Khmer Arts and Crafts

Silver sculpture

Metalwork and silversmithing

Cambodia silver work is widely available, and depending on your haggling skills, can be very reasonably priced. The wormasnhip that goes into the best pieces is exceptional, especially the traditional betel nut containers - small or large beaten copper or silver containers formed into tradtional patterns, often local animals.

Paintings at Cambodian market

Painting and Sketching

Angkor Wat and the Angkor temples, and the life of Cambodians, especially around the Tonle Sap lake, is popular subject matter both for local artists, and for visitors with an interest in drawing or painting. While the work of many second rate copyists is available, some talented artists also exhibit and sell work locally, often at very reasonable prices compared to western market prices for original artworks.

stone carving

Wood and stone carving

The rich architectural history of Angkor Wat gives invaluable subject matter for local stone carvers and woodworkers. Many of these are extremely skilled craftsmen, capable of producing commission pieces, and the lacquered "polychromic" woodwork can be very beautiful (and easier to carry home!).

Khmer ceramics

Khmer Ceramics

Ceramic work is traditionally centred around Kampong Chhnang, northwest of Phnom Penh, but examples of high quality Cambodian ceramic work can be seen in Siem Reap and elsewhere, and it is possible to visit some ceramic workshops and try your hand at this difficult skill.

Silk weaving

Cambodian Silk

Cambodia used to be world famous for the quality of its silk, and is now undergoing a renaissance, with artisan silk weavers producing hand-woven silk of very high quality. Silk can be bought as bolts of raw cloth or as finished products, and it is possible to visit, and even stay at, silk weaving villages, such as "Wisdom of the Forest" project near Siem Reap, or Okgna Tei near Phnom Penh, and see all stages of silk production.

Shadow puppets


Leather shadow puppets can be seen giving performances in Siem Reap, and elsewhere, but it is also possible to visit the workshops where these artforms are made, both to traditional and modern patterns. Leatherwork produced in these workshops is used for a variety of useful and decorative purposes.

Cambodia travel information and Angkor Wat tour specialists ABOUTAsia are based in Siem Reap just 4km from Angkor Wat. At the heart of the organisation is a guiding research centre providing Cambodia vacation advice and industry leading tours planning.


Peerless service standards and local positioning have made us the tour operator of choice by international luxury travel groups and discerning independent travellers to Angkor Wat, Cambodia and Southeast Asia.

For more information about Khmer arts and crafts contact ABOUTAsia Travel