This country is known as the Kingdom of Wonder for good reason. Everywhere you turn you’ll find something to amaze you… ancient temples abound, as do charming colonial cities, Buddhist temples, bustling local markets, lush green fields and mountains, unspoiled coastlines and pristine undeveloped islands. There is something here to suit everyone.
There are so many reasons why Cambodia is a suitable place to enjoy your retirement, such as the extremely low cost of living, some of the simplest and most flexible visa requirements available in Southeast Asia, the welcoming local population and the benefits of living in a fast growing economy, where everything from cinemas showing the latest blockbusters to international airports are in close proximity.
And, of course, Cambodia is also one of the region’s tourism hotspots with millions of visitors pouring in each year to take in the temples of Angkor Wat and explore the cities and coastal resorts, meaning the country remains eager to cater to Western standards and requirements, with English being spoken widely by many Cambodians in the urban and tourist areas.
Where to Live in Cambodia
The capital, Phnom Penh, remains the top choice for expats. Here, everything you desire is easily available. The city offers a mix of old and new, with modern property developments and shopping centres being built around the existing landmarks and colonial buildings. Expats here are spoilt for choice when it comes to fine dining and there is a thriving network of expat associations and communities, as well as a big social scene.
Siem Reap is another popular choice, especially for those with a love of exploring temples—the Angkor Wat Complex covers an astounding 1,625,999 square metres. Known as “temple town”, Siem Reap city is also a bustling, but relatively small, metropolis. With a picturesque river running through it and its local markets and temples, as well as the old French colonial quarter, it’s a pleasant place to call home. The famous “Pub Street” also means that there is no shortage of bars or restaurants to keep you entertained and well-fed.
Sihanoukville is Cambodia’s largest and most popular coastal resort which attracts foreign tourists, expats and locals to its shores. With a large number of beaches to choose from and over 30 pristine and undeveloped islands to explore you will quickly come to understand the attractions of this small city.
The laidback, colonial city of Battambang is the second largest city in Cambodia. With a small, but growing, expat population there are a number of restaurants, bars and hotels, many of which are held in quite high esteem.
Kep and Kampot are two complimentary locations in the south of Cambodia that have captured the heart of many an expat.
Kampot is a riverside town where life goes by at a leisurely pace. The area is known for its world famous Kampot Pepper, as well as its prominence as a stopover for tourists on their way to visit the Damrei and Bokor mountains. A decent number of quality restaurants and hotels have grown to accommodate both tourists and expats from Phnom Penh who come to enjoy water sport activities on the river.
Kep is just down the road from Kampot and is known as the “Saint Tropez of Southeast Asia”, due to its development by French colonialists to become what is now Cambodia’s second main coastal resort. The French influence is noticeable in the colonial villas around the town, which is centered around the beach and the fresh crab market.