Situated right on Street number 13 in the middle of Phnom Penh, to the north of the Royal Palace and to the west side of Veal Preah Man Square, the National Museum is the largest museum of cultural history of Phnom Penh as well as Cambodia. It is also the country’s first class historical and archaeological museum. Indochina travel Cambodia
The visitors can get access to the compound through the entrance at the corner of Streets 13 and 178. On the west side of the museum situated the Royal University of Fine Arts. Built with the inspiration of Khmer temple architecture, established from 1917 to 1924, officially opened in 1920, and restored in 1968, now the museum operates under the power of Cambodian Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts.
Containing of sculptural, ceramics, bronzes, and various ethnographic objects, the museum is believed to be home to one of the world’s largest collections of Khmer art. The stunning collection contains of over 14,000 items, dating back from ancient times to periods before, during, and after the Khmer Empire, which at its peak spread from Thailand, across modern Cambodia, to southern region of Vietnam. Cambodia travel tours
The museum possesses four pavilions all of which face up the beautiful garden. Most visitors coming here turn left right before continuing in a clockwise, chronological order. A huge broken part – including the relatively undivided head, shoulders and two arms of a giant bronze supporting the Vishnu statue regained from the Western Mebon temple near Angkor Wat in 1936 is the first magnificent sculpture welcoming visitors.
The stunning collection here presents the period from the 5th to 8th centuries when the human form of Indian sculpture changed into the more perfect form of Khmer sculpture. An enforcing Vishnu statue containing 8 arms from the 6th century found at Phnom Da, and a staring Harihara, coming with the features of Shiva and Vishnu are the highlights of the museum.
Open daily from 8 to 11:30 in the morning and from 2:30 to 5 in the afternoon, the National Museum of Cambodia is an ideal place for you to learn more about the history of this nation with the help of French as well as English spoken guides. Buying one of the books or a small booklet available, wandering around the four spacious courtyards, each is opposite to a garden or challenging yourself by piecing together the complex history through these specific works of ancient art are many interesting activities to keep you excited during the visit.