Beyond the Cambodia ’s capital

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Beyond the Cambodia ’s capital

For those heading to explore other parts of Cambodia, Phnom Penh is often seen as a stop over city. However, let’s extend your stay and head to the areas surrounding the city, you will not be disappointed. Indochina tours Cambodia

Kampong Cham

Kampong Cham

Kampong Cham- source: internet

The province of Kampong Cham is the place to go if you are looking for some tranquil time. Nestled on the banks of the scenic Mekong River about a two-hour car ride from the capital city, life trundles along at a really slow pace.

Although it still resembles a town, this provincial capital, also called Kampong Cham, is the third largest city in Cambodia. Under the French colonial, it was a thriving trading post and during a stroll through the center, which is home to streets of crumbling colonial buildings, you still can see the evidence of this era. About a few-minute walk from the main riverside area is located the world’s longest bamboo bridge. The rickety bridge, which is rebuilt annually once the rainy season has passed and the Mekong River water levels have dipped, is 1km in length and mainly built of blonde bamboo poles.

Kampong Cham bamboo bridge

Kampong Cham bamboo bridge- source internet

In spite of its precarious positioning, all kinds of means of transportation hurtle across the seemingly unstable structure, making it a delight to sit on these banks and observe the wonders passing by. Cross the bridge to get to Koh Pen, a scenic island that houses clusters of serene villages, stilted houses and winding lanes.

Phnom Tamao Wildlife Rescue Centre

Phnom Tamao Wildlife Rescue Centre ticks all the boxes for a fun-filled day for all the family. Located about 36km outside of the capital, this wildlife animal rescue and rehabilitation center is run by Wildlife Alliance (WA).

It is not a zoo, but home to more than 1,200 animals rescued from the illegal trafficking and clutches of poachers. Coming there, you will not only see gibbons, sugar gliders, elephants, snakes, leopards, hedgehogs, tigers, etc, but also spot the collection of rare and endangered animals as they are nursed back to health and explore the sprawling grounds. Cambodia tours packages

Phnom Tamao Wildlife Rescue Centre

Phnom Tamao Wildlife Rescue Centre- source: internet

Travelers can also spend the day shadowing a worker, getting up close and personal to the animals and learning more about their stories by joining special ‘behind the scenes’ day tours offered by WA. Also, the centre is home to Free the Bears, which operates a Bear Keeper day tour. This is your chance to see how they take care of the rescued Asiatic black bears and Malaysian sun bears, how they prepare toys and food for them and hang out with them – of course, at a safe distance.

Koh Dach

Even though sitting only about 6km from the center of Phnom Penh city, Koh Dach, also known as Silk Island, is a million miles away from the life of the capital. Though this trip can easily fit into a half day tour, you can have it stretched out to include lazing on the beach – only accessible in dry season – sipping on a fresh coconut or sitting by the pool in the dappled shade seeing local life slowly passing by.

Koh Dac

Koh Dac- source: internet

With any tuk tuk happy to take you for the day for about $20-$30, it is not difficult to get to Koh Dach. You will be there after a 30-minute ride across the Japanese Bridge and a short ferry ride. Expect to be warmly welcomed by swarms of women vying for your business by inviting you to their houses to observe the silk weaving process – the specialty of this island.

The oasis on the city outskirts is famous for its rich silk-weaving history. Although this tradition is on the decline across this country, on Koh Dach, with many women weaving on looms made from rusty bike wheels and other recycled parts under their stilted wooden homes, it remains popular.

Open to visitors, the Silk Weaving Centre and Village shows the whole process, from silk worm, cocoon to silk and fabric. This center also features a small restaurant and picnic spot on the river, with an onsite boutique selling meticulous hand-crafted silk scarves and other items and a man made pool for bathing.

To catch a closer glimpse into rural living, you should not miss to experience a lazy bike ride through small villages, past woodland and paddies and across shallow streams on a road that skirts the island. At the ferry terminal, bikes are available for hire. Koh Dach Pagoda, which houses some of the island’s colorful boat entries into the annual Water Festival boat races, is a popular stop-off point.

See more:

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A Budget Traveler’s Guide to Battambang

What to do in Cambodia in May

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