14+ journey-worthy photos of Cambodian daily life
Cambodia is a small country with large history, and its story is both magnificent and tragic. Todd Weselake, a travel photographer, focuses on what life is like today in this resilient kingdom in a series of images.
On paper, Cambodia’s numbers are quite unique; at 181,035 square kilometers (69,898 square miles), it is one of Asia’s smallest countries, with a population of 15 million people. That equates to 83 people per square kilometer on the ground; however, due to the Khmer Rouge’s brutal rule, more than 70% of those Khmers are under the age of 30. Moreover, despite its youth, more than 95 percent of the population adheres to the Buddhist way of life. Which makes sense, given that their legendary temples — Angkor Wat being the most well-known — continue to serve as a touchstone of national identity. Of course, I wanted to see what these numbers looked like in real life –– to feel them.
Cambodia has fought to maintain its identity throughout its long history, from French colonization to the Vietnam War and the Khmer Rouge. Nonetheless, its people have a friendly reputation and smile from ear to ear. Above all, I wanted to see how this unwavering tenacity shaped a nation.
So I went there, camera in hand, to tell the story of how 15 million people live proudly today, incorporating centuries of history while maintaining a distinct culture.