Phnom Penh, Cambodia

History | Geography | Economy | Universities and colleges

๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ญ Phnom Penh, formerly known as Krong Chaktomuk Serimongkul, is the capital and most populous city in Cambodia. Phnom Penh is the nation's economic, industrial, and cultural center.

Phnom Penh succeeded Angkor Thom as the capital of the Khmer nation but was abandoned several times before being reestablished in 1865 by King Norodom. The city formerly functioned as a processing centre, with textiles, pharmaceuticals, machine manufacturing, and rice milling. Its chief assets, however, were cultural. Institutions of higher learning included the Royal University of Phnom Penh (established in 1960 as Royal Khmer University), with schools of engineering, fine arts, technology, and agricultural sciences, the latter at Chamkar Daung, a suburb. Also located in Phnom Penh were the Royal University of Agronomic Sciences and the Agricultural School of Prek Leap.

The city was nicknamed the "Pearl of Asia" for its early 20th century colonial French architecture, which included Art Deco works. Phnom Penh, along with Siem Reap and Sihanoukville, are significant global and domestic tourist destinations for Cambodia. Founded in 1372, the city is noted for its historical architecture and attractions. It became the national capital in 1434 following the fall of Angkor, and remained so until 1497. It regained its capital status during the French colonial era in 1865. There are a number of surviving colonial-era buildings scattered along the grand boulevards.

On the banks of the Tonlรฉ Sap, Mekong, and Bassac Rivers, Phnom Penh is home to more than 2ย million people, approximately 14% of the Cambodian population. The Greater Phnom Penh area includes the nearby Ta Khmau city and some districts of Kandal province.

History The initial settlement of Phnom Penh is believed to have been established since the 5th century AD, according to the discovery of ancient kiln site in Choeung Ek commune of Dangkao district, southern part of central Phnom Penh in the early 2000s. Choeung Ek archaeological site was one of the largest kiln pottery centre in Cambodia and the earliest known kiln sites in Southeast Asia to produce the ceremonial vessels known as kendi from 5th to 13th century. Archaeologist stated that a large community is surrounded by a circular earthwork structure that is 740 metres in diameter and 4 metres high, built in the 11th century. In addition, there are remnants of other ancient village infrastructure, irrigation system, inscription, Shiva linga as well as an ancient brick temple foundation and its ornate remains which dated back to Funan era.

First recorded a century after it is said to have taken place, the legend of the founding of Phnom Penh tells of a local woman, Penh (commonly referred to as Daun Penh (Lady Penh in Khmer), living at Chaktomuk, the future Phnom Penh. It was the late 14th century, and the Khmer capital was still at Angkor near Siem Reap 350ย km (217ย mi) to the north. Gathering firewood along the banks of the river, Lady Penh spied a floating koki tree in the river and fished it from the water. Inside the tree she found four Buddha statues and one of Vishnu.

The discovery was taken as a divine blessing, and to some a sign that the Khmer capital was to be brought to Phnom Penh from Angkor. To house the new-found sacred objects, Penh raised a small hill on the west bank of the Tonle Sap River and crowned it with a shrine, now known as Wat Phnom at the north end of central Phnom Penh. "Phnom" is Khmer for "hill" and Penh's hill took on the name of the founder, and the area around it became known after the hill.

Phnom Penh first became the capital of Cambodia after Ponhea Yat, king of the Khmer Empire, moved the capital from Angkor Thom after it was captured and destroyed by Siam a few years earlier. There is a stupa behind Wat Phnom that houses the remains of Ponhea Yat and the royal family as well as the remaining Buddhist statues from the Angkorean era. In the 17th century, Japanese immigrants also settled on the outskirts of present-day Phnom Penh. A small Portuguese community survived in Phnom Penh until the 17th century, undertaking commercial and religious activity in the country.

Phnom Penh remained the royal capital for 73 years, from 1432 to 1505. It was abandoned for 360 years (from 1505 to 1865) by subsequent kings due to internal fighting between the royal pretenders. Later kings moved the capital several times and established their royal capitals at various locations in Tuol Basan (Srey Santhor), Pursat, Longvek, Lavear Em and Oudong.

It was not until 1866, under the reign of King Norodom I (1860โ€“1904), the eldest son of King Ang Duong, who ruled on behalf of Siam, that Phnom Penh became the permanent seat of government and capital of Cambodia, and also where the current Royal Palace was built. Beginning in 1870, the French colonial authorities turned a riverside village into a city where they built hotels, schools, prisons, barracks, banks, public works offices, telegraph offices, law courts, and health services buildings. In 1872, the first glimpse of a modern city took shape when the colonial administration employed the services of French contractor Le Faucheur to construct the first 300 concrete houses for sale and rental to Chinese traders.

By the 1920s, Phnom Penh was known as the "Pearl of Asia", and over the next four decades, Phnom Penh continued to experience rapid growth with the building of railways to Sihanoukville and Pochentong International Airport (now Phnom Penh International Airport). Phnom Penh's infrastructure saw major modernisation under the rule of Sihanouk.

During the Vietnam War, Cambodia was used as a base by the People's Army of Vietnam and the Viet Cong, and thousands of refugees from across the country flooded the city to escape the fighting between their own government troops, the People's Army of Vietnam, the Viet Cong, the South Vietnamese and their allies, the Khmer Rouge, and American air strikes. By 1975, the population was 2โ€“3ย million, the bulk of whom were refugees from the fighting. The Khmer Rouge cut off supplies to the city for more than a year before it fell on April 17, 1975. Reports from journalists stated that the Khmer Rouge shelling "tortured the capital almost continuously", inflicting "random death and mutilation" on millions of trapped civilians. The Khmer Rouge forcibly evacuated the entire city after taking it, in what has been described as a death march: Franรงois Ponchaud wrote that "I shall never forget one cripple who had neither hands nor feet, writhing along the ground like a severed worm, or a weeping father carrying his ten-year old daughter wrapped in a sheet tied around his neck like a sling, or the man with his foot dangling at the end of a leg to which it was attached by nothing but skin"; Jon Swain recalled that the Khmer Rouge were "tipping out patients from the hospitals like garbage into the streetsโ€ฆ .In five years of war, this is the greatest caravan of human misery I have seen". All of its residents, including the wealthy and educated, were evacuated from the city and forced to do difficult labour on rural farms as "new people". Tuol Sleng High School was taken over by Pol Pot's forces and was turned into the S-21 prison camp, where people were detained and tortured. Pol Pot sought a return to an agrarian economy and therefore killed many people perceived as educated, "lazy", spies, or political enemies. Many others starved to death as a result of failure of the agrarian society and the sale of Cambodia's rice to China in exchange for bullets and weaponry. The former high school is now the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, where Khmer Rouge torture devices and photos of their victims are displayed. Choeung Ek (the Killing Fields), 15 km (9ย mi) away, where the Khmer Rouge marched prisoners from Tuol Sleng to be murdered and buried in shallow pits, is also now a memorial to those who were killed by the regime.

The Khmer Rouge were driven out of Phnom Penh by the People's Army of Vietnam in 1979, and people began to return to the city. Vietnam is historically a state with which Cambodia has had many conflicts, therefore this liberation was and is viewed with mixed emotions by the Cambodians. A period of reconstruction began, spurred by the continuing stability of government, attracting new foreign investment and aid by countries including France, Australia, and Japan. Loans were made from the Asian Development Bank and the World Bank to reinstate a clean water supply, roads and other infrastructure. The 1998 Census put Phnom Penh's population at 862,000; and the 2008 census was 1.3ย million. By 2019, its population reached over 2.2 million, based on general population census.

Geography Phnom Penh is in the south-central region of Cambodia, and is fully surrounded by the Kandal province. The municipality is on the banks of the Tonlรฉ Sap, Mekong, and Bassac Rivers. These rivers provide freshwater and other natural resources to the city. Phnom Penh and the surrounding areas consist of a typical flood plain area for Cambodia. Although Phnom Penh is at 11.89 metres (39ย ft) above the river, monsoon season flooding is a problem, and the river sometimes overflows its banks.

The city, at 11.55ยฐN 104.91667ยฐE (11ยฐ33' North, 104ยฐ55' East), covers an area of 678.46 square km (262ย sqย mi), with some 11,401 hectares (28,172 acres) in the municipality and 26,106ย ha (64,509 acres) of roads. The agricultural land in the municipality amounts to 34.685ย kmยฒ (13ย sqย mi) with some 1.476ย kmยฒ (365 acres) under irrigation.

Economy Phnom Penh is Cambodia's economic centre as it accounts for a large portion of the Cambodian economy. Double-digit economic growth rates in recent years have triggered an economic boom in Phnom Penh, with new hotels, restaurants, schools, bars, high rises and residential buildings springing up in the city.

The economy is based on commercial interests such as garments, trading, and small and medium enterprises. In the past few years the property business has been booming, with rapidly increasing real estate prices. Tourism is also a major contributor in the capital as more shopping and commercial centres open, making Phnom Penh one of the major tourist destinations in South East Asia along with Siem Reap and Sihanoukville. According to the World Travel and Tourism Council, tourism made up 19.2 percent (US$2,053ย million) of Cambodia's GDP in 2009 and accounts for 13.7 percent of total employment. One of the most popular areas in Phnom Penh for tourists is Sisowath Quay, alongside the Tonle Sap River. Sisowath Quay is a five kilometre strip of road that includes restaurants, bars, and hotels.

The US$2.6 billion new urban development, Camko City, is meant to bolster the city landscape. The Bureau of Urban Affairs of Phnom Penh Municipality has plans to expand and construct new infrastructure to accommodate the growing population and economy. High rise buildings will be constructed at the entrance of the city and near the lakes and riverbanks. Furthermore, new roads, canals, and a railway system will be used to connect Camko City and Phnom Penh.

Other projects include: โ€ข Grand Phnom Penh International City (under construction) โ€ข De Castle Royal Condominium (Completed) โ€ข Gold Tower 42 (On hold 32 floors construction begins again in the mid of 2018) โ€ข OCIC Tower (Completed) โ€ข Kokling super second floor house โ€ข Vattanac Capital Tower (completed) โ€ข The Bridge (Completed) โ€ข The Peak (Completed)

With booming economic growth seen since the 1990s, new shopping venues have opened, such as Sorya Center Point, Aeon Mall Phnom Penh, Aeon Mall Sen Sok City, Aeon Mall Mean Chey and Olympia Mall. Many international brands have opened such as Mango, Salvatore Ferragamo, Hugo Boss, Padini Concept Store, Lily, Timberland, Jimmy Choo, CC Double O, MO, Brands Outlet, Nike, Converse, Pony, Armani Exchange, and Super Dry.

The tallest skyscraper in Phnom Penh is Vattanac Capital Tower at a height of 188 metres (617ย ft), dominating Phnom Penh's skyline with its neighbour skyscraper Canadia Tower (OCIC Tower). The tower was completed in December 2014. Modern high rises have been constructed all around the city, not concentrated in any one particular area.

The Central Market Phsar Thmei is a tourist attraction. The four wings of the yellow colored market are teeming with numerous stalls selling gold and silver jewelry, antique coins, clothing, clocks, flowers, food, fabrics and shoes. Phsar Thmei is undergoing under a major renovation, along with the creation of newer stalls.

Universities and colleges American University of Phnom Penh, แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แžขแžถแž˜แŸแžšแžทแž€แžถแŸ†แž„แž—แŸ’แž“แŸ†แž–แŸแž‰

BELTEI International University, แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แž”แŸŠแŸ‚แž›แž’แžธแžขแž“แŸ’แžแžšแž‡แžถแžแžท

University of Cambodia, (UC) แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แž€แž˜แŸ’แž–แžปแž‡แžถ

International University, (IU) แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แžขแž“แŸ’แžแžšแž‡แžถแžแžท

ร‰cole Royale d'Administration, (ERA) แžŸแžถแž›แžถแž—แžผแž˜แžทแž“แŸ’แž‘แžšแžŠแŸ’แž‹แž”แžถแž›

Royal University of Phnom Penh, (RUPP) แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แž—แžผแž˜แžทแž“แŸ’แž‘แž—แŸ’แž“แŸ†แž–แŸแž‰

Royal University of Law and Economics, (RULE) แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แž—แžผแž˜แžทแž“แŸ’แž‘แž“แžธแžแžทแžŸแžถแžŸแŸ’แžšแŸ’แž แž“แžทแž„แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแžŸแžถแžŸแŸ’แžšแŸ’แžแžŸแŸแžŠแŸ’แž‹แž€แžทแž…แŸ’แž…

Royal University of Fine Arts, (RUFA) แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แž—แžผแž˜แžทแž“แŸ’แž‘แžœแžทแž…แžทแžแŸ’แžšแžŸแžทแž›แŸ’แž”แŸˆ

Royal University of Agriculture, (RUA) แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แž—แžผแž˜แžทแž“แŸ’แž‘แž€แžŸแžทแž€แž˜แŸ’แž˜

National University of Management, (NUM) แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แž‡แžถแžแžทแž‚แŸ’แžšแž”แŸ‹แž‚แŸ’แžšแž„

Institute of Technology of Cambodia, (ITC) แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแžŸแŸ’แžแžถแž“แž”แž…แŸ’แž…แŸแž€แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž€แž˜แŸ’แž–แžปแž‡แžถ

Buddhist Institute. แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแžŸแŸ’แžแžถแž“แž–แžปแž‘แŸ’แž’แžŸแžถแžŸแž“แž”แžŽแŸ’แžŒแžทแžแŸ’แž™

Royal Academy of Cambodia, แžšแžถแž‡แž”แžŽแŸ’แžŒแžทแžแŸ’แž™แžŸแž—แžถแž€แž˜แŸ’แž–แžปแž‡แžถ

Cambodian Agricultural Research and Development Institute, แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแžŸแŸ’แžแžถแž“แžŸแŸ’แžšแžถแžœแž‡แŸ’แžšแžถแžœ แž“แžทแž„แžขแž—แžทแžœแžŒแŸ’แžแž€แžŸแžทแž€แž˜แŸ’แž˜แž€แž˜แŸ’แž–แžปแž‡แžถ

National Institute of Business, แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแžŸแŸ’แžแžถแž“แž‡แžถแžแžทแž–แžถแžŽแžทแž‡แŸ’แž‡แžŸแžถแžŸแŸ’แžšแŸ’แž

National Institute of Education, แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแžŸแŸ’แžแžถแž“แž‡แžถแžแžทแžขแž”แŸ‹แžšแŸ†

National Polytechnic Institute of Cambodia, แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแžŸแŸ’แžแžถแž“แž‡แžถแžแžทแž–แž แžปแž”แž…แŸ’แž…แŸแž€แž‘แŸแžŸแž€แž˜แŸ’แž–แžปแž‡แžถ

National Technical Training Institute, แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแžŸแŸ’แžแžถแž“แž‡แžถแžแžทแž”แžŽแŸ’แžแžปแŸ‡แž”แžŽแŸ’แžแžถแž›แž”แž…แŸ’แž…แŸแž€แž‘แŸแžŸ

Paรฑรฑฤsฤstra University of Cambodia, แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แž”แž‰แŸ’แž‰แžถแžŸแžถแžŸแŸ’แžแŸ’แžšแž€แž˜แŸ’แž–แžปแž‡แžถ

Preah Sihanouk Raja Buddhist University, แž–แžปแž‘แŸ’แž’แžทแž€แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แž–แŸ’แžšแŸ‡แžŸแžธแž แž“แžปแžšแžถแž‡

Prek Leap National College of Agriculture, แžŸแžถแž›แžถแž‡แžถแžแžทแž€แžŸแžทแž€แž˜แŸ’แž˜แž–แŸ’แžšแŸ‚แž€แž›แŸ€แž”

University of Health Sciences, แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแžŸแžถแžŸแŸ’แžšแŸ’แžแžŸแžปแžแžถแž—แžทแž”แžถแž›

University of Puthisastra, แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แž–แžปแž‘แŸ’แž’แžทแžŸแžถแžŸแŸ’แžแŸ’แžš

Preah Kosomak Polytechnic Institute, แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแžŸแŸ’แžแžถแž“แž–แž แžปแž”แž…แŸ’แž…แŸแž€แž‘แŸแžŸแž–แŸ’แžšแŸ‡แž€แžปแžŸแžปแž˜แŸˆ

Industrial Technical Institute, แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแžŸแŸ’แžแžถแž“แž”แž…แŸ’แž…แŸแž€แž‘แŸแžŸแžงแžŸแŸ’แžŸแžถแž แž€แž˜แŸ’แž˜

Paragon International University, แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แžขแž“แŸ’แžแžšแž‡แžถแžแžทแž•แžถแžšแŸ‰แžถแž แŸ’แž‚แž“

Institute For Development of Economy (IDE), แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแžŸแŸ’แžแžถแž“แžขแž—แžทแžœแžŒแŸ’แžแž“แŸแžŸแŸแžŠแŸ’แž‹แž€แžทแž…แŸ’แž…

Western University, แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แžœแŸแžŸแŸ’แž‘แžพแž“

Student Development Institute (SDI), แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแžŸแŸ’แžแžถแž“แžขแž—แžทแžœแžŒแŸ’แžแž“แŸแž“แžทแžŸแŸ’แžŸแžทแž

Asia Euro University, แžŸแžถแž€แž›แžœแžทแž‘แŸ’แž™แžถแž›แŸแž™แžขแžถแžŸแŸŠแžธ แžขแžบแžšแŸ‰แŸ‰แžปแž”

Phnom Penh, Cambodia 
<b>Phnom Penh, Cambodia</b>
Image: Adobe Stock Nhut #269187178

Phnom Penh is rated Gamma + by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network (GaWC) which evaluates and ranks the relationships between world cities in the context of globalisation. Gamma level cities are cities that link smaller economic regions into the world economy.

Phnom Penh has a population of over 1,573,544 people. Phnom Penh also forms the centre of the wider Phnom Penh metropolitan area which has a population of over 2,234,566 people. Phnom Penh is ranked #620 for startups with a score of 0.256.

To set up a UBI Lab for Phnom Penh see: Twitter:

Twin Towns, Sister Cities Phnom Penh has links with:

๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ญ Bangkok, Thailand ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ Beijing, China ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ท Busan, South Korea ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ Changning, China ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ Cheongwen, China ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ Chongqing, China ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ Cleveland, USA ๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ณ Hanoi, Vietnam ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ Hefei, China ๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ณ Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ญ Iloilo City, Philippines ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ท Incheon, South Korea ๐Ÿ‡ฏ๐Ÿ‡ต Kitakyushu, Japan ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ Kunming, China ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ Long Beach, USA ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ Lowell, USA ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Mandalay, Myanmar ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ Qingpu District, China ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ Shanghai, China ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ Shenzhen, China ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ Shunyi, China ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ Wuhan, China
Text Atribution: Wikipedia Text under CC-BY-SA license | GaWC | StartupBlink

Antipodal to Phnom Penh is: -75.083,-11.567

Locations Near: Phnom Penh 104.917,11.5667

๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ญ Siem Reab 104.857,11.397 d: 20  

๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ณ Chรขu ฤแป‘c 105.12,10.707 d: 98.1  

๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ณ Tรขy Ninh 106.131,11.295 d: 135.7  

๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ญ Sihanoukville 103.822,10.896 d: 140.8  

๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ณ Long Xuyรชn 105.435,10.382 d: 143.4  

๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ณ Cao Lรฃnh 105.63,10.467 d: 144.9  

๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ญ Kratiรฉ 106.017,12.467 d: 156  

๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ณ Sa ฤรฉc 105.766,10.296 d: 169  

๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ณ Rแบกch Giรก 105.088,10.007 d: 174.5  

๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ณ Phรบ Quแป‘c 103.95,10.233 d: 182  

Antipodal to: Phnom Penh -75.083,-11.567

๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ช Huancayo -75.211,-12.075 d: 19956.9  

๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ช Oxapampa -75.405,-10.574 d: 19899.2  

๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ช Ayacucho -74.217,-13.15 d: 19815.5  

๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ช Villa El Salvador -77,-12.05 d: 19799.6  

๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ช Lima -77.033,-12.05 d: 19796.1  

๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ช Huรกnuco -76.233,-9.917 d: 19792.7  

๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ช San Isidro -77.033,-12.083 d: 19795.2  

๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ช Ancรณn -77.15,-11.733 d: 19789.2  

๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ช Callao -77.15,-12.067 d: 19783.4  

๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ช Chincha Alta -76.133,-13.45 d: 19776.6  

Bing Map

Option 1