Trek through Khmu villages for a glimpse of the culture in these mountains. Keep your eyes open to spot a variety of species of mammals and abundance of birdlife. This more rustic hiking and camping experience is a great addition to any Cambodia tour for those wanting to truly adventure into the great wilds of South East Asia.
Day 1 : Travel to Chi Phat Day 2 : Trek to Antong Prang Day 3 : Explore Veal Ta Prak | On to Chi Phat Village Day 4 : Return Phnom Penh
Trek the wild Cardamom Mountains in Cambodia
Encounter rural Khmu mountain villages
Spot wildlife and prolific birdlife in this stretch of wild rainforest
Depart Phnom Penh and travel by bus to Andong Tuek (approximately 4 hours), a small settlement along the Stoeng Prat River. Meet your local guide and board a local boat for a two hour cruise to Chi Phat. Along the way keep your eyes open for the birdlife that lives along the river. Upon your arrival, leave your luggage and enjoy a leisurely 1 mile (2 km) walk to the Chhay Chrey rapids. Feel free to take a dip in the river or relax on the bank. Return by motorbike taxi to Chi Phat and overnight in a community bungalow this evening.
Travelers are afforded the opportunity to experience Chi Phat as a result of the Wildlife Alliance. This organization is dedicated to providing a fair livelihood to the local villagers, as well as protecting the surrounding forest. All of the Chi Phat guides are native to the community and are experts of the area.
Rise early this morning to enjoy a spectacular sunrise on a boat overlooking the Stoeng Prat River. Enjoy a picnic breakfast on the water as the region awakes. The peaceful ride on a row boat allows you to enjoy the nature and wildlife in silent tranquility.
Arrive to Domnak Khos, a wildlife observation post and the starting point for your trek. For this first day of trekking, an English speaking forest ranger guides travelers about the region, as well as points out wildlife. This region is known for having the largest population of wild Asian elephants as well as leopards, sun bears, and gibbons. Keep your eyes open as you trek and you may get lucky enough to spot one! These forests are also the habitat for over 450 species of birds - four which are endemic to these mountains. Trek to O'Chonleas Pran and take a break for lunch. Continue on to the Antong Prang campsite where you spend the night. Visit Veal Ta Prak, a clearing in the forest with a large pond where wildlife typically gather at dusk and dawn. Enjoy today's sunset in this spot before walking back to your campsite. Overnight tonight in hammocks at Antong Prang.
Hiking Distance: 8.6 miles (14 km) Difficulty: Moderate, with some rolling ascents and descents.
Day 3 Explore Veal Ta Prak | On to Chi Phat Village
Rise early again today to walk back to Veal Ta Prak before sunrise to observe the wildlife activity this morning. Trek back to the campsite for breakfast and continue on your journey to Chhay Kpous waterfall. Stop here for a rest, swim and picnic lunch before trekking onward to Chi Phat village mid-afternoon where you can leisurely explore the village. Enjoy a simple dinner at the community project headquarters. Overnight in a community bungalow again this evening.
Hiking Distance: 11 miles (17-18 km) Difficulty: Moderate, mostly gradual ascents/descents
Day 4 Return Phnom Penh
After breakfast say goodbye to your hosts, then start back by boat to Andong Teuk and onward to Phnom Penh.
Everything was amazing! The planning with Adventure Life went smoothly. The actual trip was fantastic! One of the best trips I have experienced. The cruise staff members were knowledgeable and attentive. I will be writing more about this on the blog!
When to Go
Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.
Chance for unpredictable weather but with fewer visitors.
Typically not offered during this period because of weather conditions.