Experience in Kampot Cambodia
Krong Kampot. The top things about Kampot and the city’s best attractions.
Kampot Cambodia is a city that lies near the Praek Tuek Chhu River and is just southeast to the foothills of the Elephant Mountains. This is the capital city of Cambodia’s Kampot province and was ruled by the French for a long time, for this reason, it is dotted with 19th-century colonial French architecture.
The city was one of the most important seaports after the Mekong river delta since it is only 5km away from the Thai Gulf.
The city was famous as being an administrative city under the French colonial rule. The city today is a quiet and cozy place with visitors falling in love with lazy tones and feels from this beautiful city.
The streets even today seem to still be held prisoner to the past with the traditional 19th
Century designs still being adopted. The streets are quiet with people sat out in the streets basking in the sun or just enjoy the cool breeze coming from the estuary. Due to its amazing design and quaint feel, there is a growing community of expats that reside within the city.
They too like us fell in love with this beautiful place and are contributing to the city in many ways.
Rent a bicycle and explore the city
The best thing I found doing while in Kampot was hiring a bicycle from one of the local bike shops for several hours and just riding around this gem of a city. The sleepy and quaint feel you get from the city is just difficult to explain.
Such a cool Experience in Kampot. It’s a scene from an old west movie except it’s not Mexico but Kampot Cambodia and the architecture is French.
So not Mexican in any way. However, the feeling you get while riding around and exploring the sleepy city weirdly makes you feel more energetic.
It is a beautiful place the crumbling French architecture, the locals sat outside in chairs or in their shops and breeze from the estuary just make this place magical. Definitely add riding a bicycle to your itinerary because it’s not something you want to miss out on.
While riding your bike definitely check out the old fish market on the riverside. It is a local fish market with people from the city buying fish for their hotels, cafes and even homes.
It is busy in the morning but it is a marvelous sight to behold. Another trip should be the local lotus pond. The beautiful pond is like the city a nice place to just sit and relax while looking at the lotus flowers bobbing above the water ever so elegantly.
Bokor Hill Station
Another eerily beautiful place we found was great to visit during our stay in Kampot Cambodia was the Bokor Hill Station.
This place was used by the French like most of the conquerors from Europe to escape the summer heat. In 1925 the French built a grand casino and hotel which was used by the aristocracy and French elite to gamble and stay during the summer.
Now abandoned it lies atop the Bokor hill and is a gorgeous sight. Sometimes in morning when the fog is thick it rolls up the mountain to the casino and gives you chills.
The place is best for taking panoramic pictures of the views from the hill station. Hiking here will be a great way to experience Kampot.
You can on a clear day take a picture from the hillside and get the gulf of Thailand in it as well. Getting to the hill takes around 1-2 hours by moped which you can rent from any hotel or moped shop in the city. Next to the city is this beautiful old abandoned Catholic Church.
Left to the ravages of time this place has an eerie feel to it but it is an amazing sight to behold. The church with its crumbling walls and roof are just like into the past. Within the national park is another hotel and casino which is not abandoned so you can relax there while on your journey.
Another must-see place in Bokor national park is the “swirling clouds” waterfall called Povokvil in Cambodian.
This waterfall is aptly named because of the shimmering cascades that fall especially during the wet season when the serenity of the area is amplified. It is another great place to take pictures.
Phnom Chhngok Cave Temple
If you are in Kampot Cambodia a definite point on your itinerary should be the Phnom Chhngok caves and temple which is around 8kms away from Kampot city sits the only cave temple in all of Cambodia.
The caves are reachable once you’ve traversed the beautiful scenic routes that pass through the rural countryside. The temple itself is built within the cave. Walking through a rice paddy you have to pay an entrance fee to non-other than a monk.
Once inside the cave, you will find a magnificent elephant that is carved into the stalactite and one is also carved into the cave’s wall. Smack dab within the cave is a brick temple built in the 7th
century by Hindu worshipers of the god Vishnu. Inside the temple is another stalactite in the shape of a phallic organ.
The temple itself is preserved beautifully from the elements because of the cave itself. Within the cave are bats that line the ceiling of the cave and fly out through chimney-like holes in the roof of the cave.
Definitely, a place to visit since there is only one of these temples in Cambodia.
Chill out in Kampot
If you’re done exploring the surrounding countryside and have visited the national park and the caves and want to just enjoy what the city then that is not a bad idea either. I found that while walking the riverside you can find a multitude of activities to do.
You can go and hire a paddleboard for a few dollars and use that to paddle around the estuary. You can even visit the floating villages on one of these paddle boards which is truly a nice experience.
You sort of getting the feeling like you are in Hawaii or Florida paddling around the coast. Another popular thing to do is go Kite surfing this should definitely be on your to-do list if you want to see Kampot in all its glory from the skies. The calm water the natural beauty of the Cambodian forests all amount to a paradise that can be viewed will be gliding atop a kite.
This is the perfect sport for all those adrenaline junkies and even the calm person who enjoys the scenery because of the quiet and calm waters.
Experience in Kampot! Endnote
Kampot Cambodia is a beautiful place to visit if you do not want the hustle and bustle of a busy city like Phnom Phen.
The city’s amazing atmosphere and laid back culture make this place a once in a lifetime experience and one should definitely visit this beautiful place to get away from the busy lifestyle and tourist trap areas within large cities famous for tourism.
This city boasts a remarkable set of places to visit form the lush green forested mountains of Bokor National Park to the blue and calm estuary.
One can enjoy fine dining at the numerous amount of local cafes and restaurants. Eat authentic Cambodian food or even go for something fusion like the Cambodian style burgers served by many of the restaurants in the area.
The expat community in Kampot have with the help of the locals revived this slumbering city from its long eternal slumber and the city has slowly started to wake up with various activities now offered within the city.
You can even after exploring the surrounding hills and countryside always go for a nice relaxing spa treatment and one of the local spas and have a nice relaxing massage or just have them pamper you like a king or queen.
Kampot is truly a gem within Cambodia and should always be on everyone’s map.
The city offers so much combined with the charm of that city by the end of your trip you will not only be left with a sad feeling because you have left it but you will be happy you visited this beautiful city.
Kampot Cambodia, the destination for my weekend