Siem Reap Vistior Guide 59th



Phnom Sampeou Phnom Sampeou is a mountain steeped in legend, topped by Wat Sampeou and a group of caves used as 'killing caves' by the Khmer Rouge, containing the

also stand-out, hosting the works of Phare graduates in superior art space. Some restaurants in town also feature local art. Lotus Bar & Gallery has a proper gallery upstairs with ongoing exhibitions by Cambodian and expat artists based in Battambang. The artsy Choco L’Art cafe, like many of the galleries, hangs the art Phare graduates on its walls. Complimenting the art scene, the souvenir shopping, though a bit in Battambang, is unique and fascinating. The Lost Stick on Street 2.5 deserves special mention for its amazing curio collection, and Bric-à-Brac as well for its high quality crafts and textiles. For more tradition- al souvenirs, riverfront shops along Street 1 offer marble and wood carvings and statues and other souvenirs. Shops... Bric-à-Brac Fine crafts woven before your eyes, extensive collec- tion of old and new Southeast Asian textiles, antiques and curios. Local crafts, trimmings and tassels. Corner Streets 2/119, Walking District Tel: 077-531562 077-531549 The Lost Stick (The Jewel in the Lotus) Magical little curio shop with interesting objects from Cambodia and beyond - postcards, medallions, old photos and posters, contemporary art by locals and expats, and a fascinating array bits and pieces. Streets 2.5, Walking District Galleries... Sangker Gallery set in a small colonial shophouse in the Walking district, with changing exhibitions at the upstairs gallery, and on-going displays downstairs. Streets 2, Walking District Bric-à-Brac Tassels and textiles hand-crafted in classic 18th & 19th century European style. View Morrison Polkinghorne's famous lotus series of paintings crafted from the ink of the flower, and Khmer decorative arts made before your eyes. Extensive collection of Southeast Asian textiles, creative crafts and antiques. Corner Streets 2/119, Walking District Tel: 077-531562 077-531549 Markets & Convenience Stores... Of the city’s three traditional markets, Phsar Nath is the primary market. Its distinctive clock tower on the river side is a local landmark. The market is geared to the locals, vending fruits, vegetables, meat, clothes, sun- dries, etc. Phsar Leu , just south of town, is the place to buy local fruits, including oranges and pomelos from Pursat, said to be the best in the country. The most popular international mini-market in town is the Chea Neang Drink Shop , on the west side of Phsar Nath, offering a pretty good selection (for a provincial town) of imported foods, meats, cheeses, snacks and liquors and spirits.

skeletal remains of their victims. The wat is unex- ceptional but the view is spectacular. For sake of ease, take the winding path up the mountain rather than the stairs, which make for a formidable climb. The whole area in intertwined with the well-known Khmer folk legend of Neang Rumsay Sok , 'the girl who let down her hair.' Many of the local geograph- ic features are named after aspects of the legend, including Phnom Sampeou ( Boat Mountain .) Ask your guide or driver to tell you the legend. In the evening around 6:00PM two of the caves dis- gorge millions of bats which pour into the dusk sky for more than 30 minutes, making quite an impres- sive site. Not to be missed if you happen to be at Phnom Sampeou in the evening. Provincial Museum statues, carvings, bits of ancient temples, pottery, etc. These little provincial museums can be a real treat for the Angkor enthusiast, containing some rare and unique pieces, and this is one of the best of the provincial museums. Hours: 8AM-11AM / 2PM-5PM. Friendly people always happy to see vis- itors. Guides available. Admission: $1. Tel: 092-914688, 016-896727 Battambang is known for being the birthplace of Cambodia's most famous artists and musicians, but during the Khmer Rouge era the art scene was virtual- ly destroyed. In recent years, Battambang has experi- enced an arts revival and become home to a vibrant emerging art scene. For years Battambang has been a place to buy marble and wood carvings, and colored gems from Pailin. And it still is, but as the art scene has begun to blossom again, several galleries and art spaces have opened. Art spaces and unique shopping venues inhabit some of the old shophouses of the picturesque Walking District, especially along Street 2.5 and surrounding area. Sangker Gallery spotlights the work of local tal- ent, many of them graduates of the NGO Phare Ponleu Selpak 's fine arts school for at-risk youth. The Romcheik 5 Art Space on the east side of the river is art & shopping The Battambang Prov- incial Museum on the riverfront in the center of town houses a large col- lection of Angkorian and pre-Angkorian artifacts -

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