Tag: cambodia

3 Amazing Places to Visit on the Cambodian Coast

3 Amazing Places To Visit On the Cambodian Coast

Have you ever dreamed of a tranquil coastal retreat? The Cambodian coast may be just for you! Lesser known than the coastlines of neighboring Thailand and Vietnam, it is a perfect place for a tranquil retreat.

The Cambodian coast is slowly developing thanks to foreign investments. These days, it is common to see foreigners managing hotels and restaurants on the coast.

There are still some problems that hinder the development of this beautiful coastline, mainly due to poor garbage management. But, there is no denying that the Cambodian coastline is a beautiful one.

Here are three places that you should absolutely check out on the Cambodian coast!

Kampot

Kampot is a quiet town situated at the foot of the wonderful Bokor Mountain.
Kampot is a quiet town situated at the foot of the wonderful Bokor Mountain.

This quiet town is set on the banks of Prek Thom River and is the capital of Kampot Province. Kampot is best known as the starting point for day trips to the Bokor Mountain, which you can see towering above the town. The town has a lovely riverside that is full of activity during the whole day.

Kampot is an ideal escape from the chaotic buzz of the capital, Phnom Penh. You can also find lots of affordable accommodation and delicious cuisine on the riverside.

Here are some places that you should check out in Kampot!

Bokor Mountain

This giant is located some 40 kilometers northwest of Kampot. The road up the mountain is safe for motorbikes and cars alike, and it is simply epic, as it is one of the best-preserved roads in Cambodia.

During the ride to the top of the mountain, you will witness picturesque vistas over Kampot and the seaside. As you go higher, you will feel the air getting colder as the clouds crack through the mountain. The fog will set up the vibe perfectly for an enjoyable ride.

On the way to the top, you will see many macaque monkeys, especially near Lorkyay Mao, a religious site with peculiar rock shapes and a large statue.

After this religious site, you will ride a bit further through the mist to the ruins of the old hill station. This station was built by the French in early 1920s and was abandoned just before Khmer Rouge devastated this area. This area, coupled with dense fog, feels like a true ghost town. The hill station is located 1,079 meters above sea level.

You can also find the Preah Bokor National Park there, that preserves endangered species such as tigers, elephants, and leopards.

Fish Island

Fish Island is a small island that is also the only place in Kampot where you can go to the beach. It is located right across the Prek Thom River, a short ride away from the downtown area.

The island is sparsely populated and is probably the quietest place in Kampot. It is connected with dirt roads that are better than the town roads.

At the end of the island, you can find the Coconut Mountain. Near this place, there are two beaches for you to choose from. One beach is rock, with mangrove trees populating the shore. The other one is a white sand beach that is just perfect for swimming.

Sihanoukville

Sihanoukville has undergone some rapid transformation during the last few years.
Sihanoukville has undergone through some rapid transformation during the last few years.

Sihanoukville is the third most visited destination in Cambodia, attracting crowds during the dry season. It is a great kicking point for exploring the Cambodian islands. Also, it has a few nice beaches.

Before, Sihanoukville was a holiday destination for rich Cambodians. Now, it is full of visitors hailing from Phnom Penh during the weekends.

In recent times, lots of Chinese investments have come in Sihanoukville, completely transforming this city. Actually, the number of Chinese population outnumbers the local populace here! With that, a lot of casinos and hotels have been built, contaminating the city. Now, the city is dirty and crowded, and in need of better infrastructure.

Here are some places that you should check out in Sihanoukville!

Otres Beach

This is probably the cleanest beach in Sihanoukville. It is located just to the south of the more crowded Ochheuteal Beach.

Otres Beach isn’t an undiscovered piece of white sand as it was before, but still, it is a very relaxing place and very lengthy.

For now, it is still free from Chinese construction work, so it may be a great time to visit it now!

Kep

Blue Crab is the symbol of Kep.
Blue crab is the symbol of Kep.

Kep is a relaxing little town located 30 kilometers east of Kampot. It is situated on a small peninsula and provides wonderful views over the Bokor Mountain and Phu Quoc Island in the distance.

Kep is still in the early stages of tourism, mostly reserved for people from Phnom Penh coming over for weekend relaxation.

These days, foreign investments are slowly pouring in. You can see Westernized restaurants popping up by the coast. Regardless of that, the tranquil atmosphere remains untouched.

Kep is really relaxing and different from other towns in Cambodia. There is only one sand beach in the city center. One interesting thing is that this beach is completely made from sand imported from Kampot and Sihanoukville. There are other places where you can jump in the sea, but are shockingly dirty and full of garbage, especially near the mangrove forests.

Here are some places that you should check out in Kep!

Crab Market

You can smell the scent of seafood when near this market. It offers delicious seafood that isn’t expensive if you avoid the restaurants nearby.

On the Crab Market, you can try the local specialty, the blue crab. The crabs are caught and cooked right in front of your eyes. Expect to pay 5 to 10 USD per portion. The portions are huge, by the way!

Kep National Park

This place is located right in the middle of the Kep Peninsula, towering above the calm town. The entrance fee to the park is 1 USD, even though you can go there for free if there are no officials around.

Kep National Park is pretty clean compared to what you might see in the town. It offers great trekking trails, the main one being the 8-kilometer circuit around the mountain that you can cross with a motorbike. Also, there are inner trails that will test your trekking skills. Beware of macaques inhabiting this area!

The highlights of Kep National Park are the Little Buddha statue and the Sunset Rock. To get to the rock, you will need to hike some 15 minutes right after the entrance to the park. Sunset Rock offers an amazing view over the whole peninsula and is a great place to observe the sunset.

Koh Tonsay (Rabbit Island)

To get to Rabbit Island, you need to take a 20-minute ferry ride from the town. It will cost you 7 USD for a day return trip or 10 USD if you wish to stay longer.

It is a very relaxing place as there are no roads, just dense jungle in the middle of the island. That makes for a unique atmosphere and a lovely retreat.

There are several gold sand beaches around the island. Recent reports say that the main beach is full of garbage these days. Regardless of that, Koh Tonsay is a lovely place to explore for a day trip!


Now that you know about some amazing places on the Cambodian coast, don’t you think that it is a high time to pack your bag and explore this beauty?

19 Delicious Cambodian Dishes You Have To Try!

Cambodian cuisine is often overlooked in favor of its neighbors, Thailand and Vietnam. While not as diverse as these two, the Cambodian dishes have a specific charm going for it. From classic noodle dishes, to weird combinations with ants, the Cambodian cuisine doesn’t disappoint!

Here are the best Cambodian dishes that you have to try!


Fish Amok

Fish Amok

This is one of the most popular dishes in Cambodia. It is a fish mousse with fresh coconut milk, often served in a banana leaf. Another important ingredient of this amazing dish is kroeung – a curry paste made from lemongrass, garlic, galangal, and fingerroot. Slok Ngor, a herb that gives a bitter flavor to this dish is also included in this dish.


Lok Lak

Lok Lak

Lok Lak is one of the signature dishes of Cambodia. It is made of stir-fried beef or pork slices dipped in brown sauce and placed on lettuce leaves. Sometimes, it is topped with a fried egg. It is usually served with rice, sliced tomatoes, raw onion rings, and cucumber. Also, as a bonus, Lok Lak is served with a dipping sauce made of lime juice and pepper!


Num Pang

Num Pang

Num Pang is a crunchy baguette sandwich, drawing French influence. It is made of lots of different combinations, usually with grilled skewer meat or pate. It is grilled before serving and brushed with lime juice for better taste. Usually, it comes with papaya salad too!


Kuy Teav

Kuy teav

This is popular street food in Cambodia usually eaten for breakfast. Kuy Teav is a noodle soup made of pork or beef bones dipped in rice vermicelli. It has great flavor thanks to the combination of fried garlic, bean sprouts, green onions, and some aromatic herbs. This soup is served with chili paste, lime halves, and hoisin sauce. These serve as a great addition to an already delicious flavor!


Khmer Red Curry

Khmer Red Curry

This curry is really similar to Thai one, featuring a coconut milk base, but much less chili. That makes it much less spicy than the Thai variant. It features chicken, beef, fish, eggplants, green beans, potatoes, lemongrass, and kroeung. This curry is usually served at weddings, holidays and family gatherings.


Nom banh chok

Nom banh chok

This Cambodian dish is usually eaten for breakfast. It features thin rice noodles, beansprouts, cucumber, mint and basil, shredded banana leaves and green fish curry. You can easily find it carried by women on the street that balance a pole on their shoulders.


Prahok

Prahok

Prahok is a type of food that you will either love or hate. It is nicknamed as the Cambodian cheese because of its strong smell. Prahok is a fermented fish paste that is crushed and salted. It has a strong salty flavor and is used as a seasoning for many other dishes.


Green Mango Salad

Green Mango Salad

This delicious crunchy and refreshing salad is served alongside lots of Cambodian dishes. It features sliced green mango, fresh chili, sliced tomatoes, pickled cucumber, onion, peppers, and fresh mint.


Grilled Squid

Grilled Squid

It is usually found in seaside towns like Sihanoukville and Kep. You can also find it in Phnom Penh. The squid is grilled in a charcoal oven, then brushed with lime juice or fish sauce and then barbecued on wooden skewers. It is often served with a sauce made of a combination of fish sauce, lime juice, garlic, fresh chilies, and sugar.


Balut

Balut

This dish is definitely not for the faint-hearted! Balut is a fertilized duck embryo that is eaten whole. Locals absolutely love it as they believe that it is rich in protein and other nutrients.


Grilled Frog

Grilled Frog

This one is a local favorite. It features a chicken texture and white fish taste, a really unique combination. Grilled frog is really simple to make and really tasty as it is marinated in chili and garlic.


Lap Khmer

Lap Khmer

Lap Khmer is a lime-marinated beef salad. It features lots of garlic, fish sauce, basil and mint, shallot and bell peppers. This dish is topped with lots of chilies which make it very spicy!


Bai Sach Chrouk

Bai Sach Chrouk

This is common street food in Cambodia. It is grilled pork marinated in coconut milk and garlic, which give this dish rich flavor and texture. This dish is served with broken rice and fresh vegetables.


Crab

Crab

Crabs are best tasted in Kep, as they are freshly made there. They are stir-fried and flavored with pepper from Kampot, giving it a nice kick.


Grilled Fish

Fried Fish

This dish consists of a deep-fried fish that is finished on a hotplate. Then, it is dipped in coconut curry made of yellow kroeung and chili. Cauliflower and cabbage are also added to the curry. This dish is served with rice or rice noodles.


Samlor Machu Trey

Samlor machu trey

This is the Khmer sour soup. There are different types of this soup: with chicken, fish or pork. The sour taste comes from lime, tamarind, and tomatoes.


Twa Ko

Twa ko

Twa ko is the Cambodian sausage. It is made from beef and pork with various spices. Twa ko has 20 – 25% fat. Some people use pork belly as the main ingredient. Twa ko is served with steamed rice and vegetables.


Bobor Rice Porridge

Bobor Rice Porridge

This is popular breakfast food in Cambodia. It is a rice porridge served with ginger and fish or chicken and congealed blood, topped with coriander and fried onions. A very simple dish with a rich flavor, and one of the cheapest meals in Cambodia.


Red tree ants

Red Tree Ants

This weird dish has a sinister origin. It started to be eaten during the famine induced by the infamous Khmer Rouge. Back then, it was one of the only sources of protein. Now, it is a cheap source of protein. It is usually served with beef that is marinated in lime juice and chili, and then stir-fried. Ants are stir-fried with garlic, ginger, lemongrass, and shallots. This dish is served with rice.


There are a lot more of Cambodian dishes to try out other than these! The food scene of Cambodia awaits your arrival!

3 Common Scams in Cambodia and How to Avoid Them

3 Most Common Scams in Cambodia and How to Avoid Them

Are you planning to visit Cambodia soon? The Kingdom of Cambodia is often referred to as the Kingdom of Wonder, and for a good reason. There is the biggest religious site in the world, Angkor Wat, to back that up. More tourists are flocking to Cambodia with each passing year. That fact opens up many scam opportunities in Cambodia.

If you are traveling to Cambodia for the first time, it’s a good thing to come prepared for numerous scams in Cambodia.

Let’s dive in-depth in some of the most common scams that you may run into in Cambodia!