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Bokor National Park

The first protected National forest in Cambodia

Enjoy rough nature
Bokor National Park is a pretty hill station which was abandoned during the mad communist time (Khmer Rouge) and after slowly resurrected when the tourist came.

That is an ideal day trip when in Kampot or a bit longer when in Phnom Penh or Sihanoukville. I booked a room via Booking.com on a computer in Kampot and the guy from the guesthouse also arranged the tour to the National Park for me. The Cambodians discovered the dual purpose of National Parks as the Thai did, first an entertainment idea and second to make money. The good news is they are not as fixed to the greed issue as the Thai who overdo it often trying hard to pull the tourist money.  

He also lent me his sneakers because the rubber slippers I bought in Thailand are not a good tool for that steep hike. It’s very slippery too and there are enough sharp broken bamboo spikes lurking in the bushes to produce ugly sore. The tour guide was not very friendly and the small truck for sure not the ideal vehicle for this, but sometimes you have to take some suffering to experience something interesting.

How to get there.

Preah Monivong (Bokor) National Park is in Kampot Province close to the main road. Just as usual buy a bus ticket in Phnom Penh to Kampot and book a hotel or guesthouse. The latter sometimes offer the better deal because they usually have the same environment as a hotel but are cheaper because they pay much fewer taxes. 
The booking tool is at the bottom of this page, just use it I get some commission so you do something which makes sense. 

Cambodia is an almost dormant destination but has much more to offer than just Angkor. A bonus is doubtful that the country actually works quite well and is surprisingly inexpensive. This tour Angkor to Phnom Penh and Bokor National Park is a great one.

After enjoying Sihanoukville with the beaches it is ideal for a few days. Perhaps for a visa run from Thailand or just explore something new again. Leaving via the border at Koh Kong back to Thailand and by bus in 6 hours to be Bangkok or Pattaya. An alternative could be to travel behind Trat and take the ferry to Koh Chang

The national park 

A tree and bamboo jungle is covering the hill and we made a slippery hike up. first on the back of a truck after a steep hike until we boarded the truck again up to the Hill Station. great waterfalls and some scenery out of a horror movie. In the wilds of southern Cambodia close to Sihanoukville, it's a real highlight, a nature perspective in a totally different direction as Angkor Wat. 

Bokor should be on every travel plan when visiting the country, it's only a few hour with the bus from Phnom Penh over a good road to Kampot. Tours are available every day, just talk to the hotel they arrange everything they are quite correct with a little you won't get cheated as in Thailand all time. 
From Phnom Penh, on the highway, no 3 through Takeo Province passing Tonle Bati and Phnom Chisor leads directly to Kampot and the Bokor National Park.
Takeo Province to the south
Here is great nature although already extensively used up in the past until the revolution put the dark blanket over it. But history often repeats itself and there are many intentions to get another hotel up there since this is an ideal recreational destination with a great view over the South China Sea. The pretty panorama and the waterfall nearby are worth a visit indeed.
Up up and away for the South China Sea panorama
Photos
To the west is Sihanoukville and from there the bus is waiting to Koh Kong.

With more wild destinations and  a different twist, no ruins, no temples, just waterfalls, wilderness, rivers and ideal for dirt biking, trekking.  Dirt bike tours can be made up to the Bokor Hill Station and around. It is also popular to Sre Ambel near the road from Koh Kong to Phnom Penh.

A young man is our tour guide for the trek at the Bokor National Park in Kampot, the idea is to trek up the mountain to the hill station. 
  1. Trekking at Bokor National Park (2)
  2. Trekking at Bokor National Park (3)
  3. Trekking at Bokor National Park (5)
  4. Trekking at Bokor National Park
This is constant climbing and the trail is over the slippery earth, limestone boulders, through the bamboo jungle and plenty of other lush tropical jungle. As a matter of fact, Phnom Bokor is a very interesting Cambodia National Park in a tropical environment.

The tickets are very dense from time to time which makes the walk difficult on top of it there are constantly sharp broken bamboo pieces popping out from the earth I guess everyone can imagine what happen when losing balance and fall into this bamboo spears, means good shoes are mandatory and some gloves will avoid cuts.

Bokor hill station church
The Bokor Hill Station
Bokor Photos
A small village with church hotel and the casino was built by the French and burned down afterwards from Cambodian revolutionary groups. Instead of some civilisation, they got the Chinese communist barbarians supported " red Khmer" instead which brought the genocide.  

The Bokor Hill Station was then abandoned until the new millennium. They restarted the space, renovated and built a new casino plus hotel. The outlook from the cliff over the south china sea is actually stunning.

The road up Bokor National Park winds through forest and thickets but was newly made some years ago so now there is no bigger problem. But sooner or later the problems will come back again since the people are always building lousy roads which usually break every few year. That’s the same from Bangkok to Pnom Penh and Siem Reap .
  1. Bokor National Park Flowers
  2. Highlight of rotten communist destruction
  3. Cambodia is slowly advancing
  4. Touched by Chinese ideological madness
  5. Mao's madness was the guiding light
  6. people see it as a combination of Mao's long march and Hollywood's the shining
  7. Chinese inspired lunatics on the run
  8. waterfall in the national park
dirt bike adventure
Beside of this, there is "Dirt Bike Adventure".

Considering the bad condition of the roads in general which is the real adventure and often there is no road Dirt Bike Adventure at all, but a small trail which gives the sense to dirt bike tours .

The Hill Station once the playground of French colonialists and was later occupied by Vietnamese soldiers the walls of this grand structure are now a mosaic with bullet holes and graffiti.
In recent times the station morphed into a modern hotel with all what it needs the ideal place to go for an attractive weekend here is the modern resort ​