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More tourism means more money for the hospitals


They are mystical and majestic. Their history is fascinating and reminiscent of a bygone era. The monumental buildings of Angkor comprise more than a thousand temples spread over around 200 hectares of jungle. Built by King Suryavarman II, they date back to the 12th century. However, it was not until 50 years later, under King Jayarvarman VII, that they were given their name, when the Khmer turned away from Hinduism and towards Buddhism.

Angkor is an important site that embodies cultural, religious, and symbolic values and is of great architectural, archaeological, and artistic significance. Nowhere else in the world can you find larger sacred buildings, decorated with numerous reliefs and ornaments. Numerous questions about the building remain unanswered to this day.

 

The site was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1992 and magically attracts tourists from all over the world. Angkor Wat, the main temple, has even become a landmark of Cambodia: Its five striking towers, resembling lotus blossoms, are depicted in the most various places, including on the official national flag.

 

Siem Reap’s Jayarvarman VII Children's Hospital, built by Dr. Beat Richner, and opened in 1999, is located on the main road to the temples. As a result, many travellers pass by it when they visit the site. Since February 2017, the state, that now owns Angkor, has been donating 2 US dollars per tourist ticket to our foundation. This is a very valuable source of income for the hospitals, as it appeals to a completely different group of people and draws attention to the children's hospitals.

 

Covid has seen a collapse in contributions in recent years, but guests are starting to return. In the first half of 2023, 386,000 people visited the temples, bringing our hospitals 772,000 US dollars from ticket sales. Tourists from China, who usually visit Cambodia in large numbers, have not yet returned. So, the figures are still a long way from those in 2019: at that time, 1.25 million people visited the site in the first semester. 

 

You can find out more about Angkor here.



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