Foreign visitors to Cambodia's famed Angkor down 78 pct in 10 months

November 3, 2020

Cambodia's famed Angkor Archeological Park received 398,485 international visitors during the first 10 months of 2020, down 78 percent over the same period last year, said a press statement released to media on Monday.

The ancient park earned 18.55 million U.S. dollars in revenue from ticket sales during the January-October period this year, also down 77 percent year-on-year, said the state-owned Angkor Enterprise's statement.

In October alone, the site received 2,244 foreigners earning 93,598 dollars, down 98.4 percent and 98.5 percent, respectively compared to the same month last year, it said.

The sharp decline was due to the impact of COVID-19 pandemic that has forced the Southeast Asian nation to impose entry restrictions for all foreign travelers since March.

Ministry of Tourism's secretary of state and spokesman Top Sopheak said prior to the COVID-19, the site attracted around 9,000 foreign tourists a day, but currently, it averagely receives only 70 a day and those are foreigners living and working in Cambodia.

"We expect that the number of international visitors to the Angkor Archeological Park will start to rebound gradually in the first quarter of 2021 if COVID-19 vaccines are available," he told Xinhua.

He said China will undoubtedly remain the largest source of tourists to Cambodia during the post-COVID-19 era.

"China is a huge source market not only for Cambodia's tourism, but also for the region's," he said. "We believe that more Chinese tourists will come to Cambodia after the COVID-19 because of our close relationship."

Situated in northwest Siem Reap province, the Angkor Archeological Park, inscribed on the World Heritage List of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in 1992, is the kingdom's most popular tourist destination.