Pagoda and gardens in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

View of the Silver Pagoda and surrounding gardens

A royal stupa in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

A Royal Stupa

Details on a stupa in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Detail on the stupa

The Silver Pagoda in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

The Silver Pagoda, named for the over 5000 silver tiles – inside are many priceless treasures made of gold and silver. The “Emerald Buddha” is the main focus of the shrine, with a 90kg gold Buddha statue standing in front of it that is covered in over 9000 diamonds. (No photos allowed inside)

A column on the Silver Pagoda in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

A column on the outside of the Silver Pagoda

The Stupa of Princess Kantha Bopha in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

The Stupa of Princess Kantha Bopha

Beautiful painting of elephants in the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

A beautiful painting in the museums of the Royal Palace

Information on visiting the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh

Entrance to the Royal Palace costs $6.25 and is open from 8-11am and 2-5pm everyday except when it is closed for official functions.

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7 comments… add one
  • Kristy Aug 7, 2013

    Are the wall design made of gold? I can’t help but adore the pretty palace by it grandeur architecture!

    • Dean Wickham Aug 10, 2013

      It certainly has grandeur. A must see in Phnom Penh 🙂

  • ChinaMatt Aug 7, 2013

    Yet another reason for me to head to Cambodia this fall. Not sure how long I’ll get to stay there though.
    ChinaMatt recently posted..Reflecting Again on JiuzhaigouMy Profile

    • Dean Wickham Aug 10, 2013

      Hey Matt. It doesn’t matter how long you have. It’s what you do with your time 🙂 Hope you have a great trip!

  • Kelli Aug 12, 2013

    There’s a lot about travel I don’t like – the inconvenience (especially with international travel), the inevitable delays and a hundred other small things – and yet, when you arrive where you’re going it is all more than worth it – these are great photos, thanks for sharing!

    • Dean Wickham Aug 19, 2013

      Hi Kelli. Yes, sometimes getting to places can be annoying, but it’s always worth it, right? Glad you liked the photos 🙂

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