Cambodia celebrates 13 years of Preah Vihear Temple as a UNESCO World Heritage Site

On 7 July 2021, the government of Cambodia is organising a tree planting ceremony at the Preah Vihear Temple to commemorate the thirteenth anniversary of its inscription on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Excellency Mr. Kong Puthikar, the Director-General of the National Authority for Preah Vihear, announced today that “1,113 indigenous trees were planted this morning along the roadside from the Sra Em village to the foothill of the Preah Vihear mountain to conserve the natural landscape and revitalize the rich forest of Preah Vihear.”

For the past 13 years, the National Authority for Preah Vihear has made tremendous efforts for not only the conservation and restoration works to ensure the value of the Preah Vihear temple, but also the promotion of ecosystem at the site in close partnership with the local community. This tree planning programme was run jointly by the Authority, villagers and schoolchildren of the area, in order to promote the conservation of cultural heritage and natural environment.

On the commemoration of the 13th anniversary, Prime Minister Samdech Akka Moha Sena Padei Techo Hun Sen recalled the time of inscription of Preah Vihear on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2008: “we take part in preserving and protecting all the ancient temples throughout the country for the benefit of all generations”. (Link to the Facebook post:

For the past thirteen years, UNESCO has been assisting the National Authority for Preah Vihear in safeguarding the Outstanding Universal Value of the historical monument in line with the World Heritage Convention. Today, Mr. Sardar Umar Alam, UNESCO Representative to Cambodia, reaffirmed UNESCO’s commitment for the conservation and restoration of the Preah Vihear Temple, outlining that: “Safeguarding the rich cultural heritage of Cambodia requires collective efforts among all Cambodians, and heritage education will play an important role to encourage youth as agents of change to participate in heritage conservation and sustainable development”.

Preah Vihear Temple is located in the northern province of Preah Vihear 400 km north of Phnom Penh and 140 km northwest of Angkor, on the central summit perched on the edge of the precipice under the sovereignty of the Kingdom of Cambodia. It is dedicated to the Hindu God Shiva in the form of Shri Shikarashvara or Lord of the Summit, is an outstanding masterpiece of the Khmer Art, in terms of plan and the details of its decoration and relationship to the spectacular landscape environment.