Battambang is the second most populated city in Cambodia.  The landscape in the surrounding countryside is magnificent.  The city is well-known for its monuments (mostly mythical animals and deities) that beautify the public places.  It is also home to some of the best preserved French colonial architecture in the country including the grand residence of the Governor during the French era. Battambang is a possible stop-over when driving from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh by the southern shore of the lake.