Proposed resort and water park threaten ancient heritage of Angkor Wat in Cambodia

The Cambodian heritage site of Angkor, which encompasses the sprawling ancient temple complex of Angor Wat as well as the surrounding landscape, could be threatened by the forthcoming construction of a vast resort and theme park, much to the alarm of Unesco.

Hong Kong-based company NagaCorp announced in November that the Cambodian government had granted its subsidiary a 50-year-long, renewable lease to develop 75 hectares of land located around 500 metres south of the protected zone of Angkor.

Pitched as Angkor Lake of Wonder, the development will include hotels, a water park, conference halls, pubs and other tourist facilities. The initial phase should be completed by 2025 and cost around $350 million. NagaCorp also plans to organise “Cambodia country tours” linking Angkor to its casino-hotel, NagaWorld, in the capital, Phnom Penh.

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